Cuban leader Fidel Castro has exposed, in an editorial published in the Cuban press, the imperialist conspiracy behind the sinking of a South Korean warship in the waters off the Korean peninsula on March 26 this year.
The sinking of the South Korean warship, in which 46 people lost their lives, was immediately and without any evidence whatsoever branded by the US as due to a torpedo strike by North Korea, and was used to drum up even more war hysteria against North Korea. The North Korean government immediately and forcefully denied any involvement. Nevertheless, a so-called “multinational” investigation team later declared that North Korea was the culprit.
An important consequence of the heightened war hysteria in that region was that Japanese Prime Minister Hatoyama, whose party had been swept to power in Japan a few months earlier on the promise that it would remove the US military base on the Japanese island of Okinawa, suddenly went back on his promise, and agreed to keep the base. His unpopularity because of this capitulation to US pressure later led to his resignation.
Looking at investigative reports and material that have come to light since then in the press, including the American press, and also taking into account the refusal of China and Russia to go along with the denunciation of North Korea, Fidel Castro has drawn an important conclusion. He has pointed out that the sinking of the South Korean warship was a carefully laid conspiracy hatched by US imperialism to simultaneously discredit North Korea and scuttle the Japanese government’s plans to challenge the US military presence on Japanese territory.
After the collapse of its former enemy the Soviet Union in the 1990s, the US imperialists have made North Korea a special target of their venomous propaganda as well as military blackmail and pressure. North Korea, even while striving to normalise its relations with the United States as well as its neighbours, has refused to bend down before the US dictate or surrender its political and economic sovereignty in any way. This has infuriated US imperialism, which has sought to brand North Korea without any basis as an “aggressive” country which is a “threat” to world peace. At the same time, recent political developments in Japan have also not been to the liking of the US imperialists. For the last 65 years, since World War II, the US has kept 88 bases in Japan, including 37 on the tiny island of Okinawa, with the help of its ally there, the ruling Liberal Democratic Party. The defeat of the LDP in the last election in Japan, in which the issue of US bases was a major factor, has threatened the plans of the US in the region.
Press reports have brought out that although the South Korean warship was equipped with state-of-the-art sonar and sensing equipment, it did not detect at all the presence of any North Korean ship or torpedo before its sinking. On the other hand, the presence in the area of several US naval vessels, including one used for mine laying, as part of a joint military exercise with the South Korean navy, has been confirmed. Analysis of the shell fragments found at the site also show that they were not North Korean, as was alleged earlier, but were of German make. Germany does not sell any ammunition or military equipment to North Korea, while it does to the US and its faithful ally Israel.
The conclusion that the whole episode was an imperialist conspiracy is inescapable. Which power other than the United States has the capability, the motive and the experience, to carry out such a criminal act to harm the interests of not only its sworn enemy North Korea, but even those who are supposed to be its allies like South Korea and Japan? The American CIA and other organs are past masters at cold-bloodedly carrying out “dirty tricks” such as assassination, bombing and so on, in the service of their foreign policy. This is a very well known fact. At the same time, its control over the media and other means of propaganda worldwide enable it to spin stories that hide its own hand and throw mud on its enemies. The people of the world, however, including American people, have become increasingly conscious of the lies and deceit of US imperialism.