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The 40th anniversary of the Pueblo incident

Not surprisingly, the North Koreans couldn't let the day pass without comment.

North Korea demanded the United States end its "hostile policy" toward the communist state Wednesday as Pyongyang marked the 40th anniversary of its seizure of a U.S. spy ship.

An unnamed spokesman for the "Korean National Peace Committee," one of Pyongyang's propaganda organizations, called the incident "a product of the U.S. gangster-like policy of aggression against the DPRK in every aspect" in a statement issued on the eve of the anniversary.

If you don't know, the Pueblo is a floating museum today in Pyongyang. It was seized off North Korea's east coast 40 years ago, but in 1999 it was sailed through international waters to the DPRK's west coast where it remains today. The USS Pueblo is US property, but no one made a protest at the time and just watched as the ship was moved.

The North Koreans have made several hints about returning the ship, but always as part of some bigger deal with the US. So far administrations have said thanks but no thanks. It should remain that way so far as I'm concerned.

A bit hat tip to GI at ROK Drop. GI wrote a lengthy post on the Pueblo incident here and I suggest you read it. GI(An officer presently serving in the US Army) is one of my favorite bloggers. His blog(ROK stands for Republic of Korea aka South Korea) follows mostly South Korea news and issues is well worth reading.


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Comments (9)

Wouldn't it be fun to have ... (Below threshold)

Wouldn't it be fun to have a B2 go in in the middle of the night, and take the ship completely out, then when the NorKs protest, simply note that the ship was our property, but since it is now so old, we decided to dispose of it in a live fire test?

I think that would be fun.

Jeff, there's a crazy perso... (Below threshold)
matthew:

Jeff, there's a crazy person with his finger on the trigger of nuclear weapons, not to mention hundreds of thousands of rounds of chemical and biological weapons that are pointed directly at metropolitan Seoul (population 22,000,000). Kim Jong-Il gets to shake his little dick at the world and we have to put up with it. He won't live forever, though, and his son is more interested in gambling in Macau than perpetuating the status quo he might inherit from his father (who inherited it from his father). Kim Jong-Il's health is extremely poor, so we play the waiting game, wait for the inevitable, and hope that somebody sane assumes control.

matthew - "Kim Jong-Il'... (Below threshold)
marc:

matthew - "Kim Jong-Il's health is extremely poor, so we play the waiting game, wait for the inevitable, and hope that somebody sane assumes control."

Hmmm, where have I heard that refrain before?

Oh yeah about Castro, he wasn't supposed to last either.

marc, but they will all die... (Below threshold)
Scrapiron:

marc, but they will all die and the rest of the world will still be free, unless the democrats gain more control in 09, then all bets are off. Was deployed to Osan AB with a fighter bomber unit during this pissing contest and kept them Nuclear loaded and aiborne 24-7. We toyed with the mental retards the same way we toy with democrats today. Eventually they all fall into the hole they themselves dug.

marc--yawn. Castro doesn't ... (Below threshold)
matthew:

marc--yawn. Castro doesn't pose a threat to anybody. Cuba is a better place to live than Iraq/Pakistan/Saudi Arabia/Detroit/most Native reserves that I've driven through. Just because they're both anti-American dictators, doesn't mean your comparison is germane. Pervez Musharraf would be a better comparison, non? He's ostensibly pro-American, but directly or indirectly a greater threat to global security than Castro has been for the past forty five years.

Anyway, South Koreans don't take Kim Jong-Il's braggadocio seriously. When people here were losing their shit after he tested a nuclear weapon, people in Seoul went about their business, knowing that a) Kim Jong-Il isn't suicidal, and b) the United States was not stupid enough to give him an excuse to commit mass murder. Ignore him.

P.S.--Scrapiron, do you rec... (Below threshold)
matthew:

P.S.--Scrapiron, do you recall when American soldiers were murdered by North Koreans with an axe for trying to chop down a tree that was obstructing the view of a pillbox along the DMZ? Their OWN axe. And what happened? Not much. Kim Jong-Il's father's goons essentially got away with murder, though the tree was felled shortly thereafter with great fanfare.

Also, in the prefab building placed along the border where the UN/ROK and DPRK officials meet to shoot the shit, there is a U.S. flag behind an inch of plexiglas. "What's with the glass?", I asked, wondering why every other flag was not protected. The tour guide (a Marine, I think) informed me that during a high level meeting, some North Korean soldiers walked in, tore the flag off the wall, stomped on it, laughed in everyone's faces, and strolled out.

It's a pissing contest, and it's been a tie for 55 years (only because the DPRK leadership couldn't care less about the welfare of its people). Every time the UN/U.S./ROK pushes a little, the DPRK has pushed back, and it ends there because cooler heads know better than to risk escalation. Of course that's spun as a huge PR victory for the "People's Republic" of the North. Their agenda has always been to get attention, and the free world has always played into their hands. So very stupid. Ignore them, and they'll just go back to begging China for food.

Bill, thanks for the kind w... (Below threshold)

Bill, thanks for the kind words and the link.

I continue to hope one day the bravery of the men on the Pueblo will be recognized by the recovery of their ship. However, I suspect much like the Korean War generation, the actions of the men on Pueblo will remain forgotten by most in America.

My fellow shipmates were he... (Below threshold)
Jim:

My fellow shipmates were held hostage and treated very badly. The U.S. really didn't do anything. I Still think of this as a dark day for my country and for everything I hold dear. Almost no one left to hold responsible so I guess no one cares anymore. I am still Sad.

Jim, if you haven't returne... (Below threshold)
matthew:

Jim, if you haven't returned to Korea, you should know that there are about 48,000,000 grateful people there who make a point of remembering things like this.




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