Monday, February 17, 2014

Correspondence with the Supreme Leader of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea and First Secretary of the Workers' Party of Korea, Kim Jong-un

I thought this might be of interest for those who did not want to wade through the whole report at this link: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/HRBodies/HRC/CoIDPRK/Pages/ReportoftheCommissionofInquiryDPRK.aspx

I would have the Korean language version of this letter sent to the north Korea people (and all military leaders into who hands this could be put)  by every available method if I were in charge of the influence campaign and PSYOP.  North Korea is one of the most important PSYOP target in the world.

But I bet no one in the Kim Family Regime ever received a letter like this. And I would be wary if Kim took Mr. Kirby up on his offcer for the commission to travel to Pyongyang.  

Correspondence with the Supreme Leader of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea and First Secretary of the Workers’ Party of Korea, Kim Jong-un    

Inline image 1
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CSPAN Korean Peninsula Security Concerns, Part 1 and Part 2

If you go to the 50:18 minute mark on Part 1 (link below) you can hear a PRC representative from the Chinese Embassy in DC give the Chinese perspective on its activities in the South China Sea, the ADIZ and territorial disputes.

Also in Part 2 you can hear from Syd Seiler, the White House NSC Director for Korea provide an interesting historical overview of nK policy and nK actions.

There was a 3d part that was not filmed because OSD did not want its representative speaking on the record.

FEBRUARY 14, 2014

Korean Peninsula Security Concerns, Part 1

Robert Zarate discussed U.S. national security concerns on and around the Korean Peninsula. He talked about relations between China, both Koreas, and Japan, including the presence of the U.S. Fleet in the East China Sea and North Korean objections to joint U.S.-Korea “war games,” and the impact of such cooperation on relations with China. After his presentation he was joined in discussion by ICAS fellows Joseph Bosco, David Maxwell, and Larry Niksch and responded to questions from members of the audience. 
The Institute for Corean-American Studies (ICAS) symposium on “The Korean Peninsula Issues and United States National Security” was held in the Rayburn House Office Building. close 

FEBRUARY 14, 2014

Korean Peninsula Security Concerns, Part 2


White House National Security Council Director for Korea Sydney Seiler spoke about security concerns on the Korean Peninsula, including North Korean nuclear ambitions and the impact of cooperation between China and the U.S. to pressure North Korea on relations with China. After his presentation he was joined in discussion by ICAS fellows Joseph Bosco, David Maxwell, and Larry Niksch and responded to questions from members of the audience.
The Institute for Corean-American Studies (ICAS) symposium on “The Korean Peninsula Issues and United States National Security” was held in the Rayburn House Office Building. close 

Report of the Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea

The entire report (4.1MB) can be downloaded here.  http://www.ohchr.org/Documents/HRBodies/HRCouncil/CoIDPRK/Report/A.HRC.25.63.doc

Note there are a number of resources on the web page below.

This report could be useful for Psychological Operations directed at the 2d tier leadership and the north Korean population. 

The ROKG (and the north Korean defector organizations) should try to get this information into north Korea to let the population know that the international community knows what is going on inside north Korea and that the regime is to blame.  Although it is unlikely to spur change or resistance when post-conflict or post-collapse occurs the knowledge that the outside world identified the Kim Family Regime as a human rights violators and international criminals could be helpful in influencing in the population/


Of course China is going to veto taking the issue to the International Criminal Court and that could be an important message to the north Korean people.  It will be important to identify those who sided with the north Korean population and those who did not.

Report of the Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea

Resources


The Report


Report of the commission of inquiry on human
rights in the Democratic People’s Republic of
Korea -­ A/HRC/25/63


36 pages


French
Español
Russian
Arabic
Chinese
Report of the detailed findings of the
commission of inquiry on human rights in the
Democratic People’s Republic of Korea -­
A/HRC/25/CRP.1


372 pages
 English 

Media Outreach


North Korea: UN Commission documents wide-ranging and ongoing crimes against humanity, urges referral to ICC
Russian
Arabic
Report of Commission of Inquiry on Democratic
People's Republic of Korea to go public on 17
February
French
Español
Russian
Arabic
For further information about the Commission of Inquiry, please contact:

Rolando Gómez: +41 22 917 9711rgomez@ohchr.org
Cédric Sapey: +41 22 917 9695csapey@ohchr.org
Rupert Colville: +41 22 917 9767rcolville@ohchr.org
Ravina Shamdasani: +41 22 917 9169rshamdasani@ohchr.org
Cécile Pouilly: +41 22 917 9310cpouilly@ohchr.org

Questions & Answers


 
Questions and Answers on the Report of the United Nations Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea
17 February 2014
English

Background information


Biographies of the Commissioners:
Marzuki Darusman(Indonesia)
Sonja Biserko(Serbia)
About the Commission of Inquiry
Commission of Inquiry Mandate

Satellite images

Satellite images of currently existing political prison camps (kwanliso) in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea -­ -­ 28 January 2014
Download complete set as a PDF or click images below for individual high-­resolution PNG files.
Expansion area adjacent to Political Prison Camp No.14 (potential residual detention complex of PoliticalPrison Camp No. 18)
Expansion area adjacent to Political Prison Camp No. 14 (potential residual detention complex of Political Prison Camp No. 18)
Political Prison Camp No. 14, Kaechon County, South
Pyongang – Prisoner Housing

Analysis courtesy of the U.S. Committee for Human Rights
in North Korea / © Google Earth
Expansion area adjacent to Political Prison Camp No.
14 (potential residual detention complex of Political
Prison Camp No. 18)

Analysis courtesy of Amnesty International/ © Digital Globe  
 
Political Prison Camp No. 15, Yodok, South Pyongan –Overview Analysis courtesy of Amnesty International / © Digital Globe
Political Prison Camp No. 16, Myonggan, NorthHamgyong – main administrative areaAnalysis courtesy of Amnesty International /
Political Prison Camp No. 25, Chongjin, North Hamgyong Province Analysis courtesy of the U.S. Committee for Human Rightsin Nor
Political Prison Camp No. 15, Yodok, South Pyongan –
Overview
Analysis courtesy of Amnesty International / © Digital Globe
Political Prison Camp No. 16, Myonggan, North
Hamgyong – main administrative area
Analysis courtesy of Amnesty International / © Digital Globe
Political Prison Camp No. 25, Chongjin, North Hamgyong Province
Analysis courtesy of the U.S. Committee for Human Rights in North Korea © Digital Globe

Map


Location of political prison camps (kwanliso) and ordinary prison camps (kyohwaso)
in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea
Location of political prison camps (kwanliso) and ordinary prison camps (kyohwaso)
in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea
PDF | PNG

Photos


Click images to download high-resolution (200 dpi) files.
Public Hearings held in Tokyo by the 
Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights 
in the Democratic People's
Republic of Korea
© OHCHR
Public Hearings held in Tokyo by the Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea
© OHCHR

Videos

Public Hearings (Programs, Videos, Transcripts)
The Commission of Inquiry conducted Public Hearings in Seoul (20-24 August 2013), Tokyo (29-30 August 2013), London (23 October 2013) and Washington, D.C. (30-31 October 2013) during which almost 80 victims and witnesses of human rights violations as well as experts provided testimony on the human rights situation in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.

Graphic illustrations

Drawings submitted to COI by former prisoner Mr Kim Kwang-il
Download complete set as a PDF or click images below for individual high-­resolution PNG files.
Drawings by former prisioner 1
Drawings by former prisioner 2
Drawings by former prisioner 3
Drawings by former prisioner 4
Drawings by former prisioner 5
Drawings by former prisioner 6
Drawings by former prisioner 7
Drawings by former prisioner 8

Thursday, February 13, 2014

NORTH KOREA’S THEATER OF THE ABSURD AND THE NEW NUMBER TWO’S by Robert Collins

If you only read one article from me today please read this one especially if you want to understand north Korean leadership (And I will be sending out a lot of articles today on this snow day in between reading admissions applications)


Bob Collins is one of the foremost experts on north Korea and north Korean leadership.  Few have the access and expertise (and few can speak with north Koreans in their dialect as he can),  When Bob writes on north Korea it behooves us to pay attention.  I can guarantee that you can read what is written below in any classified analysis.  

This is in my opinion one of the most important essays to read on north Korean leadership.


