I note with sadness but no surprise, that New Zealand has once more joined the Western cabal aiming to destabilise North Korea.
Given that New Zealand and her allies inflicted horrific genocidal acts on North Korean civilians in the Korean War (with many millions dead) and the subsequent 50 years of threats of nuking North Korea, annual massive war games on the Korean armistice line, a refusal by the Americans to negotiate a peace treaty, and ongoing threats to decapitate the North Korean leadership, it is small wonder that the North Korean regime feels its only safety is in a nuclear deterrent.
The hypocrisy of the US and its ‘allies” to advocate for a ‘non-nuclear’ Korean peninsula, while patrolling its waters with nuclear armed weaponry, no longer astounds me.
The symbolism of a shared North/South Korean flag at the Winter Olympics must be deeply troubling to those whose only negotiating option is war.
Perhaps our esteemed new Foreign Affairs Minister, Mr Winston Peters, might wish to read some history?
The blog heading is one of Mark Twain’s quotes. But here is a much better one from Mr Clemens.
Man is the only Patriot. He sets himself apart in his own country, under his own flag, and sneers at the other nations, and keeps multitudinous uniformed assassins on hand at heavy expense to grab slices of other people’s countries, and keep them from grabbing slices of his. And in the intervals between campaigns he washes the blood of his hands and works for “the universal brotherhood of man”- with his mouth. – “The Lowest Animal”- Mark Twain
Today, in my little part of the world; it is once again Anzac Day, originally commemorated to mark the bloody failure of the British Empire’s coordinated attack on Turkish positions in the Dardanelles at Gallipoli in World War One, but now, ( supposedly) it ‘acknowledges the sacrifice of all those who have died in warfare, and the contribution and suffering of all those who have served.” Strangely however this commemoration of all who have died in wars is marked by artillery salutes, marching uniformed men and much fanfare about this country’s patriotism. We are encouraged to believe that Anzac Day now promotes a sense of unity, perhaps more effectively than any other day on the national calendar. People whose politics, beliefs and aspirations are widely different can nevertheless share a genuine sorrow at the loss of so many lives in war, and a real respect for those who have endured warfare on behalf of the country we live in. (New Zealand Government).
I for one, am appalled that the majority consensus in New Zealand appears to be that ‘plucky little New Zealand’ became a real country with its own identity, and not just a member of the British Empire, by maiming and killing its way through a series of foreign “adventures”. The one possible exception to this catastrophic jingoistic litany of murder and mayhem, is New Zealand’s very real contribution to the war against Nazi Germany and Japan during the Second World War, when a New Zealand invasion by the Japanese Imperial Army was a high probability at one point.
Every other war we have fought, we have fought at the behest of others- from the genocide inflicted on the Boers during the Boer Wars as part of the British Imperial Army’s need to maintain control of South African assets, the First World War’s bizarre clash of European monarchies , the staggering level of genocide inflicted on Koreans by the “Allies’ (including New Zealand naval bombardment of civilian areas) during the Korean War, our implicit involvement in American genocide in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, our explicit connection to rendering of Afghan suspects to U.S. torture centres in Afghanistan, and our ongoing complicity in the Five Eyes intelligence project, which currently serves American and U.K. interests in promoting terrorism around the world and destroying human rights.
All in all, it is not a record I for one am proud of. Our ongoing subservience to the paranoid and psychopathic American war machine and its business interests, serves no-one’s interests on this planet, other than a few crazed right wing American idealogues and the military/industrial complex.
Despite successive New Zealand governments’ posturings that we are now a sovereign nation because of Anzac Day, when are we truly going to be a proud and independent nation who stands in truth for peace and international justice?
When I was at high-school in my quiet little New Zealand hometown, the Army came round each classroom every once in a while to show what a great job they were doing to defend us from the commies.
I have always remembered one swaggering staff sergeant and his corporal explaining in great detail to our class how the anti-personnel mines they used in Vietnam to fight the vietcong; or “charlie” as they liked to call them -(short for “victor charlie” or “vc”) – how our honourable soldiers would park these little green claymore mines on their scissor legs on the jungle trails with tripwires for the unwary-be they “charlie” or local peasants and their children.
Once detonated by the tripwire , the blast shot six hundred little ball bearings at deadly velocity in a 60 degree arc, shredding anything and everything in their path. Our staff-sergeant explained with a weary smile that that those cunning little charlie used to instead turn the mines around so that they sometimes shredded “our ” men instead.
Our staff-sergeant made it oh, so very clear to us , that this virtuous war in Vietnam was not just a war against the evil commies, but a war against the ‘yellow peril’ who would otherwise kill us good white folks in our beds some day.
The US dropped more high explosives on Vietnam than the allies used on Germany and Japan together in the second world war. It also dropped napalm jelly, which stuck to its victims while it roasted their skin; white phosphorous, which burned down to the bone; fragmentation bombs, which hurled ball bearings and steel shards in all directions; and 73m litres of toxic chemicals, including 43m litres of Agent Orange, which killed vegetation and inflicted illness on those who were exposed to it.
Infamously, the US also bombed Hanoi – a city full of civilians with no air force to defend it.
And please, make no mistake, our New Zealand government was fully aware of our complicity in these horrendous war-crimes against a people who made the mistake of wanting to kick out their colonial oppressors; the French.
And were our NZ military commanders also oblivious to the massive firebombing of every city and town in North Korea (and some South Korean cities too) during the Korean War that killed, using wild under-estimations, over one and a half million people? I think not. Were they aware of, or complicit in the extensive war crimes committed by British troops in the Malay Insurgency?
And please, let us not forget our active involvement in the capture and torture and murder of anyone who might just look like the Taleban in Afghanistan.
But of course, this has all been in the name of freedom and democracy, and of course our ANZAC nation-building exercise….
For there to be true honour for our country, we must both acknowledge and compensate for the incredible human suffering our involvement in those wars have inflicted on other peoples. Are we a brave enough nation for that?