Anti-Communist Bullshit About North Korea

Via the BBC.

It’s true that the regime lies all the time, and lies to its own people, and that there is a omnipresent propaganda system based to a large extent on lies. There is also rewriting of history.

However, there were some serious problems with this video. Frankly, this shit is just straight up anti-Communist propaganda from the capitalist BBC.

First of all, the hostess discusses the rewriting of history about the Korean War. According to the North, the Americans poured across the border and invaded North Korea. This did not occur.  But according to this BBC crap, it was the North Koreans who actually poured across the border. This lie is what almost all Americans believe about this war.

I would definitely say that the North Korea was the aggressor in the initial stage of the Korean War. However, speaking technically, the two sides had been attacking each other back and forth across the border for some time before the war started. The best analysis of the actual start of the war is that both sides simultaneously attacked each other. The Western media will never tell us this. Who’s rewriting history now?

The central lie of this video, as with all Western capitalist propaganda about North Korea, is the “Communism starves the people” lie. Actually, Communism does not starve the people. Other than brief famines during rapid collectivization, Communist regimes have generally done a much better job at insuring that everyone gets enough to eat than capitalist regimes.

There are shortages of certain foodstuffs, and there is a lack of variety, but definitely, everyone’s stomach gets fed. In China, the USSR, Cuba, Vietnam and the East Bloc, huge strides were made in in basic nutrition. To this day, the former nations of the USSR have very low rates of malnutrition. Communism is great for filling your belly.

If Communism per se is to blame for North Korea’s food crisis, how is that North Korea was able to feed its people just fine from 1945-1993, for 47 years. Did something change in 1993? The system is the same. If anything, there is much more capitalism in the system now than during 1945-1993, yet the food problem is much worse. How does this argument make sense?

Another argument of this video is that North Korea’s electrical power problems are caused by Communism. Yet there were no electrical power problems from 1945-1993. The system is the same now as then. What changed?

The problems of the system really have nothing to do with Communism, central planning or any of that. The truth is that the system collapsed in 1990. The USSR was selling North Korea oil at 10 cents on the dollar. The whole system, from heavily mechanized agriculture to oil dependent industry, relied on this cheap oil. In 1990, the subsidy collapsed and suddenly they had to pay the world price for oil. Overnite, the price of oil went up 10X. It would be as if here in the US we suddenly had to pay $30/gallon for gas. What would our economy look like? Come on.

The 10X increase in the price of oil collapsed the economy. There was no oil to run the heavily mechanized agriculture. There was no oil to run the oil dependent industries. Factories were shuttered. Agricultural production collapsed. Here it is, 17 years on, and things are not much better. They still can’t afford oil to run their farms or industry. That’s why you see bicycles in the video and cows working in the fields. Most of North Korea’s machinery broke down, and there was no money to replace it. The central problem is that the state is broke.

The North Korea haters are asked what exactly North Korea should do to remedy this crisis. They don’t seem to have any answers. I honestly think that the state is doing the best it can to provide people with electricity and food, just as it always has. It’s just that agricultural production has collapsed along with electricity production, and it’s going to be hard to get them going again with empty state coffers. I don’t buy that the state is deliberately starving people. That’s what capitalist countries do.

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51 thoughts on “Anti-Communist Bullshit About North Korea”

  1. The thing that I never understood is that Cuba had a very similar oil price shock to North Korea when the Soviet Union collapsed, in combination with similarly crippling sanctions, but emerged with not nearly so much mass starvation and social ruin as North Korea.

    Of course, life was absolute shit for the people of Cuba during the “Special Period” in the 90s, and for a period of time much of the population was on malnutrition-level rations, but you did not see nearly so much (or really any) literal starvation as in North Korea, which lost something like 3-5% of it’s population during the famine period of the 90s.

  2. North Korea like Cuba was kept afloat by loans from the USSR when that collapsed so did Korea already battered economy.

    The failure of Communism is most stark when comparing the South to the North.

    And I am pretty sure the North did attack the South first with help from the USSR and China.

    1. That’s not what Bruce Cummings says, and there is no better scholar on the subject of the Korean War out there.

      I agree that the North was the aggressor, as Germany was the aggressor against the USSR, but we are dealing with the actual incident that set off the war itself. The best analysis of that incident is that they simultaneously attacked each other.

  3. Robert,

    What is it about NK that can make normally sensible people completely looney? LOL.

