• Baden

    I've been ambiguous about Trump from the start partly for that reason. Or to put it this way: First of all the admonishment 'bad' or 'evil' is pretty useless in any discussion of almost any politician. Without qualification, it's just too reductive. So, bad or evil how? We need to be specific. And this is especially important with Trump because the way he's 'bad' as a politician differs so much from the way other politicians are 'bad'. Even his dishonesty is of a different class.

    And that's the segueway into my second point, it's not only the difference, it's the opposition—almost everything that's 'bad' about Trump is also 'good' in some other way when looked at from a different perspective relative to a standard politician. I don't mean this in terms of degree—I'm not proposing a balancing equivalence just highlighting how Trump functions politically as an obverse to a standard that illuminates characteristics of the standard which might otherwise remain obscure.

    So, zooming out on Trump as a political function you might judge him, despite already identifying almost everything specific he has done as negative, as overall actually a positive. And I think this not only applies to his presidency as a whole but to specific tasks / goals of his presidency which can be individuated into smaller micro-tasks. As in, he might fail many micro-tasks, e.g. this summit, and yet succeed at the macro-task, nuclear disarmament of the DPRK and peace in the region. The whole is not necessarily the sum of its parts with Trump whereas for other politicians it is to a more predictable extent.

    So then, zooming out further you might say this very situation where standard politics is problematized by the arrival of an interesting if unstable alternative is itself good. Maybe it opens up the conceptual space for imagining a type of politician who is the obverse of the obverses, so to speak. Who's good where Trump is bad and also good where a standard politician is bad.

    Or there'll be a nuclear holocaust in Korea followed by WWIII and we all die. Who knows with Trump? :)
  • Baden
    That's the grand prize, not a prerequisite to begin the talks.Hanover

    That's just wrong. The commitment would be basic progress on what they've said before. What they said in the text they've been saying since 1992! It's a nothing-burger. The grand prize would be actual disarmament and preceding that concrete steps towards that goal.

    He put that on the table, but it hardly means the exercises won't occur if there's not compliance by the North Koreans.Hanover

    He didn't put it on the table. He gave it to them after they left the table. There's a big difference. And he can't take it back so easily. These things are planned way in advance. You can't just cancel a huge military exercise and then a couple of days before it had been scheduled put it on again. Doesn't work that way.

    A reckless and impulsive person doesn't win the presidency.Hanover

    So, it was a robot that won and the real Donald Trump is locked up in the boot of a car somewhere? :) Look, it's about degree. Me saying that Trump was impulsive and somewhat reckless in this instance does not mean I impute a level of impulsiveness or recklessness to him that would have made it impossible or even unlikely for him to win the presidency. That's just a bad argument.

    If the point of the summit was to denounce Kim as evil personified in the fashion of typical American diplomacy, then it was a failure.Hanover

    You failed to notice that space in there between excessive praise and excessive denunciation. I'm arguing a neutral and dignified approach would have been better. That you shouldn't hand out love candy to sociopathic murderers in a political context is not to say you need to hit them over the head with a big stick every time you meet them.

    Nothing has been given away. Everything said can be rescinded.Hanover

    That you can rescind stuff doesn't mean you didn't give it away. In fact, unless you're rescinding it from yourself, which isn't logical, it's a condition of being able to rescind something that you actually did give it away. But semantics aside, sure, the position is (mostly) not irreversible, only he's made things harder for himself, that's all I'm saying.

    We're on the first few feet of the marathon.Hanover

    Time for a strategic concession, methinks. Agreed!
  • Baden

    I think at this point we're not much in disagreement over the basic facts but more over the likely outcome and therefore the justifiability of the route there. You're seeing the glass fuller than I am.

    That's a fair point. I didn't watch the stickman psychos video yet, but I soon will in order to understand everything about you. :joke: :fire:
  • unenlightened
    Anyone want to factcheck this timeline?

