The diligent crew at NewsBusters has uncovered an outrageous post by the left-wing blog "Daily Kos" asserting that North Korea is in fact no worse than South Korea or even the United States. The article, entitled "North Korea & Hysteria, Madness," written by Niccolo Caldararo – an adjunct professor of anthropology at San Francisco State University – complains that “the Western media wallows in the exotic and North Korea has been the clown of the 20th century."
He goes on to claim that North Korea is merely "brought forward for comic relief now and then or pasted up as a ‘paper tiger,’ to scare voters before elections or as a distraction for other important news.”
NewsBusters' Tim Graham writes that, to hear the professor tell it, the capitalist imperialists are licking their chops after the death of Kim Jong Il:
“Let's face it, North Korea is ripe for capitalism, there are millions of potential workers who will work for near nothing. The hope is that the regime will crumble like the Soviet Union and give way to massive investment opportunities."
Arguing that North Korea is “no less responsible toward its own citizens” than South Korea or America, Caldararo writes:
While North Korea may behave in a strange fashion at times, its political history is no less responsible toward its own citizens than the history of the South [Koreans], especially the recent history that was dominated in the 1960s to 1980s by dictatorial regimes that practiced torture and mass arrest. While we hear of starvation and torture in North Korea, these are far less well documented than the recent history of the South.
As for the nuclear weapons issue, we should also recall that the USA has been the only country to use nuclear weapons, and we used them on civilians. If the world is to be afraid of the use of these weapons by a renegade nation, one should look at the definition of the word in the context of the Bush Administration waging war in violation of international law and by the use of evidence it knew was tainted. We cannot expect a world of law and respect after such behavior.
The professor believes that "ignorance and fear" is what drives judgement of North Korean action and even went on to quote Cicero, stating, "There can be no peace without justice."
Caldararo also argued that the communist regime was actually brought on by America:
The specific kind of leadership and government North Korea has today is the result of its history, and especially its most recent history with America. We must consider that from the end of W.W.II until 1987 South Korea was a brutal dictatorship. Its prison camps and torture chambers were filled with not only political prisoners but also ethnic minorities and religious objectors, in fact, anyone who dared to challenge the injustice and corruption of the regime. All this time South Korea’s government had the full support of the USA. North Koreans remember this horror and base part of their posture to the USA on this history...
NewsBusters points out that when several commenters disagreed with Caldararo about his stance on North Korea, the professor arrogantly dismissed them as uneducated: "I love how people think they know what is happening in countries they have never even visited."