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LSE students union on Panorama: "BBC used LSE students as a human shield" Watch

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    Would love to hear people's comments about the programme later, I am interested to know if there's an "it was worth it" reaction, or if it's all been a bit of a waste of time running what was effectively a minor con on these students by Sweeney and his wife.
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    (Original post by Fullofsurprises)
    Would love to hear people's comments about the programme later, I am interested to know if there's an "it was worth it" reaction, or if it's all been a bit of a waste of time running what was effectively a minor con on these students by Sweeney and his wife.
    I hope youd love to hear mine!
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    I'm still not convinced that they managed to 'spy' on anything worth spying on seeing as they have to be accompanied by people and only see a fake, plastic state with fake people walking around the streets and then being shown an unrepresentative banquet dinner that the average North Korean would eat.
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    It was an interesting programme - not much that was new on it, but the few 'off-tour' images were revealing, although it was noteworthy that some were from YouTube. Some of it was bizarre, like the empty hospital and the charming 'lullaby' on the coach going back to the hotel.

    If the students really were endangered by the BBC, it certainly wasn't worth it - hard to tell if they were, it didn't look it, as the tour guides were evidently permitting filming with a large video camera, not just from phones.
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    Damn I missed it
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    I think western people should stop forcing their values onto other countries. If a riot like what happened over Thatchers death would not happen if the police and gov were more firm here. i bet crime is rare there.
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    Since it was mentioned that anyone who speaks out may be sent to a political prisoner camp and the BBC cameraman was told numerous times to stop filming I do think there was danger to the students.
    To be honest what the BBC did wasn't brilliant and nothing particularly new was even discovered; what's already known was confirmed.
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    Watching the programme on iplayer, the show supports the fact that extreme left and extreme right are indeed very similar, the pictures of Marx and Lenin, and the liking to Hitler, it shows that that socialism and fascism are essentially similar
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    (Original post by Jordan-James)
    Watching the programme on iplayer, the show supports the fact that extreme left and extreme right are indeed very similar, the pictures of Marx and Lenin, and the liking to Hitler, it shows that that socialism and fascism are essentially similar
    No, they show that Kim admired parts of the Nazi 'way of doing things' and since he was no more a 'socialist' than was Margaret Thatcher, you can't draw that conclusion. Just because people call themselves something, doesn't make them that thing. Stop smearing genuine democratic leftism by drawing false analogies.

    It's a shame he didn't talk about it more, but it was particularly relevant that the portraits of Lenin and Marx had been taken down from buildings, presumably this was part of the alleged slight movement towards capitalism, as with the Chinese bank under construction, although it's difficult to see how they can even start the beginnings of a capitalist system with all the markets closed and everyone working goodness-knows-where. Where does everyone work? Empty hospitals, empty factories.
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    Disgraceful actions from the beeb. Indeed it was a very interesting program, but they put the students under unnecessary risk. The possible repercussions if any of that party were caught associating with someone who wasn't who they say they were are huge. There's no question of whether it was 'worth it' or not.

    (Original post by Jordan-James)
    Watching the programme on iplayer, the show supports the fact that extreme left and extreme right are indeed very similar, the pictures of Marx and Lenin, and the liking to Hitler, it shows that that socialism and fascism are essentially similar
    NK is no longer a Marxist state.
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    (Original post by ed-)
    Since it was mentioned that anyone who speaks out may be sent to a political prisoner camp and the BBC cameraman was told numerous times to stop filming I do think there was danger to the students.
    To be honest what the BBC did wasn't brilliant and nothing particularly new was even discovered; what's already known was confirmed.
    The bit where they told him to stop filming simply confirmed that they regard filming as OK some of the time, so that on its own doesn't prove they endangered the students.

    I can't see them kidnapping a bus load of LSE students, but then I suppose given how sinister their regime is, anything is possible.
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    (Original post by Fullofsurprises)
    It's a shame he didn't talk about it more, but it was particularly relevant that the portraits of Lenin and Marx had been taken down from buildings, presumably this was part of the alleged slight movement towards capitalism, as with the Chinese bank under construction, although it's difficult to see how they can even start the beginnings of a capitalist system with all the markets closed and everyone working goodness-knows-where. Where does everyone work? Empty hospitals, empty factories.
    I don't think it's a move towards capitalism; they replaced mentions of Marxism in their constitution with their new ultra-nationalist ideology of Juche a few years back, and I think it's just an attempt to cement the Kim family as the pioneers of the NK way of life, and possibly a repudiation of the internationalist tendencies of Marx.
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    (Original post by Fullofsurprises)
    No, they show that Kim admired parts of the Nazi 'way of doing things' and since he was no more a 'socialist' than was Margaret Thatcher, you can't draw that conclusion. Just because people call themselves something, doesn't make them that thing. Stop smearing genuine democratic leftism by drawing false analogies.

