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Wednesday, May 14, 2008

"Misquotations are the only quotations that are never misquoted." - Hesketh Pearson


A short followup to the last post on Singapore and North Korea:

More scope for S'pore-North Korean economic cooperation

"Singapore has also agreed to provide IT training to North Korea... Mr Yeo also brought a letter and a gift from Singapore President SR Nathan to present to North Korean leader Kim Jong Il."

1) Considering how the Internet is highly restricted in North Korea, with most network access limited to an internal intranet, our providing IT training is like giving prosthetic limbs to someone who has blown his legs off.

2) Consider a country that:

- Invaded and overran a neighboring country and was driven out by an international coalition with UN backing
- Acquired and tested Weapons of Mass Destruction
- Pussyfooted with UN weapons inspectors ("The DPRK authorities covered all surveillance cameras and pointed them to the wall")
- Defied resolutions of the UN Security Council
- Was subject to sanctions by the International Community
- Murdered loads of its own citizens

North Korea?

Yes, but also Saddam Hussein's Iraq.

Yet, contrast the reaction from the Singaporean government to North Korea now (friendly cooperation) and support for the War in Iraq then:

Sending troops to Iraq is in Singapore's interest: Goh: "Singapore Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong has said it is in Singapore's long-term national security interest to send troops to Iraq in support of U.S.-led forces even though the mission will be dangerous... the U.S. is the only country able to defeat terrorism in the short, medium and long term... ''If small countries like Singapore don't support the U.S. in Iraq and Washington were to fail in its mission there, terrorism would be the winner,'' he said, adding that this outcome will leave small countries like Singapore at the mercy of terrorists... ''The terrorists will see that they are able to defeat the world's greatest power. Then will the U.S. and countries like Portugal and Singapore be safe? The answer is no.''"

Singapore Reaffirms Commitment to War on Terror: "Singapore's deputy prime minister reaffirmed his county's commitment to the war on terror and vowed to continue working closely with the United States "to uproot this menace to modern society" after a meeting today at the Pentagon."

Speech by Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew at the Southern Methodist University Tate Lecture Series on 19 October 2006, at SMU, in Dallas, Texas: "The Singapore Government on Iraq was and is in firm support of President George W Bush and his team... The President was right to invade Iraq to depose Saddam Hussein and remove the weapons of mass destruction that all intelligence agencies in Europe and America assessed Iraq to have."

This, given that North Korea has wreaked and is wreaking a lot more havoc than Saddam Hussein's Iraq ever did.

Presumably, supporting countries that try to destabilise the region and the world and which pursue Weapons of Mass Destruction is in the interests of small countries like Singapore.

We did act as a weapons shipment/manufacture hub during the Iran-Iraq war - but at least that was the fault of private companies.
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