KOREA | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


KOREA

Mar 09 13:37

NY Times Reporter Tells CNN | Trump Deserves ‘Enormous Credit’ For North Korea Breakthrough…

Words you don't often hear on CNN...

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Mar 09 08:18

Trump, Kim Agree to Meet ‘by May’

President Trump has announced that an offer conveyed to the United States from North Korea by way of South Korea’s visiting delegation, initially speculated to be a proposal for direct talks, is “almost beyond that,” and stands to be one of the most significant diplomatic proposals in decades. The offer was announced publicly by South Korea’s National Security Adviser Chung Eui-Yong.

North Korea is inviting President Trump to directly meet with Kim Jong-un, with the two talking about North Korea disarming its nuclear program. North Korea added that they would pause nuclear and missile development during the talks.

South Korea’s delegation of high-ranking officials visiting Pyongyang earlier this week was an historic move. A meeting between Trump and Kim would be far, far more important, which could reasonably be called the biggest diplomatic measure on North Korea since the Korean War.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

It looks like Netanyahu told Trump, "Forget North Korea. Your job is to attack Iran!"

Mar 09 07:39

U.S., South Korea to Discuss Pyongyang’s Denuclearization Offer

White House National Security Adviser Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster will meet his South Korean counterpart as Washington weighs Pyongyang’s offer to discuss giving up its nuclear program, administration officials said.

Mar 08 17:47

President Donald Trump ACCEPTS Kim Jong-un's offer to meet and says he'll do it by May after North Korea vows to suspend its nuclear weapons testing program

President Donald Trump has accepted North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un's dramatic offer to meet, and he'll do it by May, a South Korean official said Thursday evening.

South Korea's national security adviser Chung Eui-yong told U.S. press that the goal of the face-to-face talk is to achieve permanent denuclearization on the Korean Peninsula.

Chung did not say where the meeting would take place.

Kim sent a personal letter to the U.S. president that was delivered Thursday.

The message was passed to the White House through a South Korean delegation which held their own talks with the dictator this week.

In return, Kim is offering to suspend his nuclear missile testing program, Chung told White House officials before he briefed press from the building's North Lawn.

Mar 08 16:24

BREAKING | President Trump Will Announce ‘Major Statement’ On North Korea At 7 PM…

Just hit the wires a few minutes ago. Story is still developing...

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Mar 08 08:32

Donald Trump 'lacks necessary expertise' for North Korea nuclear missile disarmament talks

NORTH Korea could be willing to halt the deadly nuclear weapons programme but Donald Trump’s administration lacks the expertise to engage in such sensitive talks as the White House lacks the strategic expertise to engage constructively, according to former officials and analysts.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Another attempt by the military industrial complex to undermine the White House and push for profitable war!

Mar 07 13:51

Kim Jong-un says US is 'the sworn enemy to humankind' as South Korean President Moon warns it's 'too early to be optimistic' over North's offer of denuclearisation

North Korea has described the US as 'the sworn enemy to humankind' as the South warned it was 'too early' to be optimistic' over Kim Jong-un's denuclearisation offer.

Pyongyang's Rodong news outlet accused America of being intent on 'pushing the planet into another dreadful nuclear disaster' and 'destroying world peace and security'.

It comes as South Korean President Moon Jae-in sounded a note of caution over the North's offer of denuclearisation talks.

Moon said it was 'too early to be optimistic', even as US leader Donald Trump welcomed the development.

Mar 07 13:22

US Wants Inter-Korean Thaw Undermined

Washington has been hostile toward North Korea throughout the entire post-WW II era because of its sovereign independence – not for any threat the country poses.

The DPRK never attacked another nation throughout its entire history, threatening none now.

Unless provoked to believe its security is gravely threatened, there’s isn’t the remotest possibility it would attack another country.

If Washington and the West had normalized relations with Pyongyang, respecting its sovereignty, its leadership never would have pursued the development of nuclear and intercontinental ballistic missiles.

Mar 07 08:32

US Imposes More Sanctions On North Korea Despite Diplomatic "Breakthrough"

Barely 12 hours after a "breakthrough" report that North Korean leaders might be willing to shut down their nuclear program and surrender their existing nukes in exchange for assurances that the regime's safety would be guaranteed, the State Department announced that it would impose yet another round of economic sanctions on the North - its second batch of sanctions within the span of two weeks, per Reuters.

Mar 07 08:29

‘Possibility of a Great Breakthrough': Korean Peace Talks Depend on US Approach

On Tuesday, it was revealed that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un informed a South Korean envoy that he was willing to discuss scrapping his nuclear program if the US was also willing to make some security guarantees.

"The North Korean side clearly stated its willingness to denuclearize," a statement from the office of South Korean President Moon Jae-in noted. "It made it clear that it would have no reason to keep nuclear weapons if the military threat to the North was eliminated and its security guaranteed."

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The US approach was more sanctions!

Mar 07 07:48

US State Department finds North Korea assassinated Kim Jong-un's half-brother with chemical warfare agent VX at airport in Malaysia, and imposes new sanctions

The US State Department has said that the North Korean government used chemical warfare agent VX to assassinate half-brother of Kim Jong-un in Malaysia in 2017

State Department says it has imposed additional sanctions on North Korea over the assassination.

An autopsy showed the banned VX nerve agent was found on Kim's face and in his eyes, blood, urine, clothing and bag

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The key part that is missing is proof that the North Korean government had anything to do with this. The new sanctions are just another way to goad North Korea into a reckless action to ignite a war.

Mar 07 07:04

N Korea reactor likely resumed plutonium production for weapons: 38 North

Commercial satellite images show that a key reactor at North Korea’s Yongbyon nuclear research facility may have resumed production of plutonium for nuclear weapons, according to an article posted on 38 North, a website dedicated to analysis of North Korea.

Analysts Frank Pabian, Joseph Bermudez and Jack Liu said the photos from February 25 indicate that the 5-megawatt reactor at the facility continued to show signs of operation as indicated by steam-vapor plumes emanating from the generator hall and river ice melt near the reactor.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Hardly compelling evidence, but then again, nuclear weapons are the only real guarantee against invasion, so who could blame North Korea, given the track record of the US government in breaking promises not to invade nations that disarm.

Mar 06 15:23

Donald Trump cautious on N Korea nuclear disarmament talks

Donald Trump has reacted cautiously to news that North Korea is willing to talk about giving up its nuclear weapons if it did not feel threatened.

The US president said "the statements coming out of South Korea and North Korea have been very positive", but also said it might be a "false hope".

South Korea earlier said the subject was raised when its officials met the North's leader, Kim Jong-un, on Monday.

Seoul said Mr Kim was also open to US talks, and would pause weapons testing.

Mar 06 11:35

Kim Jong-un seeks reunification with South Korea– end of an era?

NORTH KOREAN leader Kim Jong Un met senior South Korean government officials for the first time and said it is his “firm will to vigorously advance” inter-Korean ties and pursue reunification, the North's official news agency said on Tuesday.

