August 2004
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Day August 4, 2004

North Korea acquires nuclear missile submarines from the Moonies

Normally, you’d see headline like this on the X-Files or in an Onion parody.

Not today.

Reuters reported yesterday that North Korea is deploying sea-based nuclear missiles that can carry warheads. The source is the authoritative Jane’s Defense Weekly. The missiles appear to be based on the decommissioned Soviet R-27 ballistic missile, which was apparently acquired in the 1990’s from Russian missile specialists.

Frightening, no? It gets worse.

Apparently, the North Koreans also have 12 former Soviet submarines which had been sold for scrap metal, but retained elements of the launch systems. Refit the engines, polish the brass, fill the launch tubes, and presto, the lunatic Kim Jong Il can float a missile platform off the West Coast.

Not only did the United States not stop North Korea from developing their weapons program (because we were busy elsewhere), but now they’ve got nuclear missile submarines.

So….where did they get the submarines, you ask? Why, from Rev. Sun Myung Moon, of course! The Moonie leader, whose Unification Church owns the conservative Washington Times, and who contributes heavily to conservative Republicans, is arming North Korea. And the Defense Intelligence Agency knew about it in the mid-1990’s. You can view the declassified documents here. Much of this has been put together by John Gorenfeld, as reported in American Prospect and other sources.

Wow, this looks real. I think we’re in deep shit, because Kim Jong Il is a nutjob.

I’m also wondering what the law has to say about arms sales to foreign governments. Especially ones in the “Axis of Evil.” Or do the large campaign contributions buy Rev. Moon a “get out of jail free” card?

Michelle Malkin and her defense of internment: expert analysis

Given that I’m not an expert in the history of Japanese internment, I’m not going to blog extensively about Michelle Malkin’s new book, In Defense of Internment. She has a point that civil libertarians do the country a disservice by automatically comparing every contemporary counter-terrorism measure to WWII atrocities, but beyond this it seems like her defense of Japanese internment is based on shaky historical grounds at best.

Eric Muller (of isthatlegal.org) is guest-blogging at Volokh Conspiracy on the book, and journalist David Neiwert also has an excellent and detailed analysis. This is the material I’m following right now, and suggest that others read it as well, in tandem with Malkin’s new book.