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US: North Korea agrees to moratorium on nuclear program (Will Lucy pull the football again?)
Hotair ^ | 02/29/2012 | Ed Morrissey

Posted on 02/29/2012 10:59:32 AM PST by SeekAndFind

Breakthrough or breather? The US announced today that North Korea has agreed to a moratorium on nuclear tests and enrichment at the Yongbyon facility as well as long-range missiles. It’s the latest in a series of temporary truces, but at least this one has the novelty of coming under new management:

The United States said on Wednesday that North Korea had agreed to a moratorium on nuclear tests and long-range missile launches and to allow nuclear inspectors to visit its Yongbyon nuclear complex to verify a halt to all nuclear activities including uranium enrichment.

The U.S. announcement paves the way for the possible resumption of six-party disarmament negotiations with Pyongyang and follows talks between U.S. and North Korean diplomats in Beijing last week.

“To improve the atmosphere for dialogue and demonstrate its commitment to denuclearization, the DPRK has agreed to implement a moratorium on long-range missile launches, nuclear tests, and nuclear activities at Yongbyon, including uranium enrichment activities,” the State Department said in a statement.

“The DPRK has also agreed to the return of IAEA inspectors to verify and monitor the moratorium on uranium enrichment activities at Yongbyon and confirm the disablement of the 5-MW reactor and associated facilities,” it said.

Under the iron-fisted reign of Kim Jong-il, North Korea occasionally made similar agreements in order to get food and fuel from the West. The US State Department noted in its announcement that they will finalize the transport of 240,000 tons of “nutritional assistance,” which apparently helped push the new truce forward. That would indicate that the new regime run by Kim’s son Kim Jong-un is worried about instability due to famine in the transition between tyrants.

Even the Obama administration is viewing this as only an incremental and temporary step:

Hillary Rodham Clinton is calling North Korea’s agreement to suspend nuclear activities and accept a moratorium on testing “a modest step” in the right direction.

Unfortunately, it’s a step taken so often before that it’s become the North Korean version of the Hokey Pokey. At one time, the DPRK shut down Yongbyon altogther in exchange for American food and fuel, only to reactivate it when Kim Jong-il decided he wanted more leverage in negotiations. So far, there is nothing in this agreement that distinguishes it from other temporary accords, including the desperation for food and fuel from a regime that can’t even feed its own army on a consistent basis.

Still, one might expect the new kid on the block to play hardball a little longer in order to reinforce his credentials as the new Dear Unchallenged and Brutal Leader of the world’s largest prison population. Either the army has tired of brinksmanship and wants the new tyrant to start integrating the DPRK into the rest of the world, or the famine is worse than we think.


TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: northkorea; nuclearweapons; nukes

1 posted on 02/29/2012 10:59:37 AM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

2 posted on 02/29/2012 11:01:09 AM PST by TSgt (Suppose you were an idiot and suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself.)
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To: SeekAndFind
US: North Korea agrees to moratorium on nuclear program (Will Lucy pull the football again?)

When they get the food, or money they want, yes, of course they will pull the football.

3 posted on 02/29/2012 11:21:25 AM PST by Mark17 (California, where English is a foreign language)
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To: SeekAndFind
Either the army has tired of brinksmanship and wants the new tyrant to start integrating the DPRK into the rest of the world, or the famine is worse than we think

I'm betting on the latter. March is the prime time for famine, not deep winter. In winter you still have the food from the fall. However by March you have eaten through the animals slaughtered in the fall and are down to your breeding stock and seed corn. So you either starve in March, or eat the seed and breeding stock and starve in June.

The little leader is just trying to get a few months of food so he can get seeds into the ground and have some chance of pulling out of the dive. He can't play hard ball because if he has no reserves of food or fuel.

Worse everyone knows it so if he tries the old fire missiles and demand tribute they will tell him to pound sand and watch him starve. His main patron, China, is having real problems with the collapse of their real estate bubble. So they don't want a war at the moment and aren't going to back his action as they normally do. Japan is so broke they can't pay extortion any more and might just take the chance of calling his bluff. The bully bit won't work any more as the nerds are all out of lunch money. So now he will go for sympathy and see if he can get the gullible nerds to share their sandwich in exchange for false promises to not take their lunch money again next week.
4 posted on 02/29/2012 11:25:10 AM PST by GonzoGOP (There are millions of paranoid people in the world and they are all out to get me.)
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