The 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea opened in ceremony on Friday displaying a show of unity between South Korea and North Korea. While it indeed was remarkable, the outcome is sadly more than predictable. Even sadder is that the near-sighted Mainstream Media is falling all over themselves to glorify the most brutal regime on the planet.
After the Olympics it will be business as usual in North Korea. It always is. North and South Korea participated under a unification flag for two sporting events in 1991. They also marched together at two Summer Olympics and one Winter Olympics in the early 2000’s.
So why is the South working so hard for inclusiveness? The answer likely comes from what happens when North Korea is excluded. In 1987 ahead of the Olympic games in Seoul, South Korea, North Korean agents bombed a Korean Air flight. In 2002 during the World Cup held jointly in Korea and Japan, North Korea fired on a South Korean patrol boat.
South Korea is pretty clearly mitigating risk while the games are held in their country. They’re doing their best to appease the North to prevent any incident in PyeongChang. They even performed the Communist themed song Imagine by John Lennon.
That’s why there’s unity, and the U.S. mainstream media is treating the whole thing like it’s Disney Land.
From being starstruck by enslaved cheerleaders to fawning over Kim Jong Un‘s sister Kim Yo Jong, we’re clearly seeing why there is little faith in the mainstream media on a very grand scale. Let’s start with the low hanging fruit, CNN.
— CNN (@CNN) February 10, 2018
In the CNN article, they go so far as to promote North Korea as an emerging leader of Social Justice, stating
“[Kim Yo Jung] is a signal that North Korea is not this crazy, weird former Cold War state — but it too has young women that are capable and are the future leadership.”
Though, in fairness, not everybody in CNN was having it. One of the few voices of reason from CNN, Jake Tapper said on Twitter:
If you hate US leaders more than you hate the Kim Jong-un regime, you really need to read up on North Korea.
Committee for Human Rights in North Korea: https://t.co/wSWqutmlFW
— Jake Tapper (@jaketapper) February 11, 2018
This was also echoed by CNN Correspondent Salena Zito.
I am deeply saddened by how my profession has normalized and glamorized this murderous regime.
And then we wonder why no one trusts us. pic.twitter.com/pMKVPEvOWP
— SalenaZito (@SalenaZito) February 11, 2018
However it didn’t take long for Zito to be attacked by another CNN Correspondent, Chris Cuomo who blamed this media spectacle on President Donald Trump.
You don’t think having a President who lies about what is “fake” and actively maligns the free press out of convenience is a bigger reason for animosity toward us than how some decide to cover this bs? https://t.co/xyaZ3HRYIS
— Christopher C. Cuomo (@ChrisCuomo) February 11, 2018
The problem with Cuomo’s assertion here is that distrust in the mainstream media was one of the pillars that lifted Trump to the presidency. CNN has been complicit in chasing nothingburger fake news stories like the Japanese Koi Fish incident, as well as threatening to dox a Reddit user over sharing a meme he didn’t even create. There’s a reason why people are far more critical of CNN in particular.
Next up in the New York Times.
Without a word, only flashing smiles, Kim Jong-un's sister outflanked Vice President Mike Pence in diplomacy https://t.co/c2gTuSTF9e
— The New York Times (@nytimes) February 11, 2018
NYT made the claim that Kim Jong Un’s sister out-charmed Vice President Mike Pence. The article stated
“Flashing a sphinx-like smile and without ever speaking in public, Ms. Kim managed to outflank Mr. Trump’s envoy to the Olympics, Vice President Mike Pence, in the game of diplomatic image-making.”
From the Washington Post.
“They marveled at her barely-there makeup and her lack of bling. They commented on her plain black outfits and simple purse. They noted the flower-shaped clip that kept her hair back in a no-nonsense style.” https://t.co/WTAb0Q8fte
— Noah Rothman (@NoahCRothman) February 11, 2018
The Washington Post is calling Kim Yo Jong the Ivanka Trump of North Korea. The article fawned over here stating,
“Look at her posture, the commentators said. She sat so upright — maybe she’d been a dancer like her mother — and was so well mannered. Look at her unusual handwriting, they said after Kim Yo Jong wrote a message in the guest book at the Blue House, which — of course — then appeared everywhere. The cross strokes were all angled, making her handwriting look like a kind of calligraphy.”
ABC News dazzled over the cheerleaders.
— ABC News (@ABC) February 10, 2018
“At Saturday’s hockey match between Switzerland and the unified Korean team, the North Korean cheerleaders split up into groups and situated themselves in various sections around the ice rink. The squad of young women continuously sang, clapped and danced with gusto and unified precision, even as Switzerland crushed the unified Korean team 8-0.”
I understand the impulse to cover North Korean athletes and diplomacy, because this is a rare opportunity. We should be. What I don’t understand is the editorializing and romanticism. While ABC was mesmerized with cheerleaders, they forgot they were actually mesmerized with slaves.
Let’s also not forget what happens to North Korean athletes who lose. From The Telegraph:
“Those he feels have let him down are likely to be punished by being moved to poorer quality housing, having their rations reduced and, in the worst-case scenario, being sent to the coal mines as punishment.”
The people of Hawaii believed this regime was firing a missile at them not long ago. This is a regime that has fired test missiles over Japanese airspace over and over again to test their ICBM range. They’ve done so in the face of sanctions and international pressure. They’re not suddenly changing their minds now just because it’s the Olympics.
Get a grip.