The Corner

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North Won’T Bite


Of course, the problem with TNR’s proposed agreement with the North Koreans is that the North simply won’t go for it. The North Koreans will use the peace created during a long and inconclusive negotiation process to secretly pursue their nuclear ambitions. Why? Because the North has very likely made a fundamental determination that only the possession of nuclear weapons will enable it to deter the United States. Indeed, the North Koreans likely only accepted the agreed framework in the first place because they knew they could violate it with impunity. The North Koreans knew that they would not have to quickly destroy their nuclear program. The North Koreans knew that America was actually helping them with nuclear projects they could someday turn to military purposes. And the North Koreans knew that a restricted inspections regime would allow them to cheat. Does anyone really believe that the North Koreans will now grant American inspectors free run of their vast network of secret military facilities?