I humbly apologize for not getting this out sooner.
Stalinist North Korea kicks out United Nations: The Stalinist regime “formally told the UN it no longer needs food aid, despite reports of malnutrition in the country” (BBC). The move would ensure a return to the crippling famine of the 1990s. Previously, the UN’s anti-famine arm, the World Food Program, has come under criticism for its lack of monitoring in SNK. The head of USAID openly expressed that the Administration “feared that food for vulnerable populations was being steered to the vast North Korean army” (Washington Times). Whatever monitoring the WFP had done was already enough to spook the Stalinists (last item), whose record on food distribution is, ahem, less than stellar (fifth, ninth, and fifth items). Friendly blog One Free Korea weighs in on the Stalinists’ move, while Sarah Buckley, BBC, details the reasons for the food shortage.
More reaction to the Stalinist North Korea nuclear “deal”: One Free Korea also weighed in on the SNK nuclear deal, and he’s not alone. Charles Krauthammer, Washington Post, analyzes what Communist China gains from all of this – and without a few idiotic comments on the Communists using their “leverage” on SNK he would have had the Enlightened Comment of the Day. As it is, the title goes to the Helsingin Sanomat (via Washington Times). Austin Bay, also in the Washington Times, has a good piece on the subject until a silly suggestion that engineers from Communist China could force Stalinist-in-chief Kim Jong-il to “his prison nation's cell door just a crack.” The editors of the Washington Times can’t seem to decide whether talking with the Stalinists is a good or bad (Will they never learn?). Meanwhile, SNK pressed its demand for a light-water reactor, but according to the Washington Post, it was nicer about it this time.
Russia and Communist China considering joint pipelines: Communist-owned China National Petroleum Corporation and Russia’s Gazprom “are discussing the construction of two gas pipelines across the Russia-China border” (United Press Int’l via Washington Times). Meanwhile, Ariel Cohen, of the Heritage Foundation, examines the recent “Sino-Russian rapprochement” (Fox News) and calls on the United States to “monitor this emerging partnership carefully – and work to keep it from getting too cozy.”
U.S. rips IMF for letting Communist China deliberately devalue its currency: The Undersecretary of the Treasury for international affairs blasted the International Monetary Fund for having “failed to enforce its own rules that bar member nations from maintaining artificially cheap currencies” (Washington Post). The chief culprit – and unnamed target – was Communist China, which has maintained an artificially cheap currency in reference to the dollar to damage American manufacturing and our allies’ exports. The cadres tried to assuage the financial markets with “further exchange rate changes” (BBC), but, tellingly, none applied to the currencies level against the dollar.
More on Communist China and the United States: Jerome Keating, Taipei Times (via Epoch Times) calls on the U.S. to take cadre General Zhu Chenghu’s threat seriously. Shi Da, Epoch Times, finds Hu’s trip to the U.S. to be a disappointment for the regime.
Europe softens on Iran, but Communist China still won’t budge: The three European nations leading the talks with Iran on its nuclear weapons “a draft resolution to the U.N.'s nuclear watchdog agency Friday declaring that Iran had violated treaty obligations by secretly developing a nuclear program that could be used to build weapons” (Washington Post). The resolution “is slightly softer than an earlier version.” Despite this, Communist China still opposed it.
Tribunal calls for the arrest of Jiang Zemin: The International Tribunal to Judge the Chinese Communist Party’s Crimes Against Humanity issued what it called an “arrest warrant” (Epoch Times) against Jiang Zemin, the former Communist leader who authored the murderous crackdown against Falun Gong over six years ago.
Is the dissident community about to close the open hand to Hu Jintao? Meanwhile, the editors of the Epoch Times lament that the current Communist leader has “let down are all who had once banked on Hu to usher in reform.” While they still give him one last chance to do the right thing and “abandon the CCP, leading China on the road to a long and stable period of development,” they are clearly (and given the Hanyuan County Massacre, rightly) skeptical.
More on human rights in Communist China: Wu Cenxi, Epoch Times, finds Hong Kong’s Communist-appointed regime trying to claim Falun Gong practitioners from Taiwan were a security threat.
Cadres refuse to give up ownership in mines: Communists China’s latest attempt to improve safety in mining, namely an order to “local officials to give up their stakes” (BBC) in the mines, has fallen flat. Given the choice between saving the lives of their own people and preserving the corruption in the Party, what did Zhongnanhai choose? Do you really have to ask?