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Comments

It's all right, Ray. Let them continue to deceive themselves. They'll just be asking themselves, "Huh? Wha' hoppen?" when the Republicans maintain power in the House and maybe the Senate.

The fact that they're on the wrong side of history on this will become obvious to the people of Germany some day, and then they'll really be in trouble ;).

Good God---there is such a huge cultural gap between America and Europe. The majority of Americans simply don't care about what any foreigners may think of them. And no, its not born out of some superiority complex. I think most Americans would have a hard time understanding why the inhabitants of ANY country would give ANY weight at all to the opinions of people who didn't live there. If the mainstream German media even thinks that they can influence American elections they are delusional.

Excuse me, but had anything of what you wrote have anything to do with the article at hand? I see alot of generalizing opinion, but no concrete examples of what Der SPIEGEL supposedly distorted. Also, I've read the article itself, but did not get the impression that Der SPIEGEL seemed to believe that it might influence elections in any way. Could you please give a reference?

@ Mentar,

My article (if you read it) is clearly a commentary on the cover itself and Der Spiegel's long history of biased coverage of the United States. If you look through our SPIEGEL ONLINE archive, you will find no shortage of examples. On your second point: Obviously SPIEGEL does not and would not explicitly state that it is attempting to influence any election. It would be naive, however, based on the magazine's current and past behavior, for us to deny that the publication seeks to influence opinion both in Germany and abroad through its covers and content.

Oh I'm sorry about that - you're right, you wrote to "make a prediction before the SPIEGEL has even come out". I misunderstood this part, because while the _print_ edition isn't released yet, the electronic version is, and I had assumed that you read it. Mea culpa.

Der SPIEGEL is about as "fair and balanced" as FoxNews is, just on the other side of the table. They are presenting their side of the story, and this time, the target clearly isn't the US, but rather Bush and his government. Of course it panders to its clientele, just like most weekly publications do. And of course it also tries to influence public opinion, that's what every political magazine does.

In other words: Nothing new on the western front. What exactly are you so angry about?

I agree with Mentar, Spiegel is a bad example for polemic journalism as well as probably fox news or some other media on the "right" are.

The point to me seems, as you Ray correctly mentioned, that everyone with certain interests - in the case of spiegel those being their success as a magazine - will leave out anything that might harm those interests. I don't expect to read a lenghty article about the possible dangers to our (western) legal and moral values posed by the so called "torture bill" on this blog as well as I don't expect to read an article about the benefits of a successful democratization of Iraq in spiegel or any other of the so called left german media magazines (or any other german news media probably).

For me as a reader the simple fact that I am able to get both sides presented to me and being able to form my own opinion and even comment on it here in this blog is more than enough. There is a lot of misinformation on both sides and I certainly don't expect anyone with an agenda to point out their own faults to me.

Two more things from your article I would like to comment on. First you state "And allow us to remind our friends at "Der Spiegel" of something else they may have forgotten: American defeat in Iraq would represent a catastrophe for the millions of people of Iraq and possibly for the wider Middle East". Very correct. But besides the point that Spiegel is trying to make. As they were against the war from the beginning and as they are obviously bent on proving a point here you can't really blame them for saying "See, I told you so".
I doubt that this is a good statement to make at the moment and I also doubt that this kind of statement will help in any way to improve the situation for the people suffering. But from their point of things it makes as much sense to say something like this as it will make for the supporters of the war on Iraq in let's say 10-15 years when we hopefully will have a stable democratic islamic Iraq to say "See, I told you so".

Then you wrote "Saddam's atrocities have received only a tiny fraction of the coverage that Abu-Ghraib and Guantanamo have received". I agree that there is not nearly enough attention paid to the various atrocities going on in the world at the moment. Darfur being just one of them that so confidently is being ignored because there's two big players who have interests in Sudan and no one's daring to go against them, not even the US.

But from my point of view I see a big difference between someone that is fighting in the name of democracy and human rights on the one hand and someone who says human rights are an invention of the west in order to enslave islam on the other hand. If the latter goes on a killing and torturing spree I hardly expected them to do otherwise, if any western government does so I am not really surprised that this creates a bit more of a "hooplah".

What I agree with a 100% is your underlying argument (at least what I read into it) that the media should put much more focus on the suffering of those people, regardless of who is the so called evil-doer. For the people in Darfur or the inmates of Abu-Graib or the people in Iraq being hurt by terrorists it doesn't really make a difference who's behind it as long as the suffering stops. But I guess that in (international) politics this is just wishful thinking as, again, there's just too damn many people with an agenda.

@mentar
So could you please enlighten us and give us some examples of biased reporting by Fox News?
Do you regularly follow Fox News? Have you ever seen Fox News?

@ Mentar,

I don't see my article as "angry." I guess we will just have to disagree on that.

As far as the print or online content is concerned, I could not have fit a commentary on the entire magazine, cover-to-cover, into one readable post. We may address individual articles as we see fit, but the purpose of this post is to address the magazine's return to sensationalist covers, and my posting on that topic is long enough in my opinion. If you'd like to write a posting on a particular piece, please feel free to email that.

As far as the target goes: This is clearly anti-Bush, but the last time I checked, Bush and "his government" were not the only Americans fighting in Iraq. To me it is a slap in the face to every person who has served in Iraq (including non-American coalition partners and countless Iraqis) to claim that the war is lost before it is clear that that is actually the case. It is also an extremely arrogant, partisan statement to say that a war is already lost before it is over.

Again, this is more of the irresponsible, sensationalist journalism that has come to define "Der Spiegel" and it is our job to cover that and that is what we have done.

@ nebilet

While the focus of our blog is clearly German media, we actually have discussed the issue of torture and the ongoing debate in the United States. Like most other people in a democracy, we feel that there must be a healthy balance between civil rights and security. That balance should be what transatlantic partners are engaged in a discussion about right now to a far greater extent. It is clear that the media's sensational demonization of the United States makes that conversation much more difficult. That is one aspect of this that I think we should all be concerned about.

