Time For Peace Negotiations In Korea, Not Escalation

Thaad Protest in South Korea

By staff for Center for Peace and Disarmament at People’s Solidarity for Participatory Democracy. The state of affairs on the Korean Peninsula is more volatile than ever, now that President Park has been impeached and new government is to be constituted through an early presidential election in South Korea. The Trump administration, in the meantime, is fueling the escalating tension even further with messages that it will not rule out a preemptive strike on North Korea, and that it will redeploy strategic nuclear warheads to South Korea if necessary. The situation is further destabilized by the Trump administration’s decision to send an aircraft carrier to waters near the Korean Peninsula. The latest military stance and strategy of Washington, however, completely overlooks the desire of Koreans for peace. The Kim Jong-un government in Pyongyang meanwhile has warned of another upcoming nuclear test it intends to conduct, poised as it is to show off its growing nuclear capabilities. An existing crisis is already escalating in Northeast Asia over the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system that the South Korean and U.S. governments have decided to deploy in South Korea. All these acts of military bravado, taking hostage the lives and peace of Koreans, must cease now. It is time for policymakers to be responsible and return to dialogue and negotiations and stop fueling the growing tensions.

Reunification On The Korean Peninsula: Toward A Peaceful Confederation

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By Moon J. Pak for Zoom In Korea – In any serious effort to peacefully unite the two Koreas in the future, there will be big hurdles of history and geopolitics to overcome. Due mainly to its unique geopolitical location, surrounded by large, aggressive and ambitious neighbors, China, Japan, Russia, Mongolia, Manchuria and more recently the neighbor across the Pacific, the U.S., the 4,000-year-old history of Korea is tumultuous, to say the least. The country was invaded, occupied, colonized by all of these neighbors. Although Korea fought back, it has never retaliated and invaded any neighboring countries. Despite thousands of years of troublesome and cruel foreign invasions, Korea has maintained its national, ethnic and cultural identity. In the evolution of modern Korea, this ancient pattern of competing for dominance over Korea repeated itself. China, Russia and Japan struggled over the peninsula, which resulted in the colonialization of the country by Japan in 1910. Japan considered Korea to be its geopolitical stepping-stone to the continent. Japan’s ambition for domination over Asia was permanently thwarted in 1945 with the end of the World War II.

Nobel Peace Laureate Mairead Maguire Appeals To President Trump For Peace Leadership

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By The Peace People for TRANSCEND Media Service – 1 May 2017 – Mairead Maguire, who visited the women’s peace movements of North and South Korea last year with 30 international women from around the world, made the following appeal to President Trump and the U.S. administration: “The people of North and South Korea want peace and they want a peace treaty. They do not want their country to be bombed or their government to bomb others. Having visited both North and South Korea last year and walked with thousands and thousands of Korean women, North and South, I am convinced that peace is possible and what is needed is the political will of all parties to the conflict to dialogue and for negotiations to move from a Korean armistice to a Korean Peace Treaty. “I therefore would like to appeal to President Trump and his administration not to carry out a military strike on North Korea, but to use the means of dialogue and diplomacy to reach a peace treaty for North Korea. Such peace leadership by President Trump will give hope to the people of Korea and all of humanity.

US & South Korea Force THAAD Through Protesters

Riot Police THAAD Being Forced Through Protesters 4-26-17

By Staff for Zoom in Korea. The residents of Seongju and Gimcheon were caught off guard when the United States Forces Korea and the South Korean Defense Ministry forced key parts of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) missile system into the former Lotte Skyhill Golf Course in the early morning hours of April 26. Many of the THAAD parts, including the AN/TPY-2 radar, are believed to have been transported into the deployment site. Below is a minute by minute breakdown of the conflict. The environmental impact assessment has yet to be completed, they also noted, yet the key THAAD components have already been transported into the deployment site. A total of 12 protesters sustained injuries and were escorted to the hospital in ambulances. The Defense Ministry reportedly told the South Korean media that it plans to transport the remainder of the THAAD components into the deployment site by the end of this year.

People’s Briefing For #KoreanPeace: Bay Area Korean Americans Urge De-escalation

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By Staff of Zoom In Korea – Following Trump’s Senate briefing on North Korea this week, Korean American activists and allies in the Bay Area held their own “people’s briefing” outside Senator Dianne Feinstein’s office on April 27. They called for de-escalation of military tensions between the United States and North Korea and urged Feinstein to take a peaceful and pro-engagement stance on the issue. In a highly unusual move, Trump called senators to a White House briefing on North Korea on April 26. The administration called for tighter sanctions, increased funding for missile systems in Hawaii and Australia, and reiterated that all options, including military action, are on the table. “Feinstein claims that North Korea poses an existential threat and is the number one threat in the world,” said Bay Area activist IO Sunwoo, “I ask Senator Feinstein and the weapons manufacturing lobby that contributes to her office and all the lawmakers in Washington DC how they can dare comment on existential crises when they are in the business of mass destruction.”

