No Noam on Base?

Jason Ditz, October 24, 2008

A group of South Korean military officers is pressing a court to overturn the military’s ban, announced earlier this year, on books which it considers dangerously pro-North Korean, anti-US, or anti-capitalist. The military says the “seditious” books would hinder the concentration of soldiers, and harm the military’s “mental power.” The officers say the move is censorship and unconstitutional.

The list reportedly includes 23 books, including two by US author Noam Chomsky which were listed for being “anti-government and anti-US.” One of those books is Year 501: The Conquest Continues.




35 Responses to “No Noam on Base?”

  1. I oppose this action of censorship, but in a broader sense why should the U.S. even still be in South Korea? Why? What for? The war ended 55 years ago. S.K. has twice the population of the north (so at least in theory it should be able to field twice as many soldiers) it has forty times the wealth (so it should be able to supply those troops twenty times as lavishly) and has a huge technical lead. Google a picture of the Korean peninsula at night to see the incredible difference between the two states. Unbelievable! Furthermore the Korean peninsula has lost whatever broader strategic importance it may (assuming it ever had any at all) have had during the cold war. We should just leave. Let S.K. look after itself. It’s time for South Korea to grow up and become a big boy and its time for the U.S. to dissolve its way too expensive empire.

  2. Many of the books are considered “anti_zionist” too. On a recent trip to Tokyo (Aug) I was amazed at all the anti-Israeli books for sale at local street stands.

  3. Well, it allows a lot of young white men to have sex with Asian women. More important, the bases allow us to dominate S. Korean government policy. The rather more soldiers/sailors stationed in Japan serve the same purpose(s).

    When I was a very young man, in the early ’70s, I spent a lot of time at yet another US base in Asia, Subic Bay Naval Station. It was a very colonial situation, with the US supporting the dicator Ferdinand Marcos in order to keep the bases. Now they are gone, closed by Mt. Pinatubo. I doubt the Filipinos miss our racism and humiliations a bit.

    Lester Ness
    Kunming
    China

  4. The US must dismantle its 700 worldwide bases, but most importantly, it must change its national security strategy of world hegemony, which guarantees conflict and endless, senseless war.

  5. I also doubt the American taxpayer misses no longer losing the money that was being wasted on these bases a bit either buddy.

  6. Don’t forget Japan has nothing at all like the huge, rich and very well organized pro-Israel lobby like America does. The Japanese are free to get information and opinions about Israel and the mideast generally without it being filtered through this pro-Israel/anti-Arab prism.

  7. I doubt the south Korean ,or the Japanese have a say in that.The US is the one insisting on maintainning bases all over the world.Now,it insists that Iraq subevert its soverignity to the US.

  8. Agreed 100%. It is the interventionist foreign policies of the United States that is at the root of the problem (although a lot of Americans don’t want to hear this). Far from making America safe it undermines her security, costs a fortune (which can no longer be afforded) and causes blowback.

  9. Which ‘anti-Israel’ titles did you see, sixtysomething USAF?

  10. The US military is the #1 threat to US national security:
    1) It’s actions create anti-American sentiment. They don’t fly airplanes into buildings in Stockholm.
    2) It chews up enormous resources that could be better spent on US infrastructure, education, health care etc (whether through government programs or private enterprise).
    3) As a professional, standing military, the economic interests of professional soldiers militate against force reductions. In many cases, their loyalty is to the military rather than to the Constitution. The mercenaries now being employed, such as Blackwater, are an even greater threat. They are trained to kill. Unlike the Russian conscripts in Moscow during the coup against Gorbachev, professional soldiers will not hesitate to fire on Americans.
    4) With abolition of posse commitatus, troops stationed in the US are now a direct threat, as their loyalty is to the Executive branch.
    5) It has destabilized or overthrown governments in Afghanistan, Iraq, Somalia and elsewhere, creating “failed states” that are hotbeds for terrorist training.
    6) It is the #1 polluter of the US natural environment over the last 60 years.
    7) It could, through accident or otherwise, precipitate a nuclear exchange with another country.
    8) Military bases and other installations will be targeted in the event of war with another nation.

