Tuesday, 26 January 2016

The Right of the DPRK to Defend Itself and Maintain the Peace

The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) announced on January 6 that it had successfully tested a hydrogen bomb. Immediately there was an anti-communist hue and cry that that country had dared to join the nuclear-weapon-bearing states. Turning truth on its head, the DPRK is painted as the country threatening others. This counterfeit “outrage” is designed to cover up the crimes being committed by the US-led imperialist system of states, including Britain, who are the threat to the sovereignty and integrity of so many countries across the globe, and who openly speak of regime change and take steps to carry out that threat.

The DPRK has drawn the legitimate conclusion that in these circumstances it must develop nuclear weapons to defend itself, stymie all the plans of the Anglo-US imperialists for regime change, and maintain the peace. It is not legitimate of the US and its allies, not to mention the UN Security Council under their domination, to absolve themselves of responsibility, play the thread-bare human rights card, and seek to isolate the DPRK and other countries that will not bow to their dictate. The United Nations has the responsibility to take a stand against international aggression. But it has long since abandoned this and in these circumstances the DPRK cannot be condemned for taking the measures that it has done to deter aggression and prevent regime change.

The facts of the matter are that it is the development and criminal use of nuclear weapons by the US imperialists that have led to a nuclear arms race in the first place. The US imperialists are the ones threatening to wipe out humankind. They are the only ones who have taken the criminal step of using nuclear bombs in warfare which they did against Hiroshima and Nagasaki in order to attempt to establish their global hegemony at the end of the Second World War. They will never be forgiven for this crime, nor for that matter for the crimes they committed on the Korean Peninsula during the Korean War of 1950-1953 when the use of nuclear weapons was also considered when the US was facing imminent defeat. These monstrous acts of the US imperialists have demonstrated to the Korean people of the DPRK that there is a serious threat of nuclear annihilation and that they must take decisive steps. Neither has the DPRK got its eyes shut to the imperialists' strategic plans for East Asia, the increasing concentration of US military forces in the South China Sea, and the Obama administration's conception of a “Pivot to Asia”.

And it is the US who today is the one carrying out nuclear blackmail against the DPRK, threatening it with pre-emptive nuclear strikes. It is the US which is carrying out annual warmongering manoeuvres off the shore of the Korean Peninsula with south Korea and Japan, which has its troops and nuclear weapons stationed in the south, which carries out exercises simulating regime change in the north, including the use of B-52 bombers. It is any wonder that the DPRK takes seriously the threats to its sovereignty and independence, and responds with its own nuclear deterrent?

The nuclear hysteria of the US and its allies aimed at the DPRK should be opposed. It is the countries with the biggest nuclear stockpiles which must disarm their nuclear arsenals and remove all their weapons and troops from foreign soil. This is the pre-condition for a nuclear-free world which is the demand of all humanity. When the US and all other nuclear weapons states give up their nuclear weapons, there will be no need for the DPRK to develop a nuclear weapons programme either.

The government of the DPRK pointed out in its January 6 statement that the hydrogen bomb test “is a measure for self-defence the DPRK has taken to firmly protect its sovereignty [...] from the ever-growing nuclear threat and blackmail by the U.S.-led hostile forces and to reliably safeguard peace on the Korean peninsula [...]” The statement also affirmed that the DPRK is a “genuine peace-loving state which has made all efforts to protect peace on the Korean peninsula” and that it would not use its nuclear weapons to commit aggression against another country nor would it suspend its nuclear weapons programme unless the “US rolled back its vicious hostile policy” towards it. It is quite clear that the US must end its hostile policy towards the DPRK, remove its 28,000 troops from the Korean Peninsula and sign a peace treaty with the DPRK to draw a line under the Korean War. This would ensure peace and stability on the Korean peninsula and permit the people of Korea and East Asia to live in peace. When that is done there would be no necessity for the DPRK to develop its nuclear weapons in self-defence. And until that is done, in the face of nuclear blackmail and the most egregious hypocrisy of the Anglo-American imperialists, the DPRK has the right to develop and test the H-bomb.

