Two U.S. senior congressional researchers say Washington could bring criminal charges against North Korean leader Kim Jong-il over his country’s alleged counterfeiting of U.S. dollars. The two authors of a Congressional Research Service report say the U.S.’s increasing keenness to back up its allegations with legal evidence is fueling speculation that it is considering going after Kim.

Well, that would certainly mark a decisive policy shift — one that it would extraordinarily difficult for future presidents to reverse.  “Earthquake” might be more like it.  The effect on the U.S. relationship with both Koreas could be dramatic.  South Korea would be forced to choose.  North Korea would come under very stong pressure.  It would likely mean an abandonment of our fruitless efforts to talk Kim out of his bomb, shifting toward treating Kim himself as the problem.

Image from here.


  1. Yes, unlikely, but the implications would be huge for diplomacy with him, as it was for Noriega, and as it is even for Ahmedinejad, who is wanted for murder in Europe. Even Europe can’t tolerate a wanted murderer on its soil.

    And if he was captured, say by an unexpectedly cooperative US ally, it’s much more likely he’d be tried both for counterfeiting, and then for crimes against humanity afterward.

    The real message is one of accountability for one’s crimes.