Anti-Imperialism in the South: Hands Off DPRK
It is no secret that the United States seeks to topple the socialist country known as the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea or DPRK, and establish a U.S.-backed bourgeois democracy similar to the one in the ROK or Republic of Korea.
The United States has led a long smear campaign against the DPRK; stories of public executions of pop singers (Hyon Song-wol, which was proved to be not true, as she appeared in media a year after her supposed execution), and any propaganda that western media can promote. One of the more notable campaigns perpetuated by western media is the famine that occurred in the DPRK at the command of former DPRK leader and revolutionary, Kim Jong-il.
While it is true that a famine occurred in the DPRK, it is not because of an intentional decision made by Kim Jong-il, but rather that DPRK was still (is still) recovering from the numerous bombings of their land by the United States during the Korean War. Some 80% of their land was destroyed after 635,000 tons of bombs were dropped by the United States, effectively destroying the north Korean people’s agricultural and industrial resources; it is no wonder that there was a famine due to this. Once again, the United States plays the role of imperialist aggressor.
In the recent years, particularly in the recent months, there is another boiling point quickly being reached with Trump threatening DPRK with war which, combined with more sanctions placed on them under Obama’s administration, is causing higher tensions from DPRK’s government, and rightfully so. The United States has been itching to overthrow the socialist Korea for decades now, as is the case with other socialist countries that have fallen, and now the threat of nuclear war is being discussed more and more.
So where should leftists, especially communists, be on this issue? It is simple: we must support the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea against the threats and, if it progresses to that, which we hope it will not, attacks by the imperialist United States. Many liberals and moderates all say the same things: “North Korea has an atrocious human rights record!” (all perpetuated by western media) and the “neutral stance” is that neither nation should have nuclear weapons. While this is a true statement, it is not a solid position that we should rest on and operate from. We must remember that DPRK is not the aggressor here, the United States is.
Anything that DPRK has said about their nuclear weapons has been from a place of self-defense, while everything that the United States has said about our nuclear weapons has been from a place of offense, of threats to attack.
So while it is true that neither nation (and on an international level, no nation) should have nuclear weapons, while the United States possesses nuclear weapons and threatens war with them, DPRK has every right to also have nuclear weapons to claim self-defense with. It is that simple.
Devin is a transgender communist organizer in the south.