    1985: North Korea signs Nuclear NonProliferation Treaty
    1992: North Korea signs historic agreement to halt nuclear program! (#1)
    1994: North Korea signs historic agreement to halt nuclear program! (#2)
    1999: North Korea signs historic agreement to end missile tests
    2000: North Korea signs historic agreement to reunify Korea! Nobel Peace Prize is awarded
    2005: North Korea declares support for "denuclearization" of Korean peninsula
    2005: North Korea signs historic agreement to halt nuclear program and "denuclearize"! (#3)
    2006: North Korea declares support for "denuclearization" of Korean peninsula
    2006: North Korea again support for "denuclearization" of Korean peninsula
    2007: North Korea signs historic agreement to halt nuclear program! (#4)
    2007: N&S Korea sign agreement on reunification
    2010: North Korea commits to ending Korean War
    2010: North Korea announces commitment to "denuclearize"
    2010: North Korea again announces commitment to "denuclearize"
    2011: North Korea announces plan to halt nuclear and missile tests
    2012: North Korea announces halt to nuclear program
    2015: North Korea offers to halt nuclear tests
    2016: North Korea again announces support for "denuclearization
  • Benkei
    While they said that, they did this (from Wikipedia):

    Phase I
    1956: The Soviet Union begins training North Korean scientists and engineers, giving them "basic knowledge" to initiate a nuclear program.
    1959: North Korea and the USSR sign a nuclear cooperation agreement.
    1962: The Yongbyon Nuclear Scientific Research Center opens.
    1965: The Yongbyon IRT-2000 research reactor reaches a power rating of 2 MW.
    1974: The Yongbyon IRT-2000 research reactor reaches a power rating of 4 MW.

    Between the late 1970s and early 1980s North Korea begins uranium mining operations at various locations near Sunchon and Pyongsan.

    Phase II
    1980–1985: North Korea builds a factory at Yongbyon to refine yellowcake and produce fuel for reactors.
    1984: The DPRK completes construction of a "Radiochemical laboratory", which is actually a reprocessing plant used to separate plutonium from spent nuclear fuel at the Yongbyon site.
    1984–1986: North Korea completes construction on a 5 MWe gas-cooled, graphite-moderated nuclear reactor for plutonium production. North Korea also commences with the construction of a second 50 MWe nuclear reactor.
    1987: The Yongbyon IRT-2000 research reactor reaches a power rating of 8 MW.

    Through satellite photos, the U.S. learns of new construction at a nuclear complex near the North Korean town of Yongbyon. U.S. intelligence analysts suspect that North Korea, which had signed the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) in 1985 but had not yet allowed inspections of its nuclear facilities, is in the early stages of building a nuclear bomb.

    In response, the U.S. pursues a strategy in which North Korea's full compliance with the NPT would lead to progress on other diplomatic issues, such as the normalization of relations.

    December 1990: North Korea conducts 70–80 high-explosives tests at its Yongbyon facility.
    1992: In May, for the first time, North Korea allows a team from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). The Agency inspection finds inconsistencies with North Korea declarations. Hans Blix, head of the IAEA, and the U.S. suspect that North Korea is secretly using its five-megawatt reactor and reprocessing facility at Yongbyon to turn spent fuel into weapons-grade plutonium. Before leaving, Blix arranges for fully equipped inspection teams to follow.

    The inspections do not go well. Over the next several months, the North Koreans repeatedly block inspectors from visiting two of Yongbyon's suspected nuclear waste sites, and IAEA inspectors find evidence that the country is not revealing the full extent of its plutonium production.

    1993: In March, North Korea threatens to withdraw from the NPT. Facing heavy domestic pressure from Republicans who oppose negotiations with North Korea, President Bill Clinton appoints Robert Gallucci to start a new round of negotiations. After 89 days, North Korea announces it has suspended its withdrawal. (The NPT requires three months notice before a country can withdraw.)

    In December, IAEA Director-General Blix announces that the agency can no longer provide "any meaningful assurances" that North Korea is not producing nuclear weapons.

    12 October 1994: the United States and North Korea signed the "Agreed Framework": North Korea agreed to freeze its plutonium production program in exchange for fuel oil, economic cooperation, and the construction of two modern light-water nuclear power plants. Eventually, North Korea's existing nuclear facilities were to be dismantled, and the spent reactor fuel taken out of the country.