Mar 06 10:49

‘Truly Unprecedented’: High Level Inter-Korean Talks See Promising Start

"There were amazing pictures of the Korean delegate… they went to North Korea on a South Korean military aircraft… and the most interesting thing, truly unprecedented, is that they actually met with Kim Jong-un within three hours — that is truly something that has never happened before," she added, before saying that "if all goes well I think we're going to have some major breakthrough."

Mar 06 10:29

US preventing easing of tensions on Korean Peninsula

An analyst believes whenever there is an easing of tensions between the two Koreas, Washington sends a signal to Seoul to pull back.

Mar 06 10:11

Kim Jong-un says giving up North Korea's nuclear weapons was his father's last wish as the rogue state offers to halt missile tests if US agrees to talks

Kim Jong-un has revealed that giving up North Korea's nuclear weapons was his father's last wish.

The tyrant reportedly said his late father Kim Jong-Il had wanted de-nuclearisation across the Korean Peninsula.

His comments were revealed by South Korean President Moon Jae-in's top security adviser, Chung Eui-yong, who returned home earlier today from a two-day trip to Pyongyang.

During the visit, the rogue state said it will not need to keep its nuclear weapons if military threats against it are resolved and it receives a 'credible security guarantee'.

Mar 06 08:46

'The world is watching': North Korea reportedly would consider abandoning nukes program

North Korea said it is willing to talk to the United States about abandoning its nuclear weapons program if its security can be guaranteed, South Korea's government said Tuesday.

If confirmed, the move would mark a significant departure from North Korea's previous stance on its nuclear program and give momentum to South Korea's efforts to bring the United States and North Korea together for talks.

The North said it would stop testing nuclear weapons and missiles for the duration of any "candid talks" it may hold with Washington, South Korea's Yonhap news agency reported.

In a tweet Tuesday, President Trump said the announcement signaled "possible progress" in efforts to get North Korea to discuss its nuclear program.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Korea must reunify now, or North Korea will be attacked by the US as soon as it gives up its weapons of deterrence.

Mar 05 10:01

US Media Airs Pretexts for Preemptive Attack on North Korea

On February 27, a lengthy New York Times article featured allegations by unnamed “United Nations’ experts” that North Korea “has been shipping supplies to the Syrian government that could be used in the production of chemical weapons.” It asserted that

“possible chemical weapons components” were “part of at least 40 previously unreported shipments by North Korea to Syria between 2012 and 2017 of prohibited ballistic missile parts and materials that could be used for both military and civilian purposes.”

The article claims the newspaper “reviewed” a 200-page report by the purported UN experts. It admits that the document has not been officially released and, according to a UN official cited in the article, there are no plans to publish it. The article further concedes that “experts who viewed the report said the evidence it cited did not prove definitively that there was current, continuing collaboration between North Korea and Syria on chemical weapons” [emphasis added].

Mar 05 08:32

An attack on North Korea could start a US-China war -- Don't do it

Following the Winter Olympics, South Korean President Moon Jae-in indicated he was ready to talk to North Korea and engage in diplomacy. And while Vice President Mike Pence – who earlier announced severe sanctions on the North –first signaled a willingness to talk, he quickly seemed to change course.

President Trump further indicated that he is considering a preventive military strike on the North if the sanctions failed to denuclearize the communist nation. But such a so-called “bloody nose” strike against North Korean missile sites and nuclear facilities stands an excellent chance of becoming a bloody disaster.

China won't tolerate an unprovoked attack on North Korea, and President Moon will not support the use of South Korean forces as part of a U.S. military strike against North Korea.

Mar 05 08:06

South Korean Delegation Goes To The North For Peace Talks

Envoys representing South Korea regrouped at the Seoul Air Base in Seongnam on Monday before leaving for North Korea.

The purpose is with the aim to persuade Pyongyang to hold talks with the United States towards nuclear disarmament and peace on the Korean peninsula.

Headed by President Moon Jae-in’s national security director Chung Eui-yong, the 10-member delegation was seen meeting at the airport before taking off for a two-day trip that may include a meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.

Mar 04 07:57

We Won’t ‘Beg for Dialogue’: North Korea Rules Out Talks With US Preconditions

North Korea lambasted the US for making up preconditions for dialogue between states, as Seoul prepares to send an envoy to Pyongyang to find a way to ease the nuclear standoff.

A North Korean Foreign Ministry spokesman said Saturday that dialogue between Pyongyang and Washington is "possible," but underscored that it will happen only on equal footing and without preconditions.

"There had been no case at all where we sat with the US on any precondition, and this will be the case in future, too" the spokesman said, according to North Korea's KCNA agency.

Mar 04 07:56

'Dark clouds of a war': North Korea will 'counter US' if it holds drills with Seoul

“If the US finally holds joint military exercises while keeping sanctions on the DPRK [Democratic People’s Republic of Korea], the DPRK will counter the US by its own mode of counteraction and the US will be made to own all responsibilities for the ensuing consequences,” North Korea’s official KCNA news agency said in a commentary on Saturday. "The US should clearly understand this and exercise prudence."

Mar 04 07:42

North Korea threatens to 'counter' US over military drills

North Korea threatened on Saturday to "counter the U.S." if the United States holds joint military exercises with South Korea, saying the drills would harm reconciliation efforts on the peninsula.

The United States is due to start joint exercises in early April, a South Korean presidential security adviser said this week according to Yonhap news agency — the latest in a series of drills that the north has regularly described as a threat.

"If the U.S. finally holds joint military exercises while keeping sanctions on the DPRK, the DPRK will counter the U.S. by its own mode of counteraction and the U.S. will be made to own all responsibilities for the ensuing consequences," North Korea's official KCNA news agency said in its commentary.

Mar 03 07:48

At U.N., China delays U.S. bid to blacklist ships, companies over North Korea

China delayed a U.S. request for a United Nations Security Council committee to blacklist 33 ships, 27 shipping companies, and a Taiwan man for violating international sanctions on North Korea, diplomats said on Friday.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This illustrates what I have been saying about a disjointed US foreign policy. The US goads China in the South China Sea and then expects China to help the US with North Korea.

Didn't work out, did it?

Mar 02 08:37

Pentagon Predicts 10,000 US Military Casualties in Early Days of N. Korean War

American military leaders who met to discuss a prospective US invasion of North Korea have reportedly claimed the fighting would cause around 10,000 American casualties in the very earliest stages of what could become a protracted conflict.

The New York Times reported that on Wednesday, US military leaders attended a classified exercise in Hawaii to discuss various scenarios that would arise in the opening days of a prospective US invasion of North Korea. The Pentagon stressed that the exercises did not signal that the White House had decided to go to war with North Korea.

Mar 02 07:28

South Korea Tells U.S. It Will Send Envoy to North Korea

President Moon Jae-in of South Korea told President Trump on Thursday that he planned to send a special envoy to North Korea as part of his effort to broker talks between the United States and the North on ending its nuclear weapons program.

