The PJ Tatler

North Korea to US: Brother, can you spare some grain?

It’s tough to wage nuclear Armageddon on an empty stomach.

North Korea recently took the unusual step of begging for food handouts from the foreign governments it usually threatens.

Plagued by floods, an outbreak of a livestock disease and a brutal winter, the government ordered its embassies and diplomatic offices around the world to seek help.

The request has put the United States and other Western countries in the uncomfortable position of having to decide whether to ignore the pleas of a starving country or pump food into a corrupt distribution system that often gives food to those who need it least.