Dear President Trump: We Urge You To Do The Following To Avert War In Korea

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By Staff of Women Cross DMZ – We are women leaders from 40 countries, including the Republic of Korea (ROK) and Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), and many from nations that fought in the Korean War. We are from academia, business, civil society and the military, and represent a diversity of ethnicities, nationalities, religions, and political views. We are united by our belief that diplomacy is the only way to resolve the nuclear crisis and threat of war now facing the Korean peninsula. On July 27, 1953, leaders from the United States, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, and China signed the Armistice Agreement to halt the Korean War. They promised to re-convene within three months to replace the ceasefire with a binding peace agreement. This never occurred and an entrenched state of war has ever since defined inter-Korean and U.S.-D.P.R.K. relations. This war must end. Korea is the only nation to remain divided as a result of WWII. For three generations, millions of families have been separated by the world’s most militarized border. We urge you to do the following to avert war in Korea and bring about a long-desired peace on the peninsula…

While Senators Briefed On North Korea Protesters Hold Their Ground

Christopher Glenn and Kevin Zeese holding No War banner at White House and Eisenhower Executive Office Building April 27,  2017. Photo by Anne Meador, DC Media Group.

By Anne Meador of DC Media Group. In recent weeks, North Korean ballistic missile tests have led Trump to threaten and insult the country and its leader and send three aircraft carrier groups within striking distance. Following the announcement of the Senators’ briefing at the White House, North Korea explicitly threatened nuclear war. China and the U.N. have admonished both North Korea and the United States and made pleas for restraint. When the senator arrived at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building they were met with protesters calling for No War With Korea.

Protests Outside Of Trump-Senate Meeting On North Korea

CODE PINK sign at Korean war protest at White House April 26, 2017. Photo by Chris Owens

By Staff for Popular Resistance. People opposed to war with North Korea were at the White House as senators arrived to meet with the Trump administration. All 100 senators have been invited for a briefing from the State Department and Pentagon on North Korea. As the two buses carrying senators were about to arrive the Secret Service attempted to remove 25 protesters (more protesters were prevented from getting to the area, Richard Ochs was tackled by police when he tried to join the protest others were held behind barriers from joining. Those that were protesting refused to move despite threats of forced removal and arrest. This is the beginning of an ongoing anti-war campaign. The Trump administration and bi-partisans in Congress are threatening war in North Korea and other nations. Take action here: https://popularresistance.org/urgent-stop-the-united-states-from-attacking-north-korea/

The Long History Of US Abuses To Korea

A US soldier walks around the rubble of Hamhung, North Korea, in an undated photo.

By Anthony Gronowicz for A People’s History of US Foreign Policy. The first battle, May 4, 1949—the biggest–initiated a series of clashes that culminated in the publicly declared start of the Korean War on June 25, 1950. This May 4th combat occurred when Rhee’s forces crossed the 38th parallel, only to have two of his infantry companies defect to the communist side. Numerous August skirmishes led the U.S. Korean Military Advisory Group Commander, General W.L. Roberts, to conclude, “Each was in our opinion brought on by the presence of a small south Korean salient north of the parallel …the South Koreans wish to invade the North. … almost every incident has been provoked by the South Korean security forces.” By June 25, 1950, hundreds of troops had been killed as thousands of soldiers fought countless small engagements. Convincing evidence has yet to be shown that the North was preparing to invade the South.

Who Really Started The Korean War?

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By Justin Raimondo for Anti War – The sixtieth anniversary of the “end” of the Korean war saw President Obama attempt to rescue that classic example of interventionist failure from history’s dustbin. Addressing veterans of that conflict, he declared: “That war was no tie. Korea was a victory. When 50 million South Koreans live in freedom, a vibrant democracy…a stark contrast to the repression and poverty of the North, that is a victory and that is your legacy.” This is a fairytale: it wasn’t a victory, or even a tie: the US public was disenchanted with the war long before the armistice, and Truman was under considerable pressure at home to conclude an increasingly unpopular conflict. As for this guff about “democracy”: whatever the US was fighting for, from 1950, when the war broke out, to 1953, when it ground to a halt, democracy hardly described the American cause. We were fighting on behalf of Syngman Rhee, the US-educated-and-sponsored dictator of South Korea, whose vibrancy was demonstrated by the large-scale slaughter of his leftist political opponents. For 22 years, Rhee’s word was law, and many thousands of his political opponents were murdered: tens of thousands were jailed or driven into exile.