President Moon’s office said he talked with Mr. Trump on the phone on Thursday to discuss joint strategies, based upon the discussions Mr. Moon and his aides have held with senior North Korean officials who visited the South last month to attend the opening and closing ceremonies of the Olympics in Pyeongchang.

Mar 02 07:16

It's 2002 Again - New York Times Makes Bogus WMD Claims

The valves, thermometers and acid resistance tiles Syria may have sought to acquire could be used for medical facilities, the production of candy or for dozens of other civilian purposes. They could be used to produce something for the military with chemical weapons probably being the most unlikely.

But like the discredited aluminum tube story, the current NYT piece, written by its UN reporter Michael Schwirtz, obfuscates the doubts about WMD connections of the issue. It makes false claims and is full of war-mongering assertions by hawkish figures. It is a scare story constructed to vilify various opponents to U.S. hegemony on meager factual grounds.

Mar 01 13:31

When hell freezes over: How the Corps plans to win a cold weather fight in Russia or North Korea

In the past year the Corps has upped the ante in its preparation for a major cold weather confrontation with a power like Russia or North Korea — a fight likely to prove more physically taxing and hellish than the Middle Eastern climes the Corps is accustomed to.

Attention to the smallest of details can be a matter of life and death, and even the most mundane of tasks take longer.

“What you see taking a long time is just day-to-day operations,” said 1st Lt. Wilson J. Fortune, a platoon ­commander with the U.S. Marines deployed to Norway.

Mar 01 09:07

The Pentagon’s “Ides of March”: Best Month to Go to War

Is it a coincidence?

In recent history, from the Vietnam war to the present, the month of March has been chosen by Pentagon and NATO military planners as the “best month” to go to war.

With the exception of the War on Afghanistan (October 2001) and the 1990-91 Gulf War, all major US-NATO and allied led military operations over a period of more than half a century –since the invasion of Vietnam by US ground forces on March 8, 1965– have been initiated in the month of March.

The Ides of March (Idus Martiae) is a day in the Roman calendar which broadly corresponds to March 15. The Ides of March is also known as the date on which Julius Caesar was assassinated in 44 BC.

Lest we forget, the month of March (in the Roman Calendar) is dedicated to Mars (Martius), the Roman God of War.

For the Romans, the month of March (Martius) marked “the time to start new military campaigns.”

Mar 01 08:32

WAR BEX - North Korea Reportedly Sending Missile, Chemical Weapons Parts To Syria

North Korea has reportedly sent ballistic missile and chemical weapons components to Syria in violation of United Nations sanctions, according to a draft of a new report authored by U.N. experts that has been viewed by several news organizations.

According to the 200-page report, expected to go public in mid-March, U.N. investigators say the items include acid-resistant tiles, valves and thermometers, according to The New York Times. The transfers reportedly date back as far as 2008.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Trying to manufacture a justification to attack North Korea by linking it with Syria?

Feb 28 15:54

Blundering Into Iran – Philip Giraldi

Countering an assumed Iranian threat that is no threat at all and triggering a catastrophic war would be a major mistake that would lead to a breakdown in the current political alignment of the entire Middle East. And it would be costly for the United States.

Feb 28 10:12

Fort Shafter Faces Major Task in Planning Korea Evacuations

Fort Shafter faces a huge challenge in updating evacuation plans for American civilians in South Korea should war break out on the peninsula, experts say.

Asia expert Ralph Cossa said estimates of the number of Americans in Seoul on any given day run in the 200,000-to-300,000 range, if not more.

Any evacuation would be "extremely daunting, and likely to cause chaos, even if air assets are available, but especially if they are not," said Cossa, president of the Pacific Forum in Honolulu, a subsidiary of the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Adm. Harry Harris, head of U.S. Pacific Command on Oahu, revealed at a Feb. 14 House Armed Services Committee hearing that Gen. Robert Brown, commander of U.S. Army Pacific at Fort Shafter, and his staff had been tasked with creating an updated "noncombatant evacuation operations" plan, or NEO, for South Korea

Webmaster's Commentary: 

It is not a question of "if" this war will happen; it is now more a question of "when", since this study has been greenlit about two weeks ago.

Feb 28 10:01

US Special Envoy on North Korea Retires After Trump Rejects Talks

US special envoy on North Korea Joseph Yun, an advocate of direct diplomacy with the reclusive nation since 2016 has informed the State Department of his intention to retire on Friday.

Though he didn’t offer a specific statement on this sudden decision, it came immediately after President Trump’s most recent comments spurning direct talks with North Korea without massive preconditions.

Though North Korea has expressed willingness to talk, the White House has made clear that they will only talk if they are guaranteed that total nuclear disarmament of North Korea results before the talks themselves begin.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I can certainly understand why Yun did this; he must be catastrophically disappointed in Trump, and in the Trump Administration's hard line on North Korea, which most probably means that Trump is getting ready to greenlight a military action against it.

Remember: demonization of a country, plus placing harsh sanctions against it (as the Trump Administration did last week) is nearly always a prelude to war.

Speaking of which, also at antiwar.com, comes the following article, linked from wapo.com:

Trump’s team is floating an attack on North Korea. Americans would die.

It is foolish, and magical thinking, to believe that such an attack would not escalate, and spiral completely out of control.

Feb 28 09:13

Canadian sub on mission to bolster North Korea surveillance

The last time HMCS Chicoutimi crossed an ocean, the boat flooded, caught fire, and a sailor died. Nearly a decade and a half later, the diesel-electric submarine has deployed to Asia — farther from home than any Canadian sub in five decades — on a mission the Canadian military hopes will erase doubts about the vessel's effectiveness.

Though planned for more than a year, the mission comes at a particularly sensitive time.

North Korea's nuclear and missile development activity has spiked in recent months despite trade sanctions. International tensions have risen to the point where the U.S. is considering options that could include a military strike on the Korean Peninsula.

Feb 28 08:44

‘Very Skeptical of That’: UN Claims North Korea, Syria Trade in Chemical Weapons

The United Nations has shared a yet-unreleased report with US newspapers contending that North Korea has been sending material to Syria to make chemical weapons, but Rick Sterling of the Syria Solidarity Movement says there is good reason to be skeptical.

"I wouldn't be surprised if they do have some trade between those two countries — but chemical weapons? I'm very skeptical of that," Sterling told Radio Sputnik's Loud & Clear on Tuesday. "Just because something comes from the United Nations doesn't mean it's objective or neutral."

Feb 28 08:38

Trump Accuses Russia of Undermining US Sanctions on North Korea

President Donald Trump ripped Russia on Monday by accusing Moscow of undermining U.S. and international sanctions on North Korea.

Addressing a gathering of state governors at the White House, Trump lauded China for its efforts to curb North Korea’s economic activity but said "Russia is sending in what China is taking out".

