A Volatile and Still Highly Dangerous Situation

The U.S. Has No Right to Threaten Korea (and the World)—and Neither “Trump’s Negotiations” Nor the “Tough-Guy” Warmongering Criticisms of the Democrats Are a Way Out of This Madness

Updated June 18, 2018 | Revolution Newspaper | revcom.us


The interests, objectives, and grand designs of the imperialists are not our interests—they are not the interests of the great majority of people in the U.S. nor of the overwhelming majority of people in the world as a whole. And the difficulties the imperialists have gotten themselves into in pursuit of these interests must be seen, and responded to, not from the point of view of the imperialists and their interests, but from the point of view of the great majority of humanity and the basic and urgent need of humanity for a different and better world, for another way.

—Bob Avakian, BAsics, 3:8

This past week the news has been full of the negotiations between Trump and Kim Jong-un, leader of the North Korean government. These negotiations seem on the surface to have quieted the threat of war. In fact, the situation is potentially even more dangerous.

For months Trump had been directly threatening North Korea (the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea) with annihilation unless they dismantle their nuclear weapons and submit to intrusive inspections throughout the country. He taunted Kim and threatened genocide at the UN itself. Now, with the negotiations, this has temporarily simmered down.

At the same time, very little is known about what actually was and was not said and/or settled. Even the objectives of the Trump/Pence regime itself (as well as the conflicts over this within the regime) remain opaque and in the shadows. Because of this, and because the underlying sharp international contradictions are not resolved, the dynamics of the situation remain highly volatile and continue to be... extremely dangerous. The danger of war is not fundamentally lessened.

Fascist Dynamics Drive the Negotiations Forward—and Could Derail Them as Well

First, there are dynamics intrinsic to the fascist character of the Trump/Pence regime—with its extremely aggressive foreign policy in general and its need to constantly stay on the offensive and to not be perceived as giving into, or losing to, countries over which it asserts its “right” to dominate. Should Trump and those around him (or a faction of those around him) decide that the negotiations did not, after all, put the U.S. in the light they want—if they decide that their concessions to North Korea are being perceived as weakness by rivals and those nations that they oppress—they are capable of changing their posture in the blink of a tweet.

There are also dynamics intrinsic to the shape of great-power rivalry and contradictions, which are also in a highly unstable, unpredictable, and dangerous state—as seen, most notably, in Trump’s attacks on his European, Canadian, and Japanese imperialist allies this past weekend, and his use of aggressive tariffs, but also in the less publicized but even more dangerous ongoing U.S. threats and maneuvers against China. Trump aims to use this disruption to hammer together a new order even more tightly under U.S. domination. The maneuvers around Korea fit into that—it is not about “getting a good deal on beachfront property,” even if Trump plays the fool to get you to think that. There is a method to the seeming insanity of what he is doing, but it is a method full of risks. None of this is under anyone’s control right now.

Anyone who says, “Well, at least we’re safer for now” and that we should wish Trump well “at least on this” after he has violently threatened the Korean people for over a year (and the people of the world as well) is telling us to thank a psychopath, who’s held a knife to our throat, for temporarily pulling the knife slightly back. This regime remains a fascist regime, threatening all of humanity.

The Warmongering of the Democrats

Second, the Democratic Party and its mouthpieces and allies in the media—notably, but not only MSNBC—are actually making the situation far worse from the standpoint of the people of the world. They say that the Koreans are playing Trump for a fool. And they are loudly complaining about how the U.S. is supposedly being sullied by its association with a regime as horrible as North Korea.

To start with the latter theme, North Korea is indeed a reactionary and repressive state, one that has nothing at all in common with socialism or communism. But, if you multiplied all the accusations against North Korea by 1,000, it would still not come close to the horror that the U.S. routinely inflicts on the world year after year, day after day.

Where are the “progressive” commentators and Democratic Party politicians reminding Americans that the U.S. killed three million Koreans after invading Korea during a civil war there in the early 1950s? Where are the commentators who are allowed to mention any of the crimes that the U.S. is carrying out today? Crimes like those in Yemen, where U.S. backing to a Saudi war has caused the murder of perhaps as many as 15,000 civilians, many of them children, put over 20 million Yemenis at risk of hunger and epidemic. Where are the Democratic Party politicians and MSNBC commentators who hammer on the fact that nothing North Korea is doing comes anywhere close to this, and why, therefore, regimes which do not knuckle under to U.S. commands might want to have a deterrent—especially, again, a nation in which three million people had been killed by the U.S. in living memory?


And why? Because these senators and commentators are trying to mold the thinking of people whose inclinations for a just world could lead them, if they were exposed to the actual truth, toward a much better position. Every cultured, reasonable-sounding argument these people bleat prepares people to approve and collaborate with great horrors. They are training you in a totally upside down view of the world, and they are preparing you to support a war if Trump should suddenly shift positions. Here too, their USA! USA! propaganda and conditioning—this time by the likes of Chuck Schumer, Nancy Pelosi, Rachel Maddow, and the rest—dwarfs anything that North Korea has done. Yes, someone is getting played in these negotiations: those who look to these Democrats as any sort of alternative, especially to Trump’s international aggression.

What Must Be Done Now

Third, it is very important in this situation to go out with the real truth to people. Neither of the two positions being allowed into the media—either that we are on the road to “peace” or that Korea is taking advantage of the U.S. and needs to be slapped down—is true. Both positions represent lies and come from a framework of what serves U.S. imperialism.

If you were concerned about the danger of war last week emanating from Trump/Pence/Bolton—the whole Trump/Pence regime—now is not the time to sigh in relief. Now is the time to heighten vigilance and to expose the gangsta threat behind Trump’s newfound honeyed words and the overt bellicose threats from the Democrats and McCain/Graham Republi-fascists. Now is the time to find the ways and means to act to wake people up to the continuing danger to humanity posed by this regime.

We need a different world, where humanity is not held hostage to “great powers” (that is, to imperialist murderers and plunderers) threatening each other and those nations they dominate with weapons of mass annihilation. We need a world in which the insane and relentless compulsion to expand or die at the heart of capitalism, which continually translates into murderous wars, is wiped out and overcome. The only way to get to that better world is through revolution—through overthrowing this system and bringing into being a whole different economy, political structure, and set of values, and spreading this revolution worldwide.

We need a revolution.

Revolutionaries and all who desire a just world have work to do NOW:

Truth Telling and Acting Accordingly

Agitators, organizers, and everyone who sees the real deal should bring out the truth about how to understand what happened at the Trump/Kim summit and do so in a compelling way everywhere.

Revolutionaries should link this to the core message of revolution.

Everyone who cares about the state of the world and wants to act to stop the horrific course it is on should make great use of Bob Avakian’s October 2017 speech on the Trump/Pence fascist regime, THE TRUMP/PENCE REGIME MUST GO! In The Name of Humanity We REFUSE To Accept a Fascist America. A Better World IS Possible, especially showing the clip on the Great Tautological Fallacy (“Free Yourself from the GTF”) and sending it and spreading it all over.


Broad use should be made of BAsics 3:8, including printing up leaflets of it. That quote reads:

Poster size
Leaflet size

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