The peace-loving people of the world must direct their anger and outrage against the US and its allies, including Britain, who are the ones bringing the world to the edge of a nuclear catastrophe. The working class and people must take up in all earnest their own quest for an anti-war government to act as a block to aggression, nuclear blackmail, the use of force to settle international affairs and the most unjust plans to topple sovereign governments. The democratic forces should take a stand to further develop friendship and solidarity with the DPRK in its heroic path of defending its sovereignty and independence in the face of all the threats to this sovereignty and independence by the US imperialists and the big powers.

Workers Weekly
24th January 2016

Saturday, 23 January 2016

A Test For Peace

THE BOURGEOISIE’S claim to uphold “universal human values” and glibly talk about the concepts peace, freedom, social progress, equal rights and human dignity as if they had invented them. But when the interests of the ruling class are challenged they show their true face — which is duplicity, oppression and aggression.
Last November the bourgeois media were having a field day against Jeremy Corbyn over Trident. We were told that the billions to be spent on Trident renewal was essential for Britain’s defence. General Houghton, the head of the armed forces, claimed the Labour leader’s stance on Trident and nuclear weapons undermined the “credibility of deterrence” and the Prime Minister, David Cameron, told us that Corbyn was a “threat to national security” for daring to challenge Labour’s traditional support for the Trident nuclear weapons system.
Last week the very same people who extol the concept of “nuclear deterrence” and the virtues of nuclear weapons were heaping the same abuse against the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) for daring to do what they’ve been doing for a very long time themselves.
The Cameron government “strongly condemned” the DPRK H-bomb test, claiming it was a “clear violation” of United Nations Security Council resolutions and all sorts of other nonsense that the imperialists churn out to justify their own double-standards.
What they don’t say is that the UN has been marginalised. Anglo—American imperialism only pays lip service to UN institutions when it suits their purposes. When the Americans can use it to rubber-stamp their aggression the world organisation is supported. When it is no longer of any further use to them it is ignored and discarded.
British and United States imperialism poses the greatest danger to world peace. The US National Missile Defence system has triggered another global arms race. The tearing up of the Anti-Ballistic Missile treaty has undermined every other international agreement on nuclear weapons.
Even so, the imperialists are trying to use part of the non-proliferation agreement as an instrument to bully and threaten any country attempting to develop an independent nuclear industry. But because the non-proliferation treaty has still to be implemented by the imperialist camp, every sovereign state has the legitimate right to develop its nuclear industry.
What they don’t say is that the DPRK, People’s China and India, have all pledged never to be the first to use nuclear weapons.
None of the imperialist powers will give a similar guarantee. In March 2002 the British government stated that it was prepared to use nuclear weapons against “rogue states” such as Iraq if they ever used “weapons of mass destruction” against British troops in the field and the Americans have always reserved the right to use nuclear weapons first in the case of conflict.
The DPRK had no choice but to develop its nuclear energy programme and its own independent nuclear deterrent. Its enemies are close at hand. The DPRK threatens no one. But US imperialism wants to perpetuate the division of Korea and ultimately to extinguish socialism in the Korean peninsula. US nuclear-armed warships are stationed off the Korean coast and thousands of US troops are in the occupied south of Korea as well as in Japan.
The New Communist Party of Britain congratulates the DPRK on the successful test of an H-bomb last week. Strengthening the DPRK’s nuclear defence is an essential deterrent to US imperialism and its puppets. We salute the outstanding work of the DPRK scientists and workers who made this essential contribution to the DPRK’s defence possible.

New Worker editorial 
15th January 2016

Democratic Korea: 70 years of victory!

