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July 10, 2006
Gray Lady's Editors Continue Spinning For North Korea

The editorial board at the New York Times has published yet another editorial in which they strip the context from the diplomatic stalemate between North Korea and the rest of the six-party talks. At least they have begun to concede that the UN has nothing to offer in a confrontation between rational nations and a nutcase dictatorship:

The United Nations Security Council certainly should register international condemnation of last week's North Korean missile launches. But if any serious progress is going to be made on this and the related North Korean nuclear issue, it will not be through Security Council resolutions or sanctions.

There are only three countries with any real leverage — the United States, China and South Korea — and none are doing all they could to nudge North Korea onto a less provocative course. Until they do, Security Council resolutions will remain a largely symbolic sideshow.

So far, that isn't a bad analysis. However, we know where the allegation of foot-dragging against the US will lead, and the Gray Lady does not disappoint. It criticizes the Bush administration for not pursuing direct, bilateral talks with North Korea, the exact reaction that Kim Jong-Il desired from his missile tests:

The Bush administration should drop its reflexive opposition to direct talks. But before scheduling a meeting, Washington should call on North Korea to reinstate its moratorium on long-range missile tests and keep it in place for at least one year while talks on a permanent ban proceed.

Those direct talks should also include discussions on North Korea's nuclear weapons programs. Nearly a year ago, North Korea agreed in principle to give these up as part of an agreement with the United States, China, Russia, Japan and South Korea. Crucial details were never worked out because North Korea left the talks over unrelated banking sanctions the Bush administration announced last fall. Washington has refused to conduct direct negotiations on the banking sanctions.

For the second time in a week, the Times refuses to explain exactly what caused us to impose these "unrelated banking sanctions". They came from North Korea's insistence on conducting economic war on the United States by flooding the world market with US currency counterfeits that may have already totalled a billion dollars. As I explained after the editorial board's last dishonest entry on this subject, the Kim regime uses that money not only to gain much-needed (but fake) hard currency, but also to help fund terrorism and organized crime:

In fact, supernote distribution channels involve terrorists and criminals in Pyongyang's complex strategy to get hard currency and attack the dollar's value. The US has indicted the IRA's Sean Garland for distributing the supernotes. North Korea also used organized crime "families" to pass the counterfeits inside the US; a Chinese gang linked to North Korea got stung by the FBI in an operation called Royal Charm. The climax came at a fake wedding, where instead of limos to carry the guests to the reception, vans took them to prison instead.

Pyongyang also used a front company called Zokwang, a trading company, to launder their counterfeits through Banco Delta Asia in Macau. When the US found out about it, we blacklisted it and had the assets for Zokwang frozen. The bank itself has barely remained in business, with its legitimate international business all but gone. Zokwang disappeared from Macau, but reportedly still operates from China. After watching its money-laundering operation frozen, Kim broke off cooperation from the six-party talks. He wants to have those assets unfrozen and the bank allowed to operate once more through legitimate international channels, and refuses to re-engage until that happens.

In other words, Kim wants the proceeds from his counterfeiting ring back, as well as his money-laundering operation so that he can continue to dump millions more of these fake $100 supernotes into the world economy. He wants his Macau connection back on line so that he can continue to damage the US economically through counterfeiting operations.

North Korea will not return to the six-party talks unless we release their funds at the Macau bank -- funds that they printed themselves in their own counterfeiting ring -- and agree to allow them to continue the operation. The Times apparently endorses Kim's counterfeiting operation, since they blame George Bush for stopping the money laundering and the profit that Kim received from his efforts. That's why they deliberately skip over informing their readers for the second time of the entire context of the stalemate.

The Times has descended into a fundamentally dishonest media publication. They continually misinform their readers and show no compunction about doing so on multiple occasions just to undermine a President they don't like. This editorial and the one that preceded it are utterly indefensible.

Sphere It Digg! View blog reactions
Posted by Ed Morrissey at July 10, 2006 11:59 AM

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Tracked on July 10, 2006 10:56 PM


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