  11. Bill Rood ,

    Add to the list the millions of people that it has killed,crippled,destroyed,and displaced.

  12. Oh I doubt the South Koreans or the Japanese really mind American money being spent on THEIR behalf. They are smart enough to know a good thing when they see it. Its the American taxpayer who REALLY doesn’t have any say in it.

  13. That was very well said Bill.

  14. Define “anti-Israel”? I am “anti-Israel” if that means I think the USA should stop giving Israel 3-4 billion dollars a year in “foreign aid”. That money could be used so much better right here at home.

  15. Well, the US bases are EXTREMELY unpopular in Okinawa, where most of them are. Since the government has agreed to re-locate some to the main island, Honshu, the local residents are pretty unhappy at the thought of having thousands of horny, drunken, US Marines next door. I suspect the carriers based in Yokosuka are not too popular,either.

    Lester Ness
    Kunming
    China

  16. The Nazis translated all the classic anti-Jewish works into Japanese in the ’30s-’40s. Tojo,however, got the idea that, if true, the international Jewish conspiracy would be a great ally! Hence, German and Russian Jews were allowed to live in Occupied Harbin and Shanghai. Not that there were treated less brutally than ordinary Chinese people. Something like 30 million Chinese people died in WW II, mostly civilians. Any ordinary Chinese person in most of the country can tell you a family story of how a dozen or a hundred relatives were murdered by Japanese soldiers.

    Lester Ness
    Kunming
    China

  17. They don’t like it in Korea when an armored car runs over and kills school children. Sending a telegram saying “I’m sorry” from the States doesn’t make anyone feel better, either.

    Lester Ness
    Kunming
    China

  18. If it was up to ME all American troops would be gone from Korea. The U.S. would save a lot of money and Korean schoolchildren wouldn’t be getting run over. It’s not my fault Washington has a masochistic foreign policy.

  19. But obviously Japan can’t mind TOO MUCH, since it has made no effort to make America leave and assume the burden of defending itself, preferring to freeload on America instead. BUT WHY ARE WE ARGUING? Bring the troops home at once. The question is not how appropriate or inappropraite U.S. servicemen abroad behave. THE REAL QUESTION IS why are they abroad in the first place?

  20. A good friend always asks me “Why do we have troops stationed in Europe, Japan, etc”. I answer (having been in the military) because that is one of the benefits of being in the military. It is great for a young military officer to take his family to Europe and allow them to visit the continent, ski in Switzerland, experience Octoberfest, etc. Ditto Japan. If all there was to the military was places like Fort Hood and Iraq, the military would have one hell of a time getting people to stay in. Why else do we have so many bases in Hawaii and so few in, say, Haiti? Overseas bases are not so much for national defense as for troop morale. I remember being in Subic Bay and Cubi Point in the Philippines. All of the young military wives had maids, gardners and spent their days sunning themselves as the O club. Try doing that in Norfolk.

  21. If all there was to the military was places like Fort Hood (I.E. in America) the military wouldn’t NEED very many people to stay in. I’m not interested in sending military families on ski trips to the Swiss Alps or subsidizing colonial-plantation lifestyles for soldiers wives, thank you very much. I’m only interested in the TRULY LEGITIMATE DEFENSIVE needs of America. With a truly DEFENSIVE foreign policy (as opposed to our current OFFENSIVE one like bombing Serbia or invading Iraq, two countries that had never done us any harm) America would need only a minute fraction of the military it has now. It’s not like an army of Canadians are going to storm across North Dakota and loot Fargo now is it? But then there would be a lot of suddenly very unimportant old generals and admirals with nothing to do but play bridge or lawn bowling. They don’t call it the military-industrial complex for nothing.

  22. I would like to propose a very simple way to shut down all overseas military bases as a consequence of drastically cutting government spending in general. A secondary benefit would be to completely eliminate Congressional corruption.

    My idea is to offer Congress a monetary incentive to cut spending. For example, if everyone who voted to cut any amount of spending were rewarded with one percent of the cuts, we could expect a stampede to cut spending. Out of a $3 trillion federal budget it wouldn’t be unrealistic to see a $2 trillion cut. Assuming that everyone would vote for this, it would translate to about $36 million of legal loot per Congresscritter. Can any lobbyists afford to tempt our public servants with a more lavish counteroffer?

