Tasmanian Times

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

Alex Wadsley

Love, Truth and Noodles for North Korea

*Pic: Image from HERE

First published September 5

All the experts keep saying that there are no easy solutions to the North Korean nuclear missile crisis; that the alternative of war is too horrible to contemplate and we might need to accept and normalise an evil, nuclear-armed, Kim family dictatorship.

Perhaps there is a better way we can respond? Not with threats of war, but with love, truth and noodles.

I was inspired when I saw an article on South Korean activists sending balloons over the border with North Korea with propaganda, including as one activist put it, empty packets of noodles to show how rich they were in the South.

Sending empty packets of noodles to a starving enslaved country is cruel.

But how about sending full packets of noodles to North Korea? How about enclosing those noodles in packets that contain messages of love for the people of North Korea and the truth about how well the people of South Korea are doing under their democratic free-market government?

The North Korean regime relies on the isolation of North Korea from the rest of the world to keep their people enslaved. Sanctions helps the regime to keep control, it has not stopped their missile program. Their propaganda machine relies on the threats of military action from America to justify the repression of their people. And Trump, it seems, plays along.

Sending thousands of balloons over the Korean border and from the sea delivering free food to the people of North Korea might seem antagonistic. It is intended to be. Nuclear tests and firing missiles over Japan should not go unanswered …

… But it should be answered with true strength, not bellicose threats.

The truth is an existential threat to the North Korean regime in a way that war is not.

The nations of the world need to embrace this, and start thinking constructively, not fearfully, on how to adapt to a collapse of the Kim regime. Food is a critical issue. China and South Korea both fear the consequences of millions of refugees streaming across their borders. Having a plan to feed the people of North Korea, in North Korea, is part of the solution. Air-dropping noodles perhaps?

Politically, we need China to be comfortable that a reunited Korea will not mean further encroachment of US military bases and forces. It should be agreed that a reunited Korea no-longer needs US bases, and will have an ‘armed neutral’ status, similar to Sweden or Switzerland.

And finally, the Kim family needs a way out. Many of them probably want this. I doubt being the prince of a prison camp is much fun. Kim Jong Un’s brother was disowned for trying to go to Disneyland, and later murdered in Malaysia. If China offered political sanctuary and South Korea offered a big bribe, the Kim family might just be willing to accept wealthy exile as an alternative to extermination and war.

But it starts by saying we have an option other than war, by saying we should help the people of North Korea, feed them and let them know what is happening in the world outside.

It starts with love, truth and noodles.

*Alexis Wadsley is an analyst working for the State Government. This article represents his own views and not those of his employer or any other organisation. If you think this idea has any merit, please pass it on and add your own ideas. We need to think creatively to avoid a Hobson’s choice between war and the appeasement of evil.

RT Question more: ‘US and N.Korea need to grow up and stop saber-rattling with nuclear weapons’

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25 Comments

25 Comments

  1. Leonard Colquhoun

    September 11, 2017 at 4:13 pm

    Lovely sentiments in Comment 24, and a nice reminder of what might be.

    Sadly, the Kim Jung-ons of the world don’t seem to do ‘lovely’ and ‘nice’ – just look at how they treat their own citizens, and how un-nice Mr Kim treats members of his own family.

  2. Annie

    September 11, 2017 at 3:08 pm

    Civil society’s peak peace activist network in Australia is called IPAN. It met in Melbourne at the weekend with participants also travelling from South Korea and New Zealand etc.
    Representatives asked for no sanctions against North Korea as an act of good faith. IPAN resolved to call on the USA to refrain from further installations of nuclear weapons delivery systems in South Korea.
    IPAN recommend further diplomacy and negotiation.

    This would avoid the risk of a catastrophe and associated famine with nuclear winter that would affect 100s of millions of people.

    I think it would be good if UN Secretary General Antonio could invite North Korea to sign the Nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty and also the new treaty to rid the world of Nuclear Weapons.

