Tensions growing with North Korea

Kim_Jong-Un_Photorealistic-SketchPresident Trump has been threatening military action against North Korea, and no one thinks he’s bluffing.

Three U.S. aircraft carrier groups are headed to the Korean peninsula.  Vice President Pence is in Seoul, co-ordinating with the South Korean government.

North Korea remains defiant.  An earlier missile test–that they were told not to try–was a failure, but officials vow to conduct more tests every week.  The foreign minister said that any military response from the U.S. would result in nuclear war “on the Korean peninsula,” evidently a threat to strike South Korea. [Read more…]

Trump attacks Syria

Bashar_al-Assad

UPDATE:  President Trump pulled the trigger on attacking Syria.  Some 59 cruise missiles hit an airfield suspected of storing chemical weapons.  The President  called on “all civilized nations to join us in seeking to end the slaughter and bloodshed in Syria. And also to end terrorism of all kinds and all types.”

“We ask for God’s wisdom as we face the challenge of our very troubled world,” he continued. “We pray for the lives of the wounded and for the souls of those who have passed and we hope that as long as America stands for justice then peace and harmony will in the end prevail.”

OUR EARLIER POST:

Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad launched chemical weapons on his rebellious citizens, killing 70 men, women, children, and babies.  Now President Trump is considering an attack on Syria.

Would you consider this a violation of his campaign pledge to keep us out of foreign wars?  Or does the heinous nature of Assad’s atrocity justify an exception?  A few air strikes would be short of a war.  Would you support that response?

At any rate, Trump is now denouncing Assad and supporting regime change.  That also has him opposing Vladimir Putin, the Russians being Assad’s major ally.

Trump is also rattling the saber over North Korea, threatening to take action on our own in response to its ballistic missile testa, if China does not intervene.  Other presidents have ignored Kim Jong-un’s threats, saying he is a madman.  As if it were some kind of consolation to consider that a dictator armed with nuclear weapons is insane.

 Then again, Trump also campaigned that he would reverse American “weakness.”  Should America throw its weight around a little more overseas, assuming its traditional role as world leader and quasi-policeman?  Or do you think Trump is starting to embrace neo-conservativism, which believes in promoting democracy around the world through American power?

[Read more…]

Sony will release “The Interview” after all

Sony has backed down from its backing down to North Korean hackers, announcing that it will release “The Interview” simultaneously  on Christmas day in select theaters and on Video on Demand. [Read more…]

Has the U.S. struck back in cyberwar?

North Korea’s internet has been shut down.  The suspicion is that the American government has struck back in retaliation for North Korea’s hack and extortion of Sony. [Read more…]

North Korean hackers win

We blogged about  the hack of Sony pictures, apparently by North Koreans angry about “The Interview,” a comedy about an attempt to assassinate that country’s dear leader, Kim Jong-un.  The organization that broke into the company’s data released vast amounts of embarrassing information online, including racially charged remarks about President Obama from chief executives, insulting information about how the studio viewed certain stars, and financial details about who makes more than who.  Not to mention entire movies that can now be pirated before their release.

But then the hackers had this to say about the release of the movie on Christmas day:  “The world will be full of fear.  “Remember the 11th of September 2001. We recommend you to keep yourself distant from the places at that time. (If your house is nearby, you’d better leave.)”

With this dirrect threat,  many theater chains and distributors cancelled the showings.  Whereupon Sony has killed the movie completely. [Read more…]

North Korea hacks Hollywood

Sony Pictures will soon release a comedy about two reporters who are enlisted to assassinate North Korea’s leader Kim Jong Un.  The movie, entitled The Interview, combines fiction with non-fiction, bringing the venerated “dear leader” of the notoriously touchy Communist country into a silly comedy plot.  But North Korea is outraged and breathing threats.

So apparently North Koreans hacked into Sony’s computer system, deleting files, stealing personal information about its employees, and downloading unreleased movies and making them available on the internet.

Notice how our inter-connected global technology doesn’t just spread the Western ideal of freedom.  It can also be used to attack freedom, to the point of authoritarian governments punishing people who aren’t even citizens of their country. [Read more…]