Medienbericht - Nordkoreanischer Sondergesandter für die USA hingerichtet ▻https://www.deutschlandfunk.de/medienbericht-nordkoreanischer-sondergesandter-fuer-die-usa.1939.de.
Medienbericht - Nordkoreanischer Sondergesandter für die USA hingerichtet ▻https://www.deutschlandfunk.de/medienbericht-nordkoreanischer-sondergesandter-fuer-die-usa.1939.de.
la source selon dlf serait la suivante : ▻http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2019/05/31/2019053101126.html
// avec #prudence svp //
Kim Hyok-chol, who was the counterpart of U.S. Special Representative Stephen Biegun in the runup to the summit, was shot at Mirim Airport in March with four other senior officials on charges of spying for America, the source said.
Kim Jong-un is believed to have ordered the purge, which also swept up other officials in the negotiations, to contain internal unrest and mounting public dissatisfaction over the failed summit.
The source said Kim Yong-chol was sent to hard labor in Jagang Province, while Kim Song-hye of the United Front Department was sent to a political prison camp. Kim Jong-un’s interpreter at the summit, Shin Hye-yong, was accused of “tarnishing the authority” of the leader for an interpreting error and is also believed to have been sent to a prison camp.
The North Korean leader’s younger sister, Kim Yo-jong, was told to lie low. “Kim Yo-jong has not been spotted in public since the Hanoi summit,” a government official here said.
Last Suspect Freed in Kim Jong-un’s Brother’s Murder Case | News | teleSUR English
There are no other suspects held in custody now that Huong has been released, and it is expected that the case will not reach a conviction.
Doan Thi Huong, the Vietnamese woman accused of assassinating North Korea’s Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un’s brother, Kim Jong Nam, has been released from a Malaysian prison after being held for over two years.
Huong was accused of murdering Kim Jong Nam using the highly toxic VH nerve agent. After being released, Huong was taken into immigration custody until her scheduled flight to Hanoi. The formerly jailed woman stated that she wishes to pursue a career in acting and singing once she returns home.
There are no other suspects held in custody now that Huong has been released, and it is expected that the case will not reach a conviction, considering Malaysia and Vietnam are attempting to normalize tense bilateral ties.
Critics believe that the release of Huong will prevent Malaysia from raising further questions.
On April 1, Vietnam successfully convinced Malaysian prosecutors to drop the murder charge against Huong. Vietnam increase lobbying efforts after the Indonesian government successfully negotiated with Vietnam to release the other suspect, Siti Aisyah, involved in the case.
Aisyah was released and returned to Indonesia on March 11.
Both governments used either good or improving intergovernmental relations to convince Malaysia to release the accused women, who maintain that they were tricked by North Korean agents into thinking their act was a harmless prank for a hidden camera TV show.
The remaining suspects, four Korean nationals who boarded flights out of Kuala Lumpur International Airport, were also allowed to leave Malaysia in order to maintain relations with North Korea.
“The best the two suspects could have pleaded guilty for is involuntary manslaughter. Instead, they both walk off free,” Sung-Yoon Lee, the assistant professor at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, stated and added that someone should have been held culpable for the death of Kim Jong Nam.
Russie : Kim Jong-un arrive avec deux heures de retard à une cérémonie militaire
Le dirigeant nord-coréen, Kim Jong-un, a quitté Vladivostok ce matin du vendredi 26 avril. Il participait à son premier sommet avec Vladimir Poutine dont l’objectif était de renforcer les liens avec la Russie en pleine impasse diplomatique avec les États-Unis. Il rejoint donc la Corée du Nord à bord de son train blindé, après avoir assisté à une cérémonie militaire à laquelle il s’est fait attendre.
En effet, Kim Jong-un a fait patienter pendant plus de deux heures les soldats russes à Vladivostok, à l’extrême est de la Russie. Un tapis rouge avait été déroulé pour 10h, devant le mémorial consacré à la Flotte du Pacifique. Alors que la garde en tenue de parade et les journalistes l’attendaient sous le crachin et par une température d’environ 5°C, la cérémonie a été annulée et le tapis remisé.
Ce n’est que plus de deux heures plus tard que les gardes se sont finalement remis en place, que les touristes ont été évacués et que la limousine du dirigeant nord-coréen est arrivée. En manteau et chapeau noirs, Kim Jong-un, accompagné du gouverneur de la région, a déposé une gerbe devant la flamme éternelle, avant d’assister à une brève parade et de repartir.
C’est ainsi que s’est clôturée la première rencontre entre les deux dirigeants russe et nord-coréen. Un tel sommet n’avait pas eu lieu depuis 2011 entre l’ex-président Dmitri Medvedev et Kim Jong-il. Sans avancée concrète, cette visite a permis au dirigeant nord-coréen d’afficher l’entente « historique » avec l’allié de Pyongyang de la Guerre froide.
De plus, Kim J.-U. est parti immédiatement après, 7 heures plus tôt que prévu, alors que son agenda comportait encore des visites économique, culturelle et militaire (à la flotte du Pacifique). Il a quitté la Fédération de Russie dès le départ de V. V. Poutine pour le sommet de One Belt One Road à Pékin.
Apocalypse Now ?
Le pays va-t-il se retourner contre les riches ? Contre l’innovation technologique ? Est-ce que ça va se transformer en désordre civil ? En tout cas, plus de 50 % des milliardaires de la Silicon Valley ont pris, d’une manière ou d’une autre, une assurance contre l’apocalypse.
Tout aussi irrationnel, les mêmes qui font construire un mur de la honte pour se « proteger » des populations du Sud sont en train de coloniser la Nouvelle-Zélande :
S’ils ne s’accordent pas sur la cause de cette apocalypse, beaucoup trouvent que la Nouvelle-Zélande est le meilleur endroit pour y faire face. Un pays qui ne connaît pas d’ennemi, a peu de chance d’être la cible d’une bombe nucléaire, et composé de nombreuses îles où s’isoler, avec de l’altitude pour faire face à la montée du niveau de la mer, de larges territoires inhabités, peu de pollution… Rien qu’en 2016, 13 000 riches américains y ont demandé un permis de construire. Le pays a dû restreindre par la loi la vente de logements à des étrangers, pour maîtriser la hausse des prix de l’immobilier.
Ce sont aussi les mêmes qui, déplaçant les populations, détruisant lieux de vie indigènes et zones à défendre, se construisent des rêves d’autonomie :
Mark Zuckerberg, PDG de Facebook, voit plus grand. Il a acheté un domaine dans le pacifique, sur une petite île au large de Hawaï. Il a payé les poignées de familles présentes sur ses terres, qui y cultivaient de la canne à sucre, pour partir. Il entend s’y faire bâtir une propriété et une ferme bio de 27 hectares, en autosuffisance totale. Un investissement à plus de cent millions de dollars pour assurer sa seule survie et celle de sa famille…
Là où fleurissent les bunkers de milliardaires : ►https://www.humanite.fr/nouvelle-zelande-la-ou-fleurissent-les-bunkers-de-milliardaires-670945
Nouvelle-zélande. Là où fleurissent les bunkers de milliardaires | L’Humanité
De la Californie à Auckland, les entrepreneurs de la Silicon Valley construisent des abris par peur de la fin d’un monde qu’ils ont participé à créer.
