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Is the American Empire Worth the Price?
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“When a man knows he is to be hanged in a fortnight,” Samuel Johnson observed, “it concentrates his mind wonderfully.”

And the prospect of a future where Kim Jong Un can put a nuclear weapon on a U.S. city is going to cause this nation to reassess the risks and rewards of the American Imperium.

First, some history.

“Why should Americans be first to die in any second Korean war?” this writer asked in 1999 in “A Republic, Not an Empire.”

“With twice the population of the North and twenty times its economic power, South Korea … is capable of manning its own defense. American troops on the DMZ should be replaced by South Koreans.”

This was denounced as neo-isolationism. And, in 2002, George W. Bush declared the U.S. “will not permit the world’s most dangerous regimes to threaten us with the world’s most destructive weapons.”

Bluster and bluff. In 2006, Pyongyang called and raised and tested an atom bomb. Now Kim Jong Un is close to an ICBM.

Our options?

As Kim believes the ability to hit America with a nuclear weapon is the only certain way he has of deterring us from killing his regime and him, he will not be talked out of his ICBM. Nor, short of an embargo-blockade by China, will sanctions keep him from his goal, to which he inches closer with each missile test.

As for the “military option,” U.S. strikes on Kim’s missile sites could cause him to unleash his artillery on Seoul, 35 miles south. In the first week of a second Korean war, scores of thousands could be dead.

If North Korea’s artillery opened up, says Gen. Barry McCaffrey, the U.S. would be forced to use tactical atomic weapons to stop the carnage. Kim could then give the suicidal order to launch his nukes.

A third option is to accept and live with a North Korean ICBM, as we have lived for decades with the vast nuclear arsenals of Russia and China.

Now, assume the best: We get through this crisis without a war, and Kim agrees to stop testing ICBMs and nuclear warheads.

Does anyone believe that, given his youth, his determination to drive us off the peninsula, and his belief that only an ICBM can deter us, this deal will last and he will abandon his nuclear program?

Given concessions, Kim might suspend missile and nuclear tests. But again, we deceive ourselves if we believe he will give up the idea of acquiring the one weapon that might ensure regime survival.

Hence, assuming this crisis is resolved, what does the future of U.S.-North Korean relations look like?

To answer that question, consider the past.

In 1968, North Korea hijacked the USS Pueblo on the high seas and interned its crew. LBJ did nothing. In April 1969, North Korea shot down an EC-121, 100 miles of its coast, killing the crew. Nixon did nothing.

Under Jimmy Carter, North Koreans axe-murdered U.S. soldiers at Panmunjom. We defiantly cut down a nearby tree.

Among the atrocities the North has perpetrated are plots to assassinate President Park Chung-hee in the 1960s and ’70s, the Rangoon bombing that wiped out much of the cabinet of Chun Doo-hwan in 1983, and the bombing of Korean Air Flight 858, killing all on board in 1987.

And Kim Jong Un has murdered his uncle and brother.


If the past is prologue, and it has proven to be, the future holds this. A renewal of ICBM tests until a missile is perfected. Occasional atrocities creating crises between the U.S. and North Korea. America being repeatedly dragged to the brink of a war we do not want to fight.

As Secretary of Defense James Mattis said Sunday, such a war would be “catastrophic. … A conflict in North Korea … would be probably the worst kind of fighting in most people’s lifetimes.”

When the lesson sinks in that a war on the peninsula would be a catastrophe, and a growing arsenal of North Korean ICBMs targeted on America is intolerable, the question must arise:

Why not move U.S. forces off the peninsula, let South Korean troops replace them, sell Seoul all the modern weapons it needs, and let Seoul build its own nuclear arsenal to deter the North?

Remove any incentive for Kim to attack us, except to invite his own suicide. And tell China: Halt Kim’s ICBM program, or we will help South Korea and Japan become nuclear powers like Britain and France.

Given the rising risk of our war guarantees, from the eastern Baltic to the Korean DMZ — and the paltry rewards of the American Imperium — we are being bled from Libya to Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan and Yemen — a true America First foreign policy is going to become increasingly attractive.

Kim’s credible threat to one day be able to nuke a U.S. city is going to concentrate American minds wonderfully.

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, “Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.”

Copyright 2017

• Category: Foreign Policy • Tags: American Military, North Korea 
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  1. The reason there is any North Korean hostility at all towards the U.S. is because of its presence on the peninsula. Remove that presence and NK becomes a problem for its immediate neighbours only, much like Saddam Hussein’s Iraq was before the U.S. was (((convinced))) that Iraq posed a threat to it.

    Does anyone really believe that a nuclear armed North Korea poses more of a threat to peace than religiously fanatical Pakistan or Israel?

    • Agree: dcthrowback
    • Replies: @Travis
    , @Aren Haich
  2. Never was worth the price beginning with the war between the states.

  3. anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    They’ve been able to hit the S Koreans for many years now, both with their nuclear weapons and conventional ones. The S Koreans would bear the brunt of any war there and suffer great destruction and casualties. Yet their public input into this discussion appears to be close to zero. Why is that? Are they such total puppets of the US that they’re willing to accept swallowing poison should they be ordered to?
    Various US officials have throughout the years publicly threatened to nuke the DPRK. One supposes that they never thought that the DPRK would one day be able to develop it’s own nuclear capability. Now it can be seen that all that public belligerence had it’s eventual outcome in them developing their own nuclear deterrent. Not much can be done at this point. A conventional type war with boots on the ground would be a bloody fiasco. Americans would not be willing to accept those kinds of casualties nor would they like to contemplate being subject to nuclear attack. All that can be done is to bring ourselves to recognize their legitimacy as a country, sign a peace treaty with them and enter into some non-aggression agreements with them to lower the rhetoric and the tensions. They’re not going away so we’ll have to deal with them as we deal with the other countries that have nuclear weapons.

  4. I addition to Johnny Smoggins good point, which I was going to write something on, here’s another major thing that Mr. Buchanan leaves out in all of his articles on foreign affairs – THE MONEY.

    OK, Pat, you are not a finance writer – it’s not your job. However, one can’t separate the money matters from the warmongering matters, especially if you’re going to have the title: “Is the American Empire Worth the Price?” Worth the price? Hell, if you don’t have the money, there is no point in even asking. We are beyond dead broke, Pat. The Feral Gov’t alone is in debt by $20,000,000,000,000 right now, but that doesn’t include probably an order of magnitude more in promises, called unfunded obligations by us people-who-know-what-the-hell’s-going-on. This is money that people expect to get, by “contract”, if you can trust a contract written by any large organization (spoiler alert – you CAN’T!) Just the direct amount on paper, the 20 trillion bucks, works out to $200,000 to $500,000 owed per working family that actually pays taxes (not just fills out the forms). Want more info? Here’s a 5 part series without any wonky stuff – just descriptive of the real problem: 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5

    Even with pulling all the soldiers, airmen and sailors back home from all over this empire, it’d probably be not even 1/2 of the budget savings of just the military budget saved. No, I’m not one of the lefties you’ll read saying, if we just cut out all the military, America would be home-free financially. There’s a whole lot more money that flows through the Fed Gov. that’s got to stop.