    I feel it would help if all the world’s nuclear scientists made a group effort to switch to peaceful non nuclear research such as solar/wind technology in accord with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

  3. Peter Godfrey

    September 10, 2017 at 6:55 pm

    A country such as North Korea has every right to defend itself. The U.S often carries out practice war exercises off it’s coast and in South Korea. The U.S has just been carrying out exercises with Japan and South Korea very recently.
    We must ask ourselves why, why is it OK for the U.S and its allies to play war games just off the coast of countries it dislikes.
    Why is is that the U.S does not accept other countries right to a peaceful lifestyle.
    Just who has North Korea attacked recently, say in the last 50 years?
    After massive military exercises aimed at practicing an invasion on North Korea, the North Korean leader fired a couple of missiles.
    A bit of an Up Yours, really. That is all.
    So Mr Trump is openly threatening to use nuclear weapons. Who is the most dangerous person in the world at the moment?
    Who has possibly a couple of nuclear weapons but may have just been faking their tests, and who definitely has thousands of nuclear weapons and is prepared to use them.
    Stop being led by the media people.

  4. Russell

    September 10, 2017 at 4:29 pm

    Re #20
    I agree with you completely, Annie.

    Indigenous Australians have recognised areas wherever uranium occurs as “sickness country” long before anyone dug it up for weapons, etc. They would avoid these areas totally.

    Regarding its use as an energy source, there is a safer alternative, if you can call anything radioactive ‘safe’: Thorium. It can be safely turned on and off without notice.

    Uranium on the other hand cannot, as it is going to keep going until the reaction runs its course. The only thing that is keeping it under some sort of ‘control’ is massive amounts of “pure” water to cool it down. It’s just plain lunacy.

  5. Leonard Colquhoun

    September 10, 2017 at 3:25 pm

    A ‘challenging’ website relevant to this point in Comment 19, “much of the Turk has leaked into Greek society, manners, attitudes, food, music, dance… “: http://www.helleniccomserve.com/tourkokratia.html .

  6. Annie

    September 10, 2017 at 1:52 pm

    re: 18
    yes all the more reason to cease exporting uranium and all the more reason to sign onto the new treaty.
    All the more reason to stand up for the existing nuclear non proliferation treaty as well.

  7. Christopher Eastman-Nagle

    September 10, 2017 at 1:30 am

    The Koreans have no reason to love the Japanese. The Imperial system was brutal and brutalizing. But the thing about any powerful experience, is that it leaves its mark.

    People who have been subjected to extreme violence often become like that themselves.

    Even the south, which has traditionally been associated with ‘the free world’, has had an extremely authoritarian system until quite recently. The South Korean CIA had much in common with the old Japanese Kempetai, which was the Japanese equivalent of the Gestapo.

    But on the whole, the south inherited more of the Japanese commercial culture whereas the north inherited the military one. Hyundai and Mitsubishi are almost seamlessly similar.

    I married into the Greek community. The Greeks still absolutely loathe the Turks. Greeks and Turks drink exactly the same coffee, but you will not be served if you ask for a Turkish one in Athens. Despite the ongoing hatred, much of the Turk has leaked into Greek society, manners, attitudes, food, music, dance…

  8. Russell

    September 9, 2017 at 5:03 pm

    Re #11
    Sorry Anne, but Australia makes a lot of money selling the materials to produce the world’s nuclear armoury.

  9. Simon Warriner

    September 6, 2017 at 10:43 pm

    Leonard. I did not have the luxury of a retired lifestyle to perfect my composition. Sorry about that.

    That the Koreans who live in an open and democratic society tend to join forces when outsiders threaten them makes it more, rather than less likely that their put upon NK peers would do the same, for the same reason. The totalitarian nature of NK’s media only makes that more likely, not less. Regardless, my take is that invasion or massive military strikes will not deliver up the result that will see the SK’s safe and secure.

    Unfortunately I missed an interview this arvo with a korean woman who had gone undercover in NK to investigate the NK leadership. On the ABC, The world today. If anyone heard it a summary would be much appreciated.

  10. Leonard Colquhoun

    September 6, 2017 at 1:12 pm

    “As to whether the obdurate and OTT nature of the NK leadership is a result of Jap imperial influence or simply an expression of the Korean national character I would lean toward it being the latter” (Comment 15) – wouldn’t it be far more accurate to exclude any cause like “national character” (on what should be quite obvious grounds), and re-phrase the choice this way:

    ‘As to whether the obdurate and OTT nature of the NK leadership is a result of Japanese imperial influence or mainly an expression of the standard MO of institutionalised one-party totalitarian attitudes, I would lean toward it being the latter.’