    26 October 1994: IAEA Chairman Hans Blix tells the British House of Commons' Foreign Affairs Select Committee the IAEA is "not very happy" with the Agreed Framework because it gives North Korea too much time to begin complying with the inspections regime.

    Phase III
    18 March 1996: Hans Blix tells the IAEA's Board of Governors North Korea has still not made its initial declaration of the amount of plutonium they possess, as required under the Agreed Framework, and warned that without the declaration IAEA would lose the ability to verify North Korea was not using its plutonium to develop weapons.
    October 1997: spent nuclear fuel rods were encased in steel containers, under IAEA inspection.
    31 August 1998: North Korea launched a Paektusan-1 space launch vehicle in a launch attempt of its Kwangmyŏngsŏng-1 satellite. U.S. military analysts suspect satellite launch is a ruse for the testing of an ICBM. This missile flew over Japan causing the Japanese government to retract 1 billion in aid for two civilian light-water reactors.

    3–5 October: On a visit to the North Korean capital Pyongyang, US Assistant Secretary of State James Kelly presses the North on suspicions that it is continuing to pursue a nuclear energy and missiles programme. Mr Kelly says he has evidence of a secret uranium-enriching program carried out in defiance of the 1994 Agreed Framework. Under this deal, North Korea agreed to forsake nuclear ambitions in return for the construction of two safer light water nuclear power reactors and oil shipments from the US.
    16 October: The US announces that North Korea admitted in their talks to a "clandestine nuclear-weapons" program.
    17 October: Initially the North appears conciliatory. Leader Kim Jong-il says he will allow international weapons inspectors to check that nuclear facilities are out of use.
    20 October: North-South Korea talks in Pyongyang are undermined by the North's nuclear program "admission". US Secretary of State Colin Powell says further US aid to North Korea is now in doubt. The North adopts a mercurial stance, at one moment defiantly defending its "right" to weapons development and at the next offering to halt nuclear program in return for aid and the signing of a non-aggression pact with the US. It argues that the US has not kept to its side of the Agreed Framework, as the construction of the light water reactors—due to be completed in 2003—is now years behind schedule.
    14 November: US President George W Bush declares November oil shipments to the North will be the last if the North does not agree to put a halt to its weapons ambitions.
    18 November: Confusion clouds a statement by North Korea in which it initially appears to acknowledge having nuclear weapons. A key Korean phrase understood to mean the North does have nuclear weapons could have been mistaken for the phrase "entitled to have", Seoul says.
    4 December: The North rejects a call to open its nuclear facilities to inspection.
    12 December: The North pledges to reactivate nuclear facilities for energy generation, saying the Americans' decision to halt oil shipments leaves it with no choice. It claims the US wrecked the 1994 pact.
    13 December: North Korea asks the UN's International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to remove seals and surveillance equipment – the IAEA's "eyes and ears" on the North's nuclear status—from its Yongbyon power plant.
    22 December: The North begins removing monitoring devices from the Yongbyon plant.
    24 December: North Korea begins repairs at the Yongbyon plant. North-South Korea talks over reopening road and rail border links, which have been struggling on despite the increased tension, finally stall.
    25 December: It emerges that North Korea had begun shipping fuel rods to the Yongbyon plant which could be used to produce plutonium.
    26 December: The IAEA expresses concern in the light of UN confirmation that 1,000 fuel rods have been moved to the Yongbyon reactor.
    27 December: North Korea says it is expelling the two IAEA nuclear inspectors from the country. It also says it is planning to reopen a reprocessing plant, which could start producing weapons grade plutonium within months.

