2002 October 16 Wednesday
North Korea working on Nukes

Some former Clinton Administration officials have cited North Korea as an example for how engagement with a hostile regime can lead to deals that prevent the spread of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction. Well, the showcase of their approach for controlling WMD proliferation is developing nuclear weapons:

North Korea has broken pledges made to the Clinton administration to give up its nuclear weapons program and has signaled it no longer will abide by the 1994 anti-nuclear accord, the Bush administration said last night.

And from another report:

At first the North Koreans balked but eventually "they acknowledged they had a secret nuclear weapons programme involving enriched uranium", one official said. "By acknowledging that, the agreed framework was essentially nullified," he said.

It should have been obvious to anyone who doesn't live in fantasy land that the North Korean regime was never going to honor its agreement to not develop nuclear weapons. The two big questions are:

  • Does the North Korean regime already have nuclear weapons?
  • How hard would it be to overthrow the North Korean regime?

Update: Jonah Goldberg provides the text of the original NY Times editorial praising the Clinton Administration's deal with North Korea to prevent the nuclear proliferation that is happening anyhow. See here and here for the editorial in two parts. Clinton Administration officials who thought this was a great agreement are now claiming that a war against Saddam Hussein's regime is unnecessary. I say we should discount the judgement of people who have track records of folly.

Share |      By Randall Parker at 2002 October 16 11:38 PM  Axis Of Evil

Matt Connolly said at October 17, 2002 10:45 AM:

I suppose we can thank the new Nobel Peace Prize winner for the good work he did in 1994 when he persuading the North Koreans not to develop nuclear weapons. Another wonderful step toward peace. They should change the name of the prize to the Neville Chamberlain Prize. After all, Kofi Annan who sat idle while Rwanda was ethnically cleansed won it last year.

I read the White House can't figure out why the North Koreans disclosed this. My best guess is that they are about to conduct an underground nuclear test.

I'll tell you, no one was home during the Clinton years. It was one big party. And now we're going to have to pay the price for years to come.

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