posted on Jul, 11 2009 @ 11:45 AM
"Axis of evil" is a term first used publicly by United States President George W. Bush in his State of the Union Address on January 29, 2002 to
describe governments that he accused of assisting terrorism and seeking weapons of mass destruction. President Bush named Iran, Iraq, and North Korea
in his speech. The Bush presidency has been marked by this notion as a justification for the “War on Terror.”
The phrase is attributed to former Bush speechwriter David Frum, originally as the axis of hatred, and then evil. Frum attributes the final change to
chief speechwriter, Mike Gerson.
Frum explained his rationale for creating the phrase axis of evil in his book “The Right Man: The Surprise Presidency of George W. Bush.” In the
book, Frum relates that the more he compared the Axis powers of World War II to modern "terror states," the more similarities he saw.
The Axis powers were those countries that were opposed to the Allies during World War II. The three major Axis powers - Germany, Italy, and Japan -
were part of a military alliance created at the signing of the Tripartite Pact in September 1940, which officially founded “the Axis". All three of
these nations were politically very right wing, with Germany and Italy being ruled by fascist governments and Japan having reached the point were the
military made the more important decisions instead of the country's political leaders.
In Bush's 2002 State of the Union address, a speech designed to shift the political debate from a battle against al-Qaeda to a possible confrontation
with Iraq, the president mentioned North Korea, Iraq and Iran and declared: "States like these, and their terrorist allies, constitute an axis of
evil, arming to threaten the peace of the world. By seeking weapons of mass destruction, these regimes pose a grave and growing danger. . . . In any
of these cases, the price of indifference would be catastrophic."
On May 6, 2002, future United States UN Ambassador John R. Bolton gave a speech entitled "Beyond the Axis of Evil." In it he added three more
nations to be grouped with the already mentioned "rogue states:" Libya, Syria, and Cuba. The criteria for inclusion in this grouping were: "state
sponsors of terrorism that are pursuing or who have the potential to pursue weapons of mass destruction (WMD) or have the capability to do so in
violation of their treaty obligations." The speech was widely considered as an expansion of the original axis of evil.
In January 2005, at the beginning of Bush's second term as President, the incoming Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice, made a speech regarding the
newly termed outposts of tyranny, a list of six countries deemed most repressive. This included the two remaining Axis members, as well as Cuba,
Belarus, Zimbabwe and Myanmar.
The following countries were originally labeled by the US president:
3. North Korea
These nations too were implicated, though deemed less of a threat:
Since then the USA has invaded the number one threat, Iraq, hence removing them from the list. A future attack against Iran, next on the list, is
Citation and links:
President Bush's exact statement was as follows:
[Our second goal] is to prevent regimes (terrorist) that sponsor terror from threatening America or our friends and allies with weapons of mass
destruction. Some of these regimes have been pretty quiet since September the 11th. But we know their true nature. North Korea is a regime arming with
missiles and weapons of mass destruction, while starving its citizens. Iran aggressively pursues these weapons and exports terror, while an unelected
few repress the Iranian people's hope for freedom. Iraq continues to flaunt its hostility toward America and to support terror. The Iraqi regime has
plotted to develop anthrax, and nerve gas, and nuclear weapons for over a decade. This is a regime that has already used poison gas to murder
thousands of its own citizens—leaving the bodies of mothers huddled over their dead children. This is a regime that agreed to international
inspections—then kicked out the inspectors. This is a regime that has something to hide from the civilized world. States like these, and their
terrorist allies, constitute an axis of evil, arming to threaten the peace of the world. By seeking weapons of mass destruction, these regimes pose a
grave and growing danger. They could provide these arms to terrorists, giving them the means to match their hatred. They could attack our allies or
attempt to blackmail the United States. In any of these cases, the price of indifference would be catastrophic. – George W. Bush, 2002 State of the
Unio Address,January 29, 2002
Frum, David; “The Right Man: The Surprise Presidency of George W. Bush.” (Random House, 2003)
"Axis of Evil" Authorship Settled! It was Frum and Gerson, and definitely not Bush., Timothy Noah, Slate, Jan. 9, 2003
the coalition headed by Germany, Italy, and Japan that opposed the Allied Powers in World War II. The alliance originated in a series of agreements
between Germany and Italy, followed by the proclamation of an “axis” binding Rome and Berlin (October 25, 1936), with the two powers claiming that
the world would henceforth rotate on the Rome-Berlin axis. This was followed by the German-Japanese Anti-Comintern Pact against the Soviet Union
(November 25, 1936). The connection was strengthened by a full military and political alliance between Germany and Italy (the Pact of Steel, May 22,
1939), and the Tripartite Pact signed by all three powers on September 27, 1940, Encyclopedia Britannica, “Axis Powers,” 2008