    It's a shame he didn't talk about it more, but it was particularly relevant that the portraits of Lenin and Marx had been taken down from buildings, presumably this was part of the alleged slight movement towards capitalism, as with the Chinese bank under construction, although it's difficult to see how they can even start the beginnings of a capitalist system with all the markets closed and everyone working goodness-knows-where. Where does everyone work? Empty hospitals, empty factories.
    The Tourguides are a complete setup essentially, Sweeney referred to the DPRK as an Ultra Nationalist state similar to Hitler's, i think that counts as a similarity.

    The Chinese Bank etc are all lies, i mean heck they said they were going to a collectivist farm that was actually a model town with one family in it smiling.

    And i agree Kim isnt what other socialists define as 'socialist' however its another country to add to the list of failed 'socialist' states.

    If DPRK are moving toward Capitalism, then good for them, however their citizens need permission to go anywhere in the country, that geographical mobility of labour is going to be very productive!
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    (Original post by Fullofsurprises)
    The bit where they told him to stop filming simply confirmed that they regard filming as OK some of the time, so that on its own doesn't prove they endangered the students.

    I can't see them kidnapping a bus load of LSE students, but then I suppose given how sinister their regime is, anything is possible.
    Yes filming and photo's are allowed on the trips, my politics teacher had a huge slideshow to show us all, it was amazing. Honestly his view was that the north was such a surreal place, it didnt seem serious at all.

    And wow how have you seen the South, look at that Capitalist Tiger economy, something a Socialist state could never achieve.
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    (Original post by Fullofsurprises)
    I can't see them kidnapping a bus load of LSE students, but then I suppose given how sinister their regime is, anything is possible.
    They were perfectly safe at all times. North Korea is one of the safest places on earth to visit as a tourist since they can't risk any harm coming to tourists. All this fuss from the students is OTT to be honest.
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    (Original post by tjf8)
    I don't think it's a move towards capitalism; they replaced mentions of Marxism in their constitution with their new ultra-nationalist ideology of Juche a few years back, and I think it's just an attempt to cement the Kim family as the pioneers of the NK way of life, and possibly a repudiation of the internationalist tendencies of Marx.
    Maybe. I wondered if it was some kind of response to pressure from China, maybe the idea in Beijing is to one day turn them into another Vietnam with relocated Chinese factories, etc. If so, the Chinese have got their work cut out, lol.
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    (Original post by gateshipone)
    They were perfectly safe at all times. North Korea is one of the safest places on earth to visit as a tourist since they can't risk any harm coming to tourists. All this fuss from the students is OTT to be honest.
    From what we've heard so far, I can't help but wonder if the story was that a parent with influence got hold of it, kicked up a stink, etc - the university felt they had to respond strongly so as to defend their legal position.
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    (Original post by Fullofsurprises)
    From what we've heard so far, I can't help but wonder if the story was that a parent with influence got hold of it, kicked up a stink, etc - the university felt they had to respond strongly so as to defend their legal position.
    It seems like that was more likely. It's not as if these students were being held at gunpoint and marched to a concentration camp, they were on an organised tour that went without a hitch. Plus it's not like this documentary showed anything new or interesting. The Vice documentary on YouTube shows a hell of a lot more of the real DPRK than the BBC did. It was all hype and no substance.
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    (Original post by Fullofsurprises)
    Maybe. I wondered if it was some kind of response to pressure from China, maybe the idea in Beijing is to one day turn them into another Vietnam with relocated Chinese factories, etc. If so, the Chinese have got their work cut out, lol.
    If I were the Chinese I'd want to side with the subversive lot. The black market is increasingly growing in NK and in a lot of families the wife is the main breadwinner because of it. If China offered to support some kind of rebel, quasi-capitalist body then when the regime gets overthrown (which it inevitably will) they'd be able to form a decent societal structure that won't mean a mass exodus of refugees into their country. Maybe you're right – either way, they're definitely looking long-term, and for me long-term doesn't hold much hope for the Kims.
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    (Original post by gateshipone)
    It seems like that was more likely. It's not as if these students were being held at gunpoint and marched to a concentration camp, they were on an organised tour that went without a hitch. Plus it's not like this documentary showed anything new or interesting. The Vice documentary on YouTube shows a hell of a lot more of the real DPRK than the BBC did. It was all hype and no substance.
    One could be a complete cynic and wonder if the BBC and LSE acted in cahoots and kicked up a bit of a ****storm so as to publicize both the programme and the university? As if they would stoop so low.
 
 
 
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