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Patrick Henningsen

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North Korea and The Unintended Consequences of Trump

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There’s something very strange and disturbing about the hype around the White House and US media’s latest obsession with North Korea. It’s not just the usual war-mongering and hot air though. We’ve seen all that before. This goes beyond sabre-rattling. There’s something uncomfortably bipartisan about this new appetite for war.

Watching CNN this week, you got the impression we’ve entered a new comic book phase in the American experiment, driven by an 24 hour media environment where facts and analysis seem like a distant nostalgic hallucination. I asked myself, is it real? Where does the show finally end, and the war begin?

We’re told that North Korea has now defied recent threats of “fire and fury” from US President Donald Trump, and that the regime has announced its plan to launch missiles at the nearest US territory, the island of Guam in the Pacific. So that’s it. It’s war then, right?

Trump’s generals wasted no time throwing petrol on the fire, led by Defense Secretary Gen. James ‘Mad Dog’ Mattis who warned Kim Jung-Un that the US military “possess the most precise, rehearsed and robust defensive and offensive capabilities on Earth.”

Whatever your views might be of Trump, North Korea, US foreign policy, or ‘global security,’ at this point we’d all do well to hit the breaks.
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‘The Interview’ Flops, FBI ‘North Korean Hack’ Story Also Debunked

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Official FBI claims that North Korea was behind the "Sony hack" were debunked today by two leading cyber security firms. More on that later, but first, let’s look at the failure of film itself…

To anyone in media or politics who said this week that it was our “patriotic duty as Americans” to go and see this movie, I hereby banish you to the outer realm of the consensus reality Bardo (in other words, you should be working for the North Korean government, not ruining America). 

Despite being hyped and spun with unprecedented faux patriotic fervor, and getting a ton of free publicity from President Obama, Sony Entertainment’s The Interview is officially a flop.

The film was released in 331 independently owned cinemas on Christmas Day, pulling a paltry $1 million in gate receipts, as well as an equally poor showing on the download charts too. The film was a big hit on the "illegal" download front though. According to the blog TorrentFreak, the film was downloaded around 750,000 times as of yesterday (we use the term "illegal" loosely here, because it would a real crime to charge money to see this turkey).
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