Les magnats de la Silicon Valley et autres startupers croient-ils sincèrement, comme ils aiment le répéter à longueur de conférences et de plateaux télé, que la technologie va sauver le monde ? La réponse se trouve certainement en Nouvelle-Zélande, où plusieurs dizaines d’entre eux achètent des terres pour se préparer à l’apocalypse. Un haut cadre de Facebook, qui venait de s’offrir quelques hectares boisés sur une île où il a fait installer des générateurs, panneaux solaires et un stock de munitions, le disait clairement à la BBC : « Notre société s’apprête à vivre des changements économiques et technologiques spectaculaires et je ne pense pas que les gens le réalisent. Mais nous, oui, la Silicon Valley vit dans le futur. Avec l’automatisation et l’intelligence artificielle, presque la moitié des emplois américains n’existeront plus dans vingt, trente ans. »
Une assurance contre l’apocalypse pour les ultrariches
Un drame social est à venir, qu’ils anticipent d’autant plus qu’ils commencent à avoir conscience qu’ils en sont la cause. Le milliardaire Reid Hoffman, fondateur de LinkedIn, s’interroge donc, dans le New Yorker : « Le pays va-t-il se retourner contre les riches ? Contre l’innovation technologique ? Est-ce que ça va se transformer en désordre civil ? En tout cas, plus de 50 % des milliardaires de la Silicon Valley ont pris, d’une manière ou d’une autre, une assurance contre l’apocalypse. » Pour eux, lorsque le peuple aussi s’en rendra compte et se demandera qui s’est enrichi à milliards en détruisant le travail et en creusant les inégalités, mieux vaudra pour les responsables être à plusieurs milliers de kilomètres de là. Et bien préparés.
D’autres ultrariches craignent plutôt les bouleversements climatiques, le soulèvement des robots dominés par une intelligence artificielle hostile, Kim Jong-un, un virus… La preuve, il est 23 h 58 sur l’horloge de la fin du monde, tenue à l’heure par l’université de Chicago. S’ils ne s’accordent pas sur la cause de cette apocalypse, beaucoup trouvent que la Nouvelle-Zélande est le meilleur endroit pour y faire face. Un pays qui ne connaît pas d’ennemi, a peu de chance d’être la cible d’une bombe nucléaire, et composé de nombreuses îles où s’isoler, avec de l’altitude pour faire face à la montée du niveau de la mer, de larges territoires inhabités, peu de pollution… Rien qu’en 2016, 13 000 riches américains y ont demandé un permis de construire. Le pays a dû restreindre par la loi la vente de logements à des étrangers, pour maîtriser la hausse des prix de l’immobilier.
Le milliardaire Peter Thiel, fondateur de PayPal et de Palantir, a lancé le mouvement en 2015, en achetant pour près de 12 millions d’euros une ferme et près de 200 hectares de terrain sur les rives du lac Wanaka, dans le sud de la Nouvelle-Zélande. Il y a fait construit une pièce ultrasécurisée. Avec quatre autres entrepreneurs de la Silicon Valley, dont Sam Altman, patron de Y Combinator, il garde toujours un avion prêt à s’envoler et à traverser 7 000 kilomètres au-dessus du Pacifique au moindre signe d’apocalypse ou de révolte sociale. L’un d’entre eux avoue même conserver dans son garage de San Francisco une moto et des armes, pour rejoindre au plus vite l’avion privé.
Julian Robertson, milliardaire et président d’un fonds d’investissement californien, a, lui, choisi le lac voisin de Wakatipu. Une dizaine d’autres multimillionnaires californiens ont acheté des propriétés dans la région. Tandis que le financier Bill Foley et le réalisateur de Titanic, James Cameron, ont, eux, opté pour des villas sécurisées sur l’île plus au nord. Sept autres pontes de la Silicon Valley ont opté pour des bunkers blindés, construits à plus de trois mètres sous le sol, et localisables uniquement par GPS dans des grandes prairies de la Nouvelle-Zélande. Et cela au bénéfice d’une entreprise californienne, Terra Vivos, qui fait son beurre en proposant ses solutions contre l’apocalypse. L’entreprise avait déjà pu roder son produit d’appel, un grand bunker antiatomique médicalisé, avec cinéma, armurerie et cellules individuelles, à destination des nombreux Américains qui ont cru à la fin du monde pour le 21 décembre 2012, date de fin d’un calendrier maya. Elle le recycle aujourd’hui pour les cadres de la Silicon Valley qui ont moins de moyens que les hauts dirigeants, et propose des places autour de 35 000 euros par personne dans ces abris collectifs conçus pour trois cents à mille personnes.
Le fondateur de Terra Vivos se frotte les mains depuis que, en 2017, le sujet privilégié des patrons réunis à Davos lors du forum économique mondial était la peur d’une « révolution ou d’un conflit social qui s’en prendrait au 1 % » le plus riche, raconte-t-il. Pour lui qui doit recycler ses bunkers antiatomiques dans les grandes étendues états-uniennes, la Nouvelle-Zélande n’est pas idéale puisqu’elle est sensible aux tsunamis, notamment en cas de chute de météorite… Mais, sentant l’air du temps, il a investi huit millions pour y bâtir un bunker de trois cents places.
Le PDG de Facebook a payé les habitants d’une île pour partir
Le discours prend et les patrons de la Silicon Valley s’arment. Si certains stockent du carburant et des munitions, un autre startuper préfère prendre des cours de tir à l’arc. Steve Huffman, le fondateur de Reddit, s’est fait opérer des yeux parce qu’en cas de désastre, il veut augmenter ses chances de survie sans lunettes ni lentilles de contact. Mark Zuckerberg, PDG de Facebook, voit plus grand. Il a acheté un domaine dans le pacifique, sur une petite île au large de Hawaï. Il a payé les poignées de familles présentes sur ses terres, qui y cultivaient de la canne à sucre, pour partir. Il entend s’y faire bâtir une propriété et une ferme bio de 27 hectares, en autosuffisance totale. Un investissement à plus de cent millions de dollars pour assurer sa seule survie et celle de sa famille… Comme quoi, « après moi le déluge » n’est pas qu’un proverbe, mais bien une philosophie de vie.
’They considered us toys’: North Korean women reveal extent of sexual violence | World news | The Guardian
Women in North Korea are routinely subjected to sexual violence by government officials, prison guards, interrogators, police, prosecutors, and soldiers, according to a new report, with groping and unwanted advances a part of daily life for women working in the country’s burgeoning black markets.
The widespread nature of abuse by North Korea officials was documented in a new report by Human Rights Watch that interviewed 54 people who fled North Korea since 2011, the year Kim Jong-un came to power. It took more than two years amass the stories collected in the report, with subjects interviewed in countries across Asia.
La tenue du sommet entre Donald Trump et Kim Jong-un se confirme
SOUTH KOREA: ‘PRESIDENT TRUMP SHOULD WIN THE NOBEL PEACE PRIZE’
Thanks to Trump, 70 years of Korean War drawing to a peaceful conclusion.
“President Trump should win the Nobel Peace Prize. What we need is only peace,” Moon said on Monday, according to Reuters.