The Trump administration has been leading international efforts to curb Pyongyang's ballistic missile and nuclear programs through robust UN and Washington-imposed sanctions regimes.

In addition to Russia, Trump blamed previous presidents George Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama for failing to reign in the North, saying they should have solved the problem "long before I got here.

Feb 28 07:23

BEX? North Korea sending chemical weapon supplies to Syria, UN report says

North Korea has been sending supplies to Syria that could be used to produce chemical weapons, a United Nations Security Council diplomat has told CNN.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, the diplomat said that North Korea had sent acid-resistant tiles, valves and thermometers to Syria. The diplomat was citing a report on North Korea authored by a UN panel of experts.
The same report also claims North Korean missile experts visited Syria in 2016 and 2017, after the chemical weapons supplies had been sent to the Middle Eastern state.
During one of the trips, the technicians stayed at Syrian military facilities. A UN member state reported to the panel of experts that scientists from North Korea may still be operating in Barzeh, Adra and Hama.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Let's start with the fact that once again, a claimed chemical weapon attack blamed on Assad doesn't have any proof connected with it. And we know that Trumps' big problem is that he doesn't have any real justification to carry out an unprovoked attack on North Korea. So, this so-called UN report smells like propaganda to drag North Korea into the "Assad is gassing his own people" fable. For all we know, the anonymous United Nations Security Council diplomat could be Nikki Haley herself.

Feb 27 11:45

U.S. prepares high-seas crackdown on North Korea sanctions evaders

While suspect ships have been intercepted before, the emerging strategy would expand the scope of such operations but stop short of imposing a naval blockade on North Korea. Pyongyang has warned it would consider a blockade an act of war.

Feb 27 11:22

South Korea Pushes for US, North Korea Talks; Trump Says ‘We’ll See’

Hoping to expand on diplomatic gains made surrounding the Winter Olympics, South Korea is pushing for the US and North Korea to both ease their stances a bit and get to the table for direct negotiations and quickly as possible.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in in particular said the US needs to lower its threshold for talks, citing long-standing US preconditions, while North Korea should make it clear they’re willing to discuss nuclear disarmament.

North Korean officials have broached the subject in the past, saying they would be willing to disarm their nuclear program if the deal ends the threat of US attack, which they believe they need a nuclear deterrent to preclude.

White House officials reiterated over the weekend that they would only talk if there was a guarantee that the talks would end in North Korea’s denuclearization.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I would love to think that this was possible; but North Korea will not stand down from its position to remain a nuclear-armed country, as a deterrent to a US invasion, and the US government will not stand down from its position that it will not talk unless North Korea denuclearises.

So what we have here... is the potential for a catastrophe which may will impact the entire planet.

Expect China to join the fray on North Korea's side, should the US start this war; the best hope would be for China to remain neutral, if North Korea started an attack on any US assets, but were I a betting human being, I would not bet on that happening.

Feb 27 11:08

BRITAIN OFFICIALLY PREPARES NOW FOR WAR AGAINST RUSSIA

Eric Zuesse, originally posted at strategic-culture.org
On Wednesday, February 21st, the UK’s Minister of Defence, Conservative Gavin Williamson, announced that the United Kingdom is changing its fundamental defence strategy from one that’s targeted against non-state terrorists (Al Qaeda, etc.), to one that’s targeted instead against three countries: Russia, China, and North Korea. He acknowledged that a massive increase in military spending will be needed for this, and that “savings” will have to be found in other areas of Government-spending, such as the health services, and in military spending against terrorism.

The headline in the London Times on February 22nd was “Russia ‘is a bigger threat to our security than terrorists’”. Their Defence Editor, Deborah Haynes. reported:

The threat to Britain from states such as Russia and North Korea is greater than that posed by terrorism, the defence secretary said yesterday, marking a significant shift in security policy.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Forgive me, but has this gentleman, and the entire government of the UK, gone collectively barking-dog mad, in this assessment?!?

Or, was it theirs to make in the first place, or a determination forced upon them by the current US administration?!?

With so much of their country already living in the abject misery of poverty because of the British government's austerity program, what will the future tooling up of their war machine, possibly coupled with conscription of Britain's youth, mean for Britain's future?!?

So I have a statement for Mr Williamson to ponder: Those who do not understand the past (Iraq) are doomed to repeat it (Russia, China, Korea).

Feb 26 13:43

Sanctions, Rhetoric, and Possible Boarding of Vessels vs. North Korea

On Friday, 2/23/18, the Trump Administration announced the implementation of even stronger sanctions against North Korea to force it into compliance regarding its nuclear weapons. The New York Times reported on the revised sanctions, and here’s an excerpt:

The measures target 27 shipping companies and 28 vessels, registered in North Korea and six other countries, including China. The Treasury Department said the shipping firms are part of a sophisticated campaign to help North Korea evade United Nations sanctions restricting imports of refined fuel and exports of coal.

President Trump later released the following statement to reporters during a joint news conference with the Prime Minister of Australia as reported by Reuters on Friday, 2/23/18:

“If the sanctions don’t work, we will have to go to phase two, and phase two may be a very rough thing, may be very, very unfortunate for the world.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Boarding another nation's ships in international waters without permission constitutes piracy under maritime law.

Feb 26 13:37

Trump: If North Korea Doesn’t Obey Me, I Might Punish the Whole World

On Friday, president Trump announced that his administration would be hitting North Korea with the “heaviest sanctions ever imposed on a country before.” The new penalties target dozens of ships and shipping companies that have (allegedly) been helping Pyongyang sustain its economy — and thus, its nuclear program. Specifically, these firms have allegedly enabled Kim Jong Un’s regime to evade previous sanctions by helping it trade illicitly with other countries while at sea, as opposed to on land, where such verboten commerce would be more easily detected.

The move represents an escalation of the White House’s latest strategy for combating the North Korean nuclear program: Pursue direct talks with Pyongyang — while imposing maximum economic pain on the regime — in hopes of forcing Kim Jong Un to denuclearize without unleashing “fire and fury like the world has never seen.”

Feb 26 11:57

Sum of All American Fears in Korea: Peace

North Korea has been depicted by the Western media as a dangerous rogue state, plotting the nuclear holocaust of America and holding global peace and stability hostage with its irrational aggression. It is the supposed threat North Korea poses to the world that the United States uses to justify its enduring decades-long military presence on the Korean Peninsula.

In the recently released 2018 US Department of Defense Nation Defense Strategy, it claims:

North Korea seeks to guarantee regime survival and increased leverage by seeking a mixture of nuclear, biological, chemical, conventional, and unconventional weapons and a growing ballistic missile capability to gain coercive influence over South Korea, Japan, and the United States.

Feb 26 11:37

Trump Uses Australian PM’s Visit to Threaten North Korea

US President Donald Trump yesterday exploited a joint press conference at the White House with Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull to once again menace North Korea with crippling economic sanctions and a military onslaught. Trump’s comments come as the Winter Olympics in South Korea are about to close and the US and South Korea prepare for massive joint war games in April.

