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Bipartisan concern about North Korea policy
Senate rumblings come amid report of ailing Kim Jong Il
WASHINGTON - Bush administration efforts to achieve nuclear disarmament in North Korea are not working and should be reconsidered, Democrats and Republicans on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee said Tuesday.
Those views were aired as a senior U.S. intelligence official familiar with Korean affairs told NBC News that North Korean leader Kim Jong Il "is not in good health" and while "nothing is imminent, everyone is getting prepared."
The health issues are related to his heavy drinking "and we are talking about hard liquor and not beer," said the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity.
If Kim chooses one of his sons to run North Korea's military, the source said, it would be a sign to "watch carefully" for a transition.
In the Senate, meanwhile, Republican Sen. Chuck Hagel of Nebraska said that “obviously, we’ve not seen progress here. Something is not working.”
Sen. Joseph Biden of Delaware, the ranking Democrat on the foreign relations committee, said, “The administration policy has been a failure.”