North Korea has executed the uncle of leader Kim Jong Un, declaring him a traitor who tried to overthrow the state.
A few days ago Pyongyang announced that Jang Song Thaek (long considered the country's No. 2 power) had been removed from all his posts because of allegations of corruption, drug use, gambling, womanizing and leading a "dissolute and depraved life."
A tribunal examined Jang's crimes, including "attempting to overthrow the state by all sorts of intrigues and despicable methods with a wild ambition to grab the supreme power of our party and state."
The report called him "a traitor to the nation" and "worse than a dog."
Jang was seen as helping Kim Jong Un consolidate power after the death of his father, Kim Jong Il, two years ago.
North Korea's personnel reshuffle is a sign of Kim Jong Un's growing confidence, but the removal of such an important part of the North's government -- seen by outsiders as the leading supporter of Chinese-style economic reforms -- could create dangerous instability or lead to a miscalculation or attack on the South.
Tensions are still high on the Korean Peninsula following a torrent of threats in March and April by Kim Jong Un's government against Washington, Seoul and Tokyo, including vows of missile and nuclear strikes and warnings that Pyongyang would restart nuclear bomb fuel production.
Jang was married to Kim Jong Un's aunt, Kim Kyong Hui, the younger sister of Kim Jong Il. He was earlier described by state media as "abusing his power," being "engrossed in irregularities and corruption," and taking drugs and squandering money at casinos while undergoing medical treatment in a foreign country.
Christmas is in my heart 12 months a year -and thanks to Visa it's in my bills 12 months as well!
Live Long and Prosper….