Nuclear Policy News

Nuclear Policy News – May 17, 2017

Nuclear Policy News – May 17, 2017



Japan, U.S. Agree to Keep Up Pressure on Pyongyang, Say Dialogue Off Table For Now
Japan Times

US Intelligence Takes Increased North Korean Saber Rattling Seriously
Voice of America

Ambassador Nikki Haley Delivers Remarks before UN Security Council Consultations on DPRK
United States Mission to the United Nations


Seoul says it wants to reopen communication with North
Al Jazeera
South Korean announcement appears to indicate a ‘softer position’ as UN Security Council weighs sanctions on Pyongyang. "Our most basic stance is that communication lines between South and North Korea should open," Lee Duk-haeng, a spokesman for the South's unification ministry, told reporters on Wednesday.

Japan, U.S. Agree to Keep Up Pressure on Pyongyang, Say Dialogue Off Table For Now
Japan Times
Tokyo and Washington agreed Tuesday to continue to exert pressure on Pyongyang and beef up their trilateral cooperation with Seoul in reining in its nuclear and missile programs, while stressing that dialogue remained out of the question for the moment.

South Korea’s Moon says ‘high possibility’ of conflict with North as missile crisis builds
The comments came hours after the South, which hosts 28,500 U.S. troops, said it wanted to reopen a channel of dialogue with North Korea as Moon seeks a two-track policy, involving sanctions and dialogue, to try to rein in its neighbor.



Iran’s re-engagement with the world at stake in Friday presidential vote
Seeking a second term, pragmatist President Hassan Rouhani, 68, remains the narrow favorite, but hardline rivals have hammered him over his failure to boost an economy weakened by decades of sanctions. Many Iranians feel a 2015 agreement he championed with major powers to lift sanctions in return for curbing Iran's nuclear program has failed to produce the jobs, growth and foreign investment he said would follow.

Iran Air Sees Benefits of Nuclear Deal: 4 New ATR Aircraft Arrive
Financial Tribune
Tehran's Mehrabad Airport on Wednesday saw the touch-down of four brand new ATR 72-600 planes that joined the rejuvenating fleet of Iranian aircraft.


‘You’ve got Russia and NK to think about’ – The view from Britain’s nuclear war town
Helensburgh on Scotland's west coast is home to the UK's nuclear weapons - but do the people living there want them? Here is an inside look from locals and politicians who live near the Naval Base near Faslane.



US Intelligence Takes Increased North Korean Saber Rattling Seriously
Voice of America
“We have assessed this as a very significant, potentially existential threat to the United States that has to be addressed,” Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats told lawmakers during a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing last week on worldwide threats. “It is the highest priority, one of the highest, if not the highest priority of the intelligence community at this time,” Coats added.

U.S. aims to swag China on new North Korea sanctions after test
The United States said on Tuesday it believed it could persuade China to impose new U.N. sanctions on North Korea following its latest ballistic missile test and warned that Washington would also target and "call out" countries supporting Pyongyang.

Ambassador Nikki Haley Delivers Remarks before UN Security Council Consultations on DPRK
United States Mission to the United Nations
“You are either with North Korea or you are not...We are going to send a very strong, unified message to North Korea: that the international community wants to support you, but as long as you test and as long as you continue your nuclear program, you are on an island by yourself.” -Ambassador Nikki Haley



Missile Defense 101: North Korea Could Hit with Little Warning
Military Times, Eric Talmadge
The scenario has become pretty familiar by now. Sometime in the early morning, a missile roars off its launcher in North Korea and flies off — to a splash zone somewhere in the Pacific Ocean. But what if Pyongyang wasn't just testing its hardware or drilling its troops? How long would it take to hit its real-world, primary targets? Two experts talk to The Associated Press about what would happen if North Korea fired at targets near and far.

Take a lesson from the Cold War to work with North Korea
Defense News, Robert Haffa
The key to the case studies examined in Cold War American foreign policy was illustrating the use or misuse of historical analogies decision-makers were referencing in their choices, and making transparent how those historical cases did or did not fit the issue at hand. A similar methodology might prove useful to U.S. decision-makers currently pondering American foreign policy objectives and instruments in dealing with the nuclear weapons threat from North Korea.

Trump and Moon in Harmony for Now
38 North, Leon V. Sigal
While there are ample grounds for skepticism, the United States, South Korea and Japan may all be acting in concert to inch toward dialogue with Pyongyang—one of those rare moments when progress may be possible.

Congress and the Administration Must Reassess Failing Missile Defense Programs
Real Clear Defense, Gregory T. Kiley
The U.S. Army’s Integrated Air and Missile Battle Command System (IBCS) a program that points to broken processes. While the goals of the program are laudable and important to the warfighter, in development, execution, and oversight, the Department of Defense might be best served by hitting the pause button, culling some well-needed lessons learned, and resetting.

North Korea’s Hackers Fund Nuclear, Missile Programs By Stealing From Banks, Others
Newsweek, Greg Price
Hackers tied to North Korea are suspected in Friday’s global ransomware attack that infected roughly 300,000 machines in about 150 countries. Kim’s power and reach extend well beyond the country’s borders and include major hacking and cyberwarfare capabilities that in turn have helped fund the North’s defense programs.


Did North Korea Just Get the Ability to Nuke Seattle?
The Daily Beast, Gordon G. Chang
On Sunday morning, North Korea launched what it called a “new ground-to-ground medium long-range strategic ballistic rocket.” Pyongyang might have been uncharacteristically modest. The new solid-fuel “Hwasong-12” could be an intercontinental ballistic missile. Whether the missile is an ICBM—there is considerable disagreement about its range—the Kim regime is making fast progress.

What Would Happen If You Lived In A Nuclear Winter
Australia News
Thanks to sophisticated weather models built to analyze global warming, we know that even a relatively small nuclear skirmish would be extremely bad news. Simulations of full-scale war between smaller nuclear-armed countries suggest that a hundred multimegaton bombs would be exchanged, and the simultaneous detonation of a hundred nuclear devices would be bad for you even if you were on the other side of the globe.

Shadow Brokers Have North Korean, Russian Nuclear Program Data, Hackers say
The hacker group that is believed to have leaked NSA spying software last month offered to sell code that could be used to hack into phones, computers and software around the world. On top of the proposed sales, the Shadow Brokers stated they would conduct a monthly data “dump” beginning in June, dangling the idea that they are in possession of Russian, Chinese, North Korean and Iranian nuclear and missile programs data



Debate: Modernization of Nuclear Missiles
The Project on Nuclear Issues (PONI) and Ploughshares Fund are pleased to invite you to the second in a debate series on a range of nuclear challenges and policy decisions the Trump administration will face in 2017. Participants will be asked to address the following statement: Resolved – Current plans to rebuild the U.S. nuclear arsenal are excessive, and the new ICBM and cruise missile should be cancelled or substantially curtailed.

The event is Tuesday, May 23, 2017 from 4:30-7:00pm at CSIS. Please RSVP here:



Monday's Top Nuclear Policy News


North Korea Lawmaker: Need Nukes Because of US Threat
New York Times

Nobody will trust U.S. to engage in long-term negotiation: Zarif
Tehran Times

U.S. officials try to ease concerns Trump may quit Iran deal

Tillerson: US prefers diplomacy with NKorea, but has options
Associated Press

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