    Besides, twice as many Koreans live in a very vibrant democracy and very open society.

    Could it be that the 23,000,000 wretches N of the 38th parallel are mass-victims of (among many other things) Stockholm syndrome?

  11. Simon Warriner

    September 6, 2017 at 2:04 am

    re 12, I am interested to know if you have ever tried making that argument with an actual Korean, Chris. I certainly wouldn’t. They hate the Japs with a passion.

    As to whether the obdurate and OTT nature of the NK leadership is a result of Jap imperial influence or simply an expression of the Korean national character I would lean toward it being the latter.

  12. Mike Adams

    September 5, 2017 at 11:47 pm

    No 8. Thanks, John. A North Korean view would be that their country has already been invaded by the U.S., acting as the United Nations.

    They would also bear in mind the loss of one fifth of their population and the deliberate burning and flattening of their cities and towns during the months that the U.S. Air Force’s B 29s acted without opposition.

    Had Britain had such a loss of population during WW 2 it would be hardly surprising if its distaste for Germany had not reached higher levels

  13. Leonard Colquhoun

    September 5, 2017 at 8:23 pm

    “Otherwise they become the victims wedged between two tyrannical ideologies that see war as the only solution” (Comment 1): do tell what these two tyrannies would be?

  14. Christopher Eastman-Nagle

    September 5, 2017 at 7:20 pm

    Korea is still a very Japanese place, even though the Imperial system left in ’45.

    The South inherited the commercial/industrial template of the Zaibatsu conglomerates…like Hyundai, which the Koreans call Chaebols. The North inherited the military culture and they are every bit as uber aggressive as their mentor, which from top to bottom was even more over the top than the German Waffen SS.

    The refusal by the North Koreans to negotiate a peace treaty after the armistice is entirely in line with what the attitude of the JIA would have been.

    This is why I regard a lot of so called progressives (whatever that means other than being the most improved students in clown school) commentary on the present ‘situation’ equivalencing the US and The North with such contempt. And while Trump may be a top of the class and very dangerous clown himself, the Americans generally have been very careful to just do the minimum necessary to live with a status quo that they cannot do much to change.

    And yes, it looks very much like Mr Kim is forcing the Americans to the brink of a nuclear confrontation because he thinks they will eventually back down. It is just an awful pity that he didn’t do that with Obama, because I think Trump may very well go to the wire on this….a Cuban missile crisis with an antagonist who may well not back down at the last minute, like the Russians did…

    The ghost of the Japanese Imperial Army lives and thrives in North Korea….

  15. Annie

    September 5, 2017 at 3:02 pm

    I feel that it would be very helpful at this point if Foreign Minister Julie Bishop signed Australia on to the new visionary United Nations Treat to Ban Nuclear Weapons. She will attend the forthcoming meeting on 2oth September in New York where a further invitation to sign on will be issued by the United Nations General Assembly.

    Already 122 countries have signed the new convention which prohibits the use and development and testing of nuclear weapons, and also includes mechanisms to disarm existing nuclear weapons; and initiate redress for countries that have suffered the effects of testing.

    Many more countries have supported the new convention as it comes into force as a legally abiding international law. The International Campaign Against Nuclear Weapons and Friends of the Earth also support it, as does the International Red Cross.

    To date Foreign Minister Bishop has actively played a role with Australia’s support as a signatory for the existing Nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty. Signing the new treaty will add to the work already done; and go beyond that.

    Signing the new Treaty will not only protect Australia’s interests but also send a vital message to those countries that have nuclear weapons; and also help to de-escalate tensions.

    The new Treaty will establish a new norm just as prior treaties to ban chemical weapons and other harmful weapons have established global norms.

    The bulk of peaceful civil society worldwide support the new convention.

  16. Lynne Newington

    September 5, 2017 at 2:45 pm

    @8. A big tick on Michael Kirby and hoped someone better versed than I would pick up and run with it here.

