Bozell & Graham Column: The Sickening Celebration of North Korea

Every two years, Americans unite around the television to root for U.S. athletes and their dreams of gold medals come true. Unless you’re a journalist. Then the Olympics are a time to root against your country and her president on the world stage.

At the opening ceremonies in Pyeongchang, South Korea, organizers strangely seated Vice President Mike Pence just a few feet from Kim Yo-jong, the sister of North Korea’s communist dictator Kim Jong-un. To American reporters who hate Trump, a star was born. Just the summaries on Twitter were enough to make you throw your phone across the room.

Start with the wire services. The Associated Press gushed: “The trip by Kim Yo-jong is the latest move in an extraordinary show of Olympic diplomacy with Seoul that could prove to be a major challenge to the Trump administration’s hard-line Korea policies.” Reuters echoed: “North Korea has emerged as the early favorite to grab one of the Winter Olympics’ most important medals: the diplomatic gold.”

Could the North Koreans be any happier at the idiocy of the Western media?

The newspapers also claimed Mike Pence lost to the woman who serves as the North Korean deputy director of propaganda. The New York Times headline was “Kim Jong-un’s Sister Turns on the Charm, Taking Pence’s Spotlight.” They turned to Asian history professor Alexis Dudden for the slam dunk: “The fact that he and Mrs. Pence didn’t stand when the unified [Korean] team came in was a new low in a bullying type of American diplomacy.”

The Washington Post front page on Sunday declared they had found the “Ivanka Trump of North Korea.” She “has enraptured people in looks-obsessed South Korea with her sphinxlike smile and low-key beauty.” The story inside added her attendance at the Olympics was “a signal that North Korea is not this crazy, weird former Cold War state — but it too has young women that are capable and are the future leadership.’”

This kind of truth-shredding article makes a mockery of all the Post’s indignant “Democracy Dies in Darkness” bravado. One might forget that when last May Trump called the North Korean dictator a “pretty smart cookie,” the Post ran a story headlined “Praise for strongmen alarms rights advocates: Trump’s vocal affection for totalitarians marks major U.S. policy shift.”

The the most embarrassing coverage was delivered by, which announced “Kim Jong Un’s sister is stealing the show at the Winter Olympics.” The article began, “If ‘diplomatic dance’ were an event at the Winter Olympics, Kim Jong Un’s younger sister would be favored to win gold.”

That was in addition to another piece where ran the headline touting: “North Korea is winning the Olympics — and it’s not because of sports.” They insisted, without the slightest hint of irony or introspection, that “the North has gotten the kind of publicity money can’t buy.”

CNN also brought its academic expert. David Maxwell of Georgetown University proclaimed the communists were “masterful at getting something for nothing. They’re going to get recognition, legitimacy, resources, without giving anything up.”

This is a complete flip-flop from last May. When Trump called the North Korean tyrant a “pretty smart cookie,” CNN anchor Jake Tapper punched back with the brutal facts: “Kim Jong-un had his uncle murdered. That doesn’t make Kim Jong-un a smart cookie. That makes him a murderer.”

If our media elite truly revered democracy and loathed totalitarianism, none of this sugar-coated nonsense on North Korean “mastery” would have been uttered or published. Their bitter hatred of the Trump-Pence ticket colors everything they say and write.

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Lacking Self-Awareness, CNN Admits North Korea Manipulated ‘World Attention’ at the Olympics

CNN’s The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer
February 13, 2018
5:01 p.m. Eastern [TEASE]


WOLF BLITZER: And family affair. North Korea’s brutal dictator welcomes his sister back from the Olympics. Despite the smiles, U.S. intelligence chiefs say North Korea’s charm offensive may not have worked can. Anything convince the young dictator to negotiate?


5:17 p.m. Eastern [TEASE]

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Coming Up; Dictator’s Sister Returns from Olympics]

BLITZER: And later, North Korea’s brutal dictator welcomes his sister home from the Olympics as intelligence agencies try assess if North Korea’s attempts to manipulate world public opinion actually paid off.


5:25 p.m. Eastern [TEASE]

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Coming Up; Dictator’s Sister Returns from Olympics]

BLITZER: Then later, as Kim Jong-un welcomes his sister back from the Olympics, do the big smiles tell the story or did North Korea’s charm offensive fall flat? 


