The Axis of Evil has some competition — in Ohio. The Bush Administration continues to apply pressure to North Korea about its alleged counterfeiting of $100 notes: This Korean story quotes Amb. Alexander Vershbow demanding physical proof that Pyongyang has destroyed its forging equipment. On the other hand, according to the BBC, South Korea's intelligence service doubts the North is counterfeiting, although it may have done so in the past. Meanwhile, on the homefront, a 16-year-old has been fingered as the mastermind of a bogus bill ring operating out of the boy's home in North College Hill, OH. Oddly, the Cincinnati Enquirer article announcing the bust is chock-full of juicy tips for would-be home engravers: rip off old bills rather than new, don't overlook those colored fibers, and set the wash cycle for delicates. Oh, and don't even think about using scissors: it's a sure giveaway!
We've Got 'Em The North Korean goverment has threatened to "bolster its nuclear weapons arsenal." It is a well known secret that as a charter member of the axis-of-evil, North Korea has an active program to enrich nuclear fuel. And this is not the first time North Korea has made such an annoucement. But why are they are trying to take pressure off Iran?
Japanese abducted by North Korea in Japan for brief visit. After many years of denying accusations, North Korea finally came clean last month and admitted to having kidnapped a number of Japanese civilians. Of the thirteen they admit to abducting, they say only five are still alive, and these five have been allowed a visit to Japan this week. On a less encouraging note, however, the five survivors were not allowed to bring their children or spouses and arrived donning pins bearing an image of the Great Leader. Is Kim Jong Il genuinely turning over a new leaf, is this just another part of a heartless cash grab scheme, or did the "axis of evil" speech intimidate them into softening up for a moment?
Where Is This Evil Axis Bush Speaks Of? By any common usage, it denotes an alliance. The relationship between Iran, Iraq and North Korea meets neither qualification.
Ye olde Axis of Evil turns out to be, really, just an exercise in getting rid of Saddam (registration required). Not that I blame W but shouldn't we get a few other countries to back us up in a potentially long, protracted war? Could North Korea be right?