    However, what’s the point in even discussing a war in which we’d need to wait for parts from China to fight? Let’s let China and S. Korea, both with huge trade surpluses over this country (China of course an order of magnitude higher, I’d guess) take care of this. I thought we had a Defense Department; it’s been used for too many years now as an Offense Department.

    Yes, per Johnny S., we have made an enemy of North Korea just by staying involved and keeping 25,000 troops in that country for 6 1/2 DECADES. Back in the day, the lefties were right like a stopped clock – we can’t be the world’s LEO*.

    * Never got along with LEO’s anyway, what with me being a water sign and all.

  5. Rurik says:

    the American Imperium — we are being bled from Libya to Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan and Yemen — a true America First foreign policy is going to become increasingly attractive.

    ‘Mr. Buchanan, I’m tired of your neo-isolationist, thinly veiled anti-Semitism and raging anti-Americanism! If you’re too racist to fight, then let the young American boys and girls go out there and kill and die! That’s what they were born for!! Or have you forgot what it means to be an American? It means fighting and dying in serial wars that make me and Lindsey feel important! That’s what being an American is all about, and it’s high time you remembered that!’

    I hope Rex Tillerson reads Pat Buchanan. There isn’t a more sound and savvy voice for realpolitik on the world’s stage than Pat’s.

    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
  6. Johann says:

    I voted for Trumps “America first” and I got Johnny Mccains neocon warmongering government. Let those who support the deep state perpetual war machine government do the fighting and dying.

    • Replies: @Rurik
    , @NoldorElf
  7. NoldorElf says:

    No it is not worth the “price”.

    This empire is bankrupting the American people. We have a situation where:

    1. Trump campaigned on a paleoconservative platform
    2. He has governed and been forced to by Congress to be a warmongering neoconservative
    3. These wars have never worked out
    4. The AMerican people are increasingly broke and the middle class is gone

    Worse, people are getting maimed and killed! Why? SO a bunch of neocons and the military industrial complex can get rich?!

    These wars are going to be costly, both in terms of money and lives destroyed. They have made the world a more dangerous place. Trump I firmly believe has sold people out. He campaigned on change, but has largely governed like a conventional GOP President.

  8. Travis says:
    @Johnny Smoggins

    well said. We should have removed our troops from Korea when we President Clinton gave North Korea billions of dollars in aid to help them build their nukes in 1994. Once we decided to allow them to build nukes there was no reason for us to maintain troops in Korea.

  9. nickels says:

    My dad is 85 years old, has a back issue that could be fixed with a minor surgery.
    He has been tooling around with the VA for 6 months, still hasn’t been helped.

    But we have the $ to sail our Navy all through the middle east, south sea, around korea–and to send a $100million dollars of missiles into the dirt in Syria.

    The empire clearly no longer functions.

    • Replies: @Bill Jones
  10. @WorkingClass

    Increasingly my sentiments. It might have been better for North America to have evolved along the lines of South America.

    • Replies: @anon
  11. “[W]e have made an enemy of North Korea just by staying involved,” says Achmed E. Newman. Yes, Achmed, and I’m sure you agree with Howard Zinn in his People’s History that Seoul was never attacked by the DPRK – rather the war was started by the ROK and the USA.

    Johnny Smoggins leads with “The reason there is any North Korean hostility at all towards the U.S. is because of its presence on the peninsula.” – so there again is someone who clearly agrees with Howard Zinn’s version of the beginning of the Korean War. We just should have gotten out way back in June 1950, instead of “staying involved.” So what if the US Army was attacked by a foreign power? That was all “our” fault because we “stayed involved”?

    Then there is the comment by “anonymous” — “All that can be done is to bring ourselves to recognize their [DPRK's] legitimacy as a country … ” Thus, “anonymous” avoids even considering whether the government of the DPRK is legitimate or not! The DPRK is headed by an unelected autocratic psychopathic killer, but that’s “legitimate”???

    The skein with which this comment thread begins is disgusting.

    Of course, USA should get out of Syria and Iraq, and should never have gone into Libya. Of course, we should not maintain missiles in Poland, etc, — on the pretext of defending London from ICBM attack out of Iran!!

    The truth is that …

    we should not get out of Korea, we should get out of NATO.

    The neocons within the USA government, controlling USA’s global policy, are responsible for the anti-Russia policy … but why do they do it? They do it because they are paid well by the CCP to provide diversions from what is going on in Asia — in the SCS and with Vietnam, Taiwan, Japanese islands, not to mention China’s expansion into India’s Sikkim province (incidental to PRC’s policy claiming Tibet as part of China). So we should retreat everywhere from China’s expansion but we should aggressively oppose Russia’s non-expnsion????

    Commenters preaching neocon propaganda tell us that we should retreat from DPRK’s threats. Korea now is like Poland was in 1939. How far do we retreat? Before long, these same commenters will be preaching the neocon propaganda that, after all, the PRC has a “legitimate” claim to Hawaii, and they will say that the “only solution” will be (1) recognize the legitimacy of PRC’s claim to Hawaii, and, (2) withdraw all US military from Hawaii, and (3) etc., etc. (Pearl Harbor is clearly a “provocation”?)

    Does no one ask “cui bono” as to the neocon policy to retreat from China’s expansion but to aggressively oppose Russia’s non-expansion? No, we don’t ask that question because the neocons control the media and they tell us not to ask questions. USA’s neocons have obviously been paid off since Kissinger’s trip to Beijing back around 1972 or so. It’s been going on through Republican as well as Democratic administrations, and it is continuing right here in the beginning of this comment thread.

    “Yet none dare call it treason.”

  12. anon • Disclaimer says:

    Interesting column.

    If we are committed to nuking them before they get their ICBM, we might as well do it right now.


    Since no one will find that a great idea, then why not try something else?

    Settle the Korean War. Sign a peace treaty. Toss Taiwan into the deal. Really. This is simply the detritus of the Greatest Generation. Time to quit as South Korea’s bitch boy.

  13. The US is, of course a far more Murderous Regime than the Norks.

  14. @nickels

    Why should I pay for either?

