Jeffrey LewisInspectors or Rock Stars?

IAEA inspectors have confirmed that the NORKs have shut down 15-20 MWt reactor at Yongbyon.

That’s a welcome bit of news, as they go about verifying the freeze that North Korea will place on five of its nuclear facilities (the three reactors, plus the fuel fabrication and reprocessing facilities).

But what really struck me is the rock star treatment the IAEA is giving the inspection team, with 18 color photographs showing the inspectors gearing up, checking in at the Vienna airport, checking in at the Beijing Airport, etc.

(The photograph above is from AP. Delegation head Adel Tolba is doing an excellent Mick Jagger, with the cig dangling from his lip.)

Of course, the work these folks do is really important, so it is cool to see them get the attention they deserve.

Still, I hope they don’t let all the attention go to their heads, because this is the guest house (at right) they stayed at last time. Not much room for the fine art of hotel expressionism—though no harm, I suppose, in throwing the television through the window.

Rock on.


  1. M

    is that Sly Stallone?

  2. siddharth

    The antismoking Nazis have pulled the photo with the dangling cig 🙁

  3. Robot Economist (History)

    Call me a nerd, but I’ve wanted to be an verification inspector since I was a kid. There is a certain rock star quality to the job—all the travel and roadies without the crowds or time in the studio.