As far as SPIEGEL being "right" about Iraq. If you look at Saddam Hussein's history leading up to 2003 and talk to his victims (something SPIEGEL has done very little of) it is not at all clear that they were "right." I do think that intelligent people can disagree on this. I also think it is clear that a number of things could have been done better since the war started. Constructive criticism (and NOT "told you so" Monday morning quarterbacking) is always necessary, but I'm not sure that much of the criticism coming from the German media is all that constructive. As you point out, it is directed at a particular ideology and clientele.

"The magazine will have made absolutely no real attempt to interview or fairly represent the opinions of anyone who would defend American efforts in Iraq or contend that the war in Iraq has not already been hopelessly lost."

Wozu sollte man das tun? Jemand der denkt, dass der Irakkrieg nicht ein völlig hoffnungsloses Desaster ist, leidet offensichtlich an akuter und unheilbarer Realitätsverleugnung - solche Meinungen muss man nicht ernstnehmen. Allein die Tatsache, dass dort MONATLICH bis zu 5000 Menschen an Gewalt sterben - mehr, als beim WTC-Anschlag. Die Geheimdienste schätzen inzwischen ganz offen den Irakkrieg als einen schweren Fehler ein. Aber nein - für die US-Regierung und ihre Advokaten ist weiterhin alles in Ordnung und der Irakkrieg ein toller Erfolg...

@ all,

I think that christian's comment represents the sort of absolutist, brainwashed view of Iraq that has become quite common on Iraq in much of the German media. There simply is no room or acceptance for differing views. If Iraq is a "completely hopeless disaster", then what was the situation like for the Soviet Union in Fall 1941?

It is true that thousands of Iraqis have died over the past few months. And let's be clear about who is killing most of them: Sectarian radicals and foreign Islamic radicals, not American troops. The point is that those forces need to be defeated. There is no doubt that things look bad right now and I don't think anyone (up to and including the President) have said that everything is just fine. But to say a war that is ongoing is lost is (again) a highly arrogant, premature thing to say. As I said, there are also thousands of people dying monthly in Darfur and Congo, but to a media suffering from selective outrage, those places don't seem to matter nearly as much.

The intelligence community also never called the Iraq war a "mistake" as christian falsely claims. This guy has obviously been so pumped full of propaganda, innuendo and one-sided arguments that it is impossible to have a reasonable conversation. Unfortunately, more and more Germans fall into this category because they buy what media like SPIEGEL are selling them.

Der SPIEGEL is about as "fair and balanced" as FoxNews is, just on the other side of the table.

Is this sentence deep analysis, is it wisdom, or is it... crap?

I would say that 95% of the time when Fox News discusses a political issue, they invite representatives of *both* sides. I guess it's actually more than 95%, but let's stay with that.

I repeat: they constantly have guests form *both* sides of the issue on prime time. Any sane person who follows Fox News can't help but notice that.

Where in hell is the resemblence between Fox News and Spiegel here ???

For the readers who are not blessed with knowledge of Goethe's and Adolf's language, christian is saying that "hey, what is there to discuss anymore, in fact you must be crazy to discuss anything related to the Iraq war. People die there, so it's lost". That's about it.

The ongoing war is violent, so let's pack and leave because it's lost anyway. Why is it lost? Well, you stupid Americans, because it's violent! According to christian and German media propagandists, a war is declared lost once it becomes violent.

I guess Americans should have left Europe after the battle of the Bulge because of the high number of casualties. Once the going gets rough, let's get out of there.

That's the depth of analysis one can expect from brainwashed consumers of German media.

@ray,

es geht nicht darum, ob man einzelne positive Effekte des Irakkriegs sieht oder nicht (wie z.B., dass die Leute jetzt vordergründig wählen dürfen). Das ist irrelevant - die Situation der Menschen dort verbietet es, diese "Erfolge" gegen ihr Leid aufzuwiegen, alles andere wäre unendlich zynisch.

Im Endeffekt geht es um die Frage: wofür darf man Krieg führen? Für "Demokratie"? Nein. Um feindliche Regime zu entfernen? Nein. Um einen Völkermord zu unterbrechen? Ja. Zur Selbstverteidigung, falls man unmittelbar angegriffen wird? Ja.

@Christian
Lieber Christian,
jemand der denkt er weiss das der Irakkrieg "ein völlig hoffnugnsloses Desaster ist" leidet nicht nur an extremer Realitätsverleugnung sonder dazu noch an unheilbarer Selbstüberschätzung (eine chronisch Krankheit der deutschen). Nach deiner Theorie dürfte man sich also von vorneherein niemals in Darfur engagieren da dort schon jetzt monatlich mehr als 10000 Menschen durch Gewalt sterben. Sorry, ich glaub ich muss dir das mit Darfur wohl erst näher erklären da dort die USA ja noch nicht aktiv sind und damit jede Berichterstattung über das Thema in den deutschen Medien recht mager ausfällt.
Ach ja, und welche Geheimdienste waren das noch die "ganz offen den Irakkrieg als einen schweren Fehler" einschätzen?
Ja, ich weiss Christian wenn man ganz doll die Augen und die Ohren zudrückt dann kann man alles Elend dieser Welt ignorieren und dann lebt es sich ja auch ganz gut mit einem Kerl wie Saddam (zumal man mit dem ja auch noch Toll Geschäfte machen konnte).


@Christian
"Im Endeffekt geht es um die Frage: wofür darf man Krieg führen? Für "Demokratie"? Nein. Um feindliche Regime zu entfernen? Nein. Um einen Völkermord zu unterbrechen? Ja. Zur Selbstverteidigung, falls man unmittelbar angegriffen wird? Ja."
Interessante Regeln. Hast du dir die Ausgedacht? Respekt.
Hm, also man wartet erst mal ab bis ein "Regime" einen Völkermord beginnt und erst dann (wenn dann schon mal so ein zwei Millionen hops gegangen sind damit wir uns auch richtig sicher sind das ein Völkermord vorliegt) greift man eventuell ein. Aber erst mal ganz viel diskutieren und ganz viel drohen wie beim Iran, gell. Wie heisst es so schön im deutschen Sprichwort: Der Krug geht zum Brunnen bis er bricht.

