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Author`s name Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey

Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey: Axis of Evil Philosophy Revisited

After Iraq, now Iran (terrorism) and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (drug trafficking)?
The rhetoric continues and the "evidence" begins to appear. After Washington's "hard evidence" that Iraq had active nuclear and biological warfare programmes, which turned out to be documents lifted from the Internet, the same sounds are starting to be made about Iran and the DPRK.

Regarding Iran, Washington claims that intercepted telephone calls prove that there is an Al Qaeda cell working in Iran which coordinated the Riyadh bombing on may 12th. Lakhdar Brahimi, a senior UN official, was asked to convey Washington's "deep, deep concern that individuals associated with Al Qaedaplanned and directed the attack in Saudi Arabia from inside Iran".

These are serious allegations, wholly refuted by Teheran, which claims to be working against terrorism within the framework of UN guidelines, the institution derided and humiliated by Washington in its murderous and illegal campaign in Iraq.

Despite the denials, a senior figure in the Bush administration was quoted by the New York Times last week, claiming that the USA has "hard evidence" that a cell of some 12 Al Qaeda members are hiding in Iran, having come over from Afghanistan, and include Saif Adel and Saad bin Laden, the son of Osama. This allegation has been confirmed by Donald Rumsfeld, who stated at a Pentagon press conference that "There is no question but that there are Al Qaeda in Iran". As there were in New York also, and possibly still are.

Нowever, when the United States of America starts speaking about "hard evidence" the eyebrows start to lift and the suspicion begins to arise that Washington and the Pentagon are yet again lying. Before the illegal attack on Iraq, there was a ludicrous attempt in December 2002 to denigrate the Baghdad regime by claiming that yellowcake uranium had been shipped illegally to Iraq from Niger. There were even documents to back up the claim, complete with ministers' signatures on official note-paper.

Upon close examination, Mohammed El Baradei, Director of the International Atomic Energy Agency, declared the signatures to be forgeries and the paper not that in use by the Niger government. Forged documents and false accusations.

Coluin Powell's lies to the United Nations Security Council, with his "magnificent" evidence proving that Iraq had WMD, which turned out to be a doctorate thesis written twelve years previously, lifted from the Internet, was yet another sign of the Bush administration's lack of credibility, as it stooped to ever lower levels in its desperate quest to frame Saddam Hussein.

Two months on, where are the Weapons of Mass Destruction?

Against the DPRK, the armaments argument falls flat because Pyongyang openly admits that it has missiles and nuclear fuel, denying however, that it is fabricating nuclear missiles. Here, Washington uses another ploy, reports from a dissident who claims that the government is cultivating heroin producing methamphetamine to sell abroad abnd bolster the country's hard currency. The defector appeared in a Senate Committee hearing wearing a black hood, looking like some wort of medieval hangman. There is no way to back up his "evidence" nor even to ascertain who he is, whether he is from Pyongyang or Portland, Korea or Kentucky.

However, his "evidence" led the Senate Subcommittee on financial management, budget and international security to claim that there should be a "naval quarantine" imposed on Pyongyang to seize shipments. First forgery, then lies, then war crimes against civilians in Iraq and now piracy. The list grows.

The statement of Senator Peter Fitzgerald (Republican, Illinois) is a telling and chilling reminder of the naieve mindset of the Bush administration, a glimpse into how hearsay and gossip can be turned into foreign policy which shapes the lives of hundreds of thousands of people:

"I think the process of the drug ventures are in part funding their weapons programs, therefore their drug trafficking needs to be stopped in order to protect our own national security".

I think? The Bush administration looks more and more like a club of Hollywood script writers whose copy is sent on to make the film; the difference with the real Hollywood being that these films are video nasties, the murders, the war crimes, the assassinations and the mutilation being real.