5:46 p.m. Eastern [TEASE]

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Coming Up; Dictator’s Sister Returns from Olympics] 

BLITZER: There’s much more news coming in, including the sister of the North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un returns home after an attempted charm offensive in South Korea. Did the brutal regime score an propaganda points at the Winter Olympics games?


5:51 p.m. Eastern

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: New Tonight; North Korean Dictator Aims for Propaganda Victory at Olympics]

BLITZER: New tonight, we’re getting fresh analysis — look at this. This is Kim Jong-un. Watch this for a second. 


It’s a nice reception over there in Pyongyang. We’re getting fresh analysis from intelligence experts on Kim Jong-un’s attempted charm offensive over at the Winter Olympics games. Brian Todd has been following this story for us. Brian, did the North Korean propaganda campaign have any serious impact? 

BRIAN TODD: It did have an impact, Wolf, but officials are telling us don’t be fooled by a lot of this propaganda. Tonight we’re told U.S. intelligence analysts are assessing the North Korean mission to the Olympics. What the North Koreans went there to do and whether they accomplished their goals. Part of that intelligence assessment involves pouring over the images now being released by Kim’s regime showing how he interacted with his sister and other delegates when they returned. With a military officer hailing the return and bands playing, Kim Jong-un’s sister and her delegation returned from their charm offensive at the Olympics. After briefing Kim on their trip, his sister, Kim Yo-jong, is photographed holding her brother’s arm. The other top North Korean delegate to the games, Kim Yong-nam, is holding the leader’s hand. 

MICHAEL MADDEN: This is sort of to express that they’re very confident in their trip. Whatever news they are delivering from South Korea, directly to Kim Jong-un, they had a very high degree of confidence in that — that this was good news. 

TODD: Tonight as intelligence agencies assess North Korea’s mission to the Olympics, a key question. What was Kim’s end game then? 

MADDEN: I think what he wanted to get out of it was the delivery of a message of this invitation to have President Moon maybe had visit the DPRK. He wanted to get things back on track in terms of interacting with the South Koreans and the South Korean government. 

TODD: Kim seems to have accomplish that had goal, analysts say, but they believe he’s also manipulated the South Koreans to an extent and tried manipulate world attention away from the vicious realities inside North Korea. 

JOSEPH DETRANI: I think the conversation now has been on Kim Jong-un’s presence and the cheerleaders and the athletes, not about the gulags that are still in North Korea, not about the 25 missiles that were launched in 2017.

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Joe Concha Slams Media for ‘Glamorizing’ North Korean Propagandist

Fox News Channel
Happening Now
February 12, 2018
11:23:13 AM Eastern

JON SCOTT: Just in on the Olympics. With critics slamming many members of the media for fawning over the sister of North Korea’s ruler. The mysterious young woman hijacking all of the attention at the winter games. Some outlets calling her the Ivanka Trump of North Korea. Here’s a sample of the headlines. But are the media ignoring a massive human rights issue?

Joining us now, Joe Concha, media reporter for The Hill. Judy Miller is a Pulitzer Prize winning investigative reporter, author, and Fox News contributor. Are you surprised, Judy, at the headlines that Kim’s little sister is getting?

JUDY MILLER: No, I’m not surprised. I mean, it’s kind of predictable. She is the shiny new object in the atmosphere. But let me tell you if you just go beyond those headlines, you get some fantastic reporting about what a monstrous regime this is about the extent to which North Korea starves, jails and tortures its own people. You get terrific reporting on the 30,000 North Koreans who have defected to the south but yes, this is an Olympics, Jon. This is show and they’re definitely part of the show. This is lipstick diplomacy … It will be very superficial and won’t last.

SCOTT: If the reporting is good why not reflect some of that in the headlines?

JOE CONCHA: That has been the problem. And more and more people– they scroll through their phones and they see a headline and a blurb, they won’t bother to read the story. It’s fast food journalism these days in terms of supply and demand. I hate to say it.

But let’s be clear, she is not the shiny new object. You know her official title? This is the most insane thing I’ve ever heard. She is the director of the Department of Propaganda and Agitation, all right? The last part is a Henry Youngman joke in there somewhere. But to your point in terms of what is going on in North Korea, 18 million people are starving.