@RayD

"As far as SPIEGEL being "right" about Iraq. If you look at Saddam Hussein's history leading up to 2003 and talk to his victims (something SPIEGEL has done very little of) it is not at all clear that they were "right.""

I certainly hope you did not think I would argue that Der Spiegel is right about Iraq. Maybe my formulation was not clear. In my opinion they themselves think they are right about Iraq and thus in their own conviction it makes perfect sense for them to blurt out "See, we told you so". I do agree, however, that this is in no way a sign of good journalism and it does actually hurt the cause of those who would very much like to take part for example in the discussion about torture that you mentioned.

@WhatDoIKnow

"Der SPIEGEL is about as "fair and balanced" as FoxNews is, just on the other side of the table.

Is this sentence deep analysis, is it wisdom, or is it... crap?"

And then to quote myself:
"I agree with Mentar, Spiegel is a bad example for polemic journalism as well as probably fox news or some other media on the "right" are."

After reading your comment and actually giving this some deeper thoughts I will have to retract this statement. Given the current and on this blog well documented state of the german media I do regularly look for new input from sources that don't tell me what I already know but instead offer different views that are necessary for me to form my own opinon. I will most often find those on a variety of American news outlets such as for example FoxNews. As I purposely search for opinions that will be contrary to mine in certain aspects I must admit that my subjectivity misled me in so far as I overlooked the many articles that actually do state views that I share.

But then I guess this is a human mistake to make, so please forgive me.

nebilet

My comment was a response to Mantar's post, not yours.

You don't have to appologize, I understand what you are saying and I have no problem with that. I can't forgive you since there is nothing you have to be forgiven for :-)

The problem is that countless Germans have the same narrow minded understanding as christian. They belive that Fox News is literally the loud speaker of the Republican party. It is obviously true that FN is situated right of MSM, but this alone doesn't disqualify them as a source of information.

When I was living in Germany and was "informed" by German MSM, I truly believed that Fox News is a place where you can hear exclusively the Republican point of view 24/7. When I moved to the US and started to actually watch Fox, I was very surprised. I was hearing voices from both sides much more often than say... on CNN (which I knew previously from watching CNN International).

Bottom line is that the diversity of opinions you can hear on Fox News is infinitely more varied than what you can read in Spiegel. There is absolutely no comparison between the two. Spiegel is making exclusively "ideological" journalism, while the other is making journalism, which is to the right of MSM but it basically never fails to take in account the "left" side of the story.

This Sunday morning a Democrat strategist was explaining vigorously on Fox News why Democrats are in better shape than Republicans. This is not at all a rare appearance, it is very common. Yesterday, Saturday, evening there was a show on CNN called something like "War of Words", where for an entire segment both the guest (some Slate journalist) and CNN's own Suzanne Malveaux were "objectively" explaining to the CNN moderator why the Bush Administration is in a terrible shape. Opposite views were not present.

The Germans are brainwashed by a frighteningly uniform media, which exposes them exclusively to "their" side of the story. When Medienkritik exposes this ideology, you have German commenters (like christian) whose reaction is a mindless: What exactly are you so angry about? They have become numb, the only thing that awakens them to life is their righteous indignation with Bush. German journalism is probably at its lowest level of objectivity since WWII and Germans like christian are complaining about... Fox News.

We're not angry, Christian, this America bashing is old and tiresome.

Just like Churmany.

Germany knows losing wars.

I don't know how famous this Russian journalist was and to whom we could compare her (to Woodward???) but could you imagine the media when this had happen in the US? The world is really crazy. Bush-bashing is no longer funny when the media go on with ignoring the real danger in our world. Nuclear test in North-Korea. Killing in Darfur. And so on. But the journalists are getting wild when it comes to Bush (the real terrorist). I hope our politicians are smarter than our journalists.

@Gabi
I don't know how famous this Russian journalist was and to whom we could compare her (to Woodward???)

She was quite famous. And she is the 13th Russian journalist murdered in the last few years. And there is no American journalist I can think of who was that brave.

Including Bob Woodward. Let me tell you about Woodward. In his first book, co-authored with Carl Bernstein, All the President's Men (about Watergate) he told how he contacted the infamous Deep Throat to ask for a meeting. He would move a flower pot on his balconey from one position to another.

It was years later that someone figured out that from the apartment he lived in at the time, the flower pot could not be seen.

I've forgotten the name of the book, but in it he claimed to have interviewed Bill Casey. Casey was the director of the CIA during the Reagan administration. He left his post when it was discovered he had a terminal brain tumor. Woodward claims to have breached hospital security and got to Casey in his hospital room. Unfortunately for Woodward, Casey was in a coma from which he never recovered at the time. Woodward is now known as 'Mortuary Bob'. There is an excellent post by the priceless http://fallbackbelmont.blogspot.com/2006/10/bob-woodward-donald-rumsfeld.html on Woodward's interviews with Rumsfeld. Note in the comments a link to an interview Hugh Hewitt did with Tom Edsall (a liberal journalist)

TE: I know the doctor who was treating Bill Casey, and the doctor who is someone who I think is very credible told me that Bill Casey was dead by all standards, except burial. And for him to have said anything cognizant at that time just was incredible to him. And this doctor is a liberal Democrat.

Right before that book came out Bill Casey's widow called my husband. By accident. He happens to have the same first and last name as another man who at the time was a well-known lobbyist and friend of the Caseys and the phone company gave her the wrong number. She, not knowing she was talking to the wrong person just babbled. Woodward is lying, please can you stop publication, etc. It took about a good three minutes for my husband to figure out who she was and what the hell she was talking about before he could finally interrupt her and give her the right phone number (which he had handy - those guys got each others calls frequently).

And now Brent Scowcroft has come out and said he never spoke to Woodward for the most recent book, State of Denial, all the quotes attributed to him are fabrications.

Woodward has no credibility with me and whatever credibility he earned with Watergate is all used up, as far as I'm concerned.

Oops. Sorry for the lousy link code. Let me try again.

Wretchard

About Iraqi suffering.

