Jeffrey LewisKorea Docs

Whatever one thinks of the editorial page, Nicholas Kralev at the Washington Times has had a pair of good stories on the document dump from North Korea.

Nicholas Kralev, “N. Korea to give nuke files to U.S.,” Washington Times, May 1, 2008. link

Nicholas Kralev, “N. Korea gives U.S. nuclear papers,” Washington Times, May 9, 2008. link

It is worth noting that Warren Strobel, no slouch himself, did some good work at the Washington Times. So much for stereotypes.


  1. anon

    Think of Moon’s interests here — North-South reconciliation and the prospects of money-making and recruitment in the North. It is not surprising that there is some daylight between the neocons and the WT on this issue.

  2. John Bragg (History)

    I still say that the Washington Times is one of the top twenty or so places to be for a journalist. Which job would you rather have, journalist for the Moonie-funded Washington Times or summarizing 500-word AP dispatches into 300 words for the Major City Metro Daily, owned by a profit-watching media conglomerate?

    If can’t land a job at the WP, NYT, WSJ, CSM or the LAT, where else is there to go for an investigative journalist?

  3. Just the Facts Ma'm

    I’m surprised no one is covering the IAEA angle. It’s laudable that the Six party talks may be slowly uncovering the extent of the DPRK’s nuclear weapons program, including eventually receiving the DPRK declaration. But unless and until the IAEA gains access to this information on past production of the reactor and certifies the declaration as accurate and provides assurance of the absence of undeclared activity, the DPRK cannot rejoin the NPT and the DPRK denuclearization has no formal international recognition.

  4. Geoffrey Forden (History)

    I have a question of about legalisms. When a country joins the NPT, it has to declare its current stock of nuclear materials but does not have to make a declaration about its past activities. What about North Korea? If it reentered the NPT, would it only have to declare its current stock and not have to make a declaration about its past activities to the international community at large? (Obviously, the Six Party talks can agree to some other arrangement; one that only has to satisfy the countries involved and if they agree on something else then it seems likely that the IAEA Board of Governors would also agree.) As I said, this is just a question of legalisms but since no country has ever left the NPT and then come back there is no precedence: it seems like an open question—and one for which North Korea might set a disturbing precedent.

  5. Lao Tao Ren (History)

    On the subject of NPT legalisms…

    India is suppose to be taking delivery of an Akula class nuclear submarine, ostensibly “leased” from Russia.

    Does the NPT have anything to say about the transfer of nuclear energy in the form of an SSN for a country that is, by all fair assessments, a violator of the NPT?

    How this Russian deal, and the pending American deal with India square with the NPT is something that I would like explained from a non-American and non-Russian perspective.

    Where is the fine print that says… it is OK to violate the NPT and still get the benefits of nuclear energy?

    Should we use India as an example for what Iranians should be allowed?

  6. Just the Facts Ma'M (History)

    Re LEgalisms:

    Whenever a non-nuclear-weapon state (NNWS) joins (or rejoins) the NPT (DPRK is a NNWS under the NPT), it must place all its nuclear material under IAEA safeguards. That includes past, current and future. There is a close precedent — South Africa joined the NPT after it had manufactured nuclear weapons and had produced HEU for many years at an unsafeguarded facility. It had to account for all past production, including the material that was in its nuclear weapons to the satisfaction of the IAEA and its Board of Govenors including the U.S.

    India never joined the NPT; thus it is not in violation of the Treaty. India certainly snubbed its nose at the NPT and the entire nonproliferation regime in 1998 by being the first country in 34 years (since 1964) to openly acquire nuclear weapons. By doing so, one could argue as a matter of policy that India should not receive foreign civil nuclear assistance. Indeed, since 1978 U.S. law has precluded such assistance. But President Bush decided to exempt India from that law; final approval by the U.S. Congress is pending. But there is also a multilateral ban on civil nuclear assistance to India dating from 1992 (as well as to other non-NPT parties Israel and Pakistan) under the 45 nation Nuclear Suppliers Group Guidelines to which the U.S. belongs. These guidelines have not been changed yet to exempt India, and probably won’t be unless and until India and the IAEA agree on a safeguards agreement – which is currently being blocked by India’s opposition parties. On submarines, the NPT bans the transfer of nuclear weapons, but says nothing about nuclear submarines. Again, one could argue that it’s bad policy to sell or lease a nuclear submarine to a non-NPT party like India, but it doesn’t violate Russia’s obligations under the Treaty. I don’t think this is the first time Russia has leased a nuclear submarine to India.