Other members of the South Korean government also credited Trump with bringing North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un to the negotiating table.
“Clearly, credit goes to President Trump,” Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha told CNN in Seoul. “He’s been determined to come to grips with this from day one.”
North Korea’s nuclear test site has collapsed ... and that may be why Kim Jong-un suspended tests | South China Morning Post
North Korea’s mountain nuclear test site has collapsed, putting China and other nearby nations at unprecedented risk of radioactive exposure, two separate groups of Chinese scientists studying the issue have confirmed.
The collapse after five nuclear blasts may be why North Korean leader Kim Jong-un declared last Friday that he would freeze the hermit state’s nuclear and missile tests and shut down the site, one researcher said.
The last five of Pyongyang’s six nuclear tests have all been carried out under Mount Mantap at the Punggye-ri nuclear test site in North Korea’s northwest.
A research team led by Wen Lianxing, a geologist with the University of Science and Technology of China in Hefei, concluded the collapse occurred following the detonation last autumn of North Korea’s most powerful thermal nuclear warhead in a tunnel about 700 metres (2,296 feet) below the mountain’s peak.
The test turned the mountain into fragile fragments, the researchers found.
Ah ! souvenirs de Beryl…
La page web de l’Université de science et technologie de Chine vue dans la vidéo est celle-ci
中国科学技术大学地震与地球内部物理实验室温联星研究组通过分析地震记录，确认朝鲜自2009年以来一直用于核试验的丰溪里万塔山已塌陷。该研究成果于2018年4月23日被国际地球物理权威学术期刊《地球物理研究快报》(Geophysical Research Letters) 接收。该研究组博士生田冬冬、姚家园为共同第一作者。研究还确认，2017年9月23日和10月12日在丰溪里试验场发生的三个小事件为核试验触发的、发生在万塔山之外的一个天然地震群。
La page web mentionne un article publié dans le numéro du 16 avril 2018 de Geophysical Research Letters, Vol. 45, Issue 7
Article publié en ligne le 14 mars 2018
North Korea’s 2017 Test and its Nontectonic Aftershock - Liu - 2018 - Geophysical Research Letters - Wiley Online Library
Seismology illuminates physical processes occurring during underground explosions, not all yet fully understood. The thus‐far strongest North Korean test of 3 September 2017 was followed by a moderate seismic event (mL 4.1) after 8.5 min. Here we provide evidence that this aftershock was a nontectonic event which radiated seismic waves as a buried horizontal closing crack. This vigorous crack closure, occurring shortly after the blast, is studied in the North Korea test site for the first time. The event can be qualitatively explained as rapid destruction of an explosion‐generated cracked rock chimney due to cavity collapse, although other compaction processes cannot be ruled out.
Plain Language Summary
North Korea detonated its strongest underground nuclear test in September 2017. It attracted the public interest worldwide not only due to its significant magnitude (6.3 mb) but also because it was followed 8.5 min later by a weaker event. Was the delayed shock a secondary explosion, an earthquake provoked by the shot, or something else? We answer these questions, thanks to unique data from near‐regional broadband stations. We basically solve a simple problem—fitting observed seismograms by synthetics. The good fit means that we understand why and how the seismic waves are radiated. According to our model, the explosion created a cavity and a damaged “chimney” of rocks above it. The aftershock was neither a secondary explosion nor a triggered tectonic earthquake. It occurred due to a process comparable to a “mirror image” of the explosion, that is, a rock collapse, or compaction, for the first time documented in North Korea’s test site. Interestingly, shear fault motions, typical for natural earthquakes, were extremely small both in the explosion and in the aftershock. Small natural earthquakes also occur at the test site, and geotechnical works might trigger them. Thus, all studies related to rock stability of the site, and prevention of radioactive leakage, are important.
La fermeture du site et l’effondrement de la cheminée ne convainquent pas tout le monde…
Optimism About Korea Will Kill Us All – Foreign Policy
Last week’s inter-Korean summit, and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s declaration that he would “close” his nuclear test site by May, were greeted widely with celebration. But contrary to the hoopla, we have now arrived at an especially dangerous moment in Washington’s relationship with Pyongyang. We are on the verge of letting our hopes get in the way of our survival.
Consider the now widespread view that North Korea’s test site is unusable or that the mountain that contains it has collapsed. This was always garbage reporting. You can download the two academic papers that are said to have originally made these claims — they say nothing of the kind. What the papers do is prove that, after North Korea’s big nuclear test in September 2017, the cavity created by the explosion collapsed in on itself. We already knew that probably happened (although it is cool to see it demonstrated through seismology).
But the collapsing of the cavity and shrinking of the mountain do not mean the tunnels leading to it collapsed, let alone that the mountain itself had done so. And, of course, there are two other nuclear test complexes underneath entirely different mountains at the site. Kim was quoted as making this point himself: “Some said we will dismantle unusable facilities, but there are two more larger tunnels [in addition to] the original one and these are very in good condition as you will get to know that when coming and seeing them.” But commentators in the West, hoping for a diplomatic breakthrough (whether for political or more idealistic reasons), still heard what they wanted to hear about the condition of North Korea’s program.
Les articles signalés sont d’une part celui pointé ci-dessus et aussi celui-ci (27/04/2018)
Collapse and Earthquake Swarm after North Korea’s 3 September 2017 Nuclear Test - Tian - - Geophysical Research Letters - Wiley Online Library
North Korea’s 3 September 2017 nuclear test was followed by several small seismic events, with one eight‐and‐a‐half minutes after the test and three on and after 23 September 2017. Seismic analysis reveals that the first event is a near vertical on‐site collapse toward the nuclear test center from 440±260 m northwest of the test site, with its seismic source best represented by a single force with a dip angle of 70°‐75° and an azimuth of ~150°, and the later events are an earthquake swarm located 8.4±1.7 km north of the test site within a region of 520 m, with a focal depth of at least 2.4 km and a focal mechanism of nearly pure strike‐slip along the north‐south direction with a high dip angle of 50°‐90°. The occurrence of the on‐site collapse calls for continued monitoring of any leaks of radioactive materials from the test site.
(pdf téléchargeable : que de la technique…)
What’s at Stake for Oil as Trump Appoints Another Iran Hawk? - Bloomberg
Iran is trying to attract more than $100 billion from international oil companies to boost crude and condensate output by about 25 percent to more than 5 million barrels a day. Without new investment from international companies production will stagnate.
Trump’s disdain for the nuclear deal has already deterred investors from the country, the third-biggest producer in OPEC. Of the Western energy majors, only France’s Total SA has returned, and its gas venture is proceeding slowly. Iranian officials are already complaining that western oil companies are too cautious to return to the country and there are signs that Russian companies are stepping in to fill the vacuum.
Total has the biggest financial stake of any international energy major, having pledged to invest $1 billion in the first phase of an offshore natural gas project. Overall investment in the project could reach $5 billion, and while the company is determined to press ahead, Chief Executive Officer Patrick Pouyanne has promised to review the legal consequences of any new U.S. restrictions.