North Korea’s Theater of the Absurd and the New Number Two's

NORTH KOREA’S THEATER OF THE ABSURD AND THE NEW NUMBER TWO’S

February 13, 2014 · in 
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It seems as though North Korea’s “number two candidates” are the star roles for the Kim Regime’s version of Pirandello’s “Six Characters in Search of an Author.” Jang Song-thaek’s recent execution has raised a number of questions about the Kim Family Regime: What drives these purges? What do they mean? What do they say about the stability of the regime and how it functions?  These are all the right questions, but most of the analysis out there is not providing the right answers.
The North Korean regime’s theater of the absurd has been illustrated, most recently, by the execution of Jang Song-thaek, the uncle of leader Kim Jong-Un. Jang’s execution has left much of the world’s political pundits dumbfounded as to the “why,” “how,” and “what’s next.”  The international media’s speculation on wild stories such as Jang being executed by hungry dogs ripping him apart or Jang sleeping with Kim Jong-un’s wife only added to the surrealism surrounding this episode of Al Capone-like justice. Even Jang’s relatives – sister, brother in-law, nephew and their sons, daughters and grandchildren – have been put to death.  In the North Korean legal system, whole families must suffer the fate of the criminal, especially when the crime is against the Kim Regime.
Because of the level of Jang’s abuse of power and the threat he posed to Kim Jong-un’s authority, Jang’s execution was by far the most critical event to date since Kim Jong-un replaced his father as the North Korean leader. The dramatic removal of Jang from positions of power, including Vice-Chairman of the National Defense Commission, Director of the Korean Workers’ Party Central Committee’s Administration Department, and administrator of some of North Korea’s most productive foreign currency earning operations (FCEO), created a political oversight vacuum within most of those agencies.  The charges against Jang were “stacked” with the accusations covering the areas of economic, political, ethical and even the whimsical, such as not clapping hard enough for the Kim family.  But much of this was fictional scriptwriting of which even Eugene Ionesco would be proud.
The Downfall of Jang Song-thaek
The story of Jang’s downfall requires some understanding of the North Korean socio-political system, which places maximum emphasis on personal and institutional surveillance and loyalty. As such, it is very difficult to create independent organizations – social, political, “factions,” or otherwise – that support individuals other than the supreme leader, or political agendas other than those of the party and the supreme leader.  Therefore, individuals of influence develop “lines” of personal contacts and supporters who become their “men” or “network of influence” who then manipulate institutions for their political and/or economic gain.   Jang, because of his connection to the Kim Family as husband of Kim Jong-un’s aunt, came close to establishing his own power base and certainly developed an extensive line of supporters.
Using this influence, Jang committed perhaps the greatest crime a member of the North Korean elite can commit: he made a profit and did not give the regime a cut.  Paying into the supreme leader’s “revolutionary funds” is an absolute requirement for all FCEOs. Jang’s control of a wide number of foreign currency-earning organizations enabled him to accumulate one billion dollars, which were deposited in the Bank of Shanghai.  Kim Jong-un wanted access to these funds but Jang’s men – primarily Administration Department 1st Vice-Director Ri Yong-ha and Vice-Director Jang Su-gil – mishandled the money to the point that the Chinese government shut down the account.  In December 2013, Jang confessed his crimes before a military tribunal. He was branded a “traitor for all ages” and executed shortly thereafter.
The Bank of Shanghai episode was Jang’s last rodeo, but unbeknownst to many observers, it wasn’t his first. For Kim Jong-un and others, this was likely the last straw in Jang’s long history of abusing his authority, a history that reveals much about the opaque North Korean regime.
