Look closer. Think harder. Choose the sound argument over the clever one.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Rank Propaganda, Control, Mass Murder

Kim Hyon Hui was a North Korean agent who helped plant the bomb on KAL 858 that killed 115 passengers.

She was caught. Her attempts at suicide failed.

During her interrogation in South Korea, Kim Hyun Hui’s resistance broke down quickly. Kim was taken to see the prosperity of Seoul outside of her prison cell. She had been taught in North Korea that American culture had supplanted the Korean culture in the South. She had also been taught that the rich exploited the poor who lived in poverty. What she saw outside of her prison cell made her realize that everything that she had been taught regarding South Korea was mere propaganda. Once she came to this realization, Kim Hyun Hui confessed the details of her role in the bombing of Flight 858.

Dave Price writes about it in Information, Insularity, and Induced Insanity:

[I]t is one of the most shocking and poignant stories I have ever read, and at the same time such a profound insight into the nature of tyranny and totalitarianism ...

In a similar vein, in the wake of the recent bomb plot Michelle Malkin had posted a survey from Britain with a result I can only describe as deeply disturbing: only 17% of British Muslims believe Arabs carried out the 9/11 attacks, and 56% believe it was not Arabs. This is one of the most frightening feats of social informational engineering since Germany 1938. ...

This example of contextual control [i.e., rank propaganda] does not strike me as much less contrived or ill-intended than the first, and the practical consequences are eerily similar. ...

And as Mohammed at ITM notes, the tyrants of the Mideast wield their own blend of totalitarian control and cynical pseudoreligious narratives to manipulate the people they purport to govern.
... taking a look at some simple statistics we find that the entire Arab media industry makes less than 1.5 billion dollars/year while consumes approximately 15 billions/year in return and this makes one think about who pays the difference.

No kidding. That has to be at least ten times our Mideast budget for counter-brainwashing programs like Voice of America. This is why Palestinians have no desire for peace with Israel: tremendous efforts are being made and tremendous wealth being expended by those in power to sell an alternate version of reality in which they and the violence they encourage are necessary. And the practical effect of the insanity they deliberately induce is apparent in the prevalence of suicide bombings across the region.

... Lies are the lifeblood of tyrants and fascists, Islamo- or otherwise. They hate and fear free democracies not because they are jealous of our freedom but because they realize our freedom is a potentially lethal threat to them... Regimes and movements built in the shadows of deliberately fostered ignorance and aggressively marketed lies cannot survive the harsh sunlight of truth, logic, and empiricism.

I hope so. Even in our free society, too many lies are agressively marketed and too much ignorance is deliberately fostered.

God help us.

P.S.: I'd never heard Kim Hyon Hui's story before, either.


(Please keep in mind that each commenter's opinions are only his/her own.)

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