As relations with North Korea show signs of improvement two recent articles have brought to the fore old and unconfirmed allegations of North Korean state-sponsored counterfeiting. Both the August 24 issue of The Independent and the September issue of Vanity Fair advance arguments for North Korea’s guilt and do little to hide their desire for the U.S. to take a more aggressive approach to that nation.
North Korea, it is often said, is a criminal state. One of the more persistent stories supporting that allegation is that the North Koreans are counterfeiting U.S. currency. Through repetition, the claim has taken on an aura of proven fact. This in turn has been cited as justification for everything from imposing punitive measures against North Korea to suggesting that the nation cannot be trusted as a partner in nuclear negotiations.