Feb 26 11:26

North Korea Warns Washington "Running Amok" Heralds "Dark Cloud Of War"

In a suspiciously soft response - particularly after its ally China accused the US of "long-arm jurisdiction - North Korea criticized Washington's decision to impose sanctions on marine vessels supplying North Korea with banned goods that could help support its nuclear program, but said it would still be open to talks with its longtime geopolitical archnemesis.

Feb 26 11:25

China Slams New "Unilateral" U.S. Sanctions On North Korea

China issued a stern rebuke of enhanced US sanctions on North Korea on Friday, saying the unilateral targeting of Chinese firms and individuals accused of supplying Pyongyang with prohibited cargo risks harming international cooperation on the problem.

"The Chinese side firmly opposes the US imposing unilateral sanctions and 'long-arm jurisdiction' on Chinese entities or individuals in accordance with its domestic laws," said the Chinese Foreign Ministry in a statement. "We have lodged stern representations with the US side over this, urging it to immediately stop such wrongdoings so as not to undermine bilateral cooperation on the relevant area."

Feb 26 11:20

US sanctions, economic warfare against China: Analyst

An analyst believes US sanctions on Chinese companies over having ties with North Korea are a form of “economic warfare” against China.

“This may be seen as sanctions in the Western press, all over the British newspapers for example … but it is not. It is a form of warfare and economic warfare nowadays is becoming much more important in many ways than actually fighting on the ground. So this is a very clear signal to Beijing that Washington is trying now to impose policy on Beijing,” Tony Gosling told Press TV in an interview on Sunday.

The US has engineered some unprecedented and crippling international sanctions on North Korea since July when Pyongyang intensified its tests of long-range missiles and nuclear bombs.

Feb 26 09:52

North Korea ‘Very Willing’ to Hold Talks With US

The latest North Korean delegation to the South has reiterated the nation’s eagerness to pursue diplomacy, saying North Korea is “very willing” to hold direct talks with the United States.

South Korea’s President Moon Jae-in has been pushing such talks, saying that the US and North Korea need to talk at “an early date” as a way to make further diplomatic progress after some major improvements between North and South Korea at the Winter Olympics.

Getting the US to the talks may be easier said than done, however, with the White House issuing a statement Sunday saying they would only be interested in entering the talks if it were guaranteed that North Korea’s denuclearization would be the result of the talks.

Feb 26 09:44

China: New US sanctions threaten cooperation over North Korea

China has demanded the US reverse its decision to impose fresh sanctions on North Korea, saying the "unilateral actions" could undermine cooperation between Beijing and Washington.

China's foreign ministry said it had lodged "stern representations" with the US over the measures - which prohibit US citizens from dealing with more than 50 vessels and companies, and one person, located in countries including North Korea, China, Taiwan and Hong Kong - in a statement on Saturday.

"The Chinese side firmly opposes the US imposing unilateral sanctions and long-arm jurisdiction on Chinese entities or individuals in accordance with its domestic laws," Geng Shuang, foreign ministry spokesperson, said.

Feb 26 09:40

US Prepares For "Aggressive" High-Seas Crackdown On North Korea Sanctions Violators

The Trump administration is coordinating with key Asian allies to crack down on ships suspected of violating sanctions imposed on North Korea, Reuters reports.

The joint effort between the U.S. Coast Guard and regional partners including Japan, South Korea, Australia and Singapore, would go further than ever before to physically block deliveries of banned weapons, components for its nuclear missile program and other prohibited cargo. Suspected violators could be targeted on the high seas or in the territorial waters of countries which cooperate with the coalition. Up to now, suspect ships have been intercepted on a far more limited basis.

Depending on the scale of the campaign, the U.S. might even devote a portion of air and naval power from the Pacific Command - though the plan would stop short of a full naval blockade according to officials who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Boarding another nation's ships in international waters without permission constitutes an act of piracy under maritime law.

Feb 26 09:20

China wants US to abandon new North Korea sanctions

Unilateral' US sanctions threaten to undermine cooperation efforts over North Korea, China's foreign ministry says.

China has demanded the US reverse its decision to impose fresh sanctions on North Korea, saying the "unilateral actions" could undermine cooperation between Beijing and Washington.

China's foreign ministry said it had lodged "stern representations" with the US over the measures - which prohibit US citizens from dealing with more than 50 vessels and companies, and one person, located in countries including North Korea, China, Taiwan and Hong Kong - in a statement on Saturday.

"The Chinese side firmly opposes the US imposing unilateral sanctions and long-arm jurisdiction on Chinese entities or individuals in accordance with its domestic laws," Geng Shuang, foreign ministry spokesperson, said.

"The Chinese government has been comprehensively and strictly implementing the Security Council resolutions on the DPRK and fulfilling its international obligations, and never allows any Chinese citizen or company to engage in activities in violation of the Security Council resolutions."

>>>

Feb 25 09:51

North Korea condemns new sanctions, but opens door to talks with U.S.

A North Korean envoy making an uncommon visit to South Korea said Sunday that his country was willing to open talks with the United States, a rare step toward diplomacy between enemies after a year of North Korean missile and nuclear tests and direct threats of war from both Pyongyang and Washington.

Kim Yong Chol, who Seoul believes masterminded two attacks in 2010 that killed 50 South Koreans, was in South Korea for the end of the Olympics. He said North Korean leader Kim Jong Un wanted to improve ties with Washington and had "ample intentions of holding talks" with its rival, according to the South's presidential office.

Feb 25 09:19

US warns Iraq of 'consequences' if it buys Russian S-400 missile systems

The United States has warned Iraq, among a number of other countries, of the consequences of extending military cooperation with Russia, and striking deals to purchase advanced weaponry, particularly the S-400 surface-to-air missile defense systems.

US State Department spokeswoman Heather Neuert said on Thursday that Washington has contacted many countries, including Iraq, to explain the significance of the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA), and possible consequences that would arise in the wake of defense agreements with Moscow.

On August 2, 2017, US President Donald Trump signed into law the CAATSA that imposed sanctions on Iran, North Korea, and Russia.

Feb 24 11:01

Trump Warns World Of "Very, Very Unfortunate Phase 2" If North Korean Sanctions Fail

If you weren't paying attention, you might have missed it; but during today's joint press conference with Aussie PM Turnbull, US President Trump let slip a brief comment that the rest of the world should likely be paying close attention to.

After unveiling the "heaviest sanctions ever imposed on a country before" against North Korea earlier in the day, President Trump told the gathered media that the US will go to "Phase 2" if those sanctions do not have the desired effects of denuclearizing the Korean peninsula.

As Reuters reports, in addressing what the Trump administration calls its biggest national security challenge, the U.S. Treasury sanctioned one person, 27 companies and 28 ships, according to a statement on the U.S. Treasury Department’s website.