    Phase IV
    10 January: North Korea announces it will withdraw from the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
    5 February: North Korea says it has reactivated its nuclear facilities and their operations are now going ahead "on a normal footing".
    12 February: The IAEA finds North Korea in breach of nuclear safeguards and refers the matter to the UN security council.
    24 February: North Korea fires a missile into the sea between South Korea and Japan.
    10 March: North Korea fires a second missile into the sea between South Korea and Japan in as many weeks.
    12 April: In a surprise move, North Korea signals it may be ready to end its insistence on direct talks with the US, announcing that "if the US is ready to make a bold switchover in its Korea policy for a settlement of the nuclear issue, [North Korea] will not stick to any particular dialogue format".
    18 April: North Korea announces that it has started reprocessing its spent fuel rods. The statement is later amended to read that Pyongyang has been "successfully going forward to reprocess" the rods.
    24 April: American officials say Pyongyang has told them that it now has nuclear weapons, after the first direct talks for months between the US and North Korea in Beijing end a day early.
    28 April: US Secretary of State Colin Powell says North Korea made an offer to US officials, during the talks in Beijing, to scrap its nuclear programme in exchange for major concessions from the United States. He does not specify what those concessions are, but reports say that Pyongyang wants normalised relations with the US and economic assistance. Mr Powell says Washington is studying the offer.
    5 May: North Korea demands the US respond to what it terms the "bold proposal" it made during the Beijing talks.
    sound familiar?
    12 May: North Korea says it is scrapping a 1992 agreement with the South to keep the peninsula free from nuclear weapons – Pyongyang's last remaining international agreement on non-proliferation.
    9 June: North Korea says publicly that it will build a nuclear deterrent, "unless the US gives up its hostile policy".
    13 June: South Korea's Yonhap News Agency says North Korean officials told the US on 30 June that it had completed reprocessing the fuel rods.
    18 June: North Korea says it will "put further spurs to increasing its nuclear deterrent force for self-defence".
    9 July: South Korea's spy agency says North Korea has started reprocessing a "small number" of the 8,000 spent nuclear fuel rods at Yongbyon.
    2 October: North Korea announces publicly it has reprocessed the spent fuel rods.
    16 October: North Korea says it will "physically display" its nuclear deterrent.
    9 December: North Korea offers to "freeze" its nuclear programme in return for a list of concessions from the US. It says that unless Washington agrees, it will not take part in further talks. The US rejects North Korea's offer. President George W Bush says Pyongyang must dismantle the programme altogether.

