By Gary Samore, August 31, 2018
Destruction of North Korea's Punggye-ri Nuclear Test Site. Photo credit: Voice of America
Any verification regime for eliminating North Korean nuclear weapons is likely to involve uncertainty. But a degree of uncertainty might be an acceptable price to pay.
Read more: North Korean verification: Good enough for government work?
Issue: Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists Volume 74 Issue 5 Keywords: International Atomic Energy Agency, North Korea, ballistic missiles, fissile material, nuclear weapons, verification Topics: Nuclear Risk, Nuclear Weapons
I would offer that NK is apparently, even inadvertently, moving towards precipitating a “forced pre-emptive first-strike condition” in this South East Asian region of the international atomic arms race. There is reason to recognize the developing potential for the combination of sophisticated high explosive delivery systems and a ruthless governmentcapable of using them, to create a forced condition requiring “striking first before being struck”. The combination of a leadership that has demonstrated deadly actions, against disfavored high ranking officers and even family members, and modern long range weapons can readily be viewed as an unacceptable condition…especially by those who have… Read more »
Gary Samore is executive director for research at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at the Harvard Kennedy School. From 2009 to 2013, he served as President Obama’s White House coordinator for weapons of mass destruction....
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