Pyongyang's latest nuclear test makes the potential for cooperation between China and North Korea poorer than ever, and from Washington's perspective, that constitutes progress.
Successive American administrations have failed to understand that the North Korea is not prepared to give up its nuclear weapons. The only hope for a shift in North Korea's behavior seems to be an eventual successor to Kim Jong Il.
The North Korean launch of its Taeopodong-2 missile and its second nuclear test have exposed the futility of the six-party talks and, in particular, the much-hyped myth of China's value as a partner on strategic matters.
North Korea's recent nuclear test seems to erase any progress in six years of multilateral negotiations. The United States can still pressure North Korea, but it will need China's cooperation.
The Obama administration's push for securing ratification of the CTBT is a welcome change in US policy, but will not guarantee the CTBT's entry into force. Both nuclear and non-nuclear-weapon states as well as civil society must contribute to efforts to seek US ratification of the CTBT and pressure hold-out states to do the same.
As North Korea defies international calls to abandon its nuclear ambitions, the international community increasingly looks to the United States and China to lead the effort to reign in the Kim regime.
Experts discussed the key technical and policy developments relating to the CTBT over the past decade, including the maintenance of the U.S. arsenal in the absence of testing and capabilities to detect and deter nuclear test explosions.
Experts discussed critical developments in these key countries and how their nuclear ambitions will affect efforts to curb the spread of nuclear appetites and weapons around the world.
The Obama administration would do well to take time out and think through its longer term approach to Pyongyang.
Although China has captured the world's attention because of its impressive growth rates, its economy remains smaller than Japan's. Some analysts argue that the United States has engaged China at the expense of disengaging from Japan. Japanese Ambassador to the United States, Ichiro Fujisaki, offer a perspective on Japan's role in Asia.