    2 January: South Korea confirms that the North has agreed to allow a group of US experts, including a top nuclear scientist, visit Yongbyon nuclear facility.
    10 January: The unofficial US team visits the North's "nuclear deterrent" facility at Yongbyon.
    22 January: US nuclear scientist Siegfried Hecker tells Congress that the delegates visiting Yongbyon were shown what appeared to be weapons-grade plutonium, but he did not see any evidence of a nuclear bomb.
    3 February: North Korea reports that the next round of six-party talks on the nuclear crisis will be held on 25 February.
    25 February: Second round of six nation talks end without breakthrough in Beijing.
    23 May: The UN atomic agency is reported to be investigating allegations that North Korea secretly sent uranium to Libya when Tripoli was trying to develop nuclear weapons.
    23 June: Third round of six nation talks held in Beijing, with the US making a new offer to allow North Korea fuel aid if it freezes then dismantles its nuclear programmes.
    2 July: US Secretary of State Colin Powell meets the North Korean Foreign Minister, Paek Nam-sun, in the highest-level talks between the two countries since the crisis erupted.
    24 July: North Korea rejects US suggestions that it follow Libya's lead and give up its nuclear ambitions, calling the US proposal a daydream.
    3 August: North Korea is in the process of developing a new missile system for ships or submarines, according to a report in Jane's Defence Weekly.
    23 August: North Korea describes US President George W Bush as an "imbecile" and a "tyrant that puts Hitler in the shade", in response to comments President Bush made describing the North's Kim Jong-il as a "tyrant".
    12 September: Clinton Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright admits North Korean "cheating" on the Agreed Framework occurred during the "Clinton Watch."
    28 September: North Korea says it has turned plutonium from 8,000 spent fuel rods into nuclear weapons. Speaking at the UN General Assembly, Vice Foreign Minister Choe Su-hon said the weapons were needed for "self-defence" against "US nuclear threat".
    14 January: North Korea says it is willing to restart stalled talks on its nuclear programme, according to the official KCNA news agency. The statement says North Korea "would not stand against the US but respect and treat it as a friend unless the latter slanders the former's system and interferes in its internal affairs".
    19 January: Condoleezza Rice, President George W Bush's nominee as secretary of state, identifies North Korea as one of six "outposts of tyranny" where the US must help bring freedom.
    10 February: North Korea says it is suspending its participation in the talks over its nuclear programme for an "indefinite period", blaming the Bush administration's intention to "antagonise, isolate and stifle it at any cost". The statement also repeats North Korea's assertion to have built nuclear weapons for self-defence.
    18 April: South Korea says North Korea has shut down its Yongbyon reactor, a move which could allow it to extract more fuel for nuclear weapons.
    1 May: North Korea fires a short-range missile into the Sea of Japan (East Sea of Korea), on the eve of a meeting of members of the international Non-Proliferation Treaty.
    11 May: North Korea says it has completed extraction of spent fuel rods from Yongbyon, as part of plans to "increase its nuclear arsenal".
    16 May: North and South Korea hold their first talks in 10 months, with the North seeking fertilizer for its troubled agriculture sector.
    25 May: The US suspends efforts to recover the remains of missing US servicemen in North Korea, saying restrictions placed on its work were too great.
    7 June: China's envoy to the UN says he expects North Korea to rejoin the six-nation talks "in the next few weeks".
    22 June: North Korea requests more food aid from the South during ministerial talks in Seoul, the first for a year.
    9 July: North Korea says it will rejoin nuclear talks, as US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice begins a tour of the region.
    12 July: South Korea offers the North huge amounts of electricity as an incentive to end its nuclear weapons programme.
    25 July: Fourth round of six-nation talks begins in Beijing.
    7 August: The talks reach deadlock and a recess is called.
    13 September: Talks resume. North Korea requests the building of the light-water reactors promised in the Agreed Framework, but the U.S. refuses, prompting warnings of a "standoff" between the parties.
    19 September: In what is initially hailed as an historic joint statement, North Korea agrees to give up all its nuclear activities and rejoin the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, while the US says it had no intention of attacking.
    20 September: North Korea says it will not scrap its nuclear programme until it is given a civilian nuclear reactor, undermining the joint statement and throwing further talks into doubt.
    7 December: A senior US diplomat brands North Korea a "criminal regime" involved in arms sales, drug trafficking and currency forgery.
    20 December: North Korea says it intends to resume building nuclear reactors, because the US had pulled out of a key deal to build it two new reactors.
    Main article: 2006 North Korean nuclear test
    12 April: A two-day meeting aimed at persuading North Korea to return to talks on its nuclear program fails to resolve the deadlock.
    26 June: A report by the Institute for Science and International Security estimates that current North Korea plutonium stockpiles is sufficient for four to thirteen nuclear weapons.
    3 July: Washington dismisses a threat by North Korea that it will launch a nuclear strike against the US in the event of an American attack, as a White House spokesman described the threat as "deeply hypothetical".
    4 July: North Korea test-fires at least six missiles, including a long-range Taepodong-2, despite repeated warnings from the international community.
    5 July: North Korea test-fires a seventh missile, despite international condemnation of its earlier launches.
