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Is North Korea Really a 'State Sponsor of Terrorism'?
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President Trump announced last week that he was returning North Korea to the US list of “state sponsors of terrorism” after having been off the list for the past nine years. Americans may wonder what dramatic event led the US president to re-designate North Korea as a terrorism-sponsoring nation. Has Pyongyang been found guilty of some spectacular terrorist attack overseas or perhaps of plotting to overthrow another country by force? No, that is not the case. North Korea is back on the US list of state sponsors of terrorism because President Trump thinks the move will convince the government to give up its nuclear weapons and ballistic missile program. He believes that continuing down the path toward confrontation with North Korea will lead the country to capitulate to Washington’s demands. That will not happen.

President Trump and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson argued that North Korea deserved to be back on the list because the North Korean government is reported to have assassinated a North Korean citizen – Kim Jong-Un’s own half-brother — in February at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport. But what does that say about Washington’s own program to assassinate US citizens like Anwar al-Awlaki and his 16 year old son under Obama, and later Awlaki’s six year old daughter under Trump? Like Kim’s half brother, Awlaki and his two children were never tried or convicted of a crime before being killed by their own government.

The neocons, who are pushing for a war with North Korea, are extremely pleased by Trump’s move. John Bolton called it “exactly the right thing to do.”

Designating North Korea as a state sponsor of terrorism will allow President Trump to impose the “highest level of sanctions” on North Korea. Does anyone believe more sanctions – which hurt the suffering citizens of North Korea the most – will actually lead North Korea’s leadership to surrender to Washington’s demands? Sanctions never work. They hurt the weakest and most vulnerable members of society the hardest and affect the elites the least.

So North Korea is officially a terrorism-sponsoring nation according to the Trump Administration because Kim Jong-Un killed a family member. Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia is in the process of killing the entire country of Yemen and no one says a word. In fact, the US government has just announced it will sell Saudi Arabia $7 billion more weapons to help it finish the job.

Also, is it not “state-sponsorship” of terrorism to back al-Qaeda and ISIS, as Saudi Arabia has done in Syria?

The truth is a “state sponsor of terrorism” designation has little to do with actual support for global terrorism. As bad as the North Korean government is, it is does not go abroad looking for countries to invade. The designation is a political one, allowing Washington to ramp up more aggression against North Korea.

Next month the US and South Korean militaries will conduct a massive military exercise practicing an attack on North Korea. American and South Korean air force fighters and bombers will practice “enemy infiltration” and “precision strike drills.” Are these not also to be seen as threatening?

What is terrorism? Maybe we should ask a Yemeni child constantly wondering when the next Saudi bomb overhead might kill his family. Or perhaps we might even ask a Pakistani, Somali, Iraqi, Syrian, or other child who is terrified that the next US bomb will do the same to his family. Perhaps we need to look at whether US foreign policy actually reflects the American values we claim to be exporting before we point out the flaws in others.

(Republished from The Ron Paul Institute by permission of author or representative)
• Category: Foreign Policy • Tags: American Military, North Korea, Terrorism 
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  1. US citizens like Anwar al-Awlaki? Lolwut? That’s a fake American if there ever was one. Lolbertarians are such whimpering softheads, shedding tears about the one good thing the Gay Mulatto managed to accomplish. Don’t forget muh Constitution was written for free white persons’ “Posterity,” meaning direct genetic descendants.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  2. KenH says:

    Trump needs to act all tough and show the world that “we’re baaaack”. Neocons are rejoicing. The Norks are not angels by any means, but when we accuse a nation of being a state sponsor of terrorism that usually just means they won’t take orders from the U.S. via Israel and submit to a state of vassalage.

    Washington’s own program to assassinate US citizens like Anwar al-Awlaki and his 16 year old son under Obama,

    Libertarians are always waxing indignant when non-whites are being killed, persecuted or having their rights infringed upon but remain silent when racialist whites are being persecuted by the state. Sonny boy Rand even offered to have a town hall with BLM (which they rejected) to hear their concerns but would never dare reach out to leading members of the alt-right to hear their very legitimate grievances.

    In this case it’s clearly misplaced as al-Awlaki was a senior member of Al Qaeda and involved in planning acts of violence. There was no trial but the circumstantial evidence against him was very strong.

    • Replies: @anonymous
    , @reiner Tor
  3. Trump is going to put North Korea on a list? The horror!

    State sponsors of terror are The U.S., Israel, Saudi Arabia (the Gulf States) and (until recently?) Turkey.

