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The squalid North Korean regime is one that most civilised people hold in contempt, although I note the BBC has never seemed very interested in anything actually being DONE about it, although that is another story. This morning, Today treated us to an item on the appalling conditions that prevail within the prison camps of this failed thugocracy, and very moving too. But how strange that the BBC does not highlight the fact that Nuclear-armed North Korea has just assumed the presidency of a key United Nations disarmament body — despite facing UN Security Council sanctions over its weapons programs. Naturally to associate the wise and all-knowing United Nations with facilitating the notorious North Korean regime might not look too good for the UN-worshipping BBC, so nothing is said. I suppose that is why the BBC also ignored the UN supporting Iran’s holding of an international “anti-terrorism” conference — which saw participants declaring that Western powers were the international terrorists.
We hear all the time that Fox News is a Right-wing propaganda outlet, the publicity arm of the Republican Party. Therefore, we’re expected to think, one should expect Fox News to report on any given issue from a Right-wing perspective.
With this in mind, I invite you to compare and contrast this Fox News report on China’s attempt to deal with the current crisis with North Korea:
…with this BBC piece on the same story:
China works to ease North-South Korea tension
The Fox News piece opens with this:
China made its first official protest over plans by the U.S. and South Korea to hold joint military exercises involving the aircraft carrier USS George Washington in the Yellow Sea on Sunday.
But Beijing’s protest, in a statement from the Foreign Ministry Friday, was noticeably more restrained than when the U.S. announced similar plans, involving the same aircraft carrier, in July.
The statement also appeared to offer all sides a face-saving compromise, by implying China did not oppose exercises outside its “exclusive economic zone,” a term of international maritime law that generally extends 200 nautical miles from a country’s coast.
Here, China is portrayed as ceding ground to the US and South Korea’s flexing muscle as a warning to North Korea. It goes on to say that Hu Jintao is coming to Washington in January, and doesn’t want this distraction, which means that China is more concerned about focusing for the time being on its own economic goals regarding the financial problems of the US.
The BBC, on the other hand, starts with this:
China’s Foreign Ministry has begun working to ease tensions on the Korean peninsula, holding a series of talks with Washington, Seoul and Pyongyang.
Officials said their priority was to avoid a recurrence of Tuesday’s violence, which saw North Korea fire artillery shells at a southern island.
The South responded by announcing that joint military exercises with US forces would begin on Sunday.
Pyongyang said the drills were pushing the region to “the brink of war”.
The US and other powers have repeatedly urged Beijing – Pyongyang’s only ally – to use its influence to defuse the crisis.
This makes it seem as if China is the voice of reason, while South Korea is trying to drag the US into escalating tensions. There is no mention in the entire piece of Hu Jintao’s upcoming trip to Washington. However, the BBC does see fit to make a sexy set of graphics depicting the relative sizes of the armed forces of the North and South.
I’ve said many times that China doesn’t want war to break out, because the inevitable result of that will be a total collapse into chaos, during which hundreds of thousands of half-starved, half-mad North Koreans will flood into China. There’s already too much civic unrest in many parts of China, and this is the last thing they want. Not that the BBC’s audience would know much about this, as this concern is almost never mentioned. Instead, it’s just a vague “stability in the region” kind of deal. But that’s why China has been propping up the mad North Korean regime for so long. They could have helped to put the squeeze on the leadership any time they wished, and had they done so, the regime would have collapsed by now. Instead, they work to maintain the horror show status quo, ensuring that millions of North Koreans are kept in darkness, poverty, and near-starvation. Not that the BBC would ever blame them for it.
If this did happen, however, I would suggest to China that they’ve got plenty of available empty housing for far more than the entire population of North Korea, thanks to their phony construction boom. BBC audiences will be forgiven for not knowing this, as the BBC has censored any news of China’s looming real estate bubble. Next time you see yet another BBC piece enthusing over China’s building schemes, remember this.
But back to the comparing and contrasting. Clearly these two reports approach the story from nearly opposite angles. Therefore, if Fox News is by default Right-wing, then the BBC must be approaching the story from the Left. One has it that China is backing off trying to stop the US and South Korea from a little saber rattling, while the other portrays China as a calming influence against South Korean and US aggression.
The BBC, then, approaches the story from the perspective that China is the good guy here. No mention that China is trying to maintain the status quo for their own benefit, and that this crisis has continued largely because of them. If Fox News has a Right-wing perspective, then an opposite view must be from the Left.
It was entirely predictable that the BBC would present Bill Clinton’s North Korean visit in glowing terms. Have a listen here to what is seven minutes of one sided opinion. The perfectly reasonable view that Clinton’s visit merely gives legitimacy to the tinpot tyrant Dear Leader is absent. I suppose since it was Clinton who when President facilitated the Dear Leader getting nukes in the first place it is appropriate that he return to the scene of the crime but it really is poor form that the BBC presents this entire issue in positive terms when in fact many people see this as rank amateur Obama diplomacy. But hey – the two American journalists have now been released so all is well and another example of how good Bill Clinton really is. Honest.
You have to laugh at the BBC’s slavish devotion to the world’s MOST corrupt organised hypocrisy – the United Nations. No sooner does the US reveal that North Korea and Syria have been working together to produce Boy Bashar’s very own nuke facility than the BBC rushes out to tell us that the UN is going to have to “investigate” this claim and that the International Atomic Energy Agency has already criticised the US for withholding this intelligence until seven months after Israel bombed the site. (Mm, I wonder why that might have been then?) Note how quickly Israel and the US get criticised and the charming “ulterior motive” sub heading towards the end of this pusillanimous report.