    6 July: North Korea announces it would continue to launch missiles, as well as "stronger steps", if other countries were to apply additional pressure as a result of the latest missile launches, claiming it to be their sovereign right to carry out these tests. A US television network also reports that they have quoted intelligence sources in saying that North Korea is readying another Taepodong-2 long-range missile for launch.
    3 October: North Korea announces plans to test a nuclear weapon in the future, blaming "hostile US policy". Their full text can be read at BBC News.
    5 October: A US envoy directly threatens North Korea as to the upcoming test, stating "It (North Korea) can have a future or it can have these (nuclear) weapons, it cannot have them both." The envoy also mentions that any attempt to test a nuclear device would be seen as a "highly provocative act".
    6 October: The United Nations Security Council issues a statement declaring, "The Security Council urges the DPRK not to undertake such a test and to refrain from any action that might aggravate tension, to work on the resolution of non-proliferation concerns and to facilitate a peaceful and comprehensive solution through political and diplomatic efforts. Later in the day, there are unconfirmed reports of the North Korean government successfully testing a nuclear bomb."
    9 October: North Korea announces that it has performed its first-ever nuclear weapon test. The country's official Korean Central News Agency said the test was performed successfully, and there was no radioactive leakage from the site. South Korea's Yonhap news agency said the test was conducted at 10:36 a.m. (01:36 GMT) in Hwaderi near Kilju city, citing defense officials. The USGS detected an earthquake with a preliminary estimated magnitude of 4.2 at 41.311°N, 129.114°E . The USGS coordinate indicates that the location in much north of Hwaderi, near the upper stream of Oran-chon, 17 km NNW of Punggye-Yok, according to analysts reports. In an interview on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, former Secretary of State James Baker let it slip that North Korea “... had a rudimentary nuclear weapon way back in the days when I was Secretary of State, but now this is a more advanced one evidently.” He was Secretary of State between 1989 and 1992.
    10 October: Some western scientists had doubts as to whether the nuclear weapon test that took place on 9 October 2006 was in fact successful. The scientists cite that the measurements recorded only showed an explosion equivalent to 500 metric tons of TNT, as compared to the 1998 nuclear tests that India and Pakistan conducted which were 24–50 times more powerful. This could indicate that the test resulted in a fizzle. Some also speculated that the test may be a ruse using conventional explosives and nuclear material.
    14 October: The United Nations Security Council passed U.N. Resolution 1718, imposing sanctions on North Korea for its announced nuclear test on 9 October 2006 that include largely symbolic steps to hit the North Korea's nuclear and missile programs, a reiteration of financial sanctions that were already in place, as well as keeping luxury goods away from its leaders, for example French wines and spirits or jet skis. However, the sanctions do not have the full support of China and Russia. The resolution was pushed in large part by the administration of George W. Bush, whose party at the time was engaged in an important mid-term election.
    27 October: Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Yasuhisa Shiozaki, based upon U.S. intelligence, announces, "We reached the conclusion that the probability that North Korea conducted a nuclear test is extremely high." He continued on to admit that Japanese aircraft could not confirm the U.S. and South Korean reports.
    18 December: The six-party talks resume in what is known as the fifth round, second phase. After a week of negotiations, the parties managed to reaffirm the 19 September declaration, as well as reiterate their parties' stances. For more information, see six-party talks.
    13 January: North Korean official Song Il-ho was reported to have told his Japanese counterpart Taku Yamasaki that whether the North Koreans conduct a second nuclear test depends on "US actions in the future".
    16 January: In-between-round talks between North Korea and the US are held in Berlin, Germany. Certain areas of agreement have been reached, as confirmed by both sides. North Korea claims these were bilateral negotiations; the US claims these "set the groundwork for the next round of six-party talks".
    26 January: On 26 January 2007, Russian chief negotiator Alexander Losyukov told reporters that the third phase was most likely to take place in late January or early February 2007, most likely 5–8 February 2007, before the Lunar New Year.
    10 February: Reports emanating from Washington suggest that the CIA reports in 2002 that North Korea was developing uranium enrichment technology overstated or misread the intelligence. U.S. officials are no longer making this a major issue in the six-party talks.
    13 February: The fifth round of the six-party talks conclude with an agreement. Pyongyang promises to shut down the Yongbyon reactor in exchange for 50,000 metric tons of fuel aid, with more to follow upon verification that the site has been permanently disabled. IAEA inspectors will be re-admitted, and the United States will begin the process of normalizing relations with North Korea.
    19 March: The sixth round of six-party talks commences in Beijing.
    25 June: North Korea announces resolution of the banking dispute regarding US$25 million in DPRK assets in Macau's Banco Delta Asia.
    14 July: North Korea announces it is shutting down the Yongbyon reactor after receiving 6,200 tons in South Korean fuel oil aid.
    17 July: A 10-person team of IAEA inspectors confirms that North Korea has shut down its Yongbyon reactor, a step IAEA Director Mohamed ElBaradei said was "a good step in the right direction". On the same day, a second shipment of 7,500 tons of oil aid was dispatched from South Korea for the North Korea city of Nampo, part of the 50,000 tons North Korea is due to receive in exchange for shutting down the reactor, according to the February 13 agreement.