  15. @Grandpa Charlie

    “[W]e have made an enemy of North Korea just by staying involved,” says Achmed E. Newman. Yes, Achmed, and I’m sure you agree with Howard Zinn in his People’s History that Seoul was never attacked by the DPRK – rather the war was started by the ROK and the USA.

    Listen, Gramps, even you were probably in diapers during that time. I know history, so you’re wrong here about me – read a book called “This Kind of War”. That’s a history of that conflict. (It’s interesting that all of the strategic moves up and down the peninsula occurred during the 1st one year – 2 more years were spent fighting over hills within a 50-mile wide area, with lots of more men dying and being maimed.)

    The rest of your post is similarly nonsensical.

    Commenters preaching neocon propaganda tell us that we should retreat from DPRK’s threats. Korea now is like Poland was in 1939. How far do we retreat? Before long, these same commenters will be preaching the neocon propaganda that, after all, the PRC has a “legitimate” claim to Hawaii, and they will say that the “only solution” will be (1) recognize the legitimacy of PRC’s claim to Hawaii, and, (2) withdraw all US military from Hawaii, and (3) etc., etc. (Pearl Harbor is clearly a “provocation”?)

    Dude, you have the nerve to call other people neocons? A neocon describes you to a tee, based on your writing here and in another comment of yours I have read on unz (maybe 1 week back). The Cold War is over! We are too broke to remain an empire and should not have been to begin with, based on the US Constitution and what our founders wanted. These are things you and the rest of the neocons do not seem to understand (continued here).

    Why in hell do we care whether leaving N. Korea is seen as a retreat? Do you think North Korea is going to take over the world or the Orient even? (re: your comment about it being like Poland.) Why the hell do you care what the People’s Republic of China does? We have a Defense Department, not an Offense Department. How about we stay out of the world’s business unless we are directly threatened? No, a threat to S. Korea, Syria, Israel, Japan, or East BFEgypt does not constitute a threat to the United States.

    The Cold War is over, and just look at VietNam, as an example. This is in hindsight, of course, but that war, even though lost by Washington, the Jane Fondas, and Walter Chronkite’s influence, didn’t matter, as Viet Nam may be nominally Communist, but that’s the letter of the law, not the spirit, and it’s USSR backer is no more, and China does not export Communism there as a) they fought a war in the lat 1970′s and b) China is only nominally Commie.

    We should not be worried about Communism taking over the world. That war is internal in America now. We won the external war, but are in a hell of a spot in the internal war. It’s hard to fight that when all we do is spend money we don’t have to piss off all of the rest of the world by bombing countries that most Americans could not find on a map.

    • Replies: @Grandpa Charlie
  16. @Rurik

    Yep, I like Pat Buchanan. I wish he’d gone farther in 1992. We’d been such a better situation, if he had become President then.

    (I don’t remember when Ross Perot came on the scene. I had nothing against him, but I just wonder if he had any effect on the R-primary at the early part – around when Mr. Buchanan won the New Hampshire primary. He was 3rd-party, but he could have takes some support, but I don’t know when he got into the limelight. Anyone?)

    • Replies: @Rurik
  17. anon • Disclaimer says:
    @Diversity Heretic

    At least the various countries of South America have never gone abroad or overseas fighting in pointless wars and conflicts that have nothing to do with them. Too bad the same can not be said for Canada and America.

    • Replies: @Diversity Heretic
  18. anon • Disclaimer says:
    @Grandpa Charlie

    Amazing. Simply amazing how you connect non-existent dots and create “facts” out of thin air.

  19. anon • Disclaimer says:

    The problem is that those who gain from the American empire do not pay the price for it. The military-industrial complex, the merchants of death, high ranking political figures in the USA, and the Israeli lobby (which wants the USA to support Israel) don’t suffer the ENORMOUS costs of the empire. They pass it on to taxpayers and the saps who join the empire’s legions (A.K.A. the US armed forces).

    And Americans wonder why they are the only country in the modern world not to have publicly paid for health care………

  20. @Johnny Smoggins

    Americans seem clearly not to care much about the safety of people living in Seoul or Tokyo: They keep shouting dire nuclear threats to North Korea over the heads of South Koreans and the Japanese.
    There should now be growing talk of ‘nuclear sovereignty’ in Japan and South Korea to deter North Korean nuclear threat independently and without US interference. The American presence in the region is posing a mortal danger for the people in the region.
    Japan and South Korea can very quickly manage their own defenses and make their own nuclear arsenal without American help.
    Initiating independent nuclear weapon capabilities for both South Korea and Japan will ensure peace in the region for a long time to come. It will most likely also promote economic and cultural relations on the peninsula.
    Mutual nuclear deterrence is what has prevented wars breaking out between Pakistan and India for several decades now.
    Americans should realize that increasing impotence on the part of their empire, to dictate terms to other nations, is making the world a very dangerous place to live in.

  21. @Achmed E. Newman


    Glad to hear that you do not advance the nonsense that DPRK did not start the Korean War. So it really was “staying involved” that “made an enemy” of the DPRK … well, that’s interesting because it always seemed to me that when a foreign power attacks the U.S. Army … well, then that foreign power is already an enemy, was our enemy from the very beginning, by their own choice.

    I did read over your linked “Peak Neocon” webpage. Based on that, I have to say that we have completely different ideas about what or who the neocons are. I say that Henry Kissinger is the godfather of the neocons, and the whole neocon thing started with Kissinger’s trip to Beijing in 1971. So, neocons are not people who do not think (or know) that the Cold War is over: they are, as a class, people who make their livings despite that the Cold War is over. They are, as a class, professional insiders in Washington, D.C., who made a good living during the Cold War and needed to find a way to continue making a good living with the Cold War over. They were not content to take their share of the “peace dividend” that everyone should have gotten when Russia decided to declare peace: they wanted more, much more, than that. Kisinger ran USA’s global/foreign policy for years, through both Democratic and Republican administrations. His friends, associates and acolytes have become the global/foreign policy elite since Kissinger more-or-less retired. They are the intellectuals who provide ideologies for the MIC as it works to keep warfare profitable and ongoing.

    In my view, the USA has become rather like China during the decline and fall of the Empire. So I would point out that it’s impossible to understand USA’s history since Vietnam War without understanding that when the old “China Lobby” (Chiang Kai-Shek, Henry Luce, Time and Life, the entire KMT government and military) was dying (having extracted huge sums from USA’s government), then was born the “New China” lobby, working from within the old China Lobby, which had ruled USA’s Asian (i.e., global) policy, to become the new lobby that began to rule and continues to rule USA’s Asian (i.e., global) policy. Often, I believe, it was the very same people. And just as in the days of the old China Lobby, money is everything.