CONCHA: That’s insane. 120,000 people in work camps. And you can go on and on and on in terms of the number of people that have been killed under this regime. And to give a headline like that without any context, that has been the danger here. It is why critics, not just conservative critics but what I saw on social media all over the place left and right are slamming not just The New York Times, CNN, Reuters, ABC, NBC. You can go on and on. This is across the board of glamorizing somebody like this who, again, runs propaganda and couldn’t ask for any better press if she wanted it from the U.S. media.


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North Korea Holds Massive Military Parade Ahead Of 2018 Winter Olympics

North Korea staged a large military parade on Thursday, just one day before the opening ceremony of the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

The parade was reportedly held to commemorate the 70th anniversary of founding of the country’s armed forces, according to South Korea’s Yonhap News, but it also marks a display of power mere hours before the North is expected to march under a unified flag with the delegation from South Korea. 

The Associated Press reported that tens of thousands of people watched and participated in the parade, but Yonhap noted that the display was both smaller and shorter than past similar events. The parade was also not broadcast live, a decision that Yonhap described as “an attempt to keep it low-key.”

North Korean state television broadcast footage of the parade a few hours after it concluded. The footage appeared to have been edited, the AP noted.

Foreign media was largely absent at the event, but Michael Spavor, the head of a non-profit consulting firm that facilitates work in North Korea, tweeted several video and photos he said were taken from the sidelines of the parade:

Images taken at the parade showed a procession of trucks carrying soldiers and military personnel passing large crowds, followed by a contingent of tanks. Footage from the official broadcast also showed what looked like several intercontinental ballistic missiles, including the newly developed Hwasong-15s, which North Korea claims is capable of hitting the U.S. 

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un also delivered a speech celebrating the country’s military prowess.

Nearly 300 North Koreans crossed the Demilitarized Zone between the two countries on Wednesday to participate in the Olympics, including 229 women that were part of a large “cheering squad,” The Washington Post reported. They will soon be joined by a high-level delegation of senior officials, including North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s sister, Kim Yo Jong. They are scheduled to meet with South Korean President Moon Jae-in on Saturday.

The Post notes that if the visit goes forward, she would be the first member of the Kim family to ever visit the South, a significant development in the fraught relationship between the two nations.

Kim is expected to arrive on Friday for the Opening Ceremony and stay for three days. U.S. Vice President Mike Pence, who is also attending the games this week, told reporters on Thursday that he has no plans to meet with North Korean officials.

  • This article originally appeared on HuffPost.

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CNN Panel Agrees: America Will Be ‘More North Korean’ With Military Parade

The Situation Room
February 6, 2018
6:45:45 PM Eastern

WOLF BLITZER: Before we get back to our specialists, we have breaking news. I want to quickly go to our Pentagon correspondent, Barbara Starr. Barbara, the President apparently wants a big military parade, tell us about that.

BARBARA STARR: Well, a Pentagon spokesman confirmed that they are looking at dates on the calendar for a parade that Mr. Trump has told the Pentagon he wants as an expression of national unity and patriotism.


But, what are we really talking about here? There has not been a military parade typically by the U.S. military in many years. The last one really after Desert Storm in the 1990s.


So it’s going to be a difficult proposition. And it may be very controversial. The veterans have long wanted some kind of welcome home parade. This may be seen as something unduly militaristic overseas, may be seen as an expression of celebrating years of America’s wars abroad. Wolf?


STARR: Our colleague, Jeff Toobin, made a good point a few minutes ago. What we more typically see is America’s heroes marching down Broadway in New York. The canyon of heroes, the ticker tape. This has gone on for decades, throughout America’s wars. And those kinds of Broadway, New York, celebrations are really a true celebration of the service of those who go to war on behalf of the nation. It’s not very typical, frankly, to see American weaponry rolling through America’s city streets. It is something, I don’t know that anybody can predict how nations overseas, especially in the Middle East and Asia, might react to it all, Wolf?

BLITZER: Jeffrey, what do you think?

JEFFREY TOOBIN: Well, you know, I — we’re getting more North Korean every day in this country. You know, yesterday the President says people who don’t cheer are un-American and treasonous. And today, we’re going to start having big parades with tanks and missiles. And, you know, people have to decide whether they want to have that kind of country. I mean, we have a country where we celebrate our troops, as Barbara said when they come home from battle in lower Manhattan and we throw ticker tape. But the idea in peacetime, simply having tanks roll through the streets of Washington that’s—to use a phrase the President likes to use – in my experience that’s un-American.