    11–13 September: Inspectors from the United States, China and Russia conduct a site visit at Yongbyon reactor to determine ways to permanently disable the reactor. U.S. delegation leader, Sung Kim, declared they "saw everything they had asked to see," State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said.[56]
    25 February: CNN chief international correspondent Christiane Amanpour toured North Korea's nuclear plant. CNN was one of only two U.S. news organizations at the facility.
    10 May: Sung Kim, the U.S. State Department's top Korea specialist, returned to South Korea by land across the heavily fortified border after collecting approximately 18,000 secret papers of Yongbyon nuclear reactor activities during a three-day visit to Pyongyang.
    26 June: North Korea hands over 60 pages of documents detailing its capabilities in nuclear power and nuclear weapons
    27 June: North Korea destroys a cooling tower at Yongbyon's main atomic reactor.
    11 October: The US removes North Korea from its State Sponsors of Terrorism list.
    5 April: North Korea's launch of its Kwangmyŏngsŏng-2 satellite, intended to broadcast "immortal revolutionary songs," ends in failure.
    14 April: Following a UN resolution denouncing its missile launch, North Korea says that it "will never again take part in such [six party] talks and will not be bound by any agreement reached at the talks." North Korea expelled nuclear inspectors from the country and also informed the IAEA that they would resume their nuclear weapons program.
    25 April: North Korea says it has reactivated its nuclear facilities.
    25 May: North Korea tests its second nuclear device.
    April: North Korea prepares to test its third nuclear device.
    13 April: North Korea's launch of its Kwangmyŏngsŏng-3 satellite which fails shortly after launch. It is intended to mark the centenary of Kim Il Sung's 100th birthday and the satellite will estimate crop yields and collect weather data as well as assess the country's forest coverage and natural resources.
    12 December: North Korea's launch of its Kwangmyŏngsŏng-3 Unit 2 satellite that is meant to replace the failed Kwangmyŏngsŏng-3 satellite, and became the 10th space power that is capable of putting satellites in orbit using its own launch vehicles. The launch came during the period when the DPRK was commemorating the first anniversary of the death of former leader Kim Jong-il and just before the first South Korean domestic launch of a satellite and the South Korean presidential election on 19 December 2012.
    5 February: South Korea's President warned that North Korea could be planning "multiple nuclear tests at two places or more".
    12 February: North Korea tests its third nuclear device.
    March–April: North Korea crisis (2013)
    20 May: North Korea claims to have nuclear weapons capable of hitting the United States.
    December: In early December, North Korea leader Kim Jong-un claimed that the country was prepared to detonate a hydrogen bomb, however significant doubts surround the claim.
    6 January: North Korea conducts its fourth nuclear test. Although the government claims it to be its first hydrogen bomb, the claim was met with significant skepticism.
    6 July: A high-level DPRK Government spokesman’s statement was made defining a more precise meaning of "denuclearization", as covering the whole Korean peninsula and its vicinity, signalling a willingness to continue negotiations on the topic.
    9 September: North Korea conducts its fifth underground nuclear test. With an estimate yield of over 10kt, it would make it the most powerful North Korean nuclear test thus far.
    26 October: United States Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said during a speech that persuading North Korea to abandon its program is "probably a lost cause" since, to North Korea, it was "their ticket to survival" and any discussions about ending their nuclear ambitions would be a "non-starter".
    6 March: North Korea launched four ballistic missiles, three of which landed 200 miles off Japan’s coastline. Supreme leader Kim Jong-un promised that the country will eventually have nuclear-armed, intercontinental ballistic missiles that can reach the continental United States, thus challenging the Trump Administration of the United States to review its policy options, including preemptive strikes or further isolation of the North Korean economy.
    15 April: at the yearly major public holiday Day of the Sun, North Korea staged a massive military parade to commemorate the 105th birth anniversary of Kim Il-sung, the country’s founder and grandfather of current leader, Kim Jong-un. The parade took place amid hot speculation in the United States, Japan, and South Korea that the country would look to also potentially test a sixth nuclear device, which it did not do.
    3 September: At 3:31 AM UTC, the United States Geological Survey reported that it had detected a magnitude 6.3 earthquake in North Korea near the Punggye-ri test site.[82] Given the shallow depth of the quake and its proximity to North Korea's primary nuclear weapons testing facility, experts concluded that the country had conducted a sixth nuclear weapon test (2017 North Korean nuclear test). North Korea claimed that they had tested a hydrogen bomb capable of being mounted on an ICBM. The independent seismic monitoring agency NORSAR initially estimated that the blast had a yield of around 120 kilotons but subsequently revised to 250 kilotons of TNT (1,000 TJ) based on a tremor of 6.1M
  • TogetherTurtle
    It almost does seem like a parody. I imagine political cartoonists are having a field day with this.
  • frank
    Goodness. The British Board of Trade is sensing some injustice.
  • Agustino
    That's a fair point. I didn't watch the stickman psychos video yet, but I soon will in order to understand everything about you. :joke: :fire:Baden
  • Erik
    So then, zooming out further you might say this very situation where standard politics is problematized by the arrival of an interesting if unstable alternative is itself good. Maybe it opens up the conceptual space for imagining a type of politician who is the obverse of the obverses, so to speak. Who's good where Trump is bad and also good where a standard politician is bad.