Three years ago, in a New York Times op-ed titled “To Stop Iran’s Bomb, Bomb Iran,” Bolton argued that the only way to prevent Tehran obtaining nuclear weapons was a military strike. He cited Israel’s preemptive strike in 1981 on Saddam Hussein’s Osirak reactor as an example of effective action.
Bolton downplayed the significance of his past public statements in an interview with Fox News shortly after the appointment was announced, saying he would defer to the president’s judgment.
“I’ve never been shy about what my views are,” Bolton said. But, he added, that “now is behind me, at least effective April 9, and the important thing is what the president says and what advice I give him.”
Bolton’s appointment has lots of implications beyond just Iran, Ian Bremmer, president of consultant Eurasia Group, said on Twitter. It also makes Trump’s scheduled talks with North Korea’s leader Kim Jong-Un riskier, he said.
Thursday was “probably the worst/biggest single day for geopolitical risk since I started Eurasia Group in 1998,” Bremmer said on Twitter.
To Stop Iran’s Bomb, Bomb Iran - The New York Times
By JOHN R. BOLTON – MARCH 26, 2015
Will Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un meet in Ulaanbaatar? | The UB Post
In the lead up to the historic meeting between US President Donald Trump and North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un set to happen sometime in May of this year, Ulaanbaatar has been vaulted into the conversation to host the much anticipated peace talks.
The meeting will make Trump the first ever US President to meet with a North Korean leader. On Friday, former President Ts.Elbegdorj took to twitter to commemorate a “long [waited] breakthrough”. The fourth president of Mongolia also took the opportunity to make an offer to host the historic talks in Ulaanbaatar.
“Korean Peninsula: A long waited breakthrough! Here is an offer: US President Trump and NK leader Kim meet in UB. Mongolia is the most suitable, neutral territory. We facilitated important meetings, including between Japan and NK. Mongolia’s continuing legacy – UB dialogue on NEA,” Ts.Elbegdorj tweeted on Friday.
During his presidency, Ts.Elbegdorj was at the forefront of trying to champion Mongolia and specifically Ulaanbaatar as a neutral location to hold peace talks with North Korea. In his tweet, Ts.Elbegdorj alludes to the fact that Mongolia has been a mediator between Japan and North Korea for talks regarding abducted Japanese citizens.
Oulan-Bator, toujours dans les lieux envisagés pour la prochaine rencontre Trump-Kim. Mais il y a encore beaucoup de monde en lice…
Truce village or European capital ? Possible Trump-Kim summit venues | AFP.com
US President Donald Trump says that five locations are under consideration for his expected meeting with Kim Jong Un, the leader of nuclear-armed North Korea.
But he gave no clues as to what they might be, and speculation is rife as to the possibilities — with many contenders suggested.
Here are some of the options:
A popular outside bet among Korea-watchers, the Mongolian capital can be reached from the North by both air and train, has ties with both Pyongyang and Washington - and has publicly offered to host the meeting.
Ulan Bator has signed several economic pacts with Washington, and the US military co-sponsors the annual Khaan Quest multinational peacekeeping exercise in Mongolia
The then Mongolian President Tsakhia Elbegdorj visited the North in 2013, and nearly 1,200 North Koreans worked in the landlocked country until regulations passed following UN Security Council sanctions required them to leave last year.
Ulaanbaatar has signed several economic pacts with Washington, and the US military co-sponsors the annual Khaan Quest multinational peacekeeping exercise in Mongolia.
• Singapore, Vietnam
The escalation in the war of words between U.S. president Donald Trump and North Korean leader, Kim Jong-un, has already produced many hysterical headlines about the threat of a nuclear war – and, even, of a new world war. And indeed, this is precisely what would appear to be the implication of Trump’s reactions to North Korea’s ostentatious missile launches and nuclear experiments, if his reactions were to be taken at face value – for instance, his promise to respond “with fire and fury like the world has never seen.” Especially so, as all rich countries’ governments have been unreservedly lining up behind Trump’s condemnations, including those which expressed some timid reservations about his bellicose threats.
But then, what seems to be a rather insane contest between the two leaders to raise the stakes with each other is one thing – but real world politics is quite another. So, while American U.N. ambassador Nikki Haley was dutifully upholding Trump’s line by accusing North Korea of “begging for war” and stating that “the time for talking is over,” Trump’s secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, was declaring to the media that the U.S. administration was in direct contact with North Korea through multiple channels. And although Tillerson’s statement was immediately disowned by Trump, tweeting that he was “wasting his time trying to negotiate with Little Rocket Man” and asking him to “save your energy, Rex, we’ll do what has to be done,” Tillerson’s admission was probably a more accurate reflection of what is really happening behind the scenes.
Indeed, whatever their rhetoric, neither Trump nor, of course, Kim Jong-un has any interest in triggering a war, which would be politically costly for the former and suicidal for the latter. Nor is the present standoff simply due to the “loose cannon” policy underpinned by Trump’s aggressive “tweets,” or Kim Jong-un’s alleged “paranoia.”
In the meantime, however, a raft of new U.N. sanctions have been...
U.S. Has Three Aircraft Carriers in West Pacific for First Time in a Decade - Bloomberg
The U.S. Navy has three aircraft carriers and their assorted missile-carrying vessels deployed to the western Pacific Ocean for the first time in a decade as tensions with North Korea remain high and President Donald Trump prepares to depart for Asia next week.
The milestone was reached Wednesday when the USS Nimitz and its strike group entered the Western Pacific region after operating in the Middle East, according to a Navy press release. The USS Theodore Roosevelt strike group, including a cruiser and three destroyers, entered the region Oct. 23, joining the USS Ronald Reagan.
The high-profile deployments are part of a larger build-up. In addition to the aircraft carrier strike groups, capable of launching Tomahawk cruise missiles, the Navy announced Oct. 13 that the USS Michigan — one the service’s four specialized submarines for carrying as many as 66 Navy SEAL commandos and 154 Tomahawks — arrived in Busan, South Korea.
Contrepoint diplomatique :
US defence secretary James Mattis at Korean DMZ: ’Our goal is not war’
Watched by North Korean border troops, Mr Mattis told reporters accompanying his visit to the Joint Security Area that the US wants to achieve the removal of all nuclear weapons from the Korean Peninsula and called on the regime of Kim Jong-un to end provocative acts and threats of “catastrophe” against the rest of the world.
“As Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has made clear, our goal is not war but rather the complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula”, Mr Mattis said in front of the single-storey blue huts that are used for infrequent discussions between the two sides.
Nine charts which tell you all you need to know about North Korea - BBC News
Je me demande comment sont calculés les chiffres pour la corée du Nord...
As North Korea and the United States continue to trade threats, we have little idea how the war of words is perceived to the people of North Korea because the regime of Kim Jong-un maintains an iron grip over the population, carefully controlling access to the outside world.
The country is often depicted as isolated and thoroughly out of step with the 21st century. Statistics are hard to get and often based on estimates, but what can they tell us about life in the North?
Nuclear Apocalypse Now? | by Ariel Dorfman | NYR Daily | The New York Review of Books
But there was another, more telling aspect of Trump’s UN speech. This most thoughtless and impetuous of American presidents also called the possibility of nuclear conflict “unthinkable.” On the contrary, we must think about it. And crucial to any understanding of the moral import of the possible use of nuclear weapons is to go back to the foundational moment of this nuclear age and ask again: Were Hiroshima and Nagasaki war crimes?
