Do Not Accept North Korea as a Nuclear Armed Power

By Joseph DeTrani

Ambassador Joseph DeTrani is former Special envoy for Six Party Talks with North Korea and the U.S. Representative to the Korea Energy Development Organization (KEDO), as well as former CIA director of East Asia Operations. He also served as the Associate Director of National Intelligence and Mission Manager for North Korea and the Director of the National Counter Proliferation Center, while also serving as a Special Adviser to the Director of National Intelligence.  He currently serves on the Board of Managers at Sandia National Laboratories.  The views expressed represent those of the author.

Following North Korea’s six nuclear test, reported to be far more powerful than any previous test conducted by the Kim regime, many wonder if denuclearizing North Korea is possible. Ambassador Joseph Detrani, former Special Envoy for the Six Party Talks and Director of the National Counterterrorism Center, told the Cipher Brief’s Callie Wang that to accept North Korea as a nuclear weapons state would be a mistake – for two key reasons.

The Cipher Brief: Kim Jong Un seems to be demonstrating, test by test, that the North should be treated as a nuclear power – partially to deter any thoughts of regime change, despite prior U.S. signaling that that is not Washington’s intent. What can be done to change Kim’s mind?

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