From Transgressor to Strongman: Jang’s “Revolutionary Re-Education”
Indeed, throughout his career, Jang Song-thaek frequently overstepped his bounds, bringing trouble down on those close to him.  As husband to the princess of the empire, he was spared many deserved punishments.  However, before his execution, Jang in fact twice received “revolutionary reeducation” for bad behavior. Such “re-education” is a common form of punishment within the Kim regime, if the sentence is not death or banishment to a political prison death camp. The transgressor is sent down to the common worker’s level to learn the lessons of the revolution through hard labor. As early as the 1970’s, Jang was accused of starting a “secret party” and sent to a work in a regional factory.  And in 2004, he was accused of “factional activities” and prevented from working altogether, a form of house arrest.
After returning from his second “revolutionization” experience in 2007, Jang was actually rewarded by his brother-in-law, Kim Jong-il, with an appointment as Director of the very influential Administration Department (AD) of the Korean Workers’ Party (KWP).  At the time, the KWP Administration Department was part of the KWP’s Organization and Guidance Department (OGD), an institution expanded in power and influence under Kim Jong-il to the point of it being referred to by party bureaucrats as the “party within the party.”  The OGD’s primary responsibility is maintaining the stability of the regime by requiring loyalty from every North Korean, with a focus on the elite. Only the elite of the elite and the most loyal of the most loyal are permitted to work in the OGD.  Concurrent with Jang’s appointment to the AD, Kim Jong-il separated that department from the OGD, thus creating natural barriers between the two organizations.
The mission of Jang’s AD was political oversight (not command) of the State Security Department (North Korea’s secret police), the Ministry of Public Security (national police force), the courts, the judges, the prosecutors, and the lawyers.  The Administration Department also oversaw a significant number of FCEO’s (though it does not do so not any longer).  In other words, Jang had political watch over of the regime’s internal security apparatus and significant profit-making operations, a very powerful position indeed. The AD has subordinate offices down at the provincial (9), separate city, and county (145) levels.  These offices are integral to the party committees at those levels.  From those subordinate offices, Jang was able to influence the party-state’s internal security and FCEO’s at the micro level.  The combination of those two authorities is what got Jang in trouble for abusing of power.  Everybody that worked for Jang in the KWP AD at each of its levels had been able to leverage their influence for self-aggrandizement. Now, many of those officials will pay severely for their choice of loyalty.
Reporting from a North Korean refugees’ organization suggests that in April 2011, Kim Jong-il gave Jang even more power by appointing him to oversee several FCEO’s.  One of those was Department 54 of the General Political Bureau., which was responsible for manufacturing or acquiring soldier equipment and clothing.  Jang then promoted Department 54 Director, Jang Su-kil (no known relation), to be one of his close aides as a vice director within the AD.  Jang Su-kil, Administration Department 1st Vice Director, Ri Yong-ha, the party secretary of Department 54, and the Political Department Director of the Ministry of Public Security (national police) were known to become Jang Song-thaek’s three closest subordinates.
Then, however, the Department 54 party secretary began reporting secretly to the General Political Bureau (the military’s political commissar organization headed by Vice-Marshal Choi Ryong-hae) about Jang Song-thaek’s corruption and the General Political Bureau reported this directly to Kim Jong-un.  Jang once again miscalculated his influence and power and the effectiveness of his subordinates.  Consequently, the purging process began, with Jang Su-kil and Ri Yong-ha being the first two to be executed. The execution of Jang himself, of course, followed shortly thereafter.
The Aftermath of Jang’s Execution
(Continued at the link below)