    Now, as I say, USA has become much like China during the decline and fall of the Empire (referring to the Emperor of China and the Imperial court and all that). During that period, everything was for sale. So, when I point this out, I am not saying that only the PRC is paying off the neocons such that Israel and associated lobbies are not closely tied into the neocons or do not receive money from them. Not at all. That would be like saying back during the decline and fall of the Chinese Empire that since the British Empire was getting concessions from China, therefore no one else could: it’s just history that not only the British but the Germans and the French and the Russians were competing and getting concessions as well. That’s how the USA has become: everything is for sale, and the neocons entertain more than one nationally-identified “customer” simultaneously. The one thing that they are certain of, is that USA will decline and fall – so they want to place their bets in more than one location. They are globalists, and they want to survive the fall of America and live well somewhere else, when it’s more-or-less “all over.”

    So, yes, I think that you and others are (perhaps unwittingly) echoing the neocon party line to move us in a direction that is more to the liking of one of the neocons’ most important benefactors: the PRC or, more precisely, the Standing Committee of the CCP, since ordinary Chinese do not really stand to benefit the way the billionaires of the Standing Committee do. Now, when you ask me what the hell do I care about the PRC? Well, I do and I don’t. I care very much that the neocons are catering to the PRC because I care about treasonous activities within USA’s government. Now, when you say China is only nominally Communist, I say this: China is ruled by the Communist Party just as much as the Third Reich was ruled by the Nazi Party – even though both nations could be cited as examples of state-capitalism and not of socialism (or of Marxist communism). To me, when you say that China is only nominally Communist, it’s about like some historian saying that the Third Reich was only nominally Nazi.

    You really insult me when when you suppose that I ever was (or continue to be?) a supporter of the Vietnam War or of any of USA’s more recent wars. All I am saying is that Korea is different. That’s why I say: “Do not get out of Korea! Get out of NATO!” That’s what I proclaim … and you call me a “neocon”?

  22. @Grandpa Charlie

    “Thus, “anonymous” avoids even considering whether the government of the DPRK is legitimate or not! The DPRK is headed by an unelected autocratic psychopathic killer, but that’s “legitimate”???”
    Talking of psychopathic killers, how would you label Bill Clinton, George boy Busch, Barack Obama or others before them like Woodrow Wilson, FDR or Truman? They were elected psychopathic killer puppets by the sheeple who believe that they are making history by casting a ballot when they never had a real choice.
    Besides, if the U.S. is to prosecute psychopathic killers, it would open a Pandora’s box as most of its allies fall under the category.
    The truth of the matter is that there is a rising new empire in the East that is destined to dominate that part of the globe. Their vassal of North Korea can help rid the Korean peninsula of American hegemony in a quid pro quo deal whereby North Korea would relinquish its nuclear detterence for an American withdrawal from South Korea. This would clear the way for America to seek beneficial economic relations with China, a contender whose rise America cannot stop. That would be a blow to the American Empire and a boon to the American Republic, provided that the deal is accepted by the military industrial complex ( so don’t bet on it)

    • Replies: @Grandpa Charlie
  23. Ben Frank says:

    The fight-the-Norks idiots are like water balloons practicing knife-catching.

  24. virgile says:

    Pakistan has nuclear weapons and is fueling conflicts in Afghanistan supporting the Taliban. Why is the US not worried about Pakistan?
    Why is the USA less worried about Iran’s nuclear threat, ? Simply because the USA has ‘unofficially’ renounced to change Iranian’s regime with a nuclear deal.
    It is clear that the threat of a nuclear attack on the USA and its allies operates as a deterrent for its push for a regime change. Qaddafi renounced his nuclear ambitions to be wiped out. Saddam Hossein faked the presence of nuclear weapons to prevent a regime change.
    It is obvious that a country that has nuclear weapons is immune from the US’s obsession of changing the regimes that refuse to bow to the USA hegemony.
    With North Korea, the USA has no choice than to bow and ‘unofficially’ renounce to change North Korea’ s regime change. North Korea will want China and Russia’s guarantees that the USA will abide to that, because it just doesn’t trust the USA.
    To get out of the crisis the USA will need to ask help from China and Russia ( and europe). These will attach their conditions. Maybe Russia will get a relief of sanctions?
    Trump has the Congress in total disarray about North Korea’s threat. Is it Trump’s revenge on the Congress?

  25. If it matters…that the Chinese have a dog in this fight (NK) is not new news ie barking to be expected.

    My first taka-away from the Orange Pumpkin’s trash talk was “another diversion” and still is, but is quite secondary. For me what is going on in the Western Pacific/South China Sea today vis-a-vis US Policy are colonial boundary maintenance acts. And that the US public is in denial when it thinks that jobs, health care, and infrastructure trump international colonial/corporate boundary maintenance.

    The “legislative” origins of the US Gov’s “colonial mentality” goes back to when we declared the Caribbean Basin US “territory” (Monroe Doctrine 1823.) Okay, not quite but much like England vis-a-vis the Mediterranean Sea/Basin (not withstanding French/Spanish interests.)

    Were the Philadelphia crowd (some anyway) closet “aspirational” foreign territory colonialists (ala England, the Dutch, Spain…)? Hmm …

    I think a fair cobbling together of past US foreign “actions” vis-a-vis what is happening today in the Pacific/Pacific Rim countries (NK today) reads (again) as US colonial boundary maintenance (eg):

    ~ Mexian-American War (c 1848) territory acqusitiions,
    ~ Spanish-American War/Dewey (c 1898) Western Pacific acquisitions: Philippines/Guam), the
    ~ Post WW2 “acquisition” of Western Pacific territories—read the “transitioning” of South Korea, Formosa, Okinawa into an Anti-Mainland Chinese “thorns”, add ~ ~ Vietnam/Indo-China (1950-70s), and the
    ~ Today’s Pacific Fleet/Partnership/Gulf ops vis-a-vis N Korea/China


  26. @Grandpa Charlie

    Yeah, Charlie, we definitely have a disagreement on terms, if not a FEW other things. I will write you back a better reply later on – maybe even a day or two, after I read yours thoroughly (got busy today). Thanks for the civil reply – I gotta watch that stuff myself.

    BTW, yes out of NATO – that’s a relic, and we (or the neocons) have been using it to butt right up against Russisa.

    Thanks for reading my stuff, too Gramps – have a good weekend.

    • Replies: @Grandpa Charlie
  27. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    You did not mention nuking à outrance. Decapitation by vaporization would send the world’s wackier regimes the message that a few nukelets will no longer insure against Uncle Sam and that they will not possibly be able to afford the premiums for said insurance going forward.

    And regarding your title, the answer is yes, it’s what will yield results at the gas pump.

  28. @Joe Levantine

    How would I label Bill Clinton? As venal and corrupt.