The United States also proposed a list of entities to be blacklisted under separate United Nations sanctions, a move “aimed at shutting down North Korea’s illicit maritime smuggling activities to obtain oil and sell coal.”

Feb 23 07:27

North Korea Brands UN Secretary General a 'Henchman' of the United States

The decision of the head of the UN to endorse economic sanctions against North Korea has provoked a sharp retort from the country’s representatives, who accused him of being an American lackey.

Pyongyang has accused UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres of making “reckless remarks” after he delivered a speech at the Munich Security Conference praising the international restrictions imposed against North Korea.

"This is nothing but an absurd sophistry inappropriate to his duty as Secretary-General of the United Nations and only make us to think whether he is a kind of henchman who is representing the United States,' a statement made by North Korean envoys to the UN said.

Feb 23 07:24

VP Mike Pence at CPAC Rebukes Media Glorification of North Korean Dictator’s Sister, U.S. ‘Doesn’t Stand with Murderous Dictatorships, We Stand up to Murderous Dictatorships’

CPAC attendees raucously cheered Vice President Mike Pence on Thursday when he harshly rebuked positive media coverage of North Korean Leader Kim Jong-Un’s sister at the Olympics.

“I think it’s important that every American knows who this person is and what she’s done,” Pence said of Kim Yo-jong.

From the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) stage Pence countered positive media coverage of Kim Yo-jong at the opening of the Olympics in South Korea, with details of her role as a “central pillar of the most radical and oppressive regime on the face of the planet. An evil family clique that brutalizes, subjugates, starves, and imprisons its 25 million people.”

“Even the United Nations reported that, in their words, the gravity, scale and nature of these violations would be a state that does not parallel in the contemporary world,” he continued.

Feb 22 13:06

REVEALED: The long-suppressed official report on US biowarfare in North Korea

Written largely by the most prestigious British scientist of his day, this official report, containing hundreds of pages of evidence about the use of US biological weapons during the Korean War, was effectively suppressed upon its original release in 1952.

Courtesy of researcher Jeffrey Kaye, INSURGE now publishes the report in text-searchable format for the first time for the general public, with an exclusive, in-depth analysis of its damning findings and implications.

The report provides compelling evidence of systematic violation of the laws of war against North Korea through the deployment of biological weapons?—?a critical context that is essential for anyone to understand the dynamics of current regional tensions, and what might be done about them.

Feb 21 13:11

US, S. Korean militaries to conduct joint drills despite detente with Pyongyang

The US and South Korea will go ahead with military drills off the Korean peninsula despite the “Peace Olympics” and the recent thaw in North-South relations, the South’s defense ministry said in a report to the National Assembly.

In the run-up to the Olympic Games in PyeongChang, Seoul was able to convince Washington to delay the start of their annual winter/springtime joint military exercises until after the games. The temporary halt to the annual Foal Eagle/Key Resolve US-South Korea joint military exercises allowed North and South Korea to develop a dialogue that the South hopes will ease the mounting tension in the region.

Feb 21 09:38

South Korea to announce joint military drill plan with U.S. before April

South Korea and the United States will announce plans before April for joint military drills that had been postponed until after the Winter Olympics and Paralympics, South Korea’s defense minister said on Tuesday.

Feb 21 09:36

North Korea Bailed At The Last Minute On Secret Meeting With Pence

Two weeks ago, followers of geopolitics couldn't help but speculate about the chances of a clandestine meeting between North Korea and the US when the news first broke that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un's younger sister, Kim Jo Yang, would be attending the Winter Games in PyeongChang.

After all, US Vice President Mike Pence was already confirmed to be stopping by South Korea during the beginning of the Games as part of a five-day Asia tour. But the White House was quick to repudiate this chatter, announcing that there were no plans for diplomatic talks, though both US and North Korean rhetoric since then has left the door open for such a meeting.

But as it turns out, just as the White House was denying it, plans for talks were being set in motion, according to the Washington Post, which reported Tuesday evening that the North Koreans backed out of a meeting with Pence at the last minute.

Feb 21 08:02

Top South Korean Crypto Regulator Found Dead "From Unknown Cause"

But in a shocking development that's almost guaranteed to contribute to speculation about whether any foul play was involved, the Wall Street Journal reports that one of the country's top crypto regulators was found dead Tuesday.

While some speculated that the cause of death was a heart attack, the official statement - so far - is that the cause of death remains"unknown."

Semiofficial news agency Yonhap reported that Mr. Jung was presumed to have suffered a heart attack and police had opened an investigation into the cause of death. Yonhap also reported that Mr. Jung was found at home. The government spokesman said later that “he died from some unknown cause. He passed away while he was sleeping and [his] heart [had] already stopped beating when he was found dead.”

His death comes barely a month after the country's regulators appeared to settle on a suitable regulatory framework: Crypto exchanges and banks will soon be required to collect customers' names and information.

Feb 21 07:57

BEX ALERT - North Korea’s Growing Criminal Cyberthreat

The country’s cybercrime efforts are all seemingly state-sponsored and steal money that is then used to fund its cash-strapped government

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The exact same claim could be made about the cash-strapped US government!

Feb 20 10:27

BEX ALERT - North Korea poised to launch large-scale cyberattacks, says new report

North Korea is quietly expanding both the scope and sophistication of its cyberweaponry, laying the groundwork for more devastating attacks, according to a new report published Tuesday.

Kim Jong Un’s cyberwarriors have been accused of causing huge disruption in recent years, including a massive hack on Sony Pictures in 2014 and last year’s WannaCry ransomware worm, as well as numerous attacks on South Korean servers.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The SONY hack was later admitted to being an internal leak.

Feb 19 12:17

US Has No "Bloody Nose Strategy" For North Korea As Pyongyang Prepares For "Dialogue And War"

Two senators who attended the Munich Security Conference over the weekend affirmed that the US has not developed a so-called "bloody nose" strategy to take out North Korea's nuclear arsenal - contrary to prior reports in the Wall Street Journal and elsewhere.

"We are here to echo that there has not and has never been a bloody nose strategy," said Sheldon Whitehouse, a Democratic senator from Rhode Island. Whitehouse said he and other lawmakers who attended the conference were briefed by National Security Adviser HR McMaster had briefed a Senate delegation in a secure annex of Congress before the group traveled to the Munich Security Conference, he said on Sunday in the Bavarian capital.

Feb 17 20:21

Giant boar 'Pigzilla' caught rummaging through trash dumpsters in Hong Kong - TomoNews

HONG KONG — A giant wild boar was recently seen dumpster diving in a garbage bin close to a school in Hong Kong.

Feb 17 09:18

flashback10/05/2017: Media On North Korea: Easier To Demonize Than Try To Understand

The media’s demonization of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, especially in the realm of American news, continues a pattern seen in years past. From Iraq to Venezuela, the corporate media’s depiction of inhabitants of foreign territories is meant to remove their autonomy and humanity, and this is exactly what’s happened in the case of North Korea.
***
Yet countless articles depict North Korea’s Kim Jong-un as “a madman,” and U.S. politicians routinely characterize Kim as “crazy,” while pundits invade our television screens to openly fantasize about wiping North Korea off the map. As if they were talking about a piece of paper and not 25 million human beings.