  17. Peter Godfrey

    September 5, 2017 at 2:45 pm

    #4 Well put Simon.
    The U.S. economy is totally dependent on military spending and selling military hardware.
    The only way that Trump can make America great again is to sell and make more weapons.
    So that is his plan.
    For anyone to believe the lies peddled by main stream media or the pollies is just gullible.
    Does anyone remember.
    The wheat sales to Iraq.
    Weapons of Mass destruction that Iraq surely had.
    Why we have to have U.S bases on our soil.
    Why the U.S. has been continuously at war since their own war for independence.
    Why they invaded Panama, supported the Contra Rebels in Nicaragua, why they supported Pol Pot, why they invaded Iraq in the first place, or why they invaded Afghanastan.
    Can anyone tell me why they did not stop the Rwandan genocide, why they don’t get involved in the wars that are raging in Africa where children are kidnapped and turned into child soldiers.
    My guess is it all comes down to self interest and which countries have things the U.S wants such as Oil.

  18. John Biggs

    September 5, 2017 at 1:16 pm

    Justice Michael Kirby had it right on the Drum when he said that since the Korean War the US has been seen as an enemy intent on invading N Korea. Not true we know but they have been indoctrinated for generations since that the US is their enemy and that is a logical if mistaken fear (but do not forget that the US has caused more wars since WW2 than any other country). If you believe that then the Kim dynasty’s strategy of arming to the teeth is perfectly logical. They are not “intent on war” as the US very dangerously asserts, but intent on keeping invaders out, which has very different implications for the West.

    And to think as I write that Trump is conning our very weak and connable PM into joining up in a war against N Korea.

  19. Charlie

    September 5, 2017 at 3:43 am

    I think we need to bring our own PM into line with his push to bully China to do something about NK.
    Turnbull’s autocratic style is losing him many friends inside and outside of Australia.
    Where to then?

    He is right out of his depth I believe and needs to think before his ever increasing, ill-thought public comments cause us harm.

    Australia does not have the big stick that he alludes to. Turnbull is a very small fish in a big pond.
    http://www.sbs.com.au/news/article/2017/09/01/second-class-citizen-west-chinese-newspaper-slams-malcolm-turnbull-over-north

  20. Lynne Newington

    September 5, 2017 at 1:38 am

    @5. If the US had been happy to accept a unified Korea in the wake of WWII, this situation would not have arisen, but then if Japan had not bombed Pearl Harbour, if the Archduke hadn’t been assassinated in Serbia in 1914, if Caesar hadn’t…
    It wouldn’t have saved the Jews……

  21. Tim Thorne

    September 5, 2017 at 12:50 am

    Perhaps the example of the Kim dynasty might make those who are asking for “strong and stable leadership’ from governments think more carefully, but, sadly, I doubt it.

    If the US had been happy to accept a unified Korea in the wake of WWII, this situation would not have arisen, but then if Japan had not bombed Pearl Harbour, if the Archduke hadn’t been assassinated in Serbia in 1914, if Caesar hadn’t…

  22. Simon Warriner

    September 5, 2017 at 12:05 am

    re #2, NK has enough conventional artillery aimed at Seoul to return it to the stone age in very short order. That artillery is hidden in tunnels and well manned and supplied with shells.

    10 million South Koreans will die if anyone attempts the insanity you are advocating. And that is only in the opening salvo. That is exactly why South Korea’s president stated last week that South Korea, and only South Korea will decide if and when force is used. He knows the truth, and what is at stake.

    Time to stop taking everything our idiot mainstream media report as gospel and look a little deeper.

    Who has NK invaded recently? Ever? And the US?

    What lessons have the demise of Iraq, Libya, and the attempted rape of Syria taught NK? That nuclear weapons in your armoury make it a hell of a lot harder for the US empire to “regime change” and sow chaos. The US, Japan and South Korea have been conducting exercises that are essentially mock invasions of NK for years and the actions of NK can be seen as justifiable responses to those exercises.

    The Russians and Chinese have suggested a diplomacy based way forward, which trades nuclear restraint on NK’s part for cessation of threatening behavior from the SK and US parties. That threatening behavior has been going on for decades, and has driven the NK’s pursuing the nuclear option based on the simple economics of it being cheaper than maintaining a massive standing army to deter the threatened US/SK invasion.

