Tag Archives: north korea

North Korea’s Nuclear Test

A post concerning North Korea’s latest nuclear test is on my new website for the book my wife and I just completed. I’ve included the lead-in here and encourage you to read the whole post on that website. Continue reading

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Responding to North Korea’s Fourth Nuclear Test

Tonight’s PBS Newshour covered North Korea’s fourth nuclear test that occurred earlier today. Wendy Sherman, former Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs and advisor to Hillary Clinton’s campaign, called for further sanctions “to ensure that we not allow North Korea to blackmail the international community, but that we take resolute action to tell them, this is not acceptable.” The only problem with her call to action is that it is more of the same that has gotten us nowhere over the last thirteen years. Continue reading

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Solving “a Riddle Wrapped in a Mystery Inside an Enigma”

Most people have heard Winston Churchill’s description of Russia as “a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma.” I also suspect that most took it as I did: Who can figure out that crazy nation? So it was a real surprise … Continue reading

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Avoiding Needless Wars, Part 6: North Korea

Over the last few months, North Korea has severely tested the world’s patience. It conducted its third nuclear test, canceled the armistice ending the Korean War, threatened the US with nuclear ruin, warned foreigners to leave the country because war was imminent, cut its hotline with South Korea, and readied a missile for firing. This shrill, irrational behavior seems to confirm the conventional wisdom that North Korea is a rogue nation, run by a nut job – end of story. In that perspective, there is little we can do other than hope that our military power deters them from following through on their hair-brained threats. While there is truth in that perspective, it pays to examine some other hypotheses which, if true, would give us more effective options for reducing the risk of a needless war. Continue reading

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US Unwittingly Encouraging North Korea’s Nuclear Program

While encouraging nuclear proliferation is one of the last things we want to do, we couldn’t be doing a better job if we tried. Every time we engage in regime change, we give would-be proliferators one more reason to seek nuclear weapons of their own. What other way do they have of deterring our much more powerful military from toppling them at some future date? Continue reading

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A More Effective Approach to North Korea’s Nuclear Program

North Korea appears to have conducted its third nuclear test today, with a New York Times article stating, “a magnitude 3.9 magnitude earthquake and a magnitude 4.5 earthquake were detected in the North’s 2006 and 2009 nuclear tests. South Korean, U.S. and Japanese seismic monitoring agencies put the magnitude of Tuesday’s quake between 4.9 and 5.2.” Continue reading

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North Korea’s Nuclear Deterrent

In a recent interview, former Director of Los Alamos Siegfried Hecker made an important observation about North Korea’s nuclear weapons: “I do not believe that North Korea’s leadership has any plans to bomb the United States, its assets or allies. However, it wants to hold U.S. interests at risk of a nuclear attack to deter us from regime change and to create international leverage and diplomatic maneuvering room.” Continue reading

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