Feb 17 01:56

US-North Korea Talks Coming?

Feb 16 10:03

All Eyes on North Korea

With talk of a “bloody nose” strike against North Korea being debated in Washington, public attention has focused on conventional military preparations for a U.S. attack on Pyongyang. Less noticed, but possibly even more telling, is the surge in recent months of intelligence resources.

Senior officials have made no secret of the fact that the administration is ramping up its intelligence capabilities to focus on the Korean Peninsula, but six sources familiar with U.S. planning described a nearly unprecedented scramble inside the agencies responsible for spying and cyber warfare.

In fact, the initial strike against the North Korean regime could be digital rather than physical, according to two former intelligence officials with knowledge of the preparations.

Feb 16 07:20

North Korea WARNED: Mike Pence tells Kim US will STAND STRONG against 'EVIL' regime

NORTH KOREA will continue to feel "firm and strong" pressure from the United States Government until despotic leader Kim Jong-un agrees to shut down his dangerous weapons development programme, US Vice President Mike Pence warned.

Feb 15 11:12

Trump threatens retaliatory actions against China, S Korea

Meanwhile, China, which produces nearly half of the world’s steel, is accused of flooding the market in order to keep its economy robust at home.

“I will make a decision that reflects the best interests of the United States, including the need to address overproduction in China and other countries,” Trump said.

“They’re dumping and destroying our industry, and destroying the families of workers, and we can’t let that happen,” he added.

Although the president has another two months to make a decision on possible penalizing action, he strongly indicated that he wants to punish Beijing.

Experts, however, say that any such action will prompt China to do the same, raising the specter of a trade war between the world’s two largest economies.

Trump is under pressure at home as he has not been able to deliver on his campaign promise of being a champion of America’s Rust Belt.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Upon reading this, I am having a double Picard face-palm, at warp speed.

After really needing nore cooperation with China on the issue of North Korea's nuclear program, and desperate to convince South Korea that Kim Jung Un's overtures to South Korea were really just theatrics, President Trump's timing of these threats against China and South Korea just possibly could have been worse: I just don't know how.

Feb 15 09:53

Talking is ‘MEANINGLESS’! US and Japan vow to ‘enhance pressure’ on North Korea

JAPAN and the US have vowed to increase pressure on North Korea, telling Kim Jong-un “meaningless” dialogue will no longer be tolerated.

Feb 15 09:46

Top US Admiral: North Korea Plots to ‘Reunify’ Korean Peninsula

US Pacific Commander Admiral Harry Harris, testifying Wednesday before the House Armed Services Committee, accused North Korea of making its recent military advances exclusively with an eye toward forcibly unifying the Korean Peninsula “under a single communist system.”

Admiral Harris scorned the idea that North Korea had gotten nuclear arms to try to protect North Korea from a US-imposed regime change, saying he believes Kim’s ambitions are to “blackmail the South and other countries in the region, and us.”

He was led into this answer by Committee chair Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-TX), who said the only reason anyone believes Kim is getting the weapons for deterrence is because “alternatives are too terrible to contemplate.”

But Admiral Harris seemed fine echoing this view, despite North Korea being very public about deterrence being a top priority, and despite North Korea’s recent diplomatic overtures making no sense at all if Kim’s exclusive goal is to conquer South Korea.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

US Pacific Commander Admiral Harris, a word, please.

If Kim invited South Korea's President Moon to Pyongyang, do you think for one minute Kim's goal is to hold him as his prisoner, in order to extract some kind of geopolitical "price" from South Korea, knowing that it would goad the US into some kind of retaliatory measures?!?

Admiral, Kim is many things; but irrational and unreasonable are not among them.

Regurgitating the old, tired US Deep State's propaganda on North Korea, as a narrative to justify invading it, cannot possibly sway the US populace to embrace such a decision; we have all had our fill of US-generated wars, which appear to be going nowhere; Afghanistan; Libya; Iraq; and Somalia come very quickly to mind, sir.

And I would like to politely remind you; we have lived with nuclear-armed governments which the US just has had a hard time liking, in any way, like Pakistan.

It has nuclear weapons, and even though it has now been put on the US "funds terrorist groups" Watch List, I seriously doubt we are going to invade that country any time soon.

And why?!?

Because it has nuclear weapons as a deterrent, Admiral: it is just that simple.

Feb 15 09:27

Kim Jong Un praises South Korea's 'impressive and sincere' Olympic welcome

North Korea's Kim Jong Un said it is important to boost the "warm climate of reconciliation" after meeting with the delegation that returned to the North after visiting the South for the Winter Olympics, the North's state media said on Tuesday.

Kim Jong Un also expressed "satisfaction" over their visit and said efforts made by Seoul to prioritise their visit were "very impressive" including their "sincere efforts" for which he gave his gratitude, the Korean Central News Agency said.

As with North Korean media reports over the weekend, there was again no mention of the summit offer given to South Korean Moon Jae-in from Kim Jong Un via his younger sister, Kim Yo Jong, who was part of the delegation.

Kim Yo Jong delivered a letter from her brother at a visit to the South's presidential Blue House on Saturday, asking Moon to visit "at his earliest convenience" to which Moon replied both Koreas should try to make conditions that would make the visit possible.

Feb 14 12:36

Koreans talk peace?

The games have begun. The younger sister of North Korea’s ruler Kim Jong-un has captured the attention of the media, while US Vice President Mike Pence was mocked as a dud, even undiplomatic. The two Koreas are engaging each other. This makes the Washington foreign policy swamp fume.

Feb 14 08:00

North Korea is an increasing threat despite charm offensive, warn top intelligence officials

North Korea won't give up its nukes, and Americans shouldn't fall for the regime's charm offensive, top intelligence told a Senate committee.

"North Korea continues to pose an ever-more increasing threat to the United States and its interests," Director of National Intelligence Daniel Coats told the Senate Intelligence Committee at the annual hearing on worldwide threats.

"Pyongyang has repeatedly stated that it does not intend to negotiate its nuclear weapons and missiles away," he added Tuesday.

The North Koreans sent athletes and a delegation to the Winter Olympics in South Korea, which included the North's ceremonial head of state and Kim's only sister, Kim Yo Jong. The North Korean dictatoralso invited South Korean President Moon Jae-in to visit the communist country for a summit.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

"Don't you dare like people we tell to not to like!" -- Official White Horse Souse

Feb 13 20:28

North Korea slams US, UN for its sanctions

North Korea`s United Nations mission on Monday slammed the UN and U.S. for the strict sanctions imposed on the country due to its nuclear weapons programme.

North Korea`s United Nation mission on Tuesday slammed the UN and United States` decision of imposing sanctions on the isolated country due to its persistent nuclear missile tests.