    Or there'll be a nuclear holocaust in Korea followed by WWIII and we all die. Who knows with Trump? :)

    Insightful analysis. I think you're on to something here.
  • raza

    Define what is "all they want". What have they got at this point and is it everything they have ever wanted?

    You've made what appears to be a simplified conclusion so I presume your answer will be straight forward.
  • Maw
    Trump apologists, or those merely amused by his antics, wanna defend this?
  • SophistiCat
    Is the argument against the easing of hostilities based on the fact that Kim is a brutal dictator? Is it more about protecting the interests of the USA in the region? Perhaps some combination of these along with additional things? For me the initial goal should be the modest one of lessening hostilities by opening up dialogue. It's a positive first step; nothing more and nothing less.Erik

    The thing is, this whole cycle of escalation/deescalation is pretty much entirely driven by NK. They ramp up the tensions, then when things almost seem to come to a head, they relent and say "let's talk." Ceremonial talks, handshakes, smiles, speeches with vague promises follow. Everybody sighs in relief: hostilities avoided! NK goes home with some tangible rewards without giving anything in return (other than deescalation of tensions, which it manufactured in the first place.) It's basically behaving like an enfant terrible that nobody knows what to do with. And there's the problem: is there anything better that can be done?
  • unenlightened
    Define what is "all they want". What have they got at this point and is it everything they have ever wanted?

    You've made what appears to be a simplified conclusion so I presume your answer will be straight forward.

    Oh it was just a stolen quote from facebook, not a philosophical thesis. It has already been alluded to, that what they want is largely a matter of status, where status confers power.
  • raza
    Ok. So you are parroting a narrative without really looking into what this "all" may mean?

    "Status" isn't providing any detail. Certainly not to qualify as "all they want".

    And who is "they" in this context? I presume you mean NK's leader?

    I would have thought every leader requires a recognition of status AS the leader from other leaders.

    Kim is the current leader of NK, is he not?

    What would be the point, with regard to negotiations, to make a show of not recognizing he is NK's leader?

    I would have thought that recognizing him as leader would have to be the first step to talking with him.

    What's the alternative to not talking? Just blowing them all up?

    So giving them "all they want" effectively only really equates to setting up talks and then talking.
  • unenlightened
    So giving them "all they want" effectively only really equates to setting up talks and then talking.raza

    I'm not going to talk to you about it any more.
  • Baden

    I'll help.

    Kim is the current leader of NK, is he not?raza

  • unenlightened
    You're giving him what he wants and getting nothing in return.
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