“The axis of evil lost a charter member this weekend,” said The Wall Street Journal in an editorial, as the U.S. took North Korea off its list of state sponsors of terrorism. In return, North Korea—which has “broken every disarmament promise” it has ever made—agreed to let international inspectors verify that it’s giving up its nuclear program. But that only applies to “declared nuclear sites,” so the deal is toothless.
Coming after weeks of “saber rattling” from Pyongyang, the deal’s “optics are terrible” for the U.S., said Victor Cha in The Washington Post. But despite its flaws and North Korea’s duplicity, President Bush is probably leaving his successor “the remnants of a workable nuclear disablement process rather than a full-blown crisis.” That’s progress.
Whether or not it was “the right call,” said Shmuel Rosner in Commentary online, delisting Pyongyang strips the terrorism list of any vestiges of “moral authority”—nothing changed to merit the move. Still, North Korea “is not going to gain a lot, practically speaking,” as the U.S. and U.N. will keep their economic sanctions in place.
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- Why China's Communist Party is headed for collapse
- 31 TV shows to watch in 2014
- Why Texas Republicans may want to cool the anti-Obama land-grab talk
- He said he was leaving. She ignored him.
- How to make perfect fried rice in 6 easy steps
- Why the poor's investment of choice is so alarming
- What would a U.S.-Russia war look like?
- Why atheism doesn't have the upper hand over religion
- Obama doesn't have a manhood problem — but conservatives certainly do
- Why we need a maximum wage
Subscribe to the Week