    About all these presidents of USA that you are comparing with Kim Jong-Un, none of them had political competition murdered to secure their place at top of a system designed to be ruled by one dictator. Further, it’s important to notice that the administrations of American presidents were respectively followed by administrations headed by persons who had survived the election process, according to the Constitution as it has evolved. Yes, FDR is a special case, and so was Nixon. Yet and still, we do have a functioning system for the peaceful transfer of power. That’s important, and the recent threats to that system are also of great importance. China too has a functioning system for the peaceful transfer of power. However, in the case of the DPRK, there has never been a transfer of power to outside the Kim dynasty, and even there, Kim Jong-Un could establish himself apparently only by murdering his brother and his uncle.

    You have no grounds for arguing with me that to prosecute wars against all nations headed by psychopathic killers is an impractical policy, because I have never proposed such a thing. However, I would say that any nation that is developing a nuclear capability and is headed by a dictator who is a psychopathic killer … well, you tell me what is the proper policy for such a situation.

    Okay. you have a plan for this particular case of the DPRK. What you don’t say is that exit of USA’s military from the peninsula isn’t the projected end of a negotiated peace – it is the demand made by the Chinese-Russian statement on the crisis as the necessary pre-condition of any peace process. Yes, they say first USA needs to leave and then we’ll talk, or then the DPRK and the ROK can begin to talk. Does that seem reasonable to you? Or does that make you wonder if the DPRK truly is the vassal of the PRC or has the DPRK managed to become to the PRC what Israel is to the USA – the tail that wags the dog? My suggestion has always been that USA should follow the lead of the ROK. Let them decide how to handle this thing, since they know more about it than any of us.

    I don’t think that the people of democratic ROK would trust in the good heart of Kim Jong-Un to do the right thing once he with his nukes and his military is sitting at the bargaining table with President Moon of the ROK, and the USA out of the picture, do you? Looking at history, it seems much more likely that he would simply arrest or kill President Moon on the spot. So, imo, let the ROK lead us, USA. If they say that all USA military should leave, then of course, USA military will leave. If they say USA should nuke Pyongyang, then USA should probably nuke Pyongyang, in the sense that that is really the best chance for a good outcome from a terrible situation.

    When President Trump dissed President Moon when the latter paid a visit to the WH, that was not only impolite and graceless, it was foolhardy. I had already given up on Trump – ever since he fired General Flynn – and so Trump’s non sequitur with Moon, for me at least, was crap frosting on a mud cake.

    One last point: the way for USA to enter into beneficial trade relations with the PRC is not really a problem involving our political relations with the PRC. It is really simply a matter of the people of the USA taking charge and kicking the neocons out of power – preferably while trying them for treasonous collusion with agents of the PRC. We – USA – need to take charge of our trade relations as the Constitution intends. We thought Trump would do that, but between him and congressional Republicans, none of them has a clue. Either that or they are all as venal and corrupt as ever Bill Clinton was!

    • Replies: @Joe Levantine
  29. Rurik says:
    @Achmed E. Newman

    Hey Achmed,

    but I don’t know when he got into the limelight. Anyone?)

    it started on a program of Larry King’s talk show, when he said he would run.

    like with the Challenger explosion and 9/11, I remember where I was at the time I heard he dropped out.

    it was a catastrophe for me

  30. MEexpert says:

    This country was created to fight against an empire. The founding fathers knew the evils of being an empire so they wrote the constitution to avoid the pitfalls of becoming one. This country was great as long as it stayed clear of that notion. However, during the past several decades, because of the internal factors (do nothing US congress) and the invasion of AIPAC and neocons, the country has been on the road to becoming an empire. So far the price that we have paid for this misadventure is trilions of dollars and millions of lives (thousands of them American). What do we have to show for all this; chaos in the Middle East, renewed cold war against Russia, trade war against China, relations with former allies in Europe at breaking points, refugee crises in different countries, bombastic threats against North Korea and Venezuela with Iran next on the list. On the plus side, we have friends like Israel, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and the bankrupt (morally) regime in the UK.

    NO, I would say the “American Empire” is not worth the price.

  31. KenH says:

    The U.S. should have left the Korean peninsula and Okinawa after the end of the cold war and collapse of the Soviet Union. We simply have no reason to be there anymore.

    I used to laugh when reading about Stalin and Khrushchev’s claims and the old Soviet propaganda decrying the “imperialistic United States” since we were always told it was they who were the imperialists. But when the cold war ended the Russians dismantled all their foreign bases and went home while America continued to build new bases abroad. It was a real jolt to realize that these Soviet claims were not propagandistic after all and had a factual basis.

    I think Kim Jong Un is a buffoon, thug and murderer but from a purely objective standpoint I cannot blame him for wanting to acquire a nuclear warheads and the means to deliver them using ICBM’s. For that is the only insurance against regime change efforts by the U.S. & NATO.

    Saddam gave up WMD’s in the 1990′s and we not only toppled him but hung him after a Soviet style show trial. Qaddafi stopped supporting terrorists and became somewhat friendly towards the West and yet he, too, was toppled based on a phony pretext like always. I don’t think any of this has been lost on the North Koreans.

    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
  32. Kim’s credible threat to one day be able to nuke a U.S. city is going to concentrate American minds wonderfully.

    A bit melodramatic, I’d say. Wrong on both counts as well. Nothing like a little distraction to take our minds off of the real threats, most of which are right here, at home.

  33. @WorkingClass

    Never was worth the price beginning with the war between the states.

    It increasingly appears to me to have been a war of the Northern banksters against the Southern agrarians. I think “war between the states” is another misnomer.

    • Replies: @WorkingClass
  34. @jacques sheete

    Pat is asking “Is the American Empire Worth the Price?”

    Whatever you call it the war was a manifestation of the will to empire in the north. The Confederacy was invaded, defeated, occupied and absorbed into the fledgling American Empire. Lincoln had to suspend the constitution in order to accomplish this errand.

    My paternal great grandfather came to the U.S. from Norway to take advantage of the Homestead Act. He got as far as Illinois when he was conscripted into the union army. He survived the war and lived to stake his claim albeit missing one leg below the knee. I myself was conscripted into the union army in the mid 60′s. The war in south east Asia was also an imperial adventure. Both wars (all American wars) have served one purpose. To make a few rich men richer.

    Go in peace jacques sheete.

    • Agree: jacques sheete
  35. athEIst says:

    we will help South Korea and Japan become nuclear powers like Britain and France.