The latest number that I am aware of is 3,000 Iraqis of all types killed every month. These would include victims of bombings, mostly, and gunmen of all types. That would be 100 a day.

Compare this to the UN run ‘Oil for Food’ program, which ran for about six years, 1997-2003.

Madeline Albright, American Secutary of State, in 1996, was asked by CBS’s 60 Minutes, "We have heard that half a million children have died. I mean, that's more children than died in Hiroshima. And, you know, is the price worth it?" Albright replied: "I think this is a very hard choice, but the price -- we think the price is worth it." ( 228 children a day for 6 years)

Former Oil for Food program head Hans von Sponeck said, "What is proposed at this point in fact amounts to a tightening of the rope around the neck of the average Iraqi citizen" and claimed that the sanctions were causing the death of 150 Iraqi children per day; ( 324,000 over six years)

I must note that I suspect that futher deaths could be attributed to the Oil for Food program from sick and elderly adults who died sooner than would of happened. Also I must point out the permant effects of children born and raised on low nutrition and their future mental development.

Futhermore if one takes the Iraq/Iran war and Gulf war deaths and the usual hum drum kill my enimies daily rate of Sadams leadership, I think we can easily throw 500 Iraqis a day on the Sadamm death state numbers, bringing something like 650-750 killed per day. This is about 250,000 killed per year. Presently the rate is 100 per day, 36,000 per year. This is roughly 85 percent less.


Der Spiegle and company can critise all they want, but what is their better, real world, dusty boots in the middle of nowhere solution?

Gabi, you can read more about Anna Politkovskaya here.

Just a little off topic. Concerning the Nuclear tests by N.K.
Reading the bloggers reactions in Die Welt, it seems that about 85% of the German Bloggers seem to blame "Evil Bush" and the USA for this development. They cite a parallel to Iraq and that everything bad on this Earth is as a result of the USA's existance.
It is sad that Goebbels has formed German opinions even from his Grave. Maybe it just the German psyche that allows this "education" to flourish?
Since all of the Nobel Awards so far have been given to those stupid Americans, when will we find out in the German media that evil Bush bribed the Jurors? (Sarc.)
Oh well, Opinions are like assholes, everyone has one.

americanbychoice

Sounds like you may need some ammo.

North Korea Nuclear/Missile Chronology - 1962-2000

1977: Kang Song-San, a high party official, visits China's Lop Nur nuclear test site.

1979: Starts to build 30-megawatt thermal reactor that can produce enough plutonium for one bomb a year.

......

1989: Begins to process plutonium into nuclear-ready form.

1989: Starts to build 800-Mwt. reactor that can produce plutonium for 30 to 40 bombs a year.

......

July 1999: A U.S. intelligence report claims that North Korea has between 25 and 30 kilograms of weapon-grade plutonium, enough to make several nuclear warheads.

January 2000: It is reported that the Congo may be supplying North Korea with uranium in return for military training of its government forces.

......

June 2000: In the wake of a historic summit between the leaders of North and South Korea, the Clinton administration formally implements steps to ease economic sanctions against North Korea.

Lock and load.

Thanks Pamela,
I was aware of all that. Nobody ever blames Clinton and Carter (the worst president ever) on anything. It is all Bush's fault.
Sometimes I would just like to see the US tell everyone that we are ending the role of World Policeman and ask the EU to take over. Ha, Ha
We could use the money saved to really put it to use developing a defense of our country that would make us impenetrable. Of course we couldn't , shouldn't share any of our techical progress with anyone anymore.
Let the Germans who claim to have invented everything on Earth, supply all of the nations with their "superior products". :)

the crux of the argument is wether or not Germany/Speigel is for expanding liberty.
If the entire question were up to Germany/Spiegel would the world be free or just snotty and omniscient. I thin the Speigelcowards arent really concerned with anyone but their poor little marginalized selves. They know that its not up to them anymore and they cant stand it.

What can a German do TODAY to expand liberty and freedom? They could join a relief agency or get hired by the UN but then be co-opted into helping the latest plutocrat line their nest, or they could start their own blog and try to inform the electorate..OR THEY COULD COME OVER HERE AND ENLIST!!

The press and many in these former power countries all rely on the fantasy that their readers are as stupid or delusional as their class. Fortunately this isnt the case and the demographic is changing as the new media begin to chip away at their racket. Thus thy are more and more desperate and shrill.

The genre of the seventies newsmag with its neato cover art is about as dated and nostalgic as anyting I've ever seen. Obvioulsy this is to keep the torch glowing for the aging babyboomers that missed out on "changing the world" are bitter bitter has beens.

Spiegel is to todays news as Playboy is to modern porno.

O/T
Americanbychoice, "Sometimes I would just like to see the US tell everyone that we are ending the role of World Policeman and ask the EU to take over. Ha, Ha."

We already did. It was a while ago, and we said that Europe could have point on the Darfur crisis. The rush to help the people of Darfur caused twenty two world leaders to be trampled to death. The rest are on station watching the janjaweed receive upgrade training. Now where did I put that tag?

Pamela, can I borrow a /sarc. tag?

Pamela, I found some more details on the crisis that Clinton/Carter started.

Timeline from a BBC article

2002
3-5 October 2002: On a visit to the North Korean capital Pyongyang, US Assistant Secretary of State James Kelly presses the North on suspicions that it is continuing to pursue a nuclear energy and missiles programme.

Mr Kelly says he has evidence of a secret uranium-enriching programme carried out in defiance of the 1994 Agreed Framework.

Under this deal, North Korea agreed to forsake nuclear ambitions in return for the construction of two safer light water nuclear power reactors and oil shipments from the US.

16 October: North Korea admitted in their talks to a secret nuclear arms programme.

17 October: Initially the North appears conciliatory. Leader Kim Jong-il says he will allow international weapons inspectors to check that nuclear facilities are out of use.

18 October: Five Japanese citizens abducted by North Korea 25 years before are allowed a brief visit home - but end up staying, provoking more tension in the region.

20 October: North-South Korea talks in Pyongyang are undermined by the North's nuclear programme "admission".

US Secretary of State Colin Powell says further US aid to North Korea is now in doubt.

