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Just in case no one understood them after the many, many, many other times they threatened to blow up the world, the North Koreans announced today that their army is now on "combat duty posture No. 1." What does that mean? Maybe this will clear things up:

Now is the time to shower a fire of revenge on the enemies that dared draft even the "list of targets" to hurt the dignity of the DPRK supreme leadership.

To be more specific, the North is threatening to unleash its "strategic rocket units and long-range artillery units, which are assigned to strike bases of the U.S. imperialist aggressor troops in the U.S. mainland and on Hawaii and Guam."

We're not saying that North Korea has reached "Belligerent Nation Who Cried Wolf" status just yet, but we are interested to learn more about one of the people who does the crying. And he's not even Korean. Zach Campbell at the Chrisitan Science Monitor has a profile of Alejandro Cao de Benós, a PR professional who is the only non-Korean allowed to work at North Korea's foreign ministry. This cog in the world's most ubiquitous propaganda machine actually comes from Spain, but Cao de Benós is so supportive of the North Korean project that he founded the Korean Friendship Association, and has become a public relations lifeline to the West. He doesn't live in Korea, but speaks on their behalf all across Europe.

It's not really clear what drives Cao de Benós to sympathize with the Kim dynasty's way of life, but he certainly believes in the main themes of North Korea's propaganda: That they only want to be left alone and that every aggressive action they take is merely a response to the earlier aggression the American or the South. Things may not be luxurious there, but ven their ongoing famine and bleak spartan existence is merely "belt tightening" required to fight their arms race agains the U.S. As Cao de Benós says "Aggression will be met with aggression and peace will be met with peace.”

Whether he's personally responsible or not, we do have to say their insults are getting more interesting:

There are in the south a group of good-for-nothings who are unable to discern truth from lies under the ill-judged "government" which depends on the U.S. forces that bring only the danger of war to both the north and the south, and plutocrats and the rich who account for just one percent of the population

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