world

Photos show North Korea expanding uranium enrichment plant

19 Comments
By HYUNG-JIN KIM

The requested article has expired, and is no longer available. Any related articles, and user comments are shown below.

© Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

©2021 GPlusMedia Inc.

19 Comments
Login to comment

Fake news! Trump took care of Kim already.

-7 ( +4 / -11 )

Nobody's willing to discuss the larger elephant in the room.

Enough weaponized anthrax to render the entire Japanese archipelago uninhabitable for a few centuries.

A more than adequate supply of VX, sarin, botulinin and tabun - if you wanted to completely depopulate the Korean peninsula south of the DMZ.

Covertly placed agents with smallpox munitions that are estimated to kill 20M in the first year.

Nukes are flashy Hollywood headline material that make for great PR and keep Kim's name up in lights. But the DPRK's chemical and bioweapons are the real ace up his sleeve.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

The issue with using biological or chemical weapons is you lose control once they are unleashed. The direction of the wind changes and your up a creek without a paddle.

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

The issue with using biological or chemical weapons is you lose control once they are unleashed. The direction of the wind changes and your up a creek without a paddle.

True, chemical and biological weapons are intended for use in localized small scale warfare.

Mass scale CBRN warfare is “scorched earth” take’em down with us tactic.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

The sanctions against the NK people should end.

After all they haven’t invaded Afghanistan, Iraq or Syria.

Once that happens Pyongyang will be busy developing their economy instead of making missiles.

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

If you are North Korea it makes perfect sense.

What do you expect them to do?

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Japan is naked. Pacifist, Restrictions, Article 9.

Even North Korea can be a serious threat with Nuclear weapons and Japan have no way to match them.

What's plan B? If the America's don't come or want to participate, what then?

When Japanese citizens die you should tell them your calling Washington to ask the real President what he will do.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

Oh... and lets not forget the guy loading explosives into his van...

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

...had some reliable intel on that too... and if it weren't for those meddling kids...

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

There are a couple more layers to this story.

According to the Daily NK, North Korea decided to restart the Yongbyon nuclear facility and renaming it as ‘district 1’, to solidify the meaning and importance of Yongbyon.

When last they were in a negotiating mood - the Hanoi summit in February 2019 - Kim Jong-un used Yongbyon as the one piece of what they would give up in exchange for the lifting of sanctions against the country. Things fell to pieces when they wouldn't dismantle the five additional nuclear facilities in addition to the Yongbyon nuclear facility.

So they restarted #1.

So we see more brinkmanship for a tired world wanting to avoid the vision of some smoking glowing craters blown into terra firma by his exciting new toys.

But, things are still really bad in their country of 25.77 million economically. When North Korea has a GDP from Agriculture decrease to 6876.40 KPW Billion in CY 2020 (from 7441.20 KPW Billion in 2019; yes that's in one year!), you know things are bad; combine this with similar dips in all other producing economic sectors, and you have the ingredents for economic chaos.

The economic inferno is showing - and growing. North Korea's economy shrank by a whopping 4.5 percent in FY 2020 (as reported last July), suffering its biggest contraction in almost 25 years. Even the most out-of-touch recluse simply must see the writing on the wall by now.

Unless he and his family are extraordinarily delusional (just putting it out there . . . ), even Kim Jong-un himself has to realize by now that, even with intense and extreme brinksmanship posturing that he and his circus can muster, he simply must decide to undergo significant major economic reforms in a very short amount of time. Lifting economic sanctions and major injections of foreign money from every country just can't solve his problems.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

*The economic inferno is showing - and growing. North Korea's economy shrank by a whopping 4.5 percent in FY 2020 (as reported last July), suffering its biggest contraction in almost 25 years. Even the most out-of-touch recluse simply must see the writing on the wall by now.*

*Unless he and his family are extraordinarily delusional (just putting it out there . . . ), even Kim Jong-un himself has to realize by now that, even with intense and extreme brinksmanship posturing that he and his circus can muster, he simply must decide to undergo significant major economic reforms in a very short amount of time. Lifting economic sanctions and major injections of foreign money from every country just can't solve his problems.*

People have been saying substantially the same thing for three generations of Kims now.

They got through the Arduous March without nuclear technology; they’ll get through this, and people like you will continue repeating the above.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

And where's the photo!!!!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

They got through the Arduous March . . .

For some younger readers who were not around yet when this happened, the North Korean famine (for intentional propaganda purposes, the Arduous March or the March of Suffering) was a period of mass starvation combined with a general economic collapse from 1994 to 1998.