The North adopts a mercurial stance, at one moment defiantly defending its "right" to weapons development and at the next offering to halt nuclear programmes in return for aid and the signing of a "non-aggression" pact with the US.

It argues that the US has not kept to its side of the Agreed Framework, as the construction of the light water reactors - due to be completed in 2003 - is now years behind schedule.

14 November: US President George W Bush declares November oil shipments to the North will be the last if the North does not agree to put a halt to its weapons ambitions.

18 November: Confusion clouds a statement by North Korea in which it initially appears to acknowledge having nuclear weapons. A key Korean phrase understood to mean the North does have nuclear weapons could have been mistaken for the phrase "entitled to have", Seoul says.

11 December: North Korean-made Scud missiles are found aboard a ship bound for Yemen, provoking American outrage.

The US detains the ship, but is later forced to allow the ship to go, conceding that neither country has broken any law.

12 December: The North threatens to reactivate nuclear facilities for energy generation, saying the Americans' decision to halt oil shipments leaves it with no choice. It blames the US for wrecking the 1994 pact.

13 December: North asks the UN's International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to remove seals and surveillance equipment - the IAEA's "eyes and ears" on the North's nuclear status - from its Yongbyon power plant.

22 December: The North begins removing monitoring devices from the Yongbyon plant.

24 December: North Korea begins repairs at the Yongbyon plant.

North-South Korea talks over reopening road and rail border links, which have been struggling on despite the increased tension, finally stall.

25 December: It emerges that North Korea had begun shipping fuel rods to the Yongbyon plant which could be used to produce plutonium.

26 December: The IAEA expresses concern in the light of UN confirmation that 1,000 fuel rods have been moved to the Yongbyon reactor.

27 December: North Korea says it is expelling the two IAEA nuclear inspectors from the country. It also says it is planning to reopen a reprocessing plant, which could start producing weapons grade plutonium within months. 2003
6 January: The IAEA passes a resolution demanding that North Korea readmit UN inspectors and abandon its secret nuclear weapons programme "within weeks", or face possible action by the UN Security Council.

7 January: The US says it is "willing to talk to North Korea about how it meets its obligations to the international community". But it "will not provide quid pro quos to North Korea to live up to its existing obligations".

10 January: North Korea announces it will withdraw from the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.

28 January: In his annual State of the Union address, President Bush says North Korea is "an oppressive regime [whose] people live in fear and starvation".

29 January: North Korea says Mr Bush's speech is an "undisguised declaration of aggression to topple the DPRK system" and dubs him a "shameless charlatan".

31 January: Unnamed American officials are quoted as saying that spy satellites have tracked movement at the Yongbyon plant throughout January, prompting fears that North Korea is trying to reprocess plutonium for nuclear bombs.

5 February: North Korea says it has reactivated its nuclear facilities and their operations are now going ahead "on a normal footing".

12 February: The IAEA finds North Korea in breach of nuclear safeguards and refers the matter to the UN security council.

24 February: North Korea fires a missile into the sea between South Korea and Japan.

25 February: Roh Moo-hyun sworn in as South Korean president.

2 March: Four North Korean fighter jets intercept a US reconnaissance plane in international air space and shadow it for 22 minutes.

10 March: North Korea fires a second missile into the sea between South Korea and Japan in as many weeks.

1 April: The US announces that "stealth" fighters sent to South Korea for a training exercise are to stay on once the exercises end.

9 April: The United Nations Security Council expresses concern about North Korea's nuclear programme, but fails to condemn Pyongyang for pulling out of the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty.

12 April: In a surprise move, North Korea signals it may be ready to end its insistence on direct talks with the US, announcing that "if the US is ready to make a bold switchover in its Korea policy for a settlement of the nuclear issue, [North Korea] will not stick to any particular dialogue format".

18 April: North Korea announces that it has started reprocessing its spent fuel rods. The statement is later amended to read that Pyongyang has been "successfully going forward to reprocess" the rods.

23 April: Talks begin in Beijing between the US and North Korea, hosted by China. The talks are led by the US Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian affairs, James Kelly, and the deputy director general of North Korea's American Affairs Bureau, Li Gun.

24 April: American officials say Pyongyang has told them that it now has nuclear weapons, after the first direct talks for months between the US and North Korea in Beijing end a day early.

2 May: Australian Foreign Minister Alexander Downer expresses concern after an official from North Korea's ruling Worker's Party is found on board a state-owned ship accused of bringing A$80m (US$50m) worth of heroin into Australia.

12 May: North Korea says it is scrapping a 1992 agreement with the South to keep the peninsula free from nuclear weapons - Pyongyang's last remaining international agreement on non-proliferation.

2 June: A visiting delegation of US congressmen led by Curt Weldon says North Korean officials admitted the country had nuclear weapons had "just about completed" reprocessing 8,000 spent fuel rods which would allow it to build more.

9 June: North Korea says publicly that it will build a nuclear deterrent, "unless the US gives up its hostile policy".

13 June: South Korea's Yonhap news agency says North Korean officials told the US on 30 June that it had completed reprocessing the fuel rods.

9 July: South Korea's spy agency says North Korea has started reprocessing a "small number" of the 8,000 spent nuclear fuel rods at Yongbyon.

1 August: North Korea agrees to six-way talks on its nuclear programme, South Korea confirms. The US, Japan, China and Russia will also be involved.

27-29 August: Six-nation talks in Beijing on North Korea's nuclear programme. The meeting fails to bridge the gap between Washington and Pyongyang. Delegates agree to meet again.

2 October: North Korea announces publicly it has reprocessed the spent fuel rods.

16 October: North Korea says it will "physically display" its nuclear deterrent.

30 October: North Korea agrees to resume talks on the nuclear crisis, after saying it is prepared to consider the US offer of a security guarantee in return for ending its nuclear programme.

21 November: Kedo, the international consortium formed to build 'tamper-proof' nuclear power plants in North Korea, decides to suspend the project.

9 December: North Korea offers to "freeze" its nuclear programme in return for a list of concessions from the US. It says that unless Washington agrees, it will not take part in further talks.