We have no way of knowing what the people of North Korea would make of that question, any more than we know what their views are about their leader’s avowed willingness to order a nuclear first strike. After all, the citizens of the so-called Democratic Republic are closeted in a “dense fog” created by Kim Jong-un’s father, Kim Jong-il, “to prevent our enemies from learning anything about us.”
We do, on the other hand, know something about what Americans think. Two years ago, a Pew Research poll found that 56 percent of American respondents regarded the bombing of Hiroshima as justified, a clear majority, though significantly down from the 85 percent who felt that way in 1945.
There is still much controversy around the issue. The traditional justification for the attack was that it was the only way to force the Japanese High Command to surrender immediately, and to avoid a long and costly invasion of island after island that would have led to countless American and Allied casualties. But subsequent historical research has revealed that Japan capitulated out of fear that the Soviet Union would land forces on the Japanese mainland and occupy half the country. The findings of historians Gar Alperovitz, Murray Sayle, and Tsuyoshi Hasegawa, among others, refute the conventional wisdom that the first nuclear attack in history was an absolute necessity.
Yet the myth persists. The question is: To what extent does Americans’ belief in the rightness of President Truman’s fateful decision in 1945 provide moral support for the brimstone rhetoric of nuclear conflagration that President Trump is deploying today?
Why sanctions will only fuel North Korea’s missile tests | This Week In Asia | South China Morning Post
Much of the world sees Pyongyang as weak, and is seeking to make it even weaker with various sanctions.
Pyongyang realises this, and won’t come to the table unless it feels some semblance of strength. This is the North Korean conundrum.
Without a full-fledged ICBM capability, Kim Jong-un knows he cannot strike terror into the hearts of US decision makers.
And North Korea is still lacking such a capability, despite its two ICBM tests in July. The latest research by scholars at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies in Monterey, California, suggests that two tests are too few to indicate a mature capacity in this regard.
Indeed, even when considered in addition to the sixteen other missile tests Pyongyang has carried out this year, there’s little to suggest any recent breakthrough by North Korea in enhancing its offensive capabilities.
It may be grappling with the science of atmospheric re-entry, but Pyongyang’s military scientists still have little real world evidence to go on.
This is why Kim has already launched more missile tests this year than the 17 conducted throughout his father Kim Jong-il’s entire tenure.
He knows that without increasing his #missile capability his hand is too weak to engage in negotiations.
The secret to North Korea’s ICBM success
Kim Jong-un celebrates ICBM success
By Michael Elleman, Senior Fellow for Missile Defence
North Korea’s missile programme has made astounding strides over the past two years. An arsenal that had been based on short- and medium-range missiles along with an intermediate-range Musudan that repeatedly failed flight tests, has suddenly been supplemented by two new missiles: the intermediate-range Hwasong-12 and the intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), Hwasong-14. No other country has transitioned from a medium-range capability to an ICBM in such a short time. What explains this rapid progression? The answer is simple. North Korea has acquired a high-performance liquid-propellant engine (LPE) from a foreign source.
Available evidence clearly indicates that the LPE is based on the Soviet RD-250 family of engines, and has been modified to operate as the boosting force for the Hwasong-12 and -14. An unknown number of these engines were probably acquired though illicit channels operating in Russia and/or Ukraine. North Korea’s need for an alternative to the failing Musudan and the recent appearance of the RD-250 engine along with other evidence, suggests the transfers occurred within the past two years.
Tests reveal recent technical gains
North Korea ground tested a large LPE in September 2016, which it claimed could generate 80 tonnes’ thrust. The same LPE was again ground tested in March 2017. This test included four smaller, steering engines. On 14 May 2017, with Kim Jong-un overseeing test preparations, North Korea launched a new intermediate-range ballistic missile, the Hwasong-12. The single-stage missile flew on a very steep trajectory, reaching a peak altitude of over 2,000km. If the Hwasong-12 had used a normal flight path, it would have travelled between 4,000 and 4,500km, placing Guam, just 3,400km away, within range.
The success of the Hwasong-12 flight in May gave North Korean engineers the confidence needed to pursue a more ambitious goal: the initial flight testing of a two-stage missile capable of reaching the continental United States. Less than two months after the Hwasong-12 test, the two-stage Hwasong-14 was launched on 4 July. A second Hwasong-14 was tested on 28 July. The Hwasong-14 launches flew on very steep flight paths, with the first shot reaching an apogee of 2,700km. The second test peaked at about 3,800km.
North Korea’s announced results were independently confirmed by the Republic of Korea, Japan and US. In both tests, the mock warheads plummeted towards the East Sea, 900–1,000km from the launch point. If flown on a trajectory that maximises range instead of peak altitude, the two missiles would have reached about 7,000km and 9,000km respectively, well exceeding the 5,500km minimum distance for a system to be categorised as an ICBM.
The dimensions and visible features of the Hwasong-12 indicate an overall mass of between 24,000 and 25,000kg. The Hwasong-12’s acceleration at lift-off, as determined by the launch video aired by KCNA, is about 8.5 to 9.0m/s2. Assuming North Korea did not manipulate the launch video, the thrust generated by the Hwasong-12’s complete engine assembly is between 45 and 47 tonnes’ thrust; the main engine contributes between 39 to 41 tonnes’ force, and the auxiliary engines about 6 tonnes’ force. The Hwasong-14 has an estimated mass of 33,000–34,000kg, and an initial acceleration rate of about 4–4.5m/s2, resulting in a total thrust of 46–48 tonnes’ force.
Identifying the new LPE and its origins
The origins of the new engine (see Figures 1 and 2) are difficult to determine with certainty. However, a process of elimination sharply narrows the possibilities.
There is no evidence to suggest that North Korea successfully designed and developed the LPE indigenously. Even if, after importing Scud and Nodong engines, North Korea had mastered the production of clones, which remains debateable, this does not mean that it could design, develop and manufacture a large LPE from scratch, especially one that uses higher-performance propellants and generates 40 tonnes’ thrust.
liquid-propellant engine of Hwasong-12
Figure 1: The liquid-propellant engines ground tested in September 2016 and March 2017 appear to be the same, though only the second ground test and the Hwasong-12 flight test operate with four auxiliary or vernier engines, which steer the missile. See larger version.
Claims that the LPE is a North Korean product would be more believable if the country’s experts had in the recent past developed and tested a series of smaller, less powerful engines, but there are no reports of such activities. Indeed, prior to the Hwasong-12 and -14 flights, every liquid-fuelled missile launched by North Korea – all of the Scuds and Nodongs, even the Musudan – was powered by an engine developed and originally produced by the Russian enterprise named for A.M. Isayev; the Scud, Nodong and R-27 (from which the Musudan is derived) missiles were designed and originally produced by the Russian concern named after V.P. Makeyev. It is, therefore, far more likely that the Hwasong-12 and -14 are powered by an LPE imported from an established missile power.
