News Release

· North Korea and U.S. Missiles · UN Hypocrisy · Mexico Election Credibility

The Washington Post reported today that North Korea’s missile testing prompted “a hastily called session of the UN Security Council after the Stalinist state unnerved the region.”

The Associated Press reported on June 14: “The Air Force successfully tested an unarmed Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile early Wednesday, officials said. The missile traveled 4,800 miles in about 30 minutes before its three warheads struck targets at the Kwajalein Missile Range in the western chain of the Marshall Islands [in the Pacific]…”

ALICE SLATER
President of the GRACE Policy Institute, which works on issues of nuclear power and the environment, Slater said today: “We are reaping the whirlwind when the North Korean government launches this shocking series of missile firings. The U.S. has been hurling missiles over the Pacific, most recently in June, after the Korean threat was reported as a ‘provocation’ to U.S. interests. Russia is getting into the act, too, having launched a ballistic missile on June 29, from a submarine in the Barents Sea, at a target nearly 4,000 miles away in the Pacific. It is folly to think we can tell North Korea what to do, when we are unwilling to restrain our own missile testing.

“We ought to be negotiating a treaty to ban all missiles. Instead, the Bush administration has pulled out of the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty, an agreement we had with Russia not to provoke a missile arms race, brazenly asserting our U.S. right to ‘dominate and control the military use of space,’ proclaimed in the mission statement of the U.S. Space Command.”
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IAN WILLIAMS
Author of the book The U.N. For Beginners, Williams said today: “The manner in which the Security Council is dealing with Israel and North Korea is quite an interesting exercise in hypocrisy.”

“Israel has just announced it’s moving into civilian areas [in Gaza], and was already in egregious violation of international law and a multitude of UN Security Council resolutions. It has ripped up the ‘Road Map’ and, despite occasional hot air from ambassadors, the U.S. government has made sure nothing is done about it.

“Meanwhile, whatever you may think of the provocative…actions of the North Korean government, it is not violating any international statute — there is no treaty governing missile launches — but there is a rush to put the issue on the Council agenda.”
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MARK WEISBROT
Weisbrot is co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research and has written extensively on Latin America. The group issued a statement this morning: “The credibility of Mexico’s electoral process was thrown into question on Tuesday morning when the head of Mexico’s Federal Electoral Institute, Luis Carlos Ugalde, acknowledged that as many as 4 million votes had not been counted in the preliminary vote count that began after the polls closed on Sunday.”

Said Weisbrot: “[Felipe] Calderon’s lead in the preliminary vote count appears to be statistically meaningless, since the excluded votes are more than 10 times as large as his margin over Lopez Obrador. … Why didn’t the Federal Electoral Institute inform the public about the more than 3 million votes not included in the preliminary vote count until about a day and a half had passed and only after the PRD [Democratic Revolution Party] had raised the issue of ‘3 million missing votes.'”
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For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy:
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167