    If you mean we helped Britain and France become nuclear powers, we did not. The British expected we would help them but we refused and the British had to develop their own capability* We did everything but invade to stop the French.
    *cooperation with Britain resumed in the mid Fifties. The US had a Uranium shortage

  36. @anon

    I think Brazil was involved in WWII, at least to a limited extent. And South American countries had some nasty 19th Century wars. But the division of the continent into a number of countries seems to have precluded the overseas expansionism that now plagues the U.S. The U.S. ought to be able to have a foreign policy of a large Switzerland, but it’s very size gives its elites delusions of grandeur.

  37. @Achmed E. Newman

    Thanks for a civil reply and for the recommendation of the Fehrenbach book.

  38. Erebus says:

    Is the American Empire Worth the Price?

    It might not be worth the price much longer, but rest assured that when the Empire goes, America will cease to exist in its current form.
    Quite probably, it will break up into a much looser federation, or even federations, of states. To an extent not normally appreciated, the Empire has been the glue that held the country together. Or, perhaps more accurately, the tribute collected by the Empire held the country together. Now that the Empire is faltering, the old fault lines are elbowing their way to the front, and some new ones have appeared.

    While they’re growing, Empires are of great material benefit to their home base, but they invariably take their home base down with them when they ultimately fail. Imperial failure is staring America in the face.

    So, a better question may soon be “Was the American Empire Worth the Price?” Ask any American 10 years from now, and I’ll wager all here know the answer. Well, almost all.

  39. If you mean we helped Britain and France become nuclear powers, we did not.

    Would you care to elaborate on this? It’s especially interesting in light of the fact that the USSR was supplied, through Lend Lease, with technology and material to start its nuke program, and Israel obtained at least some components from the US illegally and as far as I know, no one has ever been indicted let alone convicted, for any of that.

  40. Very sensible article.
    To put it in a homely way: the US could catch more flies with honey rather than vinegar…Given how poor this little fly is, I suspect it wouldn’t take much honey either….

  41. @KenH

    I used to laugh when reading about Stalin and Khrushchev’s claims and the old Soviet propaganda decrying the “imperialistic United States” since we were always told it was they who were the imperialists. But when the cold war ended the Russians dismantled all their foreign bases and went home while America continued to build new bases abroad. It was a real jolt to realize that these Soviet claims were not propagandistic after all and had a factual basis.

    Great paragraph there, Ken. I felt the same way in the 1980′s when I heard that WE were the imperialists our of the mouths of Commie leaders of the Soviet Union. It was the Cold War, and the point of the American military was containment – that didn’t mean there weren’t pre-neocons out there and the MIC wanting more weapons, more bases, and more money, notwithstanding worry about being surrounded by Communism.

  42. @Grandpa Charlie

    Really, Charlie, the only thing we disagree on wrt the definition of the neocons is that I wrote that they were mostly former lefties, but not all, per my linked articles:

    I really doubt that all of the neocons, since this type became an infestation by the early 1990′s, were from the left as I described, but there were others just absorbed and deflected away from true conservatism onto this new path.

    The people you wrote about (and I completely agree) like Kissinger, et al, are what I would call the Deep State folks (or at least connected or in charge of the Deep State). I don’t think the neocon term was even around back then, as I had always thought it meant those who came over to conservatism in the 1980′s just because it was winning out (seemed to be then, right?) I’ll put my whole paragraph here, just for others:

    OK, back on topic, once the Cold War was won, the US had by far the most powerful military in the world, much goodwill built up, and still the most powerful economy by a factor of 3, probably, over any other single country in the world. Any true conservatives left by 1990 or so, many of them regular Americans, but in the political world, your Pat Buchanans and such, would and were arguing for our country to stay out of the world’s business finally, as the Cold War was won (on the military, foreign affairs level, not domestically, but most of us didn’t see that coming!) Not only was it difficult for any part of the Military Industrial Complex to just stand down, there were politicians, elites, pundits, etc. wanting us to DO SOMETHING with this power, and many a allegedly-former lefty could become part of this huge power structure just by not saying “We should not be the world’s policeman.” and “Unilateral disarmament, Now!” anymore, and by shutting their pie holes on conservative social issues that they didn’t really believe in. Lastly, because it must be mentioned, the neocons support Israel, as if it were essential to life in the US because a) many neocons are Jewish and just as importantly b) the middle east is a good place to have wars, as until now, the US military could kick ass fairly inexpensively throughout the region.

    We have disagreements on China (somewhat) and Korea (completely), and I am sorry to have insulted you by assuming you were in hindsight a Vietnam War supported – I really cannot say I would not have been back in 1965, but then, much information was hidden from us.

    Just about Korea, since that is, after all, the subject of Mr. Buchanan’s article here: I agree with KenH’s 1st paragraph, here,

    The U.S. should have left the Korean peninsula and Okinawa after the end of the cold war and collapse of the Soviet Union. We simply have no reason to be there anymore.

    but that is the past. As of now, I understand your point, Charlie, that having a madman in charge of functional nukes anywhere in the world is a bad thing. It is hard to have a M.A.D. standoff type program with a nutcase, as he may not care whether his countrymen, subjects really, all die. However, we have been on and off with the same situation in Iran, and the proliferation is already done.

    I just don’t see how it should or remain America’s problem, and I do indeed maintain that the threat would not be aimed at us, would we just defend our land here and leave the rest of the world alone. Why is North Korea a completely unique case here?

    OK, this brings up the economic aspect of it to me – I posted on that above to Mr. Buchanan (it’s be cool if he’d read this stuff, but I doubt he does) as number 4 above. I may write you more on this part and about China. I do have some first-hand recent knowledge of the place, but not really of the workings of their government.

    I just read your new comment this morning, so thanks for that (I opened a new tab to find a way to get my comment #4 7-digit number for the link – it’s kind of roundabout* – then saw your new one.)

    *For old HTML hacks, without a reply to that comment (of mine), I had to view page source, find my comment, and then the number with it. I must be missing an easier way.

    • Replies: @Grandpa Charlie
  43. I like this Deep State analysis. I have been avoiding “Deep State” because it always seemed to be ill-defined, and because some “deep state” is always necessary and not necessarily evil. To me, the key issue is this: are USA’s Deep State actors or members – are they on the payroll of, or otherwise beholden to, foreign powers? In the case of Israel, it’s pretty obvious and even blatant. In the case of the PRC, there has been considerable evidence relating to the bribery of the Clintons, whom I would call “neocons” but could also be identified in terms of but for me the most compelling evidence is the record of the stupidity of USA’s Asian policy over the years (since c. 1970). In this regard, you say about the Vietnam War, “I really cannot say I would not have been [supportive of the Vietnam War] back in 1965, but then, much information was hidden from us.”