If this engine was imported, most potential sources can be eliminated because the external features, propellant combination and performance profile of the LPE in question are unique. The engine tested by North Korea does not physically resemble any LPE manufactured by the US, France, China, Japan, India or Iran. Nor do any of these countries produce an engine that uses storable propellants and generates the thrust delivered by the Hwasong-12 and -14 LPE. This leaves the former Soviet Union as the most likely source.
Hwasong-12 and Hwasong-14 engines
Figure 2: The three missiles tested by North Korea are powered by the same engine complex, with one main engine and four steering engines. See larger version.
Given North Korea’s reliance to date on technologies originating with the Isayev and Makeyev enterprises, one might suspect one or both as the probable supplier. However, neither enterprise has been associated with an engine that matches the performance of LPE used by Hwasong-12 and -14.
An exhaustive search of engines produced by other manufacturers in the former Soviet Union yields a couple of possibilities, all of which are associated with the Russian enterprise named after V.P. Glushko, now known as Energomash. The RD-217, RD-225 and RD-250 engine families use high-energy, storable-liquid propellants similar to those employed by engines tested by North Korea. Neither the RD-217 nor RD-225 have external features matching those of North Korea’s new engine. The RD-250 is the only match.
Glushko RD-250 engine
Figure 3: The RD-250 engine consists of a pair of combustion chambers fed by a single turbopump. Each chamber produces about 394k Newtons of thrust, or about 40 tonnes’ force, when relying on UDMH as the fuel, and N2O4 as the oxidiser. The RD-250’s nozzle also features a cooling tube and a compliance ring that resemble those found on the engines tested by North Korea. The small engine with its nozzle pointed upward and displayed in the foreground is not associated with the RD-250 engine. See larger version.
The RD-250 engine is normally configured as a pair of combustion chambers, which receive propellant from a single turbopump, as shown in Figure 3. When operated in tandem, the two chambers generate roughly 78–80 tonnes’ thrust. This level of thrust is similar to the claims North Korea made when the first ground test was conducted and publicised in September 2016.
It gradually became clear, however, that the Hwasong-12 and -14 used single-chamber engines. Note, for example, that Pyongyang claimed that a new pump design was used for the September ground test. This makes sense, because operating the RD-250 as a single chamber LPE would necessitate a new or modified turbopump. Having no demonstrated experience modifying or developing large LPE turbopumps, Pyongyang’s engineers would have been hard pressed to make the modifications themselves. Rather, the technical skills needed to modify the existing RD-250 turbopump, or fashioning a new one capable of feeding propellant to a single chamber would reside with experts with a rich history of working with the RD-250. Such expertise is available at Russia’s Energomash concern and Ukraine’s KB Yuzhnoye. One has to conclude that the modified engines were made in those factories.
The alternative hypothesis, that Russian/Ukraine engineers were employed in North Korea is less likely, given the absence of any known production facility in North Korea for such engines. In addition, Western experts who visited KB Yuzhnoye Ukraine within the past year told the author that a single-chamber version was on display at a nearby university and that a local engineer boasted about producing it.
Why single-chamber engines were transferred rather than the more powerful double-chamber original versions is unclear. One possible hypothesis is that the exporters, for whatever reason, exercised restraint in what they were willing to transfer to North Korea. Combined with a second stage, however, the single-chamber RD-250 engine is powerful enough to send an ICBM to cities on the American West Coast at least.
The RD-250 was originally designed by the Glushko enterprise of Russia, and produced and incorporated into the first stage of the R-36 (SS-9) ICBM and the Tsiklon-2 satellite launcher by KB Yuzhnoye of Ukraine. The Tsiklon-2 carrier rocket lofted its first satellite into orbit in 1969, with the last of 106 launches occurring in 2006. While Yuzhnoye was responsible for producing the Tsiklon-2 rocket, Russian entities launched the satellite. The relationship survived the break-up of the Soviet Union in 1991 primarily because of long-standing institutional linkages, and the commercial interests of both enterprises and countries. However, despite the Tsiklon-2’s unsurpassed reliability record, Russia stopped purchasing the Yuzhnoye rocket in 2006 in favour of an indigenous system. Yuzhnoye’s repeated attempts to market the rocket and related technologies to other potential customers, including Boeing and Brazil, yielded little. The once vaunted KB Yuzhnoye has been near financial collapse since roughly 2015.
The total number of RD-250 engines fabricated in Russia and Ukraine is not known. However, there are almost certainly hundreds, if not more, of spares stored at KB Yuzhnoye’s facilities and at warehouses in Russia where the Tsiklon-2 was used. Spares may also exist at one or more of Energomash’s many facilities spread across Russia. Because the RD-250 is no longer employed by operational missiles or launchers, facilities warehousing the obsolete LPEs are probably loosely guarded. A small team of disgruntled employees or underpaid guards at any one of the storage sites, and with access to the LPEs, could be enticed to steal a few dozen engines by one of the many illicit arms dealers, criminal networks, or transnational smugglers operating in the former Soviet Union. The engines (less than two metres tall and one metre wide) can be flown or, more likely, transported by train through Russia to North Korea.
Pyongyang has many connections in Russia, including with the illicit network that funnelled Scud, Nodong and R-27 (Musudan) hardware to North Korea in the 1980s and 1990s. United Nations sanctions imposed on Pyongyang have likely strengthened the Kim regime’s ties to these criminal networks. North Korean agents seeking missile technology are also known to operate in Ukraine. In 2012, for example, two North Korean nationals were arrested and convicted by Ukrainian authorities for attempting to procure missile hardware from Yuzhnoye. Today, Yuzhnoye’s facilities lie close to the front lines of the Russian-controlled secessionist territory. Clearly, there is no shortage of potential routes through which North Korea might have acquired the few dozen RD-250 engines that would be needed for an ICBM programme.
How did North Korea acquire the RD-250 engine?
When and from where RD-250 engines may have been shipped to North Korea is difficult to determine. It is possible the transfers occurred in the 1990s, when North Korea was actively procuring Scud- and Nodong-related hardware, as well as R-27 technology and its Isayev 4D10 engine. But this seems unlikely for three reasons.
Firstly, the network North Korea relied on in the 1990s focused on products originating from Russia’s Makeyev and Isayev enterprises. Energomash and Yuzhnoye had limited connections to Makeyev or Isayev; indeed, they were rival enterprises competing for contracts as the Soviet Union crumbled. It is, therefore, a stretch to assume the illicit channels Pyongyang was using in the 1990s had access to products manufactured or used at either Yuzhnoye or Energomash two decades ago.
Secondly, until recently, North Korea appeared to focus on exploiting R-27 hardware for its long-range missile ambitions. Pyongyang’s first intermediate-range missile, the Musudan, which was first displayed in a 2010 parade, is derived from the R-27 technology acquired in the 1990s. Moreover, until the Hwasong-12 launch in March 2017, Pyongyang’s design concepts for a prospective ICBM featured a first stage powered by a cluster of two Isayev 4D10 LPEs. Photographs taken while Kim Jong-un toured a missile plant in March 2016 captured the back end of an ICBM prototype that appeared to house a pair of 4D10 engines, not a single RD-250 LPE. A month later, Kim attended the ground test featuring a cluster of two 4D10 engines operating in tandem, a clear indication that North Korea’s future ICBM would rely on this configuration. There is no evidence during this period to suggest that North Korea was developing a missile based on the RD-250 engine.
