25 March 2005

IAEA to Pyongyang: "Drop Your Pants"

North Korean ambassador to Thailand O Song Chol, in an interview with Thailand’s The Nation published March 25, said North Korea was “ready to talk peace” and “ready for war with the Americans.”

Such talk is nothing new – North Korea has for some time said it is prepared to fight the United States and fend off any invasion, but underlying the threats remains the deeper goal of signing a non-aggression pack with the United States, or better yet diplomatic ties. Note that as O was talking war in Thailand, Prime Minister Pak Pong Ju was touring Shanghai to figure out how to repeat the Chinese economic miracle in North Korea.

But O’s interview had one of the best gems of North Korean commentary. In discussing Pyongyang’s 2002 ejection of IAEA representatives in the early stages of the current nuclear crisis, O said “It was agreed that they [the inspectors] would see the testing room, but when they arrived, they demanded to see the Army’s underground facility,” adding, “It was as if they wanted us to take our pants off for them.”

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