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April 11, 2024

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Spring Housing Guide

U.S., N. Korea; not so different

President Bush once said, “There is but one just use of power, and it is to serve people.”

There is no doubt to the students of this University that Bush means this, as he has meant all of the rhetoric he has spouted since undertaking office. He never hesitates to explain how God is on America’s side, how we fight for justice or how we will kill those that seek to do us harm.

Recently North Korea announced that they had produced nuclear weapons. In the eyes of Kim Jong Il and much of the nation of North Korea, this has been done to protect themselves from America. Since Bush took office in 2001, he has been on a rampage against North Korea, Syria, Iran, Iraq.,.. If one is able to look at this without bias, it should not surprise any students why North Korea has produced these weapons.

Bush also frequently speaks of a nations’ right to protect itself and its people. It was how he justified his pre- emptive strike against Iraq. It is this same principle that North Korea is standing on in their efforts to produce WMD.

In his announcement, North Korea’s Minister of Foreign Affairs was keen to use his own kind of rhetoric, explaining that North Korea felt threatened and wished to protect itself.

Throughout history tyrannical leaders have used rhetoric to usher people to their cause. Hitler was great at doing this, so was Stalin of Russia, and Mao Zedong of China. All of these men committed atrocities against their fellow citizens and people in neighboring countries.

Perhaps none have relied as much on rhetoric as Kim Jong Il and his father Kim Il Sung. They have kept their people blind to the outside. Children in schools are taught to worship Kim Jong Il, the press is censored, there is no food, no money, and North Korea’s leaders live like movie stars in palaces on hills outside the garbage that is Pyongyang. There are many North Koreans who probably want to be free. People who feel their government is betraying them.

As our most recent election has shown, a little less than half of our country does not approve of what President Bush has done and feel betrayed. These same people have been lied to by their own government, a government that is rich and really is not concerned with helping the common citizen, much like that of North Korea.

It could not be argued that the North Korean government is just or that they do not pose a threat to the countries that surround them. They periodically shoot missiles in the direction of Japan. They threaten to attack anyone that would harm them, and they have a large, well-trained military capable of severe damage.

Yet, America threatens other countries, they periodically attack those they deem “evil” and they have a large well-trained army capable of causing great damage as we have seen in Iraq.

There are many similarities between the evil countries and the good countries. Often, the differences between the two are in shades of gray.

This can be seen by constructing a “six degrees of Kevin Bacon”esque relationship diagram. For those students who do not remember six degrees of Kevin Bacon, the object of the game was to take a seemingly unrelated event/person and in six steps link it to Kevin Bacon.

For our example let’s see if we can link the U. S. with North Korea using despicable acts of man. I am almost positive we can do it in four steps or less. Ready?

Step one: The United States used atomic bombs on Japan, a bombing that took place in the center of an urban metropolis, similar to the attacks of September 11th.

Step two: Japan’s invasion of China and the rape of Nanking.

Step three: China’s claim to Korea as being a part of the Chinese kingdom during the period when China was ruled by emperors. During this time the Chinese government abused Koreans.

This is done to show that while there is a difference between what President Bush has done and what Kim Jong Il has done, neither country is without fault or failure.

That is why it is irresponsible, uninformed and hypocritical to openly charge nations that are not on Americas’ side as evil while supporting what our government is doing.

At this moment we are at war with a country that did not attack us (just to remind my fellow students that Iraq didn’t sponsor the September 11th attacks as the 9/11 commission has stated). Our army has been involved in fighting that has killed over 100,000 Iraqi civilians. A country is in ruins, everyday the death toll rises and there has been very little progress made.

Maybe it is easier just to listen to the comforting talk of justice, peace, and democracy that our president is found of? I think I might turn off my sense of reason and float along like the rest of America. I hope the water’s warm.

Contact George via e-mail at [email protected]

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