Thirdly, the Isayev 4D10 engine, which relies on staged combustion, is a complicated closed-cycle system that is integrated within the missile’s fuel tank. If the open-cycle, externally mounted RD-250 engine had been available in 2015, engineers would have likely preferred to use it to power a new long-range missile, as it shares many features with the engines North Korea has worked with for decades.
However, when North Korean specialists began flight testing the Musudan in 2016, the missile repeatedly failed soon after ignition. Only one flight test is believed to have been successful. The cause of the string of failures cannot be determined from media reports. That many failed very early in flight suggests that problems with either the engine itself, or the unique ‘submerged’ configuration of the engine, were responsible. If this was the case, North Korea’s engineers may have recognised that they could not easily overcome the challenges. This might explain why the Musudan has not been tested since 2016.
The maiden appearance of the modified RD-250 in September 2016 roughly coincides with North Korea’s decision to halt Musudan testing. It is reasonable to speculate that Kim’s engineers knew the Musudan presented grim or insurmountable technical challenges, which prompted a search for an alternative. If North Korea began its quest to identify and procure a new LPE in 2016, the start of the search would have occurred in the same year Yuzhnoye was experiencing the full impact of its financial shortfalls. This is not to suggest that the Ukrainian government was involved, and not necessarily Yuzhnoye executives. Workers at Yuzhnoye facilities in Dnipropetrovsk and Pavlograd were likely the first ones to suffer the consequences of the economic misfortunes, leaving them susceptible to exploitation by unscrupulous traders, arms dealers and transnational criminals operating in Russia, Ukraine and elsewhere.
North Korea’s ICBM still a work in progress
Acquisition of the modified RD-250 engine enabled North Korea to bypass the failing Musudan development effort and begin work on creating an ICBM sooner than previously expected. The Hwasong-14, however, is not yet an operationally viable system. Additional flight tests are needed to assess the missile’s navigation and guidance capabilities, overall performance under operational conditions and its reliability. Empirical data derived from tests to validate the efficacy of warhead re-entry technologies is also needed. Pyongyang could elect to deploy the Hwasong-14 as early as 2018, after only a handful of additional test launches, but at the risk of fielding a missile with marginal reliability. The risks could be reduced over time by continuing flight trials after the missile is assigned to combat units.
Further, the Hwasong-14 employs an underpowered second stage, which could limit Kim Jong-un to threatening only those American cities situated along the Pacific Coast. Arguably, Pyongyang will want a more powerful ICBM, one that can target the entire US mainland. The modified RD-250 engine can be clustered to provide a basis for an improved ICBM, but development of a new missile will require time.
It is not too late for the US and its allies, along with China and perhaps Russia, to negotiate an agreement that bans future missile testing, and effectively prevents North Korea from perfecting its capacity to terrorise America with nuclear weapons. But the window of opportunity will soon close, so diplomatic action must be taken immediately.
#Ioujnoïe Bureau d’Études du Sud (de l’Ukraine)
en russe transcrit à l’anglosaxonne KB #Yuzhnoye (ou DKB Yuzhnoye, pour les ukrainiens)
en ukrainien, DKB Pivdenne Mikhaïl Yangel (tjs du Sud)
et WP[fr] l’associe essentiellement à PA #Ioujmach (#Yuzhmash, à l’anglosaxonne)
(pas facile de s’y retrouver…)
North Korea’s Missile Success Is Linked to Ukrainian Plant, Investigators Say - The New York Times
North Korea’s success in testing an intercontinental ballistic missile that appears able to reach the United States was made possible by black-market purchases of powerful rocket engines probably from a Ukrainian factory with historical ties to Russia’s missile program, according to an expert analysis being published Monday and classified assessments by American intelligence agencies.
The studies may solve the mystery of how North Korea began succeeding so suddenly after a string of fiery missile failures, some of which may have been caused by American sabotage of its supply chains and cyberattacks on its launches. After those failures, the North changed designs and suppliers in the past two years, according to a new study by Michael Elleman, a missile expert at the International Institute for Strategic Studies.
Such a degree of aid to North Korea from afar would be notable because President Trump has singled out only China as the North’s main source of economic and technological support. He has never blamed Ukraine or Russia, though his secretary of state, Rex W. Tillerson, made an oblique reference to both China and Russia as the nation’s “principal economic enablers” after the North’s most recent ICBM launch last month.
Analysts who studied photographs of the North’s leader, Kim Jong-un, inspecting the new rocket motors concluded that they derive from designs that once powered the Soviet Union’s missile fleet. The engines were so powerful that a single missile could hurl 10 thermonuclear warheads between continents.
Those engines were linked to only a few former Soviet sites. Government investigators and experts have focused their inquiries on a missile factory in #Dnipro, #Ukraine, on the edge of the territory where Russia is fighting a low-level war to break off part of Ukraine. During the Cold War, the factory made the deadliest missiles in the Soviet arsenal, including the giant SS-18. It remained one of Russia’s primary producers of missiles even after Ukraine gained independence.
But since Ukraine’s pro-Russian president, Viktor Yanukovych, was removed from power in 2014, the state-owned factory, known as #Yuzhmash, has fallen on hard times. The Russians canceled upgrades of their nuclear fleet. The factory is underused, awash in unpaid bills and low morale. Experts believe it is the most likely source of the engines that in July powered the two ICBM tests, which were the first to suggest that North Korea has the range, if not necessarily the accuracy or warhead technology, to threaten American cities.
“It’s likely that these engines came from Ukraine — probably illicitly,” Mr. Elleman said in an interview. “The big question is how many they have and whether the Ukrainians are helping them now. I’m very worried.”
In addition to production facilities in Dnipro, Pivdenne Production Association includes the Pavlohrad Mechanical Plant, which specialized in producing solid-fuel missiles. Pivdenmash’s importance was further bolstered by its links to Ukraine’s former President Leonid Kuchma, who worked at Pivdenmash between 1975 and 1992. He was the plant’s general manager from 1986 to 1991.
In February 2015, following a year of strained relations, Russia announced that it would sever its “joint program with Ukraine to launch Dnepr rockets and [was] no longer interested in buying Ukrainian Zenit boosters, deepening problems for [Ukraine’s] space program and its struggling Yuzhmash factory.”
The firm imposed a two-month unpaid vacation on its workers in January 2015. With the loss of Russian business the only hope for the company was increased international business which seemed unlikely in the time frame available. Bankruptcy seemed certain as of February 2015. As of October 2015, the company was over 4 months late on payroll. The employees worked only once per week, the last space related product were shipped in early 2014. 2014 revenues (in severely depreciated Ukrainian Hrivnas) are 4 times less than 2011.
… et en français #OKB-586
Au sein du groupe industriel Pivdenne
Outre les Usines Sud de Dnipropetrovsk, la Sté Pivdenne possède les Ateliers de Mécanique de Pavlohrad, spécialisés dans les missiles à propergols solides. L’importance du groupe PivdenMach n’est pas sans rapport avec l’ascension politique de son ancien directeur (de 1986 à 1992), Leonid Koutchma, embauché comme ingénieur en 1975 et qui fut le directeur-général des Ateliers du Sud jusqu’en 1992. Celui-ci devient par la suite Premier ministre de l’Ukraine puis président de l’Ukraine de 1994 à 2005.