Most historians agree that this period took place after the country began to decline after Germany reunified in 1990, the Soviet Union collapsed in 1992, and China shifted to a market economy. Economic aid from China and the Soviet Union alliances was reduced to a mere fraction of its former self, and natural disasters (severe floods and extreme droughts) followed soon afterwards. North Korea’s economic situation deteriorated and the country began experiencing devastating food shortages.

Records shows an unprecedented famine during this time period, resulting in death by starvation for between 220,000 and 350,000 people (some put the figure much higher). Back then, the government refused to import food, and stood determined to stay the course in economic planning. They even went so far as to outlawing the very use of the term “famine” – hence the use of the term “Arduous March” as a tool to prepare the masses for the very worst.

North Korea is dependent on others for crop imports. As more than half of its topography is mountainous, simply putting farmers in communal farms to tell them what to do with a mere 20% of it's arable land was not very smart (still isn't).

North Korea decided to improve relations with the US, Japan, and South Korea. What followed was the ‘Sunshine Policy,’ which led to the North to began receiving considerable food aid. They still receive it.

International Relations experts also agree as to what happend next. North Korea decided to switch their strategy to prioritize elevating the country’s military power, including a nuclear program. The international community denounced this poliferation of nukes, and subsequently imposed economic sanctions and diplomatic isolation. The First and Second Nuclear Crises in 1993 and 2002, were constructed by North Korea from its policy of continuing to create military programs sufficiently large and menacing to gain a better position in future negotiations.

Fast forward to this past April, when Kim Jong un, speaking at a ruling Workers’ Party of Korea conference, spoke of more current dire economic situation (see GDP numbers above), and called on the Party Faithful to “wage another more difficult ‘Arduous March.’”

The classics never go our of style.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Correction: last para should read The classics never go of style.

Thank you!

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Another instance of the new incompetent regime in Washington resulting in bad things on the world stage. This was happening when the last guy was running things.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

Another instance of the new incompetent regime in Washington resulting in bad things on the world stage.

Which do you think they should do first to solve this issue? Threaten to rain hellfire, start a war, have a photo op, or write love letters? These are all the traditional Republican methods of dealing with such situations, do you feel they're still the right way to handle it, or do you guys have some new ideas now?

Remember, it's easy to oppose/obstruct, but only people who aren't useless can come up with solutions.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

This has long been a conundrum for diplomats and International Relations theorists for years: what do you do with the planet's leadership that is crazier than a swimsuit full of weasels.

Some suggest a universal basic income for these counries and others that are living almost exclusively on the kindness of strangers, just so that their populations won't starve. Others argue against that, saying that the country and its merry band of miscreants will just use the money originally intended for food and basic staples, and spend it all instead on their bloated military and their obscenely expensive and lethal toys.

Any ideas?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Nukes are flashy Hollywood headline material that make for great PR and keep Kim's name up in lights. But the DPRK's chemical and bioweapons are the real ace up his sleeve.

Sigh. No, not really. Chemical and biological weapons require very specific and favorable atmospheric conditions to be employed with the intended effects. Favorable weather is fairly rare. The launch platforms also need to be very close to their target and the weapons are very dangerous for the military using them. DPRK is not in a position to use chemical or biological agents against Japan. If it did so against the South Koreans (or Japan) the US would reply with nuclear weapons. The US has always been very clear that if an enemy used chemical or biological weapons on US or allied forces or the population of an ally the US would respond with nuclear weapons.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

A major problem for South Korea and the US is that about half the South Korean population lives within artillery range of North Korea. Estimates of the carnage from a North Korean attack on the south are 100,000 dead per hour on the first day of war. Not 100,000 dead per day, but per hour. There are big apartment complexes in South Korea with upwards of 50,000 living in them. A couple of well aimed artillery shells would kill tens of thousands. It is that extreme concentration of South Koreans so close to DPRK artillery that makes a second Korean war so horrible to contemplate. There would be no way to evacuate the population of great Seoul fast enough to prevent the Norks from badly depopulating the ROK even without using nuclear weapons. It is that sobering consideration that prevents the US and South Korea from doing anything too ambitious militarily to confront DPRK. Add in the fact that if it ever looks like the US and South Korea were on the verge of defeating the DPRK there would be a tidal wave of PLA forces backed by the PLAAF and PLAN to deal with. It is a dangerous balancing act. Destroying DPRKs nuclear facilities could cause a war that kills tens of millions, maybe hundreds of millions of China were to enter the war on the side of the DPRK. Nobody wants to go there. Do you blame them? Now, how do you negotiate with DPRK under these circumstances?

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites