hopefully an eye opener

February 7, 2010

*please excuse any random jumps in my train of thought and any grammatical mistakes.  I tend to rant and go crazy when I talk/write about this issue.*

North Korea fires more artillery toward sea border

It’s a front.  Unlike previous posts, the entire article isn’t posted upfront because there is no need.  (If you want to read the article, I made the headline a link.  It will direct you to the article at Yahoo! News.)

We see headlines with the words “North Korea, aggression, weaponry, artillery, smuggles, boom, bang, etc.” pop up (no joke) every other week.  And, honestly, we’re used to it.  Many of us (including myself) associate North Korea with “the man with a perm” and all the ridiculous things he does.  We rarely think of children picking up blackened rice grains from the ground, widespread starvation, gulags set in strategic locations throughout the country, and the many atrocities occurring in North Korea.

It’s all f&%*ing genius.  All the ridiculous “acts of aggression” that North Korea commits on a monthly (sometimes weekly) basis, aren’t North Korea trying to “show its might to the world.”  They know perfectly well that they will lose everything if their small skirmishes with South Korea escalates into an all-out war. NO. It’s not acts of aggression, all this is just a highly successful attempt to draw the world’s attention AWAY FROM the human rights crisis in North Korea.  We say, “No… no matter what they do, we will always know of the crimes against humanity that they are committing,” but how many times have we looked at a headline with the words “North Korea” and said “Ah. Whatever, they’re just acting up again.”?

And it makes sense; what North Korea wants the most right now is a stable relationship with the United States and the rest of the free world.  Kim is known to drive a Mercedes while bumping to to his iPod and drinking fine French wines.  If they’re rambunctious enough, the world will soon say “Stop with your useless saber rattling, and we’ll let you play with us.”

The United States and South Korea have both denounced North Korea’s appalling human rights record in official statements, but when they hold summits with or send envoys to North Korea, the subject of human rights is never brought up. Apparently, a nuclear free Korea is more important than the lives of millions.  A North Korea without nuclear weapons does make me feel better and help me sleep better at nights, but that doesn’t mean we should allow North Korea to get away with its crimes against humanity in exchange for denuclearization.

If I’m not mistaken, we did something like this before.   We turned a blind eye to a nation’s policy of systematic extermination of specific groups of people in exchange for God-knows-what, and it resulted in the death of approximately 6 million civilians. Sound familiar? Yes, I’m talking about the Holocaust.  And am I saying that this issue is as devastating and as bad as the Holocaust? No, I’m saying that this issue is far worse and will escalate into something far more devastating than the Holocaust.  Hitler had 10 years; Kim and his father has had 60 years and counting.  The Allied learned of the extent of the Holocaust AFTER invading Germany and German occupied states.  Same with us; we won’t know the true numbers until after North Korea decides to get its mind out of the gutter.  The numbers we get are mere estimates with possibly thousands more unaccounted for.

Whenever I think about people who did nothing as they witnessed and/or heard about the Holocaust and did nothing about it, I want to ask “Why didn’t you do anything?  Even just saying, “That’s not right,” could have changed something.”

Think about it: 50 or so years down the line, when your grandchildren come home after learning about the human rights crisis issue in North Korea and how long it lasted, they’ll ask you “Why didn’t you do anything?  The teacher said the whole world knew about it.  Couldn’t you have done something… anything?”

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