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North Korea, Imperialism, and Nuclear Weapons

November 11, 2006


Let me begin by stating I think all nuclear weapons should be eliminated. It was a terrible mistake for humanity that nuclear bombs were ever invented. In a world dominated by imperialism, a system driven by profit, exploitation and military “might makes right,” it was inevitable, I suppose, that nukes were developed.

There are 5 major nuclear weapons powers in the world. The United States, which first developed nuclear weapons and which is the only country to ever use them on human beings (the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945 – neither of which were significant military targets, both of which suffered tens of thousands of civilian casualties). The U.S. today has over 10,000 highly developed and weaponized nuclear bombs, missles, and artillery rounds. Russia has a somewhat similar number and assortment of nukes. France, England and China have smaller but also high tech arsenals of nuclear weapons. In the late 90’s, India and Pakistan joined the nuclear weapons group when they tested nuclear bombs. Both countries have small arsenals now.

It is a known “secret” that Israel, with clandestine assistance from the U.S. military, acquired nuclear weapons in the 1970’s. They are assumed to have a small but sizable nuclear arsenal today.

On October 8, 2006, North Korea successfully tested a nuclear bomb. Several days earlier, the Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea (DPRK – usually called North Korea in the U.S. media) Foreign Ministry issued a clear statement, “The U.S. extreme threat of a nuclear war and sanctions and pressure compel the DPRK to conduct a nuclear test, an essential process for bolstering nuclear deterrent, as a corresponding measure for defense.”

The Bush government, the corporate news media and most of the ruling elite in America, are falling over each other condemning and demonizing this nuclear test by the DPRK.

It’s important to look at this situation with a little reflection. Who is the U.S. government, Britain, France or any of the armed to the teeth nuclear weapons powers, to criticize North Korea for testing one small bomb? Let’s remember the United States was instrumental in dividing the ancient nation of Korea into a South and North in the 1940’s. It was the U.S. that sent huge armies to the Korean peninsula in the early 1950’s to fight a war there, and who has maintained an army of occupation numbering 10’s of thousands of soldiers in South Korea ever since. It is the U.S. government that has refused to officially end the Korean war and who has refused to sign a treaty of peace with the DPRK.

In recent times, President Bush singled out North Korea, along with Iraq and Iran as an “axis of evil.” In 2002, in the official U.S. government “Nuclear Posture Review”, North Korea was listed as a target for U.S. nuclear missiles.

Perhaps most ominously, in 2002 Bush stated his policy of “preemption”, where the U.S. government declared its “right” to unilaterally attack, invade, overthrow the existing government, and occupy any country it considered an enemy. We all know that within a year, this is exactly what the Bush government did to Iraq. Although the U.S. is now bogged down in a deadly war of resistance to its occupation and the initial reasons for the war (Iraq’s supposed nuclear, chemical and biological weapons of mass destruction), have been proven false, the U.S. government still claims it was right to invade Iraq. This lesson was certainly learned by countries around the world. If you don’t bow down to U.S. imperialism and do as it commands, you better have weapons powerful enough to make the U.S. government think twice, or you will be next to get invaded.

The DPRK now has a more powerful weapon. They have as much right, and probably a lot more need, to have nuclear weapons as any other country, including the 7 official nuclear weapons nations, plus Israel. North Korea is a small, poor, but proud nation. It has resisted imperialism and U.S. threats and sanctions for decades. It has developed its own economic system and in recent years moved towards a process of reunification with South Korea. The people of America have nothing to fear from North Korea. What we should do is push our government to finally, after 53 years, sign a peace treaty with the DPRK. The crisis on the Korean peninsula could be resolved if the U.S. government would just do three basic things: 1.) sign a peace treaty and recognize the sovereignty of the DPRK; 2.) establish normal diplomatic and economic relations between the two countries; 3.) guarantee the DPRK’s security against a preemptive U.S. attack. Although we don’t often hear this in the corporate U.S. news media, the North Korean government has been asking for these 3 steps for the last 50 years.

It is time for the U.S. to quit bullying North Korea. They now have a nuclear weapon so this “game” is now potentially much more deadly. Today it is more important that ever, that we the American public become more aware of what the U.S. government is doing in our name, what the real history is behind places like Korea, Cuba, Venezuela, Iran, etc, before we are stuck in some new “Iraq type” war. Let’s work to end this Iraq war by bringing ALL U.S. troops home now – period! And let’s not let Bush or some future U.S. government scam us into attacking North Korea or any other country.

Knowledge is power
Imperialism brings war

Jaan Laaman
anti-imperialist political prisoner

Jaan Laaman (W87237)
P.O. Box 100
South Walpole, MA 02071

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