2017: Strategy for Dealing with NK

Nordkorea:   06.01.2016 H-Bom Test
                  07.02.2016 Missile
Source:  The Asia-Pacific Journal | Japan Focus,   Volume 15 | Issue 15 | Number 1 | Aug 01, 2017
Mit freundlicher Erlaubnis von Japan Focus

A Strategy for Dealing with North Korea
Leon V. Sigal

North Korea is on the verge of developing boosted energy nuclear weapons with higher yield-to-weight ratios. It is test-launching mobile ICBMs and intermediate-range missiles to deliver them. It is churning out plutonium and highly enriched uranium at a rate of six or more bombs’ worth a year.

Such an unbounded North Korean weapons program poses a clear and present danger to U.S. and allied security. That makes it a matter of great urgency to negotiate a suspension of its nuclear and missile testing and fissile material production even if the North is unwilling to recommit to complete denuclearization up front.

Have no doubt about it: complete denuclearization remains the ultimate goal. But demanding that Pyongyang make that pledge or take concrete steps to that end before talks begin will only delay possible agreement, enabling it to add to its military wherewithal and bargaining leverage in the meantime.

Soon after taking office President Trump wisely resumed diplomatic engagement with Pyongyang. Those talks are now in abeyance. Restarting them is imperative. Pressure without negotiations has never worked in the past with Pyongyang and there is no reason to think it will work in a timely way now. ....

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