Sunday, May 08, 2005

N. Korean Nukes or U.S. Scaretactics?

If anybody would be shitten bricks right now about North Korea getting ready to test a nuke, you would think it would be South Korea. But according to an article by ABC News, South Korea has dismissed the recent U.S. claims about North Korean nukes.

A recent ABC article states, "...that in August 1998, US media revealed military intelligence findings based on satellite photos that North Korea was constructing a tunnel at Kumchangri, 40 kilometres north of the Yongbyon nuclear complex, which could be a nuclear production and/or storage site...The Clinton administration responded to the disclosure by persuading North Korea to allow US inspectors to visit the underground facility in return for 500,000 tonnes of new US food aid."
ABCNews Online: S Korea skeptical North preparing for nuclear test

So is the U.S. acting on new intelligence? We know that during the last Democratic National Convention the administration raised the Terror Threat Alert based on photos discovered on a laptop that showed surveillance of financial institutions, but failed to mention that the info was a couple years old.

There's also been several recent statements about capturing Al-Queda's #3 man. I've seen several stories about how the guy hasn't talked, even after being interagated under severe pressure and even after being subjected to the use of truth serum. Well maybe it could be because they've got the wrong guy. He hasn't said anything because he doesn't know anything.

According to the article by the TimesOnline, "The capture of a supposed Al-Qaeda kingpin by Pakistani agents last week was hailed by President George W Bush as 'a critical victory in the war on terror'. According to European intelligence experts, however, Abu Faraj al-Libbi was not the terrorists 'third in command', as claimed, but a middle-ranker derided by one source as 'among the flotsam and jetsam' of the organization....Al-Libbi is just a 'middle-level' leader, said Jean-Charles Brisard, a French intelligence investigator and leading expert on terrorism finance. 'Pakistan and US authorities have completely overestimated his role and importance. He was never more than a regional facilitator between Al-Qaeda and local Pakistani Islamic groups'."
TimesOnline: Captured Al-Qaeda kingpin is case of "mistaken identity"

So given the current U.S. track record, one has to question the validity of its' claims and wonder just how old the info might be, given that none of us will ever be able to see the satellite photos since they're considered "classified."

Is there really a threat lurking in the near future? Personally, I hope that there isn't. Is there anything to really fear or is it true that "The only thing to fear is fear its' self", which Bush, Rove and the rest of them have become experts at exploiting.