Tuesday, 16 April 2013

The bizarre claim in John Sweeney's North Korea Panorama programme

Last night's clandestinely-filmed  BBC documentary about North Korea was admirable. Of course, it didn't tell us anything we didn't already know: the country is a communist dystopia, with all that implies - cruelty, stupidity, barbarism and levels of economic incompetence which make Fred Goodwin look like a safe pair of hands. Before the programme started, I wondered how the BBC - an institutionally left-wing organisation - was going to deal with the fact that what's happening in North Korea is the inevitable result of a left-wing ideology. John Sweeney decided to boot that minor problem into touch very near the start.

He did this by posing the question, what kind of system does North Korea represent? I was a bit suprised by this, because the answer is so screamingly obvious: communism. But not at all - up pops a chap from the Institute for Strategic Studies to inform us that N. Korea is an extreme right-wing state. The evidence for this? Founder Kim-Il-Sung was a fan of Hitler's. QED, apparently.

How silly and childish and misleading. Even if we accept the grotesque Marxist lie that National Socialism wasn't left-wing, what's the difference between North Korea and Stalin's Russia or Mao's China? The answer, of course, is "none". They all share(d) the following characteristics: personality cult, no rule of law, cosmic economic stupidity, inconceivable brutality, gulags, secret police, paranoia, fear, the destruction of everything that makes life worthwhile and a poisonous hatred of humanity, etc. etc.

Call me naive, but if a state calls itself communist and acts like every communist regime that's ever existed, how does it suddenly become right-wing? The answer, of course, is obvious. Because the BBC and 95% of the people who work for it are left-wing, they feel uncomfortable about being lumped in with mass-murderers: after all, modern liberals are such jolly nice, caring people. Easier by far to do what Marxists did when those far-left totalitarian philosophies, Fascism and Nazism, first reared their hideous heads in the 1920s - call them right-wing and pretend they're somehow inherently different to decent, humanity-loving, life-affirming Communism.

Not that it'll do any good, but it's worth repeating: Fascism and Nazism are left-wingideologies. The people who founded them were socialists - i.e. left-wingers. The only difference between the three systems is who they want to slaughter.

Having said that, John Sweeney is a brave journalist - I particularly enjoyed the bit where he rounded on the people at the glossy hospital he was visiting when they insulted his intelligence by trying to gloss over the rather obvious anomaly that it didn't have a single patient in it. Shame he had to mar an otherwise excellent piece of reporting by trying to pull a tired old leftie trick.


  1. It may help to put this North Korean business in context. On the PM programme earlier today BBC Radio 4 interviewed a young man called Spart who explained that he looks forward to protesting at tomorrow's funeral ceremony because, among other things, the celebration of Mrs Thatcher's personality cult reminds him of North Korea (52'45").

  2. Hugo Tillinghast17 April 2013 at 10:22

    Goebbels noted in his dairy, after watching a (pre-1933) Communist Party parade/demonstration in Berlin, that (apart from the Jews, of course) the demonstrators would make excellent recruits for the NSDAP.