One very good sign that North Korea’s recent warlike threats are merely posturing.

Pioneer cover

From the press release: From the moment he is handed a possibility of making the first alien contact, Saunders Maxwell decides he will do it, even if doing so takes him through hell and back.

Unfortunately, that is exactly where that journey takes him.

The vision that Zimmerman paints of vibrant human colonies on the Moon, Mars, the asteroids, and beyond, indomitably fighting the harsh lifeless environment of space to build new societies, captures perfectly the emerging space race we see today.

He also captures in Pioneer the heart of the human spirit, willing to push forward no matter the odds, no matter the cost. It is that spirit that will make the exploration of the heavens possible, forever, into the never-ending future.

Available everywhere for $3.99 (before discount) at amazon, Barnes & Noble, all ebook vendors, or direct from the ebook publisher, ebookit.

One very good sign that North Korea’s recent warlike threats are merely posturing.

[W]e do have one pretty good metric with which to judge the country’s intentions: the Kaesong Industrial Complex. The Kaesong Industrial Complex, located just across the northern side of the border, is staffed by South and North Koreans. It can’t function without Pyongyang’s daily okay. If the North suddenly shuts down Kaesong at some point, watch out. But as long as it’s still running, as it has been throughout the provocations and tensions of the last few weeks, we can probably – probably — assume that North Korea is not actually planning to launch a war.

And the complex is still in operation.


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  • JGL

    My impressions of what goes on in North Korea is that the elite have grown up on American movies and this posturing is a kind of dramatic play acting that is engaged in to keep their people under the impression that a hot war status is a continuing condition. Sadam Husien had a similar dramatic approach.

    The only people that buy what they are selling are their own country wide oppressed people, they must be able to justify the poor condition of their lives some how. The international sanctions levied because of their bad behavior regarding nukes I believe is where their problems stem from and that is certainly driven by the U.S., as it should be.

    Which is not to say that they are not dangerous, but when you look at the reality of the situation that is the conclusion I come to.

  • JGL

    I think it is also a way for young UN to make his bones in the eyes of his people. Shoot a couple of shells around make some noise, declare victory and wa la, you have a war hero president. Other than that he is an unaccomplished boy.

  • JGL

    As I review some of the pictures being released by the North Koreans themselves this whole thing looks more like a staged P.R. job than preparations for all out war. The shots of K.J. UN are all of him reviewing maps and looking through binoculars he is being made to look like he is large and in charge. A young man with no experience being made to look like he is experienced. Not that it means that he is not dangerous, it might mean that he is more dangerous, kind of like another inexperienced leader I know.

    There is a lot of BS and lies flying around the world today. BS and lies.

  • lino

    Has anyone noticed that North Korea’s bombastic attacks have increased geometrically since Dennis Rodman has returned to the states? Perhaps we have underestimated his calming influence.

    Maybe we need to send him back and leave him there permanently as a peacekeeping gesture?

    He could become our permanent ambassador to the Kaesong Industrial Complex.

  • lino

    “Tensions escalated further over the weekend when North Korea threatened to shutter a factory complex it operates just inside its border with South Korea. The eight-year-old Kaesong industrial park is a vital source of cash for North Korea, with more than 50,000 citizens earning close to $100 million annually. The factory, which has continued to operate normally — with hundreds of South Korean workers traveling to work there each day — has withstood prior strains between the two Koreas. U.S. experts say its shutdown would be grim news.”

  • Hi Lino,

    Glad to see you commenting again! I especially liked your earlier comment about Rodman and North Korea.

    Do you have a link for this quote?

  • JGL

    The Dennis Rodman thing was not something that just happened, I think it is a part the P.R. job being executed by the leaders. The people may well think that Rodman is a high status American and the fact that their president was hanging out with him brings status to him. That may well be their rational (I didn’t say it was a sane rational).

    The psychology in a place like N Korea must be very, very strange. The people being so isolated and controlled to the max and left to interpret the world based on information disseminated by their government only and any pieces of information that happens to filter in. Disinformation goes on here also, so much more than we think, but N Korea must be more like a communist “Trueman” show.

  • Lino

    Now the situation has worsened. Access for South Koreans to the complex is being denied…..

  • Lino

    I’m not very good at pasting these links, but CNN is reporting that South Koreans are being barred from entering the complex. They can leave but they cannot return.

    My sense is that this lunatic is going to send himself down a path that he cannot control. Events can sometimes take on a life of their own. He doesn’t have the sense to realize the reactions to his words and actions.

    Unless a military coup rescues the situation, this could proceed in a very bad way.

  • I have found a link to this story, from Reuters, and have posted it on the main page.

    Very bad news indeed.

  • Lino

    There are quite a few scary places in the world…..and for good reasons.

    This one is at the top of my list. If we can get to Derby Day without a major eruption here, I think we’ll be lucky.

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