Tuesday, December 31, 2002

Axis of Evil: Is It Real?

Last night I saw Michael Ledeen claim yet again that the Axis of Evil is more a real than a rhetorical device. (The transcript is not available yet. When it is, it will reside here.) He claims, and I agree with him, that the "Axis of Evil" is a real alliance between these three powers. Iraq, Iran, and North Korea, are acting in concert against us, and furthermore that we are now seeing an escalation of the war against our civilization that might, within the next few weeks, burgeon into an actual two-front war... that when we move against Iraq, North Korea will move against Seoul.

This presents us with a rather frightening possibility. Especially since North Korea does not fit neatly into the Islamofascist mold. It would be much simpler to be able to believe that the coming conflict is some sort of a modern Crusade: Christendom against Islam. The addition of the godless North Koreans makes the conflict quite a bit wider than that.

This is not the first time that Ledeen has said more or less the same thing. In March, on NRO, for instance. At that time, I agreed with Ledeen that Iran's people were the greatest hope in the region, but that the Iranian regime was capable of most ominous action. Now, 10 months later, Iran seems to be the more quiescent of the three evil powers. They are, however, working hand in glove with the other two powers that make up the Axis. They are certainly working with Iraq in the Middle East conflict. They may be working with Pakistan and its Nuclear program. The missing piece of the puzzle is in delivery systems. That is North Korea's strong suit. They are medium range missile experts.

It is easy to wargame a total defeat of Iraq in a few weeks. But North Korea is prepared to attack Seoul with massive force. There are estimates that they could launch over a million rounds of short and medium range missiles and mortar rounds against the South within the first 24 hours of any attack. We have tens on thousands of American troops there in their fields of fire right now. Get your seat belts tightened folks. This could be a really rough ride.