War Is Not An Option For Korea

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By Christine Ahn for Foreign Policy in Focus – “Let me be very clear: The policy of strategic patience has ended,” U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson told reporters at a news conference in Seoul, South Korea. “All options are on the table,” Tillerson continued, including “an appropriate response” to any North Korean threat. The United States and North Korea are like two “accelerating trains coming toward each other,” Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi warned last week. North Korea test-fired four ballistic missiles off the coast of Japan as thousands of South Korean, Japanese, and U.S. troops, backed by warships and warplanes, are currently engaging in massive military exercises, including the deployment of the Navy SEALS that killed Osama Bin Laden. With no communication other than military posturing, Pyongyang is left to interpret Washington’s maneuvers as preparation for a pre-emptive strike. Given the political vacuum in South Korea following President Park Geun-hye’s impeachment, all tracks are heading towards one destination: war. At a Council of Foreign Relations discussion on March 13, Mary Beth Long, a former assistant secretary of defense, advocated for “aggressive movement”

Minneapolis Slams Escalation Of War On Afghanistan, Demands “Hands Off Korea”

From Fightbacknews.org

By Staff of Fight Back News – Minneapolis. MN – With only 24 hour’s notice, Minneapolis peace groups organized an emergency response protest against the use a massive U.S. bomb in Afghanistan. Over 60 people joined the protest held on Friday, April 14. Several people just walking by or waiting for their bus stopped and joined the protest. People in cars, trucks and buses passing by waved and honked in support of the anti-war message. On Thursday, April 13, it was reported that the Trump administration and the Pentagon unleashed the most powerful U.S. bomb – the 20,000 pound GBU-43, referred to as the ‘mother of all bombs.’ The weapon was used in Afghanistan. Twin Cities anti-war groups saw this as a major escalation of the U.S. wars and consulted quickly to call an emergency protest against this latest U.S. military move. Organizers also raised the alarm about the growing danger of a new U.S. war in Korea. News reports had indicated that the Trump administration had plans for an imminent attack on Korea. The protest was in the West Bank neighborhood of Minneapolis. The neighborhood has many Somali immigrant families.

China Sounds Alarm: Trump Prepares For War Against Korea

US South Korea war games include amphibous landing and nuclear attack on North Korea

By Brian Becker of ANSWER Coalition for Liberation News. Trump’s military action against Syria muted his ruling class critics and he won the praise of the Democratic Party leadership and the mainstream media. Trump is on a roll and the next target is North Korea. The Democratic Party “resistance” to Trump has been replaced by obsequiousness. Congress barely whimpered that Trump didn’t even bother to ask for authorization for new war. The Chinese leadership is obviously stunned. In fact, China is now convinced that a new US military strike in Asia may be imminent unless the DPRK backs down from further expected weapons tests perhaps as early as this coming Saturday – the birthday anniversary of Kim Il Sung, the founding leader of the DPRK. It must be remembered that the DPRK has consistently offered to suspend nuclear weapons tests in return for the United States cancelling its massive, annual military exercises that simulate the destruction of the North. Both the Obama administration and the Trump administration immediately rejected this offer.

April 4-16: U.S. National Speaking Tour To Oppose THAAD Deployment In S Korea

From zoominkorea.org

By Staff of Zoom In Korea – Ramsay Liem, a member of the Task Force organizing the speaking tour, spoke about the importance of highlighting the South Korean people’s anti-THAAD struggle: We will convey our solidarity with the citizens of Seongju County, South Korea and protest the THAAD deployment to officials in Washington D.C. We also want to take advantage of the tour to build stronger relations with the Boston-area peace movement and to ensure that Korea and Northeast Asia are squarely on the agenda of anti-war activists. For most Americans, Korea is a problem ‘over there.’ The deployment of THAAD in Seongju is just the latest example of U.S. intrusion into Korean affairs to further its own geopolitical interests.

How To End The Korean War

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By Justin Raimondo for Anti-War – for This question is always hard to answer because they don’t call it the Hermit Kingdom for nothing. Very little comes out of the notoriously reclusive – and repressive – Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea, and not that much gets in. But occasionally there is a burst of activity that, like the eruption of a volcano, is hard to miss – the recent launching of four ballistic missiles being one of them. The missiles landed in the Sea of Japan, about 190 miles off the Japanese coast, sending shockwaves throughout the region. Both Tokyo and Seoul protested, while the North Koreans characterized the action as a logical reaction to the perceived threat of imminent military action by the US and South Korea.