  23. I wonder if Pat Robertson’s _The New World Order_ is banned or Hal Lindsey’s _The Late Great Planet Earth_ and it’s many follow-ups. Born-again Protestantism is strong in S. Korea and takes some strange forms. Do many Koreans want to speed up the Rapture, the Battle of Armeggedon? the Second Coming of Jesus? US born-agains are in a frenzy of anticipation, judging by radio/internet preachers.

    Lester Ness
    Kunming
    China

  24. Unfortunately, I suspect many didn’t know or care. When I returned from my war cruise in 1972, my dad didn’t want to hear about the Philippines. “It has nothing to do with me!” 20 or so years later, when the bases were closed, he complained up a storm about ungrateful the Filipinos were, blah, blah, blah. I thought (but didn’t say) “Gee, I could have told you why they didn’t want the bases, 20 years ago!”

    Dad is enthralled by TV evangelists and media conservatives and so are many other Americans. If Pat Robertson or Dr. James Kennedy say, it must be so!

    Lester Ness
    Kunming
    China

  25. Well, it benefits members of the elites in S. Korea and Japan. Whether it benefits ordinary Koreans or Japanese is another question.

    Lester Ness
    Kunming
    China

  26. Another question is whether it benefits ordinary Americans too, who are the ones bearing the financial burden of those troops, by the way.

  27. Many in the top of the military belive such things and their outlook on the world shaped by that,our God is bigger than their’s .Also rev.Moon owns the Washington Times,news max,etc.

  28. They have made quite the stink over Obama’s pastor. McCain denied his love for Hagee once and it was over. Who is the bigger nut case Hagee or Wright? I can not stand either, but it’s obvious that our joke of a media thinks it’s off limits to dog out the let’s start the rapture nuts.

    My invisible friend is stronger than your invisible friend. If you don’t believe me I’ll bomb the snot out of you. What a lovely system.

    Peace!

  29. But the question is why did America need or want those bases? I don’t see the need for them. What catastrophe befell America after it left the Philippines? The answer of course is none at all. Likewise no disaster would likely follow from leaving S.K. The USA should never have bothered the Philippines, going all the way back to 1898. Both countries would have been better off.

  30. Our oligarchs get to indulge their lust to dominate, our soldiers get to indulge their bodily lusts. Fundamentally, it’s not much different from apes competing for status and sex.

    Lester Ness
    Kunming
    China

  31. Japan pays quite a bit to be occupied 60 years after the end of WW II. I don’t know but I wouldn’t be surprised if S. Korea pays as well.

    Lester Ness
    Kunming
    China

  32. I want the old-fashioned small military, and a government that concentrates on removing the beams from US eyes, not fussing about the motes in the rest of humanities’.

    As for why the troops overseas, it pays some people, mostly people involved with the Military-Industrial complex. It pleases a lot of bossy ordinary folks to think that we still occupy the loser countries of WW II. It’s weird, but a lot of US foreign policy amounts to re-fighting WW II (or more usually a movie about WW II). It’s a perverse way of playing King of the Hill.

    For Japanese leaders, it means they don’t have to spend money on defense (although they do anyway).

    Lester Ness
    Kunming
    China

  33. Japan doesn’t have a large number of born-again Christians eager for the End of Days. Korea does have a lot of born-agains, but I don’t know if Dispensatonalism is important.

    Instead of anti-Israel books (probably all copying each other), read Hal Lindsey, et al. The Armaggedonites are the power behind AIPAC and US pro-Israel policies.

    Lester Ness
    Kunming
    China

  34. Rod Parsley is worse than either Haggee or Wright.

    Lester Ness
    Kunming
    China

  35. A group of South Korean military officers is pressing a court to overturn the military’s ban, announced earlier this year, on books which it considers dangerously pro-North Korean, anti-US, or anti-capitalist. The military says the “seditious” books would hinder the concentration of soldiers, and harm the military’s “mental power.” The officers say the move is censorship and unconstitutional.

    http://www.lastevent.info