PROPAGANDA SITE OF THE WEEK: AXIS TO GRIND

From the statement page of the Axis to Grind website:

Axis to Grind exposes the clash of cultures of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) and North America… our status quo misrepresentation of north Korea actually stands as an obstacle to peace and reunification for the Korean peninsula… My first rapid unlearning of my attitudes about north Korea came when I visited there for 6 weeks as part of an International March for Peace & Reunification of the Korea, in 1989…

This sets the stage for the rest of the ‘statement,’ and the rest of the site. The site author, Irwin Oostindie, gained at least part of his insight by attending a six week propaganda festival in North Korea in 1989, which was likely carefully crafted for gullible and naive foreigners such as himself. At that time Kim Il Sung was still president, and it was several years before the devastating famines hit. The ‘statement’ continues:

North Korea does not choose to squander it’s desperately needed resources for war-readiness, or compromise it’s citizens’ human rights in this war zone…

So, Kim Jong-il is not to blame for his “military first” policy that in fact does spend those resources at the expense of his people. North Korea has been working on its nuclear weapons programs for decades ““ what U.S. policy is responsible for that? Is Oostindie aware the George Bush Sr. withdrew all nuclear weapons from the Korean Peninsula in 1991, before the first nuclear crisis? How much does a nuclear weapons program cost? And rice for Kim’s people?

Irwin Oostindie apparently makes the mistake of confusing U.S. policy towards the North Korean regime, and towards the North Korean people, something President Bush has been very careful and consistent about differentiating. Why his heart may be in the right place, it places him firmly in the category of ‘useful idiots.’

Rebecca MacKinnon of NK Zone interviewed Oostindie in 2004, and The Marmot made a few comments on that.

In closing, a gem from the top of the Axis to Grind feedback page:

“North Korea is one of the greatest contries in the world.”

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