by Dermot Hudson

I VISITED the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) for the 10th time in October at the kind invitation of the Korean Association of Social Scientists, to attend the celebrations for the 70th anniversary of the foundation of the Workers' Party of Korea (WPK).        Seeing the DPRK countryside I realised that the stories about crop failure and famine are untrue. Some elements also spread false stories about "reform", "opening up" and even the "restoration of capitalism", but in the countryside you could see the Red flag proudly displayed in the collective farm fields.                                         
            Highlights of the trip included the massive military parade to celebrate the foundation of the Workers’ Party of Korea, a torchlight parade by tens of thousands of youth and a 10,000-strong gala performance on a floating stage.
I was met at the new Pyongyang Sunan International Airport by an official of the Korean Association of Social Scientists and by my guide for the trip, Ms Ri. All traces of the old Sunan Airport were replaced by a new modern airport that is spacious and bright. Many countries boast of modern airports but these are constructed with the help of foreign capital. Sunan Airport is 100 per cent Korean in construction and design, built by the soldier constructors of the Korean People’s Army in the Juché spirit. There are no HSBC, McDonald’s, Starbucks nor KFC – everything is Korean owned and managed, in stark contrast to a certain neighbouring country where the first thing you see on coming out of arrivals is a McDonald’s.  Although Sunan Airport now has bigger capacity it still has a calm atmosphere and lacks the stress of Heathrow Airport. In some capitalist countries airports have been over expanded, drawing anger and protests. The DPRK has struck a balance between the need for international air travel and the need for environmental harmony.
Pyongyang was in a festive mood ready for 10th October. The red flag of the WPK, with its distinct hammer, sickle and writing brush, could be seen flying on many street corners. At the Party Foundation museum I learned that the sickle, brush and hammer are upright to symbolise the single-hearted unity of the masses, and the writing brush is higher to reflect the importance of intellectuals in society.
            The DPRK is one of the few countries in the world where the Red flag flies on street corners, reflecting that the DPRK upholds the red banner of socialism, frustrating all attempts to undermine socialism as dear respected Marshal Kim Jong Un said in his recently published work The Cause of the Great Party of Comrades Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il Is Ever-Victorious: "We must keep a watchful eye over all sorts of moves by the enemy to undermine our socialist system from within, approach these moves with political awareness and never allow any poisonous weeds of capitalism, however trifling, to sprout in the garden of socialism."
Dermot in Pyongyang
      DPRK unity was demonstrated by the massive military parade, civilian demonstration and torchlight procession of youths. The parade was a superb pageant, led by a column representing the anti-Japanese guerrillas and was symbolic of the continuity of the revolution down the generations. There were original tanks from the Fatherland Liberation War including tank no 312, the first tank into Seoul on the 28th of July 1950. There was an impressive display of tanks and missiles, including long-range missiles and a nuclear suicide unit, showing that if necessary the KPA under the command of Marshal Kim Jong Un can strike back at the US imperialists worldwide.
There was an aeronautical display of the WPK symbol and of the number 70, followed by a civilian demonstration of army-people unity, quite impossible in capitalist society where there is conflict between the people and the armed forces. Later I explained this conflict to my guide, in my home town there was an army barracks in the centre of town but it had to be moved into the countryside far outside town because each night the soldiers would go out, get drunk in pubs and beat up the civilians.
Kim Jong Un addressed the parade, his voice clear, strong and full of conviction: "For our country and people, 10th October is a meaningful revolutionary holiday when we celebrate the birth anniversary of the genuine vanguard of the revolution, its militant General Staff, which has taken responsibility for their destiny and leads them."
Military parades in the DPRK are different from those in former socialist countries because in the DPRK they march with vigour, enthusiasm and colourful displays. In the latter the military parades seemed gloomy. Some big powers may put on big military parades but these are just for show with no real content
            In the evening there was a military torchlight youth parade followed by a colourful firework display.                                
            The 10000-strong joint performance Great Party, Rosy Korea was performed on a floating stage on the River Taedong. It was started by schoolchildren but centred on veteran artistes of the DPRK. The famous Pochonbo and Wangjaesan bands performed classic numbers such as My Country is the Best. The history of the DPRK was represented by music and stunning choreography.
the heart of the capital