    Is it the entertainment value of the place? People apparently just get a kick out of seeing Bobby Lee types just make complete asses of themselves. String them along, cut them slack, pretend a civility, throw them bones, reassure them, engage in pitter patter. Just to see Bobby Lee types being Bobby Lee. Bobby Lees never understand the jokes on them. And if Bobby Lee actually takes himself seriously and has delusions of grandeur, that’s so much better.

    I’m not even gonna argue NK here. It’s not possible for me to separate the comedic from the tragic wrt NK anymore. Sheesh.

  4. The central lie of this video, as with all Western capitalist propaganda about North Korea, is the “Communism starves the people” lie. Actually, Communism does starve the people.

    Where the “NOT” Robert? I think this is an editing error. The whole point about North Korea, all the excuses nothwithstanding, is that it’s not communism that reigns there anymore. How many communist states can you name that have a religion of a dead leader? It’s spooky…

    1. If you read the book “The Cleanest Race” by B.R. Myers, he makes the point that North Korea is more of a fascist state than a Stalinist commie state. In particular, he compares the religion of a dead leader with State Shintoism and Emperor worship in Imperial Japan from 1931 to 1945. He says that North Korea, despite being founded by anti-Japanese guerrillas, got a lot of ideological imput from fascist, wartime Japan.

        1. I wouldn’t consider it creepy. Have you read that book by Myers? And what do you make of the irony that Kim Il-sung and other North Korean leaders, who were anti-Japanese guerrilla fighters before 1945, borrowed aspects of Japanese fascism and militarism?

        2. When Right and Left move away from central core democratic principles and eachother on the political spectrum they come full circle in their extremist manifestations and meet once again in the land of totalitarian dictatorship where they share many similar attributes, enslavement of the populus, leader cults (Mao and Hitler) and vanguard organizations (Nazis and Communist Party).

    2. @Abiezer Coppe

      “How many communist states can you name that have a religion of a dead leader? It’s spooky…”

      All the major Communist states starting with the USSR with Lenin, Mao in China, Ho Chi Minh in Vietnam, Kim Il-sung in North Korea, Che Guevara in Cuba and international Marxist groups in Latin America.

      1. No, JohnUK, fellow compatriot, you’re mixing it all up. Show a bit of discrimination.

        There were cults of the personality of Enver Hoxha in Albania, Nicolai Ceaucescu in Romania, Mao in China and Stalin in the Soviet Union. I don’t know about the case of Vietnam. Nowhere did these cults, evidence of political backwardness though they evidently were, extend to the physical immortality of the leader. Nowhere apart from in North Korean did the personality cult become a secular religion. In Hungary, the GDR, Poland, Bulgaria and Czechoslovakia there were no such cults of the personality, neither was there one in the Soviet Union after Stalin. Tito created a cult of the personality in Yugoslavia, but I don’t think the Slavs really went for it. They were too smart. In Europe, the cult of Hoxha was possibly the most extreme. Goes with the territory: a very backward country, hauled into the twentieth century by a multi-lingual Westernized intellectual who became dictator for life. The Wikipedia article on Hoxha is usually good:

        The Cuban veneration for the person of Fidel Castro is widespread – and largely justified, I have to add – but does it add up to a cult? I don’t know. Until recently Fidel mingled with ordinary Cubans a lot. He didn’t seem to be afraid of them. For a dictator, which he is, he seems pretty benign.

  5. I read a review of the book. It doesn’t surprise me at all that they would borrow from Emperor Worship. They are very rooted in the East. The book also says that North Korea is the most racist state on Earth today.

    1. First I heard of this book myself. I too looked at the Amazon reviews like the ones quoted. Not impressed. Sounds like another Jung Chang – you know, that crap on Mao. There’s mileage in churning out psychobabble books confirming the worst of US propaganda and justifying US foreign policy. There’s a lot of bile against Bruce Cumings in the comments, because he tells a different story from the tv basically – definition of a commie. Apparently Cumings has been discredited, and on Wikipedia to boot. Goes with the turf. You can lead a horse to water… These reviewers will only drink the water they’re used to.