The US rejects North Korea's offer. President George W Bush says Pyongyang must dismantle the programme altogether.

2004
10 January: An unofficial US team visits what the North calls its "nuclear deterrent" facility at Yongbyon.
22 January: US nuclear scientist Siegfried Hecker tells Congress that the delegates visiting Yongbyon were shown what appeared to be weapons-grade plutonium, but he did not see any evidence of a nuclear bomb.

23 May: The UN atomic agency is reported to be investigating allegations that North Korea secretly sent uranium to Libya when Tripoli was trying to develop nuclear weapons.

23 June: Third round of six nation talks held in Beijing, with the US making a new offer to allow North Korea fuel aid if it freezes then dismantles its nuclear programmes.

2 July: US Secretary of State Colin Powell meets the North Korean Foreign Minister, Paek Nam-sun, in the highest-level talks between the two countries since the crisis erupted.

23 August: North Korea describes US President George W Bush as an "imbecile" and a "tyrant that puts Hitler in the shade", in response to comments President Bush made describing the North's Kim Jong-il as a "tyrant".

28 September: North Korea says it has turned plutonium from 8,000 spent fuel rods into nuclear weapons. Speaking at the UN General Assembly, Vice Foreign Minister Choe Su-hon said the weapons were needed for "self-defence" against "US nuclear threat".

2005
14 January: North Korea says it is willing to restart stalled talks on its nuclear programme, according to the official KCNA news agency.

19 January: Condoleezza Rice, President George W Bush's nominee as secretary of state, identifies North Korea as one of six "outposts of tyranny" where the US must help bring freedom.

10 February: North Korea says it is suspending its participation in the talks over its nuclear programme for an "indefinite period", blaming the Bush administration's intention to "antagonise, isolate and stifle it at any cost". The statement also repeats North Korea's assertion to have built nuclear weapons for self-defence.

18 April: South Korea says North Korea has shut down its Yongbyon reactor, a move which could allow it to extract more fuel for nuclear weapons.

1 May: North Korea fires a short-range missile into the Sea of Japan, on the eve of a meeting of members of the international Non-Proliferation Treaty.

11 May: North Korea says it has completed extraction of spent fuel rods from Yongbyon, as part of plans to "increase its nuclear arsenal".

16 May: North and South Korea hold their first talks in 10 months, with the North seeking fertiliser for its troubled agriculture sector.

25 May: The US suspends efforts to recover the remains of missing US servicemen in North Korea, saying restrictions placed on its work were too great.

22 June: North Korea requests more food aid from the South during ministerial talks in Seoul, the first for a year.

9 July: North Korea says it will rejoin nuclear talks, as US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice begins a tour of the region.

12 July: South Korea offers the North huge amounts of electricity as an incentive to end its nuclear weapons programme.

25 July: Fourth round of six-nation talks begins in Beijing.

7 August: The talks reach deadlock and a recess is called.

13 September: Talks resume, but a new North Korean request to be built a light water reactor prompts warnings of a "standoff" between the parties.

19 September: In what is initially hailed as an historic joint statement, North Korea agrees to give up all its nuclear activities and rejoin the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, while the US says it had no intention of attacking.

20 September: North Korea says it will not scrap its nuclear programme until it is given a civilian nuclear reactor, undermining the joint statement and throwing further talks into doubt.

7 December: A senior US diplomat brands North Korea a "criminal regime" involved in arms sales, drug trafficking and currency forgery.

20 December: North Korea says it intends to resume building nuclear reactors, because the US had pulled out of a key deal to build it two new reactors.

2006
12 April: A two-day meeting aimed at persuading North Korea to return to talks on its nuclear programme fails to resolve the deadlock.

3 July: Washington dismisses a threat by North Korea that it will launch a nuclear strike against the US in the event of an American attack, as a White House spokesman described the threat as "deeply hypothetical".

4 July: North Korea test-fires at least six missiles, including a long-range Taepodong-2, despite repeated warnings from the international community.

5 July: North Korea test-fires a seventh missile, despite international condemnation of its earlier launches.

7 July: South Korea suspends food aid in protest at the missile tests.

15 July: The UN Security Council unanimously votes to impose sanctions on North Korea over the missile tests. The resolution demands UN members bar exports and imports of missile-related materials to North Korea and that it halt its ballistic missile programme.

11 September: Senior US diplomat Christopher Hill warns North Korea against a nuclear test, saying that it would be a provocative act.

27 September: North Korea blames US financial sanctions for the deadlock in multilateral talks on its nuclear programme. In a speech to the UN General Assembly, envoy Choe Su-Hon said that North Korea was willing to hold talks, but the US stance had created an impasse.

3 October: North Korea is to conduct a nuclear test to "bolster" its self-defence in the face of US military hostility, the foreign ministry says. In a statement, it says North Korea would carry out the test "in the future... where safety is firmly guaranteed" - but did not say when.

9 October: North Korea says it has carried out its first ever test of a nuclear weapon. It calls the test a "historic event" and says it was carried out safely and successfully.

This article was written Oct 3, 2006 so I assume it was updated today with that last paragraph.

Hi, Pamela, and Thank you for all this information!

Mike H.
Pamela, can I borrow a /sarc. tag?

Fresh out - gave them to Helian. But lots of /snark if you'd like........

most welcome Gabi, say hello to hubby for me....

I'm really, really sick of the Spiegel. And I'm angry to see such type of cover when I'm in the US on biz trip or on vacation. I do feel ashamed. Where the heck these folks in Hamburg think they got their freedom from, from Russia, France, the UN, ...? Yes, to kick out the butcher Saddam was okay. No question. An peace will come, for Iraq too. I'm sure. But these guys in Hamburg maintain a typical German quality: precosious back-seat-driver behavior and bossiness. And they never respond to emails.

>Hm, also man wartet erst mal ab bis ein "Regime" einen Völkermord beginnt
>und erst dann (wenn dann schon mal so ein zwei Millionen hops gegangen
>sind damit wir uns auch richtig sicher sind das ein Völkermord vorliegt)
>greift man eventuell ein. Aber erst mal ganz viel diskutieren und ganz viel
>drohen wie beim Iran, gell. Wie heisst es so schön im deutschen Sprichwort:
>Der Krug geht zum Brunnen bis er bricht.