Feb 13 10:11

North Korea won PyeongChang political gold, but what’s next?

Kim Jong Un scored some badly needed publicity points by sending his sister to the games and extending an invitation to the South Korean president

Feb 13 09:54

If America Wasn't America, The United States Would Be Bombing It

On January 8, 2018, former government advisor Edward Luttwak wrote an opinion piece for Foreign Policy titled “It’s Time to Bomb North Korea.”

Luttwak’s thesis is relatively straightforward. There is a government out there that may very soon acquire nuclear-weapons capabilities, and this country cannot be trusted to responsibly handle such a stockpile. The responsibility to protect the world from a rogue nation cannot be argued with, and we understandably have a duty to ensure the future of humanity.

However, there is one rogue nation that continues to hold the world ransom with its nuclear weapons supply. It is decimating non-compliant states left, right, and center. This country must be stopped dead in its tracks before anyone turns to the issue of North Korea.

Feb 13 08:58

Pentagon Requesting $66 Million For Laser Drones to Shoot Down North Korean Missiles

The Missile Defense Agency is rushing to put more solutions in the field and trying to put past failures behind them.

One of the smaller line items in the Missile Defense Agency’s $9.9 billion budget request for 2019 is also one of the most interesting: $66 million to keep developing a laser that can be mounted on a drone and used to destroy enemy missiles on the launch pad — or shortly after takeoff.

That amount includes $61 million to continue the laser-on-a-drone program, called the Low Power Laser Demonstrator, or LPLD, and $5 million to scale up its laser to sufficient destructive power.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

In light of the fact that Kim Jong Un's Sister just handed a letter to South Korea's President Moon, inviting him to Pyongyang, is it just possible that such a weapon will not be needed, because it looks to me as though there is a distinct possibility of peace, and possibly, reunification, breaking out between the two Koreas?

Were I the chairperson of the committee with the power to approve this line item or not, I would certainly want to delay its implementation, to see what dimplomatic process evolves here, after the Winter Olympic Games, which are still in progress, and will not end until the 25th of this month.

Feb 12 13:40

BREAKING: Kim Jong-Un sends hand-delivered invitation to South Korean president to meet in Pyongyang

The invitation for President Moon Jae-in to meet with Kim Jong-un in Pyongyang was received warmly, request made for US to resume talks with North Korea

Feb 12 11:12

HomeWorld NewsSeoul won’t rush to renew joint military drills with US as new intra-Korean summit solidifies

South Korean President Moon Jae-in reportedly rejected a call from Japan to quickly resume joint US-Korean military drills. Moon has been invited to visit Pyongyang for what may become the first top-level summit in over a decade.
At a bilateral summit on Friday, Moon called on the Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to wait before resuming the drills, Yonhap reported, citing a government official. The drills have been paused for the duration of the Winter Olympics, as part of Seoul’s attempt to mend relations with Pyongyang. North Korea considers the drills a major threat to its national security, saying they may be used to conceal a build-up for an invasion.

According to the report, Abe argued that the time to delay exercises scheduled for spring was not right and that Pyongyang had to change its behavior before receiving concessions.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Call me cautiously optimistic here...

Feb 12 10:45

Koreas Defy Naysayers on Winter Olympics Diplomacy

Diplomacy at the Winter Olympics has been an event covered like no other, and while some media outlets are in awe at the amount of progress that, by most accounts, has been made, there are also a lot of naysayers casting doubt on whether it amounts to anything.

The official US position has been to simultaneously downplay the talks, and to make some fairly high-profile efforts to undermine them. That seems to have been picked up by a lot of analysts as gospel truth.

The historic visit by a North Korean delegation that included both the parliamentary president and the sister of Kim Jong Un, handshakes, talks, and an invitation to South Korean President Moon to visit North Korea, have all been shrugged off by many as some sort of combination of a North Korean trick to undermine US interests, and one officials insist will fail.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Both North and South Korean leadership want peace, even if the two Koreas cannot agree on a reunification process; the only International actor in the region which DOESN't appear to want want such peace to happen... is the United States.

And - at antiwar.com this morning, right underneath this breathless headline, come the following headlines:

North Korea invites South Korea's President tio Pyongyang

and...wait for it...

Secretary of Defense Mattis: North Korea cannot divide the US from South Korea

Forgive me, Sec Def Mattis; it appears, as my late grandmother would say, "The Horse is Already Out of the Barn." on this issue.

And sir, the optics of any attempt to squelch this newfound ratcheting down of tensions between North and South Korea, are going to be perceived by the rest of the world, as a barbarically martial and repugnant on the part of the US government.

I mean, can you seriously be thinking in this direction?!?

One would hope to heck, NOT!!

Feb 12 10:43

Bound and…ungagged? US ready for direct talks with sanctions-bashed N. Korea

Washington is no longer opposed to the idea of talks with Pyongyang without preconditions, but still favors ramping up sanctions pressure against North Korea until it agrees to relinquish its nuclear arsenal, Mike Pence said.

Feb 12 07:47

Moon Rejects Abe's Call To Resume Korea-U.S. Military Drills

South Korean President Moon Jae-in has dismissed a call from Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to quickly resume South Korea's joint military drills with the United States, calling it a violation of his country's sovereignty, an official from Seoul's presidential office Cheong Wa Dae said Saturday.
***
Abe stressed the need for what he called an "actual" change in the North's behavior, saying it was not the right time for Seoul and Washington to delay their joint military exercises>>>>

(*How does one say "Screw Them!" , In Korean ?)

Feb 12 07:01

North Korea Heading for Diplomacy Gold Medal at Olympics

North Korea has emerged as the early favourite to grab one of the Winter Olympics’ most important medals: the diplomatic gold.

That is the assessment of a former South Korean government minister and political experts who say the North has used the Games to drive a wedge between South Korea and its U.S. ally and to potentially ease pressure on its sanctions-crippled state.

In barely a month since North Korean leader Kim Jong Un surprised the world and said his nation was ready to join the Games, South Korean President Moon Jae-in has delayed military exercises, feted Kim’s sister at the Pyeongchang Olympics and given conditional consent to a bilateral summit in the North.

Feb 11 18:30

'Ignorant & insensitive': NBC apologizes to Korea for Japan comments

NBC has apologised after one its correspondents caused uproar in South Korea by saying that “every Korean” knows how important Japan, which occupied the peninsula for 35 years until 1945, has been in the country’s development.

The comments were made by NBC Winter Olympics Analyst Joshua Cooper Ramo during Friday’s opening ceremony; Koreans were not impressed. “Now representing Japan, a country which occupied Korea from 1910 to 1945. But every Korean will tell you that Japan is a cultural and technological and economic example that has been so important to their own transformation,” The Korea Times quotes Cooper Ramo as saying.

The comments infuriated many South Koreans, with some stating that they were akin to “advocating Nazi persecution of the Jews.” Another asked if NBC would thank Japan for the attacks on Pearl Harbour.

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