A map detailing Mr Kim’s “US Mainland Strike Plan” was released by the Communist dictatorship on Friday.
A South Korean news organisation, NK News, published a composite image with a map of America overlaying the original. It claimed that Mr Bush’s home state of Texas was, possibly, in North Korea’s sights.
Three other US targets appeared to have clear strategic value: Washington, DC, America’s capital; California, its most populous state; and Hawaii, a key US military outpost in the Pacific.
Yet Texans reacted with bemusement yesterday upon learning that they, too, may be in the line of fire. “Was it me?” asked Karl Rove, Mr Bush’s former aide and fellow Texan.
The former president splits his time between a house in Dallas and a ranch in Crawford, the location of which appeared closest to Mr Kim’s projected missile path.
Some Texans, however, suggested the path in fact led 95 miles south to Austin, the state’s capital, and speculated that Mr Kim had taken against the liberal enclave’s young “hipster” population.
Kirk Watson, a state senator and former mayor of the city, described Mr Kim’s threat as “the ultimate Austin-bashing legislation”. After Mr Kim was also pictured working at an Apple iMac computer, one local resident also suggested that as the “ultimate Apple fanboy”, he planned to “nuke Dell”, the PC giant, which is located nearby.
Questions were raised over how Mr Kim had obtained the computer, given that America has a trade embargo with North Korea. Apple warns buyers on its website that the export of its products to North Korea is “strictly prohibited”.
A tour operator from Wigan meanwhile said on Friday that he had received an email warning him to stay out of North Korea.
The email said US stealth bomber flights over North Korea had made the situation “critical with the outbreak of war probably only hours away”.
Dylan Harris, 34, who organises sporting trips to “unusual” locations, said he had cancelled forthcoming tours but one British client was still in the country on a golf holiday. It was not clear who the email was from. Pyongyang has said it will allow tourists to enter and exit.
“My customers know what they are getting into,” said Mr Harris.
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