    For me, going back to the 1964, I did have some small amount of ‘insider information’ at that time, not such that I would necessarily oppose intervention there but such that I understood that the whole approach of USA to Vietnam at that time was pretty much resulting from the influence of the China Lobby (the old lobby, as it still existed at that time), but I maintained a wait-and-see attitude. IMO, based on some facts (concerning, e.g., the K.C. Wu tungsten mine in the south of China), part of the USA government – the “deep state” of that era, I guess – was working toward using the Vietnam conflict as a means to reopen the Chinese Civil War in the south of China. Not being a big dog at a high level, I of course sat on a fence to see how all that would work out.

    I got off the fence and began openly to oppose the Vietnam War from the very day that Fulbright (chair of the Senate’s Foreign Relations Committee) made the statement (doing all he could to get it into MSM) that (1) Johnson had called him personally immediately after the Gulf of Tonkin incident to get him (Fulbright] to vote for the Joint Resolution, and (2 that he (Fulbright) had no idea, even though Johnson had promised to give him details, of what actually had happened at the Gulf of Tonkin. That set off alarm bells in my mind, and then the whole picture became muddy (or maybe I should say, ‘bloodied’) when it turned out that there was no grand design involving China, at least not effectively, and the whole thing really had no point unless you could believe the ridiculous propagandistic ‘domino theory’. So, what became clear to me was that Vietnam wasn’t a war that could be ‘won’ or even honorably ended. I severed my ties (or they were severed for me) with the defense establishment. Subsequent to that, I was drawn into the anti-war movement, but I just didn’t fit into that at all, so I moved up-country and did not even read any newspapers for a few years, and was occupied with family and such.

    So, yes, much was hidden – but enough was known to anyone who paid attention.

    Here, I call attention to Kissinger and what he called “real politik”. IMO, what Kissinger meant by that ‘real politik’ stuff is mainly that he saw the unreality that had taken over in Washington as a result of the influence of the old China Lobby, and he (Kissinger) wasn’t about to fall into that trap. That’s how and why he made his famous (at that time secret) trip to Beijing in 1971. That destroyed the old China Lobby, but within that lobby Phoenix-like arose the New China lobby – complete with all the pay-offs. In other words, the China lobby in Washington was taken over lock, stock and two smoking barrels by the CCP.

    Now you could – and maybe you do – argue that all the inane USA policy decisions that benefited the PRC from the 1970s to the present day were just honest mistakes, coming out of the Eurocentrism of the USA (academia, banking cartel, etc.) including the Deep State “experts”. Don’t believe btw the crap that it was all Jimmy Carter’s doing: consider that our first de facto ambassador to the PRC was none other than George H. W. Bush. So both political parties were equally involved and responsible, and members of both parties were benefitting. Now, you could argue that it’s all just been stupidity. But I say this: you can’t argue that “honest mistakes” theory now in this era of the anti-Russia neocon (Deep State) policy! Russia and Putin for years begged USA for an alliance, so that she (Mother Russia) would not be at the mercy of China – and so the only way to see the anti-Russia thing is as being done of, by and for the CCP.

    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
  44. @Achmed E. Newman

    I apologize that apparently my comment, immediately above, has no “@Achmed” notation at the top. But it makes sense only if it is read as a response to ‘Achmed’.

    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
  45. @Grandpa Charlie

    I”ve done the same thing, Charlie, I spent a little time writing under Steve Sailer’s post. I will respond to your great comment above later today when I have more time. I really think the only thing we don’t agree on is what to do about N. Korea now, if anything.

    You have a lot more knowledge of the inside politics of those days 60′s-70′ than I do, but I do remember the Clintons’ selling out of American business to China for what, a few bucks, and probably something special for Bill (maybe a little China doll straight out of the Poontang Dynasty).

    Really, I’ll write more later – getting distracted right now by other stuff.

    • Replies: @Grandpa Charlie
  46. @Achmed E. Newman


    Looking forward to your post. No rush. The world seems to be stuck right now in the dog days of summer.

  47. @Grandpa Charlie

    I think the Deep State types and some of the neocons can trace their lineage to way back in the day of the OSS in WWII (the big one) with Wild Bill Donavan. They had a purpose in that day, though even that could be argued, I suppose, by someone with first-hand knowledge of that time – most wouldn’t knock the purpose of the OSS in WWII.

    What happened? No organization wants to shut down just because their job is done (take the MADD people, please!). Additionally, those types were flamboyant, wild types that I’m sure had a blast doing all the stuff they were involved in. They wanted to keep the show going, and they sure did. During the Cold War, there was a purpose to the espionage, sabotage, and what-have-you, but there was also much more goofed-up stupid shit that killed lots of people unnecessarily and ruined complete nations. I’m talking about the CIA mainly, but there’s more Deep State organizations that we don’t know about – hell even the NSA was something one never heard of until the last 2 decades or so.

    Now that there is no Cold War, the purpose is gone, but the crazy, stupid shit continues, and much of the spying has turned inward, because, why not ? You’ve got your big budget for the year – use it or lose it.

    I will recommend another book, Charlie, called “China Pilot“. The author flew from the days of flying the hump as the Flying Tigers under Clair Chenault*, continued in China (up in Muckden, aka, Shenzhen) during the time of the Commie takeover, and into the Vietnam years. It’s pretty interesting, and this ties in with your points about the Nationalist Chinese under Chaing-Kai-Shek. That book and one called “Burma Road” about the fight against the Japs in that theater includes info. on the corruptness of those Nationalists.

    I think the Deep State types along with the leaders puppets-in-chiefs (Clinton, Bushes especially) did not give a damn about the long term affects of their foreign policies on the American economy. They were just having a blast playing around with foreign nations all over the world like pieces in a game of Risk.

    More later …..

  48. Lots of stuff covered in your post.

    Thanks for pointing me to China Pilot and to Burma Road. Someone gave me a copy of Pearl Buck’s The Promise, which is also about the conflicts surrounding the Burma Road. Hard to say how historically accurate it may be, but I think it’s good reporting on, e.g., how the Asian peoples generally despised all Whites, and also about Japanese use of tanks and Japanese fighting style. One thing it brings out is that the Chinese view (not only of Chinese Communists) is that the Philippine Islands are pretty much to be considered as Chinese. It all goes back to ancient China idea that there are no well-defined limits to the Middle Kingdom, although they never considered that they had to conquer the world militarily. It’s more along the lines of Sun Tzu’s idea of conquering an adversary without him ever knowing he has been conquered.