    The ridiculous US neocon tart, Nikki Halley can rant all she likes at the UN, but with both Russia and China having veto, if the US really wants to go to war it will have to do it without the legal cover of a unsc resolution.

    Yes, the regime in NK is a dictatorship and it needs to go, but while ever there is a threat on NK’s border with SK the NK population will support their leadership. Maintaining and amping up that threat only strengthens the dictators position.

    it’s the old thing about it being easy to bring the people to their leaders bidding, just tell them they are being attacked. God knows the NK population has enough reason to hate the US and it’s allies, and especially Japan.

    And everyone will have noticed in this mornings news a low key mention of Trump approving a massive sale of new missile systems for SK. War is great for business, it seems.

  23. Lynne Newington

    September 4, 2017 at 8:31 pm

    Yes Tony @2.
    Ideologies believe they are right and no matter what happens they will win out in the end. However historical fact states ideologues, are never right and their refusal to accept reality and work within it, is the most visible aspect of all ideologies and why there are never ending wars on the planet.

  24. Tony Stone

    September 4, 2017 at 8:05 pm

    Nothing like living in a disney land mentality, claiming all we have to do to fix the Korean problem, is give them love and truth. Pretty funny when you look at how that approach has worked throughout history, to the fatal detriment of the advocates and everyone else involved.

    We are dealing with ideologies here, not reality and reality expressly says only taking out the entire hierarchy of NK will stop a war.

    Ideologies believe they are right and no matter what happens they will win out in the end. However historical fact states ideologues, are never right and their refusal to accept reality and work within it, is the most visible aspect of all ideologies and why there are never ending wars on the planet.

    Mad Kim now has the weapons to threaten the rest of the planet, no way will he give up those or stop pushing the buttons of everyone else.

    Ignore him and he will continue on until the only think that satisfies him will be attack, Cajole him and it will boost his ego and make him think he is now in charge and everyone will adhere to his demands what ever they are.

    There is only one way to relieve the planet of this threat and bring long term peace. That’s to make the biggest most destructive surgical strike on NK that will take him and his family out, cripple his entire arsenal to the point where NK can’t reply.

    Without the ruling family and severely depleted armed forces, NK will have to come into line with everyone else.

    To do nothing, but try to appease this ideological relic of the past, will only make it worse. We have the time lines and outcomes of every war in history, so can gauge what will happen and it always ends up as, those doing the appeasing get the brunt of the oppositions force.

    If those advocating such suicidal approaches, had any sense they wouldn’t make such ridiculous fairy land claims. But would realise there is only one thing that stops ideologues, remove their support and remove them.

    Kim is desperate to prove his point and attack something. If he launches a nuke and the yanks shoot it down when high up in the atmosphere, the resulting EMF and associated air pressures, will wipe out every form of electronics within hundred of klms and also flatten everything within its destructive range.

    Much better to flatten all NK’s missile arsenals and artillery, then they would be crippled. Apply an economic blockade and demand the opening of NK to the world, to remove the blockade.

    Knocking out Kim with one huge hit, will make both Russia and china think twice about making waves or taking over other societies.

  25. Jack

    September 4, 2017 at 5:39 pm

    Exactly. Hook them up to wifi using Google balloon platforms and bomb them with iPhones too (those millions of devices that sit unused in drawers because they are not the latest versions).

    Let the people of North Korea sort out their problems by giving them the metabolic fuel and information to do so. Otherwise they become the victims wedged between two tyrannical ideologies that see war as the only solution.

    Because when the only tool you have is a hammer every problem looks like a nail.

    But we all know that this will never happen. The strategy takes the power from the warmongers at both ends of the spectrum. It undermines governance and control in NK and the West. It is too democratic and humane and puts power in the hands of the people and exposes political rhetoric and narrative as lies.

    We can’t have that can we? Where would it stop?

    How can the people of N Korea be given insight and the ability to expose the lies of their regime while our own struggles daily to deceive us through spin, press release and mass media?

    And if the people of NK found the Australian Parliament online I suspect that they would stay with their Great Leader anyway.

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