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

This is UW

This is UW :-) Could not resist sharing. As most know I am a strong proponent of UW and it is probably the most misunderstood mission in the military.  Perhaps these pictures illustrate why.  But I do think the correct interpretation is a combination of the academics and the old guys.
V/R
Dave


LEARNING LARGE LESSONS FROM SMALL WARS by Frank Hoffman

If you read only one thing I send today, make it this one.  Please go to War on the Rocks to read the entire essay.  http://warontherocks.com/2014/02/learning-large-lessons-from-small-wars/

Learning Large Lessons from Small Wars

LEARNING LARGE LESSONS FROM SMALL WARS

February 5, 2014 · in   
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Not long after America’s withdrawal from South Vietnam, Harvard Professor Stanley Hoffmann observed   that, “Of all the disasters of the last decade, the worst could be our unwillingness to learn enough from them.” The same appears true today.  For all the ink spilt and bytes used, it is hard not to want to paraphrase Dr. Hoffmann and apply his witticism to America’s policy elite. So here goes:the greatest disaster about Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom is our abject inability to draw critical lessons from them.
I find myself in mild disagreement with Mark Stout’s comments   on the counterinsurgency debate.  The debate is certainly useful.  However, it masks a larger and more important debate on the effectiveness of American policy and the strategy community, and another about the utility of force in the 21st century.  We should not be distracted from these larger debates, which depend on our ability to be reflective and properly draw upon history to establish lessons.
Drawing clear lessons from post-mortems and “after action reviews” is a delicate matter because they can be politicized too readily.  But it can and must be done.  For an example, see the admirable Joint Staff assessment titled The Decade of War  .  But the military drew only operational lessons in that report.  Its strongest lesson was about the “Big War” mentality that blinded the U.S. military from studying and preparing for insurgencies or small wars.
Several contributors here at WOTR have touched on the need to draw lessons carefully.  Dr. David Johnson of RAND has reflected   on his own experience in the post-Vietnam Army.  Others, like Army Strategist Nate Finney, have also commented   on the challenge, saying:
If we cannot look critically at our conflicts, how they were prosecuted, what worked and didn’t work, and what this could imply for the future, all of the concept development (think AirSea Battle   and Strategic Landpower  ) and budget battles we are currently debating will be largely premature, if not largely uninformed.
As I noted in my review   of Dr. David Ucko’s and Robert Egnell’s searing but scholarly critique of British policy and strategy making  , someone in the United States needs to conduct a similar assessment of U.S. decisions and the processes that supported them.  This analysis cannot just be about “President Bush’s Generals” or “Mr. Obama’s Lieutenants.”  Modern conflicts, so called “wars amongst the people,” are not purely military in character, and thus we should not limit our learning and subsequent adaptations to just military lessons.  American strategic performance (policymaking, bureaucratic processes, integration capacity, assessment mechanisms, Congressional oversight/advice, etc) needs the same level of dispassionate scrutiny, professional assessment, and learning as COIN theory or doctrine.
Best-selling author Tom Ricks has written about his unease with the military’s ability to deal with its shortcomings.  However, the next assessment should go beyond just a study   of military generalship or military issues.  The challenges of modern warfare are just as pertinent to U.S. policymakers and elected officials as they are to senior military leaders.  We need to ask harder and more critical questions.  The critical question is not “Can the military learn from its mistakes?”  We need to expand that question beyond just the military community to the entire policy and strategy making community. Thus the ultimate question is “Can American policy makers and civilian strategists learn anything from the past?
Learning is not for the Timid
There are major lessons to be drawn out and carefully analyzed from conflicts, large and small.  Yet, as Dr. Joe Collins of the National Defense University noted in the aftermath of Desert Storm  , “The sages rarely remind us how difficult this learning process is.  A full disclosure would show that decision makers, uniformed and civilian, often fail to learn effectively from experience.”
Our ability to learn from recent conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq has been hampered by a culture reticent to critically understand its own experiences and foibles.  Hard-earned lessons from prior conflicts are often tucked away by our preference for more romantic regimental histories or stories of great valor.  Our lack of preparedness for an emergent insurgency in Iraq in 2003 was shaped by the distorted lessons we took from the sour experience of Vietnam and the triumphalist narratives from the Gulf War, as well as our collective failure to learn fromOperation Just Cause  .  This coup de main was a great example of a military profession that perfected an American Way of Battle    at the expense of obtaining assigned political objectives.
We can and should learn from these conflicts, but we need to be aware of the abuse of history by institutions and the pervasive Masks of War  worn by each of the armed services and our political camps.  As Eliot Cohen has observed  , “Political and military institutions can no more escape the molding hand of history than an individual can escape the influences of memory.”  Each of our Services imprints a mental model of warfare on its institution and its Officer Corps.  Similarly, political and academic schools of thought imprint models or lenses on civilian policy elites.  We will need to “unmask” these influences and uncover the real lessons if we seek to improve our strategic performance.
Applying the Historical Mind
We need to use history very carefully when searching for lessons.  Because lessons are the product of interpretation, and since history can be skewed by prejudice and parochial blinders, great care must be taken in drawing and validating lessons. Like any form of comparative analysis, case histories can be enormously insightful, but only if one is ruthlessly objective and rigorous in the development of the underlying conditions, the granular context of each case.  These histories can also expose in glaring light the biases, erroneous assumptions, and poor decisions made by participants.
(Continued at the link below)

How U.S., South Korean Special Ops Would Join Forces in a New Korean War

Of course it would not be a new Korean War but a continuation of the current one that was temporarily suspended by the 1953 Armistice.  But...