REBECCA BERG: And one of the reasons we don’t tend to have those military parades in America, is just the sense that being the power that we are, we don’t need to show off our military might like countries like North Korea or Russia might need to.


DAVID SWERDLICK: If you’re the President and you think what nation needs is a military parade, to me that’s like what Jeffery said, that’s like North Korea, that’s like a middle-aged guy who goes out and gets an earring and ponytail. That’s trying to prove something that just simply doesn’t need to be.

BLITZER: Very quickly.

KAITLAN COLLINS: We can already see the future what’s going to happen here. This parade will probably go forth on Veteran’s Day or whenever the White House is proposing a date. Democrats and critics will automatically draw conclusions this is like North Korea, that the President is acting like a dictator, and White House will, in turn, say those people aren’t patriotic and they don’t love our troops that they don’t want a military.


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Re: Syrian army deploys new air defences in north-commander in pro-Assad alliance

The Syrian army has deployed new air defences and anti-aircraft missiles to frontlines in the Aleppo and Idlib areas, a commander in the military alliance fighting in support of President Bashar al-Assad said on Monday.

“The Syrian army calls up new air defences and anti-aircraft missiles to areas on the frontlines with the militants in the countryside of Aleppo and Idlib,” the commander told Reuters. “They cover the air space of the Syrian north.”

Read: Russia says US ‘took provocative steps’ in Syria

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It Sure Sounds Like The US Is Actually Going To Bomb North Korea

During his first State of the Union address on Tuesday, Donald Trump pledged the United States would continue its campaign of maximum pressure” against North Korea. Meanwhile, the Washington Post ran an opinion piece written by the man who was, until recently, set to become the U.S. ambassador to South Korea.

Victor Cha, a professor at Georgetown University and senior adviser at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, had reportedly passed all U.S. security checks, and South Korea had signed off on him.

It was expected — and for the government in Seoul, hoped — that Trump would soon formally nominate Cha for Senate approval. But over the weekend, it was reported that the White house informed Cha he was no longer being considered for the post.

Sources say the move was motivated by Cha’s disagreement with the Trump administration’s policy on North Korea. In particular, these sources say, the would-be ambassador took issue with the White House considering a preemptive strike against the Hermit Kingdom.

Writing for the Washington Post on Tuesday, Cha stated that the answer to the North Korean question “is not, as some Trump administration officials have suggested, a preventive military strike.”

Rather, Cha wrote, there are options available to address the threat “without escalating into a war that would likely kill tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of Americans.”

Cha, who previously served in the administration of George W. Bush, wrote that he expressed his concerns over North Korea policy while he was being considered for the Seoul ambassadorship.

The Georgetown professor went on to question the logic of the “bloody nose” strategy, meant to shock leader Kim Jong-un and make him think twice about his nuclear ambitions:

“If we believe that Kim is undeterrable without such a strike, how can we also believe that a strike will deter him from responding in kind? And if Kim is unpredictable, impulsive and bordering on irrational, how can we control the escalation ladder, which is premised on an adversary’s rational understanding of signals and deterrence?”

Cha noted that on any given day, there are around 230,000 Americans in South Korea and another 90,000 in neighboring Japan. He pointed out that if North Korea were to retaliate against a preemptive strike, those citizens “would most likely have to hunker down until the war was over.”

He also noted that unlike Japan, South Korea lacks sufficient missile defense systems to counter a barrage of artillery from the North, meaning Americans there, as well as millions of South Koreans, would be vulnerable:

“To be clear: The president would be putting at risk an American population the size of a medium-size U.S. city — Pittsburgh, say, or Cincinnati — on the assumption that a crazy and undeterrable dictator will be rationally cowed by a demonstration of U.S. kinetic power.”

Regardless of such warnings, Trump remained adamant that the Kim regime poses a substantial threat to the U.S. while speaking before Congress on Tuesday. After claiming his administration has been tough on authoritarian nations, Trump zeroed in on North Korea in his State of the Union Address:

“But no regime has oppressed its own citizens more totally or brutally than the cruel dictatorship in North Korea. North Korea’s reckless pursuit of nuclear missiles could very soon threaten our homeland. We are waging a campaign of maximum pressure to prevent that from ever happening.”