  4. Fine and good that we have a list of state sponsors of terrorism, but can someone tell me the objective criteria that qualifies a nation to neon that list and who can impartially decide, based on those objective reasons?

  5. anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    What (circumstantial) evidence informed the killing of his son?

    And on what basis do you believe that Dr. Paul has spoken out against this extra-judicial execution of American citizens to any greater extent than he would have if they had been whites?

    • Replies: @KenH
  6. Malla says:

    What do you guys make out of this???

  7. KenH says:

    What (circumstantial) evidence informed the killing of his son?

    The strong circumstantial evidence was against his father, not the son who seems to be guilty only of being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Kind of like Vicki Weaver who was summarily murdered in cold blood along with son Samuel Weaver by federal agents. Or, like the Branch Davidians who were burned alive by the feds without trial.

    I said libertarians in general, not necessarily Ron Paul in particular, tend to wax indignant when non-whites are inconvenienced in any way or killed by the state. But Ron Paul is so steadfast in his love for Constitutional rights that he doesn’t take into account the evidence against Anwar Al Awlaki or that Al Awlaki, as an Islamic fundamentalist, has no use for that parchment (other than to hide behind it as needed) since it wasn’t inspired by Allah.

    If it weren’t for the 1965 immigration act that granted entry to untold millions of racially discordant and religiously and culturally antagonistic third world people like “fellow citizen” Al Awlaki we wouldn’t be wasting our time debating this point.

  8. @Hank Rearden

    The US government made Anwar its own citizen, and then decided to murder him without much further legal ado.

    • Replies: @Hank Rearden
  9. @KenH

    In this case it’s clearly misplaced as al-Awlaki was a senior member of Al Qaeda and involved in planning acts of violence. There was no trial but the circumstantial evidence against him was very strong.

    I’m not totally convinced of the strength of evidence, but I do agree that it could be a legitimate case of state-sponsored murder.

    But then Kim’s half-brother was reportedly involved in a plot on Kim’s life, so there’s that. In a kingdom, conspiring to kill the king is high treason. As long as he was alive, he could be a pretender to the throne.

    If some murders are legitimate, then is just one murder enough to designate a country a “state sponsor of terrorism”?

  10. @reiner Tor

    It’s a good start accomplishing the necessary physical removal, so to speak, of fake Americans within our midst.

    Ron Paul, being a libertarian, should understand that easily.

    • Replies: @jtgw
  11. KenH says:

    I’m not totally convinced of the strength of evidence, but I do agree that it could be a legitimate case of state-sponsored murder.

    If you have evidence that Al Awlawki was a Muslim Mr. Rogers and not guilty of what the U.S. gov’t accused him of then I’m all ears.

    If some murders are legitimate, then is just one murder enough to designate a country a “state sponsor of terrorism”?

    No, especially when Kim Jong Un already wields absolute power and he doesn’t politically gain anything by committing this one murder. The N. Koreans have a stronger case against us with our support for MEK and “moderate” Syrian rebel groups who were just ISIS aligned Wahhabis with lipstick and mascara.

    • Replies: @jtgw
  12. jtgw says:

    The burden of proof is on the government, not on the accused. As for Kim’s power, surely a dictator’s power is maintained by constantly eliminating rivals and potential rivals and not being seen to go soft. That doesn’t mean Kim is guilty, but it is plausible. And RP’s point is really the double standard: if NK is a terrorism sponsor for assassinating one of its citizens without trial, by the same reasoning we are terrorism sponsors for doing the same thing to one of our citizens.

  13. jtgw says:
    @Hank Rearden

    Hoppe would also have opposed the assassination. Awlaki was not in the country and didn’t need to be “physically removed”:

    Stop attacking, killing and bombing people in foreign countries. A main cause, even if by no means the only one, for the current invasion of Western countries by hordes of alien immigrants, are the wars initiated and conducted in the Middle East and elsewhere by the US ruling elites and their subordinate Western puppet-elites. As well, the by now seemingly ‘normal’ and ubiquitous terrorist attacks in the name of Islam across the Western world are in large measure the “blow-back” of these wars and the ensuing chaos throughout the Middle East and Northern Africa.

    There should be no hesitation to call these Western rulers what they are: murderers or accessories to mass murder. We must demand, and cry out loud instead for a foreign policy of strict non-interventionism. Withdraw from all international and supranational organizations such as the UN, NATO and the EU that integrate one country into the domestic affairs of another. Stop all government-to-government aid and prohibit all weapon sales to foreign States.

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