Der Steinzeitkommunismus des Pol Pot kommt einem da in den Sinn, aber das ist ja schon 25 Jahre her und wurde, oh Schreck, oh Graus, von den (Nord)Vietnamesen beendet. Das Argument ist reiclich lau. Wie wärs, wenn man etwas weniger Langweiliges auftischte?

Jörg

Posted by: Calahan | October 10, 2006 at 08:02 PM

>I'm really, really sick of the Spiegel.
>And I'm angry to see such type of cover
>when I'm in the US on biz trip or on vacation.
>I do feel ashamed.

Und?

>Where the heck these folks in Hamburg think they
>got their freedom from, from Russia, France, the
>UN, ...?

Und?

> Yes, to kick out the butcher Saddam was
>okay. No question. An peace will come, for Iraq
>too. I'm sure.


Wenn man sich den Artikel durchliest, stell man fest,
dass im wesentlichen Us-Quellen für alle Aussagen
zitiert werden. So wie's ausschaut, gibt es wohl eine
Menge USAner, die die Regierung und ihren Kurs kritisieren
und die den Krig verloren geben. Ich habe im übrigen
keinerlei Aussagen hier in diesem Forum bemerkt, die jenseits
eines dumpfen Jetztaberdochismus der Situation im Irak irgend
etwas positives abgewinnen können, außer vagen Anmutungen.

> But these guys in Hamburg maintain
>a typical German quality: precosious
>back-seat-driver behavior and bossiness. And they
>never respond to emails.

Wenn die Emails diesem Posting entsprechen, warum sollten sie?
Die Aussage im Artikel lassen sich ohne große Probleme in den
US-Medien wiederfinden. Teilweise werden sie dort deutlich
schärfer gefasst.

Was also maulen Sie?

Jörg

Schon 1000mal gesagt und geschrieben: Daß viele Amerikaner diese Meinung und dieses Niveau teilen, kann den dumpfen Antiamerikanismus nicht beseitigen. Jörg, denk mal länger drüber nach.

Die Deutschen zitieren gerne Uri Avnery, um antisemitische Positionen zu verbergen. Viele erkennen ihren eigenen problematischen Standpunkt gar nicht. Es gibt also unbewußte Antisemiten und Antiamerikaner. Das macht das Problem so schwierig.

Antisemitismus, Antiamerikanismus sind zwei gefährliche Haltungen. Hier ist jeder gefordert, sich selbst zu prüfen und zu stellen. Lies doch erst einmal, was Antiamerikanismus ist. Nur weil es Bush-Hasser in den USA gibt, ist ein deutscher Bush-Hasser nicht vom Vorwurf des Antiamerikanismus befreit. Hier fängt das Denken und die Arbeit an. Wenn du nur ein bißchen liest, bin ich mir sicher, daß du die Unrichtigkeit deines Argumentes erkennst.

&Jörg
"Der Steinzeitkommunismus des Pol Pot kommt einem da in den Sinn, aber das ist ja schon 25 Jahre her und wurde, oh Schreck, oh Graus, von den (Nord)Vietnamesen beendet. Das Argument ist reiclich lau. Wie wärs, wenn man etwas weniger Langweiliges auftischte?"

Ich kann jetzt beim besten Willen nicht verstehen was dieser Kommentat widerlegt oder beweist?
Meine Kommentar bezog sich wohl ganz klar auf das Verhalten Europas und im speziellen Deutschlands.
In wie weit widerlegt dein Kommentar meine Aussage? Was hat das Verhalten von Vietnam vor 25 Jahren mit dem Verhalten von Deutschland jetzt zu tun? Was hat Deutschland vor 25 Jahren dazu beigetragen das Pol Pot gestürzt wurde?
Was ist daran langweilig wenn tausende, hundertausende oder gar Millionen erst sterben müssen bevor man sich in Deutschland oder Europa dazu bequemt etwas zu unternehmen? Warum soweit zurück gehen und nicht nur 10 Jahre und sich als aktuelleres Beispiel den Kosovo Konflikt hernehmen? Wieviele Menschen hätten gerettet werden können wenn von seiten der EU ein entschlosseneres vorgehen frühzeitig eingeleitet worden wäre?
Beantworte doch mal diese Fragen bevor du hier mit lakonischen Kommentaren kommst.

"Und? Und? Und?"
Tolle argumentation Jörg erinnert mich irgenwie an die frühpubertären Diskussionsbeiträge von 10. Klässlern.

Nothing profound here but Ray said, "why not post some of your correspondances with your German friends!" So . . . (Topic was ARD coverage of Army Enlistments and Iraq)


K: Dear Ty,

I am sure the U.S. embassy in Germany, or other U.S. services in Germany, is (are) monitoring German TV programs that deal with subjects concerning the U.S. I am doubly sure that when and if such programs contain slanderous or offensive statements about the U.S. military in general the U.S. embassy will not hesitate to voice protest, either publicly or behind closed doors. In the case you have presented here (I did not see that particular edition of Panorama although I try to catch the program whenever I can) it would probably be hard to find a handle for complaint as it is not obvious that the program makes any derogatory statements about the U.S. military as a whole. Essentially, the piece deals with one U.S. soldier and his small unit of 4 or 5 comrades. Do you think the story, as pertaining to the actions of that one solider and his comrades, is inaccurate as told?

Me: K you point is obtuse. Can I claim to report on "Germany" but then all I do is show criminals activity, environmental disasters, political corruption, photograph the bums and punks drinking and sleeping on the benchs down on the Koenigstrasse, (proving socialsim is a cruel joke); or all the redlighted houses of prostitution everywhere, (proving Germans are sexually repressed); show the foreigners living in stacked cargo container villages outside of Darmstadt, (proving the state's commpassionate policies are a lie); or all the drunk Germans after the fruehlingfest laying in their urine and vomit between the Bad Cannstatt wasen and the bahnhof? (proving Germans are a base and dithering people) . . .
If all I do is seek out only what is banal and perverse about Germany and German life is that an accurate depiction? Or is it indoctrination, another example of censorship by selective ommission? This ARD story is just another brick in the wall building on the preferred narrow meme in Germany/Europe about how the U.S. and Americans "really are!"