Continuing, the president suggested the U.S. “need only look at the depraved character of the North Korean regime to understand the nature of the nuclear threat it could pose to America and to our allies.”

This aspect of the president’s State of the Union Address — Trump’s focus on the character of North Korea as opposed to the country’s nuclear weapons program — already has some speculating that the White House may be preparing for actual war.

Writing for The Atlantic, Peter Beinart noted that Trump’s telling of the story of Otto Warmbier, the American arrested in North Korea who died shortly after his return to the U.S., as well as that of North Korean defector Ji Seong Ho, may have been an attempt to “rouse moral indignation” ahead of the outbreak of war.

Writing for The Intercept on Wednesday, Jon Schwarz made a different connection. He pointed out that in Trump’s speech, many of his stated justifications for war with North Korea were “frighteningly familiar” to those given by President George W. Bush during the lead-up to war with Iraq in 2003.

Further, a source speaking to Anti-Media on the condition of anonymity with knowledge of U.S. Naval activities told us preparations have begun for military conflict in East Asia over the coming months.




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North Korea could stage ‘intimidating’ military parade day before Olympic Games – Seoul

The North is preparing to mark the anniversary of the Korean People’s Army (KPA) at Mirim Airfield in the capital, Pyongyang, on February 8, Unification Minister Cho Myoung-gyon told a forum in Seoul, as cited by Yonhap news agency. “There is a high possibility that the North could hold an intimidating military parade by mobilizing sizable numbers of military personnel and almost all of its weapons,” Cho said

On Tuesday, North Korea announced that it would mark February 8 as Army-Building Day, the anniversary of the creation of the Korean People’s Army (KPA) back in 1948. Earlier in January, the North announced that the KPA anniversary should be held on February 8 instead of April 25 – the date it has been marked on since 1978.  

“The North seems to be preparing for major events massively on the ground as the regime marks the 70th anniversary of its creation, and its leader Kim Jong-un apparently wants to show his absolute power,” Cho stated. However, he declined to comment on whether Seoul sees the parade as a provocation.

The minister added that the decision by the US and South Korea to postpone annual joint military drills until after February’s Winter Olympics may pave the way for dialogue between the two Koreas. “If the allies resume their exercises, North Korea will likely protest strongly against them. There is a high chance of North Korean provocations, which would make the international community impose further sanctions,” he said, adding, however, that it is “a realistic guess” that “a vicious circle of repeated provocations and sanctions could come back soon.”

The Winter Olympics start in PyeongChang on February 9, and appear to have helped bringing about a relative thaw in the situation on the peninsula. North and South Korea have agreed to make a joint entrance under a unified Korean Peninsula flag at the opening ceremony. They have also agreed to send a combined women’s ice hockey team, while North Korea will be represented by 22 more athletes. 

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North Atlantic right whale discovered dead off Virginia coast, 1st in 2018

At least 18 North Atlantic right whales have now died in Canadian and U.S. last year and this winter.


Another North Atlantic right whale has been found dead, the first to be recorded in 2018 and the 18th since last year.

The whale was reportedly found off the coast of Virginia on Jan. 22.

Jennifer Goebel, a spokesperson for the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), confirmed the information to Global News on Thursday.

According to NOAA, the remains of the whale appeared to be wrapped in a fishing line.

Based on past experience with entangled whales the NOAA believe the whale was alive and swimming when it encountered the line.

Canada implements new restrictions

The discovery of the whale comes only two days after the federal fisheries minister announced four measures aimed at protecting right whales from entanglement in fishing gear.

“Protecting Canada’s endangered whales from further harm is a responsibility that weighs heavily on all of us,” Dominic LeBlanc said Tuesday in Moncton.

LeBlanc said four new rules for the southern Gulf of St. Lawrence snow crab fishery will greatly reduce the amount of rope that can be left floating on the surface when crab pots are set – to no more than 3.7 metres.

“In addition, no rope attaching a crab trap to a primary buoy can remain floating on the surface of the water after the crab trap has been set,” he said.

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North Korean ex-spy Kim Hyon-hui speaks out

Kim Hyon-hui is a mass murderer, a former spy for North Korea who blew up a passenger jet in 1987 on orders she says were from Kim Jong Un’s father. Now she’s speaking out against the regime.

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