  6. I think it’s worth quoting from an Amazon review:

    Myers advances and, I think, proves that North Korea is purely a product of its all-pervasive propaganda which literally soaks every aspect of daily life, twenty-four seven, learned in part from the brutal occupation tactics of the Japanese between 1905-1945. And this propaganda supports the two pillars of this Orwellian moonscape, the military and the Kim clan, arguably the most successful crime family since the fictional Corleones. North Korea is no longer properly understood as a “communist” society. Indeed, the very word was removed from the latest Constitution in favor of the long-evolving bogus governmental policy of “Juche,” the military elites celebrated as a class in support of a paranoid “imperial family” who have gone to absurd lengths to soldify their dread power over a population kept in absolute, deliberate ignorance of the world outside; even going to far as to use low-level malnutrition as a method of social control. Myers uses mutitudinous examples of past and contemporary North Korean governmental propaganda to illustrate the depths to which this control is exercised. And the consistent keys struck over and over are: (a) absolute fear of the “outside,” especially South Korea, Japan, the United States, and even China to a limited extent; (b) the fostering of a divine cult around the ruling family (even suggesting the future “quasi-resurrection” of the dynastic founder); (c) glorification of the military establishment, including the nuclear programme as nationalist expression; and (d) institutionalized racism that also extendes into eugenic practices to keep the Korean race “pure.” And all this is overlaid with a perverse form of warped Confucianism where deference to authority is posited as the highest of social aspirations. Put in radically simpler terms, North Korea is best understood less as nation-state than religious cult where the “Dark Other” is the rest of the earth itself.

    This does really put Israel in the shade, fpy3p. In fact European fascism has nothing on this place…

    1. All of those point could be made about Israhell in spades. What about the propaganda about the big bad Persians? What about forbidding Arabs from marrying with jews, even though they are both Semitic peoples?

        1. Even if North Korea is racist, there’s nothing wrong with that. North Korea is for Koreans only, and they make no bones about it. Israhell, on the other hand, is a jewish supremacist state that advertises itself as this paragon of morality and goodness, just because it is filled with kikes. I can’t this hypocrisy.

        2. That is a valid distinction. I thought you’d stopped using the offensive term “kike”.

          Time for some retraining fyp3p. If I called you a gook, slant, slope, or zipperhead you wouldn’t like it, would you? But I’m not, and I’m just bloody limey

          For it to have maximum effect, valid criticism of ethnocentric behaviour is best distinguished from throwing ethnic slurs around, right fyp3p?
          Recently I saw you write that you’d prefer Commie Jews over neocon Jews. Is this evidence of evolution on your part?

        3. It’s not evolution; I’ve always felt that way.
          Neocons jews are the ones creating all trouble these days. I’ll take Norman Finkelstein over any Zionist gasbag.

        4. “I saw you write that you’d prefer Commie Jews over neocon Jews. Is this evidence of evolution on your part?”

          Commie Jews are Neocon Jews just that they have changed the language somewhat through the mask of conservatism but the agenda and tactics are the same instead of using Russia which failed in 1917 they use the US as there global Golem.

    1. Abiezer, how Nordic would you say the British people are in general? I had assumed in the past that because of the Anglo-Saxon invasions, the Brits would look similar to Scandinavians, but it seems that is not the case. Many white Americans are of British lineage, and brown hair seems to predominate.

  7. Blue eyes predominate over brown. We are generally very fair skinned, and burn easily in the sun. Brown hair is more common than blonde and fair hair, but the latter is also common. Red hair and green eyes turns up among people of Celtic ancestry. The Celtic tribes were originally from Iberia I believe, but spread all over Europe in pre-Roman times. Viking invasion and settlement came after Saxon invasion and settlement: so that’s two waves of Nordic invasion. Then the Norman French arrived. I think they naturalised and intermarried more readily with the English than the Romans did. Neither the Normans nor the Romans displaced the language of the natives, but the Saxons did. I imagine the English at the time of the Roman invasion would have spoken a language related to modern Welsh, which is itself very ancient (6th century AD) Black hair is unusual, except among Celts, who are mostly on the fringes of England. In the 17th Century the Dutch came in large numbers – many surnames in the Eastern region, where I live, are Dutch. Celts left a big trace on the genotype of the English, but were pushed Westwards by the Romans. A big Celtic revolt in my region of the country was suppressed by the Roman occupiers.

    1. Interestingly, in the Scottish New Year tradition of Hogamanay after the clock strikes 12 it is considered a harbinger of bad luck if the first visitor or “first footer” is of blonde or reddish hair, a dark haired visitor on the other hand is considered good luck. This tradition hearkens back to the 8th century, when the presumably fair-haired Vikings invaded Scotland. Thus, a blond visitor was not a good omen. Suite101: The English and Scottish Tradition of First Footing on New Year’s

  8. You can’t talk about the British, not strictly, as a nationality. I am a British citizen but of English nationality. A Scotsman or a Welshman would be aware of this difference. National identities remain strong, and they have a genetic basis. There is also a Cornish national identity in the far Soutwest of England, a Cornish language, which is being resurrected and a Cornish genotype which in more Celt than the rest of the English. People from the Northeast of England, the East of Scotland, and the Shetland Islands are more related to the Scandinavian. Gaelic, the language of the Celts, is still spoken in the Scots Highlands and Orkney, though it is struggling, whereas in Wales it is well established and recruiting speakers among the young.

