The Bush declaration of an 'axis of evil' to
include North Korea is baffling.
Even many of America's European allies who
have been onboard up to now have expressed
concern over Bush's statements.
The inclusion of North Korea after the
inter-Korean reconciliation and in
the face of South Korea's "sunshine
policy" makes no sense.
No North Koreans have yet been implicated
in the WTC attacks or any other operation
by international terrorists.
It seems at most, North Korea has provided
weapons to states that have supported
terrorism themselves. But, of course, North
Korea is not alone in this, as the U.S.
has played that game many times before.
In fact, Iraq and Saddam Hussein once
benefited from American military and economic
assistance. Even Osama bin Laden was once
for all practical purposes on the U.S.
That antagonism with North Korea started
well before the Sept. 11 events. It seems
part of the Bush administration strategy
in the region. Is an Asian enemy necessary
for U.S. national interests?
The grand pronouncement against North Korea
is of no great benefit for Asian Pacific
Americans (APAs) either.
The Patriot Act has cast an atmosphere of
suspicion against members of the APA
community that has led to many cases of
The growing number of immigrants from Islamic
regions of South, Southeast and Central Asia
has given a Muslim face to the APA community.
But the problems have not been limited to the Muslim
APAs. Sikhs, Filipinos, Samoans and other
Asians with brown skins, but who are not Muslim, have
reported incidents of harassment or unfair treatment at
the hands of the authorities.
Recent statements made by United States Attorney
General John Ashcroft during a 9 November radio interview
don't help either.
In an interview with conservative Christian syndicated
columnist and radio personality Cal Thomas, Ashcroft
reportedly said: "Islam is a religion in which God
requires you to send your son to die for him. Christianity
is a faith in which God sends his son to die for you."
Statements like these can create a Crusader mentality. They
have no place coming from an official of Ashcroft's
Now, with North Korea included in the 'axis of evil' we
can expect further 'lumping' of APAs collectively as
There are real enemies of the U.S. out there. Creating
imaginary enemies, for whatever reason, is not something
we need in the new millennium. Otherwise, the 'New War'
may take us down the same tired old road.