North Korea has nuclear weapons, something that won’t change anytime soon. As bad as this is, recognizing that status in a way that paves the road for South Korea to follow suit would be even worse.
Washington must present a credible threat to Pyongyang, while leaving the door open to talks.
With the July 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action diminishing the near-term prospect of an Iranian nuclear bomb, most proliferation prognosticators would likely pick South Korea, Japan, or perhaps Taiwan as the next place that could opt to develop nuclear weapons.
What are the timing implications of North Korea's latest missile test?
North Korea’s most recent missile launch highlights the advancement of the country’s weapons program and the urgent need for U.S.-China cooperation to address this growing regional security threat.
South Korea’s ongoing political crisis is making it difficult to respond effectively to North Korean provocations.
North Korea test-fired a missile on the morning of February 12, a primary objective of which was to improve the survivability of its nuclear weapons and missiles. But it also seems that North Korea had other goals in mind when testing this new mobilized solid-fuel missile.
If President Trump decides he wants business as usual with North Korea, he will be playing a losing hand. More progress is likely to be made if he plays the role of peacemaker rather than disrupter.
U.S. President Trump has indicated that he will increase pressure on China to help tackle the nuclear threat posed by North Korea, but further pressure could lead to erratic and dangerous responses from North Korea.
Until or unless Seoul abandons or downgrades it, the THAAD system will almost certainly remain a major irritant in China’s relations with its Northeast Asian neighbors for the foreseeable future.