Tariq Ali speaks on North Korea (inter alia)

Ben C benj at connexus.net.au
Fri Aug 22 02:46:56 MDT 2003


Last night I sent to Tariq Ali's feature speech at the Age Book Of The
Year presentation.

He ranged far and wide over the history of US imperialism, Iraq, Iran,
Palestine, Venezuela, the Philippines, and more, to a large mainly
liberal-type audience (who were quite appreciative of his points
nevertheless).

On North Korea, he related a story. He debated some Bush flunkey in
Germany, she regurgitated the crazy Bush Gang line on Iraq etc. loyally,
and even said something like "The only reason you Germans don't want
this war is because you're afraid of war" !!! The host apparently
thanked Ali for his interesting speech and said "but listening to her
was an anthropological experience!"

But afterwards (over dinner) Ali said that she was far more candid and
intelligent. When he said, why have you ruined the peace/disarmament
process that Clinton had in place in Korea (gradual rapprochement of
north and south, with the North decommissioning its reactors in order to
get US aid), her reply was along the lines that Clinton got it wrong,
and they weren't afraid of the north but the south. Even with 40-60 000
US troops there. The economy of the south plus the army of the north,
placed in a very delicate area between Japan and China would be enough
of a headache. But more - if Korea had nuclear capability, there would
be no stopping Japan getting it as well. And the US won't tolerate that
sort of instability in such a sensitive area.

Not that we haven't heard the theory before but I guess this more or
less confirms it.

Ben C




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