Wall Street Journal Online’s Claudia Rosett has a stunning article on repression in North Korea, where the prison camp state may have reached its apotheosis. The article served to remind me of the righteousness of our project here at Samizdata. I can only pray that our small efforts make a difference, somewhere down the line.
Of immediate interest is the link she draws between the utter savagery of the North Korean regime and the newly ascendant strategy of appeasement of that regime. Sadly, it appears that the Bush administration has opted for appeasement as well, after resisting such a policy for many months.
The latest hallucination of geopolitics has it that if only we can make North Korea’s Great Leader Kim Jong Il feel safe from the fate of Saddam Hussein, maybe he’ll stop testing missiles and making nuclear bombs. So the experts–whose ranks have now swelled to include, alas, even President George W. Bush–have been scrambling for ways to make Kim feel more secure.
Bad mistake. Even in the exquisitely complex realms of geopolitics, there comes a point at which right and wrong really do matter. Ensuring the safety of monsters is not only an invitation to even more trouble ahead, it is also wrong. Before Mr. Bush says another word about security for North Korea’s regime, before any more policy makers suggest any more deals to gratify Kim Jong Il’s deep appetite for his own ease and longevity, there’s a report the entire civilized world needs to read–released today by the Washington-based U.S. Committee for Human Rights in North Korea. In landmark depth and detail, this report documents the filthiest of all Kim’s backroom projects: North Korea’s vast system of political prisons, which underpin Kim’s precious security right there in his own home.
As an aside, I never cease to be amazed at the useful idiots who view corporations and the market as more of a threat to their well-being than the state. When Microsoft and Exxon order “babies tossed on the ground to die, with their mothers forced to watch. . . , or assign [grandmothers] to help in the delivery of babies who were thrown immediately into a plastic-lined box to die in bulk lots,” I will be willing to listen to these morons, but not before.
The state is not your friend.