    As I have explained earlier, “Communist” really should never be taken, imo, at least not since Stalin, as signifying any kind of idealistic concept of socialism or of central planning (as distinguished from the centralization of power) and, far less, any version of Marxism. Really, the Communist Party is closely comparable with the Nazi Party. Economic theories, like philosophic theories, are to be picked up and put down for opportunistic reasons. They are means to the end of ruling the masses. That’s all that the Communist Party really is: a kind of club or conspiracy for the purpose of (A) overthrowing government(s) and (B) ruling the masses. (And the unstated goal of enriching “the new ruling class,” i.e. Communist Party members.) On the other hand, Mao did begin his intellectual contributions with an extremely detailed “class analysis,” a very Marxist idea, Mao’s was a different undertaking from European Marxism’s aristocrats, bourgeoisie, proletariat. Incomparably more detailed than something about ‘lumpen proletariat’ – although that could be a start.

    Understanding that Communists are (along with many dupes or True Believers) political opportunists, explains how many “professional” conservatives had their starts working in the Communist Party, where they all considered themselves to be “professional” revolutionaries.

    About the “Deep State,” I think that theory goes back to the “Dual State” theory of the German political scientist Ernst Fraenkel. I think it comes out of the reality that the German General Staff continued in a semi-dormant state during the Weimar years and then continued, imo, right up until it was rooted out by Hitler after they tried to assassinate him. Your treatment of the history, imo, leaves out the very important role, imo, of the JBS. In any case, John Birch’s story is great and significant.

    Looks like this thread has run its course. I’ll be checking it in case you decide to write some more here, but now in my octogenarian years, I just am not likely to write much. I greatly admire your website, and I would encourage you to continue with it. Be wary though: as soon as I saw you have a website, I was already trying to influence you. And I can’t be the only one. I think you are what they call an ‘opinion maker.”

    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
  49. @Grandpa Charlie

    Hey, Grampa Charlie,

    I think it’s fine if nobody else is on here – maybe Mr. Buchanan can read the thread and straighten us both out. ;-}. Again, I think he has a good grasp of history, but he doesn’t get into any matters of economics (other than rightfully writing about the evisceration of American manufacturing). The economics is gonna matter soon enough, in my opinion.

    I agree with your 2nd full paragraph. One thing I will say in favor of the Chinese big government leaders big-shots over our CURRENT ones here. They may be corrupt as all hell (same as ours), and not care what some of the effects of their policies are over just raking in the bucks and living large (same as ours). However, I think they still care about the Chinese “People”, as in they would favor them over other ethnic groups, while our elites are doing their damndest to flat-out replace the American people.

    Yeah, but definitely most of the totalitarian societies are run by people who aren’t die-hard believers in any of the “-isms” whatever the official line is. You concentrated on China, but Stalin is a good example too – I don’t think he gave a crap about “the people’s this” and “to each according to his needs, and from each according to her ability”. (haha!). Lenin and Trotsky probably were all in on the Marxist bull from the beginning but once they came into power over people that went away, I’m sure. Is it in the Communist principals to have your “brother” Trotsky killed with an ice axe? I doubt it – just strictly bidness!

    I’d always had good thoughts about the John Birch Society, but I don’t know that much. I’d appreciate it if you could fill me in when you have time. The Weimar years in Germany must have been about as crazy a time as we are experiencing in 20-teens America, just about a century later. Between the huge, huge inflation, so loss by most families of their savings, Commies trying to take over (Lenin was a decade earlier sent over to Germany to cool his heels and to get away from the Czar), Nazis trying to get their country back, yet led by a madman, and the deep state from WWI, which I’d read something about, how could one live a normal life?

    I’m really sorry to get off on the wrong foot with my first post to you. I tend to get to cussing too much – I was gonna quit that a coupla weeks back, but it didn’t take. I went to my 12-step program for this, but couldn’t get through step 1: “Hello, my name is Achmed E. Newman, and I … don’t have time for this shit. Fuck you people!” Haha.

    Have a good morning, Grampa Charlie, and thanks for your complements on Peak Stupidity.

    • Replies: @Grandpa Charlie
  50. @Grandpa Charlie

    “About all these presidents of USA that you are comparing with Kim Jong-Un, none of them had political competition murdered to secure their place at top of a system designed to be ruled by one dictator. ”
    Hmmm! Does the name Huey Long mean anything to the vast majority of Americans? The man was proving to be a real threat to the political survival of FDR but he prematurely met his maker by an assassin’s bullet. I am not implicating FDR in Long’s death, but I would not rule out the hand of shadow government or what is fationably called the ‘ deep state’ in Long’s and many other presidents and presidential candidates assassinations.
    The truth of the matter is that Kim’s role in DPRK is akin to the role of the deep state in the U.S. One is called a dictatorship and the other a democracy. If we ever ask the American public if they would trade their freedom to cast a ballot in favor of any governmental official for a measure of social security with respect to the basics of life, what would you think most of the crushed majority would choose.
    Besides, the Western corporate press have been accusing all those who are targeted for the cull with all kinds of assassinations and human rights violations without any proof. So we cannot assume that the death of Kim’s brother and uncle were actually ordered by Kim anymore than we can believe that Putin annexed Crimea. Charles De Gaulle, a French democratically elected president pioneered the term ‘ Raison D’état ‘ to justify actions by the executive branch that bypasses constitutional niceties. So as a believer in a small and very decentralized government model, I realize that the divide between so called democratic and dictatorial governance is not as black and white as we were taught to believe.

    • Replies: @Grandpa Charlie
  51. @Joe Levantine

    Joe Levantine,

    First off, I am less motivated than I was when all this thread started at Buchanan’s article – less motivated, because

    So, that’s good news to my mind. And it indicates that Trump is anything but the clown that the Clintonian MSM would like us to believe.

    About the general case that you present as countering my comparison of the Kim dynasty with USA in the current era – yes, you score strong points. But the way I see it, even if USA is being run by the Zio conspiracy, that still doesn’t argue against the perception that Kim Jong Un is a psychopath who should not be able to challenge USA with nukes. You know, “two wrongs do not make a right.”

    Anyway, it appears that China is acting to rein in the hothead of the DPRK.

    As for the history, I just have to say that FDR is a very special case, and to say that this isn’t the time to hash all that out – and that I don’t have the time for it – that would be a huge understatement. And the same for Huey Long. And the same for JFK. And if your point is that we really don’t have much solid info on the Kim dynasty – yeah, that’s obvious, and yet we have no choice but to form our views to the best of our abilities, reading between the lines and all, if we are going to try to comprehend what’s going on. And I generally wouldn’t have even tried but for the apparent intransigence on the PRC/DPRK side plus how even Buchanan is just throwing up his arms to surrender (without a fight).

  52. @Achmed E. Newman


    No problem with you being something of a hothead – no problem. After all, I am the guy who even recommends (sort of) that USA pulls off a strike on Pyongyang.

    As for the JBS. Just google it. Or go directly to it –

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