This anti-imperialist, anti-US spirit was demonstrated at the new Sinchon Ri museum. Sinchon Ri is where the US and local class enemies murdered 35,383 people – one quarter of the population. Can you imagine the death toll if the same thing was done in London, 2.2 million people dead. It is an understatement to say the US imperialists are as bad as Hitler’s Nazis, they were worse!
A museum was built at the site of one of the massacres not simply as a memorial to those who died but also as a centre of anti-US, anti-imperialist class education. Kim Jong Un instructed that the museum should be rebuilt, modernised and moved to the site where the massacre took place in the Chestnut valley. It is much larger than the old one, and has more detailed and graphic displays some with sound effects, showing the horrendous crimes committed by the Americans against the Koreans. The long history of US aggression against Korea goes back over 150 years.
The USA used religion as a means of creating passivity and infiltrated many missionaries into Korea to spread the worship of the US, and to recruit spies and collaborators.  My eye was caught by a depiction of a Korean, a former landlord, shown helping the US imperialists. The US imperialists were the external enemy but were helped by internal class enemies like former exploiters; the two were hand in glove.
Today the reactionary exploiting class in south Korea, led by Park Geun Hye, is hand in glove with the US in their anti-DPRK moves. My guide explained that the nature of the US imperialists is unchanging. I bought an excellent booklet Sinchon Accuses the Yankee barbarians.  None of the other socialist countries, former or present, carried out such thoroughgoing anti-US anti-imperialist class education, and it intends to increase it.
              Visiting the Fatherland Liberation War Museum one learns that the US provoked the Korean War and also of the crushing defeat inflicted on them by the heroic Korean People’s Army, commanded by the great leader generalissimo Kim Il Sung. Also displayed outside were numerous captured US weapons including the USS Pueblo, captured on 23rd January 1968. The US asked British premier Harold Wilson to ask the USSR to ask the DPRK to hand back the ship. The DPRK refused to, though Soviets also pressured the DPRK to do so.
           The International Friendship Exhibition is situated in Myohyang Mountains and the gift we presented to Kim Jong Un in 2013 is on display. 
             No visit to Pyongyang is complete without a visit to the amazing Pyongyang Metro. The cost of a ride on the Pyongyang Metro is approximately 0.003 pence, so it is virtually free and war veterans get completely free travel. The Pyongyang Metro is clean, free from vandalism, graffiti, capitalist advertising and dirt. I told my guide how dirty the London Underground is and she asked why they cannot keep it clean, given the high fares on the Tube. The Pyongyang Metro is very safe, the platforms are wide and each station has two "security girls" who ensure the safety of passengers. In London ticket offices are being closed and the numbers of staff reduced.
            The DPRK is building many blocks of flats such as Mirae Street and handing them over to the people free of charge. This would be unthinkable in Britain where a flat on the riverside in central London costs £12,000 per calendar month to rent or up to £1 million to buy.
Thanks to my dependable and reliable guide I was able to walk about the centre of Pyongyang, which not only afforded me the opportunity of fresh air and exercise but gave me the chance to see the reality of the DPRK even more deeply than before. Some enemies of the DPRK say that visitors to the DPRK simply stay in hotels and go around in tourist buses but do not really know the country; this was untrue. I encountered busy and bustling streets full of people. In the pedestrian underpasses there were no homeless people as in capitalist countries.
              There was no sign of police oppressing the people, nor heavily armed police units patrolling the streets. Travelling through the countryside to  places such as Sinchon, Mt Myohyang and Nampo there was no sign of the "forced labour and concentration camps" that the imperialists claim exist in the DPRK; I saw no barbed wire anywhere in the DPRK countryside. The "human rights" propaganda of the imperialists and the stories spread by defectors are completely false.
            The DPRK boasts excellent leisure and recreational facilities, which are either non-existent or very expensive in London. The famous Munsu Water Park is incredibly big with indoor and outside facilities such as slides, a wave machine, hairdressers and an excellent coffee bar.
            I had the privilege of meeting the Anti-Imperialist National Democratic Front of south Korea (AINDF), the vanguard revolutionaries of south Korea. I saw a video about US/south Korean moves to tear up recent inter-Korean agreements and provoke war; also a video concerning the attempt to revise history books in south Korea so as to embellish both Japan's occupation of south Korea and the Park Chung Hee military fascist regime, and also the struggle of the south Korean people against such a revision.
In discussions with the AINDF I noted that Park Geun Hye styles herself on Thatcher but in reality Thatcher was a leader hated by many British; when she died many came out on the streets to celebrate. The same will happen to Park Geun Hye and her fate will be the same as her father's.  It was a great visit. I was disappointed to depart the land of Juché Korea to return to the capitalist world where everything seems so depressing and miserable.