Don’t Believe the Hype

Created by friend and fellow expat,  Mike Stewart

Created by friend and fellow expat, Mike Stewart

There’s a chance these could be famous last words, but I don’t think so. As tensions between North Korea and South Korea escalate, the western media seems to be having a field day, creating a sense of fear and panic when none is legitimately warranted by blowing (pun intended) everything out of proportion.

While it’s true that I am somewhat jaded and inured to the conflict, having lived in this environment for several years and, at times, freaking out only for it to end in nothing, I still feel like it is more or less business as usual in the South Korean capital. My parents have called, slight panic in their voices, and even my great aunt cranked up her ‘machine’ to send me an email – quite a feat I’m sure. One or two of my co-workers, particularly the American ones, are allowing their panicked friends and family back home to spook them. Another co-worker, who has a Korean wife, said that it was the first time in their years together that she had expressed fear over the situation. There was some macabre talk in the office the other day about what the best way to die would be if something were to happen (it was generally agreed upon that it would be better to be quickly turned to ashes than to lose a leg and live). But, for the most part, everybody is going about their daily lives. Given the discrepancy between the reality of life here and the portrayal in the media, it is interesting to consider the impact, influence and power news outlets like CNN have in shaping our reality.

This is what my American friend who used to work for the American military here (and still lives here) had to say:

Just to let you know the real reason. As an ex-military hand it’s all financial. There is no real threat. Never will be. The news creates a panic and a rustle which works in the favor of the military complex of the USA (which has been coming under some expenditure scrutiny as of late). With a “nuclear threat”, a blank cheque and free license is given to the US military. Meaning more money for the military and its military contractors. They also tend to mark up their costs (sometimes as high as 200%) during the times of “military danger and incursions.”

The 2nd thing is that the military knows it needs more arms here in the Asian peninsula. Not because of North Korea but cuz of the threat of China (and their Russian ally). The USA would be over-run in 48 hrs by the Chinese military. EASY. So when they hype-up the BS of NK they can come send over more arms, men’n’muscle to beef up security in the region and fortify their presence.

3rd, Korea has been wanting to decommission the USFK (at least minimize its presence in Korea. That in itself is contrary to the USA’s long-term hegemony ideals. So what’s the best way to ensure you stay put. Get the media to egg on the noise of war and chaos in the region. It causes the S.K. nation to lose its investments and its economic stability and currency value. Send many USA troops in to the region and investors feel safe to invest again when the noise “suddenly” settles, and they return in force to invest and get stocks which had been sold for cheap during the crisis, boosting the economy. In the end the USFK dont go anywhere. the S.K. govt get ample investors. the region is secured for hegemony purposes. NK get concession. and we all live happily ever after.




P.P.S the most dangerous thing to the USA is a united Korea, cuz that may mean a bond formed with China, the region’s largest powerhouse and, by proxy, China’s ally, Russia. A new power block the USA cannot collectively defeat. Beware the red herrings ad see past the smoke and mirrors.

I’m not politically savvy enough to know if I agree with all of his points, but I get the gist of it. In the meantime, I will be careful with what media I expose my eyes and ears to, know the whereabouts of my passport and credit card and keep calm and carry on.

1 Thought.

  1. Seoul Doll,

    You can try to be careful which media you expose your eyes to, but that ain’t gonna git ‘er done, so to speak, if the same circus comes back to town – which it inevitably will, sometime down the road.
    Nope, the best indicator that the hype is actually hell on the way would be your neighborhood 7-eleven or C4U store shuttered and locked up tight, and the roaming recycle cart folks nowhere to be seen. They’re the ones with the best ‘military intelligence’. Your American friend is @ 50% correct. He’s wrong on the China-Russian alliance; they are not bedfellows any longer.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *