Arnold Wolfe posted a prompt over in Ivory Tower 2.0 about the attention to N. Korea and whether this might constitute the beginnings of an Iraq-style hype-fest, especially in the intense personal and almost psychoanlytic focus on Kim Jong Un. I created this group (WarMemes) to handle this kind of discussion.
Of course, N. Korea has become much more visible lately due to a variety of reasons, the least of which is their recent (and highly unnerving) saber-rattling rhetoric. What other dimensions are hidden within this they-threaten-we-respond frame, though? I’m particularly drawn to the images of N. Korean celebrations, which seem to be settling into Western consciousness where Triumph of the Will had been.
Seb Kaempf and I were at the International Studies Association in San Francisco when all these nuclear threats were zipping through the newswires. We thought, why isn’t this conference holding an ad-hoc panel of N. Korean experts to get some real perspective on why this is happening? Perhaps we can draw on the collective intelligence here at TVM to shine some light on what has been a pretty opaque affair.