K: Do you think, furthermore, that it is incorrect to infer from this story that the U.S. army has recruited that soldier despite the fact that he had a criminal record? Do you think it is unreasonable to infer that the U.S. forces knowingly recruit people with criminal records, ignoring the danger that these soldiers might commit crimes while serving? Don't you think that, in the light of this, the U.S. military command can legitimately be criticised for not doing enough to screen out potential criminals?
One bad apple, after all, can spoil the whole sack. Don't you think it is reasonable to conclude that some U.S. soldiers have acoomodated to the culture of Iraq in such a way as to have assumed the same low (or non-existent) regard for human life as most of the natives of that country are habitually holding? And that they are now paying those barbarian Iraqis that have no regard for American lives back in the same currency?

Me: Does the U.S. Army make mistakes? Absolutely and every day. I sent you the links on their recruiting policy and standards that should explain how waivers (second chances) can be granted. One bad apple only spoils the whole lot to people looking for a reason to have their personal prejudices reinforced! Don't forget that Americans are also "stupid" and "obese" and don't travel or know the world. Yet, you know Pat and myself and I am sure a number of other Americans that prove those "facts" to be a lie or at least a cynical caricature.
That the Army is easily meeting it's recruitment goals contradicts the German media's theme about how horrible and immoral Iraq is... so obviously the must be filling the ranks with immoral criminals! Who else could disagree with what ARD knows and volunteer?
But don't let your lying eyes get in the way of what this one example on ARD "proves!"

K: War often brings out the worst in people. Obviously, war can also bring out the best in people. But the latter happens mostly in wars fought out of honest personal conviction. I doubt that many U.S. soldiers in Iraq are fighting out of deep personal conviction. I rather guess (just a guess) that many, if not most, don't really know what they are fighting for over there.

Me: It is gettin to be amusing how often you make my point for me. Since your media hasn't shown you any examples of heroism thus there can't be any, or anything else good coming out of this war. Unfortunately, one of my old friends has been put in for the Medal of Honor. But it is probably just a political ploy since you and ARD know how venal and criminal the Amerikkkan military really is.
Your media has instead decided to tell you how you are suppose to think and feel about the overthrow of a criminal dictator, about three elections and a new Constitution, about a seated government, about 300 - 400,000 trained military troops and police officers, about the heroism of the Iraqi people every day in the face of continuing terrorism; and oddly it is all negative.
Even more oddly, given that you tell me you are a thinking person, you swallow it. From the depths of your bias you don't even think to question why you have never seen any other perspective, political or otherwise, on events in Iraq. It feeds your prejudices so that is enough for you. The writers are brilliant, the stories are the truth, and all is correct in K--'s world. As I have often asked you, 'Is anything ever all good or all bad?" And shouldn't the fact that all you get is "all bad" raise a flag ... for thinking people?

You and ARD can't afford to believe they could be fighting for a rational reason much less out of any personal conviction. You believe what the ARD show says, that the U.S. military is a bunch of stupid redneck killers loosed on an innocent world by an out of control Amerikkka run by Bushitler and his neocon cabal. I am realizing that you want to, but for some reason you just can't yet bring yourself to say it out loud.
How could those men and women possibly believe in what they are fighting for . . . their opinion is different from yours so they are obviously ... misguided, dupes or stupid. You know how ill informed I am and how weak my convictions are on this topic. But rather than allow that people can see things in the world differently and hold different opinions on what to do about it, you have labeled me too.

I am certain that your labeling of me and parroting the Euro~bumpersticker thinking of "Bush's War for Oil" or "criminal troops" are easier than seriously thinking the subject through. Delving into the short and long term strategic implications for the region and the world and their economies; thoughtful consideration of the consequenses, first of initiating this and then seeing it through; pondering the positive (liberal) possibilities at the end of the tunnel of the first representative Arab government in the world, might reveal some "inconvenient truths," as some people like to say these days.
Instead you appear to me to only worry about it's potential effect of messing up your sweet deal living in Germany. Stories like this one on ARD allow you to rationalize and feel a bit more comfortable about what appears to be little more than your(Europes) self-absorbed nihilism.

Tyranno

@Tyranno
Very well done.

What bothered me most abou that PANORMA propaganda (right after the lousy researching and fake facts) is the form in which the whole story was presented. The hole program was using the "is" form though Green wasn't even trialed yet. If the program would have been about any other crime committed where a suspect hans't been convivted yet I am quite sure they would have used the correct "may" form as also in germany the rule usually applies - everybody is considered innocent until proven guilty. This is a spit in the face to neutral coverage and is actually a shame for the german media.

@Jörg: Sie müssen sich ja mit Ihren Ansichten richtig wohl fühlen im Deutschen Blätterwald! Da muss der Morgen am Zeitungskiosk die reine Freude sein. Leider kann ich Ihre Kommentare schlecht deuten. Ich maule nicht, ich versuche nur etwas gegenzuhalten. Und, der US-Blätterwald ist vielfältiger als Sie denken! Das Time Magazin ist sehr objektiv (und nicht suggestiv wie der Spiegel). Aber vielleicht kennen Sie das ja gar nicht.

@tyranno..
loved your point about 'all good' and 'all bad'.
That is one of the ironies of German thinking.
Bush is dumb and evil.. and the Amis think in terms of black and white
Bush ist dumm u. böse und die Amis denken schwarz/weiss
Bush is dumb and evil.. and the Amis think in terms of black and white
Bush ist dumm u. böse und die Amis denken schwarz/weiss
Bush is dumb and evil.. and the Amis think in terms of black and white
Bush ist dumm u. böse und die Amis denken schwarz/weiss

Say it enough times, and it begins to make sense ;) NOT
of course Germans are nuanced thinkers in other areas though.
I am an American who lives in Germany. I have heard..
not everything about Nazism was bad..

makes me want to cry sometimes.

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