Trump Intel Chief: North Korea Learned From Libya War to “Never” Give Up Nukes
The media is now filled with headlines about North Korea’s missile test on Friday, which demonstrated that its ICBMs may be able to reach the continental U.S. What isn’t mentioned in any of these stories is how we got to this point — in particular, what Dan Coats, President Donald Trump’s Director of National Security, explained last week at the Aspen Security Forum.
North Korea’s 33-year-old dictator Kim Jong-un is not crazy, said Coats. In fact, he has “some rationale backing his actions” regarding the country’s nuclear weapons. That rationale is the way the U.S. has demonstrated that North Korea must keep them to ensure “survival for his regime, survival for his country.”
Kim, according to Coats, “has watched, I think, what has happened around the world relative to nations that possess nuclear capabilities and the leverage they have and seen that having the nuclear card in your pocket results in a lot of deterrence capability.” In particular, “The lessons that we learned out of Libya giving up its nukes … is, unfortunately: If you had nukes, never give them up. If you don’t have them, get them.”
This is, of course, blindingly obvious and has been since the U.S. helped oust longtime Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi’s regime in 2011. But U.S. officials have rarely if ever acknowledged this reality. Here’s the timeline:
In December 2003, Libya announced that it would surrender its biological and chemical weapons stockpiles, as well as its rudimentary nuclear weapons program.
Who Is Tony Kim? North Korea Has Detained A Korean-American University Professor
On Sunday, The Wall Street Journal reported that North Korea had detained an American citizen at the Pyongyang international airport. According to CBS News, Tony Kim is one of three American citizens currently in North Korean custody.
It was not clear on Sunday if North Korean officials had confirmed Kim’s arrest, but the Swedish embassy in North Korea said that the incident occurred as Kim was trying to board a flight out of North Korea’s capital city. The Swedish embassy represents American interests in North Korea, since the U.S. does not formally maintain relations with Kim Jong-Un’s government.
It also wasn’t clear on Sunday exactly when the incident took place. CNBC reported that Kim was detained on Friday, while CNN and CBS News reported his arrest as occurring on Saturday. Also unknown were Kim’s charges, if any.
What is clear, though, is Kim’s reason for being in the controversial country. According to various media reports, Kim is a Korean-American professor who had been teaching accounting at the Pyongyang University of Science and Technology (PUST). Kim, who is reportedly in his 50s, also goes by his Korean name, Kim Sang-duk.
Occasion de découvrir la #PUST, Pyongyang University of Science and Technology
In the heart of North Korea’s dictatorship, a university - largely paid for by the West - is attempting to open the minds of the state’s future elite. The BBC’s Panorama has been granted unique access.
Entering the Pyongyang University of Science and Technology, it is immediately clear this is no ordinary academic institution.
A military guard salutes us as our vehicle passes through the security checkpoint. Once inside the campus we hear the sound of marching and singing, not more guards but the students themselves.
They are the sons of some of the most powerful men in North Korea, including senior military figures.
“Our supreme commander Kim Jong-un, we will defend him with our lives,” they sing as they march to breakfast.
In North Korea, GW Lecturer Teaches Statistics | GW Today | The George Washington University
Justin Fisher said he was surprised by how similar North Korean and GW students are.
July 23, 2012
After spending a week in North Korea as part of a Statistics Without Borders program, George Washington Elliott School of International Affairs Lecturer Justin Fisher is sure his summer students now have a better understanding of survey sampling, computer analysis and how (some) Americans greet each other.
“They were quick to pick up the fist bump,” said Mr. Fisher, who taught it to students one day over lunch. “They probably think Americans greet each other like that all the time!”
Mr. Fisher, B.A./B.S. ’97, was one of 13 professors who recently taught a combined seven courses for the Pyongyang Summer Institute (PSI) in survey science and quantitative methodology in North Korea. PSI is an international teaching program at the Pyongyang University of Science and Technology (PUST).
In the mornings, Mr. Fisher, who is also a senior statistician at the U.S. Government Accountability Office, led a survey sampling class and, in the afternoons, he taught computer analysis. He said that, although he didn’t initially know what to expect from his students, he found commonalities with GW students, and they were friendly, eager and curious about Americans “despite the usual rhetoric between the U.S. and North Korea.”
“My biggest surprise was how similar the students were to those at GW: just a group of kids working hard to understand the material and get good grades to secure the best job for their future,” Mr. Fisher said.
North Korea displayed a lot of missiles - including big ones - at a bombastic military parade over the weekend. But what do we really know about Pyongyang’s missile capabilities? Defence expert Melissa Hanham explains.
À propos de propagande, ça fait un an qu’Otto Warmbier est prisonnier en #Corée_du_Nord
American student stuck in North Korea because Kim Jong-un is unwilling to make deals | Daily Mail Online
American student, 22, is still stuck in North Korea after a year because Kim Jong-un is unwilling to make deals like his father
• Otto Warmbier, 22, was sentenced in March to 15 years of hard labor after he confessed he had tried to steal a propaganda banner from a Pyongyang hotel
• Warmbier, of Wyoming, Ohio, was arrested on January 2 as he was departing the East Asian country
• He told a North Korean court he tried to steal the banner as a trophy for an acquaintance who wanted to hang it in her church
• Former New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson says that North Korea has accepted a delegation from his foundation
• According to Richardson, ’We’re trying to do this on a humanitarian basis, not a government-to-government basis’
• State Department spokeswoman says the US is urging North ’to pardon him and grant him special amnesty and immediate release on humanitarian grounds’
On February 29, 2016, he confessed to stealing a piece of North Korean propaganda to take back to the United States as a “trophy” for someone from his home-town church who offered to pay him for it with the gift of a car worth $10,000. The poster said, “Let’s arm ourselves strongly with Kim Jong-il’s patriotism!” Harming such items with the name or image of one of their leaders is considered a serious crime in North Korea.
Seoul shuts down joint North-South Korea industrial complex | World news | The Guardian
South Korea is to close an industrial complex it operates with North Korea in retaliation for Pyongyang’s rocket launch last weekend, bringing to a sudden halt one of the last symbols of cooperation between the two countries.
Officials in Seoul said the decision to shut down the Kaesong complex was intended to prevent the regime of North Korean leader, Kim Jong-un, from using hard currency earned through the venture to fund its nuclear and ballistic missile programmes.
North Korea bans sarcasm because Kim Jong-un fears people only agree with him ‘ironically’ | The Independent
North Korea has forbidden people from making sarcastic comments about Kim Jong-un or his totalitarian regime in their everyday conversations.
Even indirect criticism of the authoritarian government has been banned, Asian media reported.
Residents were warned against criticising the state in a series of mass meetings held by functionaries across the country.
Death penalty statistics, country by country in 2012 | visualisation and data | World news | The Guardian
Ça date de 2012 mais je référence pour l’exemple et la méthodo carto.
After the execution of Kim Jong-un’s uncle, the brutality of North Korea’s regime has once again come under the international spotlight. In a broader context, is the attention warranted? Find out who uses the death penalty today - and see how it compares to 2007