"This is Pyongyang's way of reminding everyone of their existence at a moment when all the parties are together, in a typically defiant, North Korean way," John Delury, assistant professor at Yonsei University in South Korea, told CNN.
Patriot Advanced Capability-3 surface-to-air guided interceptors in central Tokyo were readied as a response to Nakatani's order, and surveillance activities were also stepped up. A separate government source today told Kyodo News that the Japanese have received indications that Pyongyang is preparing to launch a ballistic missile, possibly an intermediate-range Musudan missile, in the eastern part of North Korea facing the Sea of Japan.
Surrounded by world leaders, President Barack Obama gave the peace sign as they gathered for a 'team photo' during a two-day nuclear summit. All eyes were on Obama as 54 other presidents and prime ministers joined him in Washington, DC, for crunch talks on Iran and terrorist threats involving nuclear weapons. There was one set of eyes, however, that was particularly focused on the President - those of Prime Minister David Cameron. Relations between Cameron and Obama have been strained since the President criticized the Prime Minister for getting 'distracted' during the crisis in Libya and turning it into a 's**t show'.
North Korea Proves Your White Male Privilege Is Not Universal “That’s what the hell he gets. Good for him!” My mother had uttered those words in her typical matter-of-fact tone one morning as she watched the news. “He” was Michael Fay, an 18-year-old from Ohio who had confessed to vandalizing cars in Singapore, and was subsequently sentence to six lashes from a rattan cane. I was in sixth grade and all I could imagine was how horrible the pain would be. My mother was unmoved at the thought, remarking, “He earned that.”
Citizens forced to vote in North Korea's version of democracy It's called the Democratic People's Republic of Korea. But any real notions of democracy end with the name. North Koreans headed to the polls at the weekend to cast their ballots in elections for local representatives on provincial, city, and county People's Assemblies. Citizens were not asked to make a choice -- the results had already been decided by Kim Jong Un's central government. Voters were handed ballot papers but didn't mark them. They would have instead deposited them in a ballot box, signifying their support for the pre-approved candidates.
“He has been the victim, Kim Jong Un, of a lot of bad press, a lot of bad international attention, with the Sony hacking, with [being] taken to the International Criminal Court by some U.N. countries, a number of other very destabilizing moves that he has made, shooting the missiles, nuclear testing,” Richardson said on Friday on MSNBC’s “News Nation with Tamron Hall.”Watch it here:
President Obama, while vacationing in Hawaii, signed an executive order authorizing the sanctions, saying the repressive government was trying to stifle freedom of speech by American artists and businesses. The Treasury Department imposed financial measures on 10 North Korean officials and three government agencies. They include the country’s main intelligence agency, believed to have orchestrated major cyber operations, as well as agencies responsible for weapons deals and military research and development. The newly sanctioned officials include those operating out of Namibia, Iran, Syria and China....
Of course. From Bloomberg:
The people have spoken! Freedom has prevailed! Sony didn't give up! The Interview will be shown at theaters willing to play it on Xmas day!— Seth Rogen (@Sethrogen) December 23, 2014
“We have never given up on releasing ‘The Interview’ and we’re excited our movie will be in a number of theaters on Christmas Day,” Michael Lynton, chief executive officer of Sony Entertainment, said in a statement today. “We are continuing our efforts to secure more platforms and more theaters so that this movie reaches the largest possible audience.” The studio scrapped the Dec. 25 debut after the four biggest U.S. theater chains took the movie off their schedule, a response to threats from hackers linked to North Korea. President Barack Obama said last week the studio’s capitulation to terrorists would hinder freedom of expression. “As the President made clear, we are a country that believes in free speech, and the right of artistic expression,” White House spokesman Eric Schultz said today in a statement. “The decision made by Sony and participating theaters allows people to make their own choices about the film, and we welcome that outcome.”Of course, everything Sony is saying here is complete garbage. I don't believe for a second that it was Sony's intention to get creative with its release strategy; I give credit for this not to the execs involved but to the owners and operators of independent theatres like the Alamo Drafthouse, who took matters into their own hands, offered to screen the film, and when that didn't work out, attempted to screen something just as subversive and rude as "The Interview."
Kim Jong-un launches furious counterattack following widespread Internet outages in North Korea. pic.twitter.com/CvYeJyAhud— Justice Don Willett (@JusticeWillett) December 22, 2014
The connectivity problems are coming just days after President Obama warned of a "proportional response" to North Korea, which is suspected of breaking into Sony's network in a major cyber hack. It's not yet known whether the United States is responsible for the downtime. But according to Dyn Research — which earlier this year bought the respected network analysis firm Renesys — North Korea's Internet is currently showing unusual amounts of instability. ... Is this an attack? The chances aren't zero, considering that the few North Koreans who can actually get online tend to be government and military officials. Even if the outages are the result of somebody's deliberate act, proving that the United States did it would be difficult.According to the New York Times, if this was us (and it had better be us, even if we'll never admit it) it would mean that US intelligence is trying something completely different. Normally, American cyberwarfare (that we know about) goes the "espionage" route and focuses on data grabs.
President Obama said in an interview broadcast Sunday that he does not think a recent North Korean cyberattack against Sony Pictures Entertainment was "an act of war." "No, I don't think it was an act of war," Obama said on CNN's "State of the Union." "I think it was an act of cyber-vandalism that was very costly, very expensive. We take it very seriously. We will respond proportionately."
North Korea has offered to hold a joint inquiry with the United States into a cyber-attack on Sony Pictures, strongly denying US claims that it is behind it. Its foreign ministry accused the US of "spreading groundless allegations", which the joint probe would refute. Without addressing Pyongyang's idea, a US spokesman insisted that North Korea must admit "culpability" ... On Saturday, the North Korean foreign ministry said: "As the United States is spreading groundless allegations and slandering us, we propose a joint investigation with it into this incident." "Without resorting to such tortures as were used by the US CIA, we have means to prove that this incident has nothing to do with us." The statement said there would be "grave consequences" if the Americans rejected their inquiry proposal.If not North Korea, then who? Here are four possibilities via NY Mag:
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