  9. You’d have to explain what a haplogroup is, and perhaps your source for this information, so that I can go and look it up. I was talking impressionistically and historically, indicating that from our history the British genetic makeup is complex and varies somewhat from region to region, and you are talking genetics, which I know is a strong interest of yours. Yes, of course, we are all on the same piece of land, and we’ve moved around a lot, and that includes the Irish in Ireland, which has seen a lot of intermarriage with the Anglo-Scots and the English, for 800 years, although it really got going after Oliver Cromwell, who hammered the Irish in the 1650s, laying waste to a city in the South and massacring the inhabitants.

    1. I’m not very well informed on the specific details of the science, but I do know the genetic relationships between various racial and ethnic groups. R1b is essentially the paternal genetic marker of not just Britain, but western Europe as a whole. It stops at the border between Germany and Poland. R1a is predominant among East European Slavs. But both R1a and R1b both come from R1, so that shows you how closely related all Europeans are to each other, east or west.

        1. God knows where the neolithic invaders of the UK came from. Some linguists claim Basque is a neolithic language. Were they from Iberia, and before that from Africa? Fuck, are we Brits 80% African?

        2. Who? The “Old English?” No, they were very dark. Very short with dark hair and dark eyes. Pretty Med-looking people. Some think those were the original people of Europe before the Indo-Europeans showed up. Europeans used to be a lot darker. Recall that 12,000 YBP, Europeans looked like Arabs and had Arab genes. This light skin, hair and eyes thing is new.

        3. They were originally from what is now Central Asia and Siberia, and they gradually moved west until they reached Iberia, and then they moved up and populated Britain and the rest of Atlantic Europe.

  10. Oh, fair enough, perhaps I am wrong about the genetic basis of nationality. Perhaps it’s more to do with history and culture. When you say Nordic, where does that stop? Does it include the Austrians and the Swiss, or just Scandinavians excluding the Finns, Germans, and maybe the Dutch? What about the Hungarians – neither Slavs not Nordic? Who do Nordicists think the Nordic peoples are? Newcastle football supporters?

    1. Swedish people, believe it or not, are not really Nordics so much as they are depigmented Arabs! Genetics is funny sometimes. They belong to haplogroup I, which is not related at all to R1, which most Europeans belong to. I recently split off from J, which is a Middle Eastern marker.

      1. Neolithic peoples are from Siberia in Asia? Yes, by the pre-Roman British I meant neolithic peoples, Bronze age and Iron Age folk. Yes, they were dark, but Asian in origin? I was rather hoping we Brits were related to the rather white looking (but darker in pigmentation than the modern Brits) Berber tribes of North Africa, the original ancient Europeans? That would be cool. I mean no disrespect to Asian neolithic people.

        1. Yes, they came from the area around Omsk and Novosibersk in southern Siberia on the border with Kazakhstan. That must have been very long ago though. Things get really confusing going that far back. Those Siberian types were proto-Caucasoids.

          Europeans 30,000 YBP (proto-Caucasians) didn’t even look very Caucasoid. They looked like Amerindians from NW America. Like the Makah people.

    1. It means that white Europeans and Amerindians are close cousins who split off in east and west directions. Of course Amerindians are also related to my people.

    1. Is it possible that Slavs look somewhat Mongoloid because they retained some of that old Amerindian-like genes while west Europeans did not?

      1. No, and those early Europeans who looked like Makah were not even Amerindians. They were part of some race that no longer exists. Slavs look Asiatic due to recent breeding with Uralic-Finnic types.

  11. I say that the DPRK is not socialist ( and not communist ) at all. The western powers and the Stalinist states were lying about what is socialism and what is not. For the western media it was necessary to portray the DPRK, the USSR and the PRC as ”communist” states in order to portray Marxism as an undemocratic totalitarian ideology. The stalinists said their nations were socialist, yet they relied more on nationalism then on socialism. Stalin used old Russian war stories during ww2. Kim Il Sung was a nationalist just like Ho Chi Minh and Fidel Castro. For them socialism in one nation was an ideal cover for their nationalist agenda.

    The current DPRK is a totalitarian monarchy. An state ruled by fear and poverty. That is thanks to the regime of Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il who closed the nation. While stalinism in China, Vietnam and Laos returned to capitalism, North Korea remained a tool of the ruling Kim dynasty. They brainwash, murder and lie. Stalinism is anticommunism and North Korea is not socialist nor communist.

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