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OpEdNews Op Eds    H4'ed 6/9/10

N. Korean Torpedo Accusation Fizzles - Strong Probability of US Mine Strike Investigated

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After China quietly described as "not credible" the results of a U.S. arranged investigation proudly showing a dug up North Korea torpedo as "overwhelming evidence" that it had broken in half a S. Korean warship, the big international outcry for punishment of the North suddenly died down and South Korea is making nice again. It is restoring some industrial cooperation with the North, its ruling party having fared badly last week's elections. Its mayor of Seoul barely escaped losing, and the opposition won the mayoralty race in Inchon, whose territory includes the island of N. Korea where the warship sank.

What is important for men and women of good will, is to be aware of the immediate and nearly universal condemnation of a communist enemy the capitalist Empire was able to explode upon the world, through its powerful media. And if the past is of any instruction, it will be the fabrication that will remain in the public's memory, not any possible less publicized rectification. Notice how quickly U.S. lackey Secretary General Ban Ki-moon quickly jumped in support of punishment for condemnable communist North Korea.

Readers will not be disappointed with taking the time to read a Japanese investigative reporter's laying out the facts, circumstances, suspicions and of probability of what occasioned this latest return to U.S. Cold War tactics. The articles author, Yoichi Shimatsu is former editor of the Japan Times, is an environmental consultant and a commentator on Asian affairs for CCTV-9 Dialogue.
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Did an American Mine Sink South Korean Ship? New America Media, News Analysis, Yoichi Shimatsu, 5/27/10, BEIJING - "South Korean Prime Minister Lee Myung-bak has claimed "overwhelming evidence" that a North Korean torpedo sank the corvette Cheonan on March 26, killing 46 sailors. U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton claimed that there's "overwhelming evidence" in favor of the theory that North Korea sank the South Korean Navy warship Cheonan. But the articles of proof presented so far by military investigators to an official inquiry board have been scanty and inconsistent ...

There's yet another possibility, that a U.S. rising mine sank the Cheonan in a friendly-fire accident....

Ever since an American cruiser was damaged by one of Saddam Hussein's rising mines, also known as bottom mines, in the Iraq War, the U.S. Navy has pushed a crash program to develop a new generation of mines. The U.S. Naval Mine and Anti-Submarine Warfare Command has also been focused on developing counterparts to the fearsome Chinese naval "assassin's mace," which is propelled by a rocket engine.

A rising mine, which is effective only in shallow waters, rests atop a small platform on the sea floor under a camouflage of sand and gravel. Its detection system uses acoustics and magnetic readings to pick up enemy ships and submarines. When activated, jets of compressed air or solid-fuel rockets lift the bomb, which self-guides toward the magnetic center of the target. The blast rips the keel, splitting the ship or submarine into two neat pieces, just as was done to the RKOS Cheonan.

A lateral-fired torpedo, in contrast, "holes" the target's hull, tilting the vessel in the classic war movie manner. The South Korean government displayed to the press the intact propeller shaft of a torpedo that supposedly struck the Cheonan. Since torpedoes travel between 40-50 knots per hour (which is faster than collision tests for cars), a drive shaft would crumble upon impacting the hull and its bearing and struts would be shattered or bent by the high-powered blast.

The The initial South Korean review stated that the explosive was gunpowder, which would conform to North Korea's crude munitions. This claim was later overturned by the inquiry board, which found the chemical residues to be similar to German advanced explosives. Due to sanctions against Pyongyang and its few allies, it is hardly credible that North Korea could obtain NATO-grade ordnance.

Thus, the mystery centers on the USNS Salvor, ... The inquiry board in Seoul has not questioned the officers and divers of the Salvor which happened to be yet right near Byeongyang Island at the time of the Cheonan sinking.

The Salvor's presence points to an inadvertent release of a rising mine, perhaps because its activation system was not switched off. A human error or technical glitch is very much within the realm of possibility due to the swift current and strong tides that race through the Byeongnyeong Channel. The arduous task of mooring the launch platforms to the sea floor allows the divers precious little time for double-checking the electronic systems."

Watching the self-righteous scowling countenance of Mrs. Clinton reminds those with good memory of the serious look on the face of Colin Powell pointing to photos of Iraq's weapons of mass destruction trucks, of Adelai Stevenson showing photo evidence that the planes that bombed Cuba were not U.S. planes, of Robert McNamara holding forth on the Gulf of Tonkin attack on innocent U.S. warships, of the John Foster Dulles in the limelight of U.S. corporate media broadcasts telling all the truths about communists, not capitalists being out to conquer the world.

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Jay Janson is an archival research peoples historian activist, musician and writer; has lived and worked on all continents; articles on media published in China, Italy, UK, India, in Germany & Sweden Einartysken,and in the US by Dissident (more...)

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