President Donald Trump has fired and arrested a staff member who writes Tweets for his personal account on Twitter, a White House official said on Thursday. “Trump is fed up with tweets misrepresenting his actual words”, said the official.
The staff member of Trump’s personal account, @RealDonaldTrump, has been taken into custody late last night to an unknown location. White House officials are alarmed at this illegal behavior being carried out from the executive office. “President Trump doesn’t have the legal power to carry out this type of order”, said another official from the Trump administration.
Okay, I can’t continue this lie anymore. That’s exactly what it is: FAKE NEWS. And Western Media is doing the same thing right now but about North Korea.
“Reports” have been spreading like a wildfire about North Korea executing top officials who “failed” the Kim-Trump talks. I mean every outlet is reporting on this story now: New York Times, Reuters, Financial Times, Guardian, Huffington Post, Japan Times, Deutsche Welle (DW), and more. Just do a google search of “North Korea” and you’ll see the ridiculous headlines from nearly every major news outlet. Some headlines include:
- North Korea Executed and Purged Top Nuclear Negotiators, South Korean Report Says (New York Times)
- North Korea executes envoy in a purge after failed U.S. summit (Reuters)
- North Korea Reportedly Executes Officials For Failed Trump-Kim Summit (Huffington Post)
The majority of these Western media outlets don’t even hyperlink or cite the actual source of these claims. Some, like the Los Angeles Times, did report that the source of these claims came from “an unnamed, unspecified source“. But the damage has been done. Once the original story is published in mainstream media outlets, audiences have had the story imprinted into their minds and any attempt at correcting the story becomes ineffective.
Having no concrete source or method of verifying these claims, the New York Times and other “agenda setting outlets” reported on these stories anyhow. This is FAKE NEWS. Once published in major outlets like the NYT, all the other outlets just follow the lead. This is lazy journalism. In truth, it’s not even journalism.
The actual source of these claims about North Korea executing their top negotiators by firing squad (WTF?!) comes from a major South Korean newspaper called the Chosun Ilbo. A closer look at the author, Kim Myong-Song, is a “North Korean defector turned journalist”. How does a North Korean defector even have access to information like this? It’s difficult enough to get any information about North Korea, but these claims come from people who clearly have a biased view and should not be considered a journalist.
If you read the article, just in the first few paragraphs, the claims come from an unidentified source. The article literally says, “a source said Thursday” with no hyperlinks and no other information. The article contains only 8 short paragraphs, providing no actual evidence or sources, and it has made worldwide news. How does this happen?
Let’s remind ourselves that it is Friday. The most wild reports tend to be published on Friday because the majority of readers are preparing for the weekend, thus people don’t make it a priority to read the news. So Friday’s must include the most sensationalize titles in order to grab people’s attention.
If you really wanted some real news about North Korea, particularly from North Korean defectors, I highly recommend watching this short documentary where two defectors and an attorney are interviewed. The main issue of the film is about exposing the industry (yes it’s an industry) focused solely on exploiting North Korea defectors with a goal of demonizing North Korea and providing “legitimacy” for aggressive military actions from South Korea and the US.
North Korean defectors are offered a lot of money in the capitalist world and are given more than enough public exposure to fabricate crazy stories which can never really be verified. In fact, South Korea has an entire TV show dedicated to North Korea defectors coming up with ridiculous-emotional-filled stories every week.
In addition, the real story of North Korean defectors actually want to return back to their homeland. North Koreans are treated horribly in South Korea. They suffer from high unemployment, public ridicule and outcasting, alienation, and suicide.
The short documentary, Loyal Citizens of Pyongyang in Seoul, provides a deeper explanation of why North Koreans defect in the first place. We must remember, North Korea is still at war with the US and South Korea. Both Koreas have strict national security laws. For instance, in South Korea if anyone speaks publicly about North Korea in a positive manner, they can be arrested for up to six months. As an activist and Korean-American, I know people who’ve actually been arrested for this. When I visited South Korea to study the impact of US military bases scattered throughout the country (83 US bases) most people did not want to speak out against the US military presence, especially on camera. There are laws and cultural norms which can have serious repercussions for speaking out against their own government. And yet, South Korea is portrayed as a “democracy”?
We must learn to verify information and not necessarily believe every story in any outlet. Not even this one. Yes, it will require extra effort to confirm information but it’s worthwhile. In a time where mainstream-corporate media, as well as alternative and independent media, are fighting for you attention in order to make a living we must tread carefully. We live in a world where information is cheap, but attention is expensive.