North Korea

July 13, 2017
Financial sanctions have emerged as a key strategic weapon for the United States and a primary means of non-military confrontation with nations, companies, and individuals that threaten U.S. and international security.
July 9, 2017
Saturday, on the sidelines of the G-20 in Hamburg, President Trump sat down with his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, for more than an hour-and-a-half of "substantive" discussions. Nonetheless, Washington as a practical matter no longer has a "China policy." That’s a good thing.
July 5, 2017
The U.S.-South Korea alliance has supported the peace and prosperity of both nations for more than 60 years, and South Korean President Moon Jae-in revealed one more reason to be thankful for the partnership in his first state visit to the United States and first meeting with President Donald Tru
July 5, 2017
The Trump Administration has made the North Korean nuclear and missile threats a national security priority and has called on its regional allies to bring additional pressure on North Korea to bring it back to negotiations. At the recent summit between U.S.
July 5, 2017
At the first meeting between U.S. President Donald Trump and new South Korean President Moon Jae-in, the two leaders discussed disagreements over trade, the THAAD missile defense system, and splitting the cost of basing U.S. troops in South Korea.
July 2, 2017
Every recent U.S. administration (Clinton, Bush, and Obama) has confronted the problem of North Korea’s (DPRK) nuclear weapons program.
June 20, 2017
On June 21, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Secretary of Defense James Mattis will meet with their Chinese counterparts, State Councilor Yang Jiechi and General Fang Fenghui, Chief of Joint Staff of the People’s Liberation Army in Washington for the inaugural session of the U.S.-China Diplom
June 20, 2017
In a recent interview with reporters in Beijing, Acting Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs Susan Thornton noted that the Chinese were finally e
June 20, 2017
Upon coming into office, the Trump Administration quickly came to the correct conclusion that the Obama Administration’s policy of “strategic patience” toward North Korea was really “strategic neglect.”  Secretary of State Tillerson in Seoul March 17 stated it succinctly: “Let me be very clear: t
June 9, 2017
U.S. policymakers seeking an end to North Korea’s nuclear program often point to Beijing’s leverage over Pyongyang as the key to securing a binding disarmament agreement and peace on the Korean peninsula.
June 9, 2017
Ambassador Fu Ying, Beijing’s veteran diplomat, said last month that her country had “no leverage” over North Korea unless China addressed Pyo
June 9, 2017
Pyongyang has responded to the UN Security Council’s unanimous decision June 2 to expand sanctions for North Korea’s nuclear and ballistic missile programs
June 6, 2017
Editor’s Note: The North Korean test on Tuesday of what is believed to be an intercontinental ballistic missile, capable of hitting Alaska, has the U.S. and the rest of the international community grappling with what to do to stop Pyongyang’s nuclear program.
May 26, 2017
Twenty-five years of failed negotiations with North Korea.  Since 1993, our efforts to halt North Korea’s pursuit of nuclear weapons have failed. What have we learned from this experience?
May 16, 2017
North Korea’s successful launch of the road-mobile intermediate range Hwasong-12 missile on Sunday yet again demonstrated the Kim Jong-un regime’s perseverance and improving technical acumen in developing ballistic missiles that can carry nuclear warheads.
May 16, 2017
Imagine the middle of nowhere Alaska. Got that in your head? Great. Now drive 2½  hours further into nowhere and you have arrived at Fort Greeley. I visited in the fall of 2015. It was cold out there—a wet, bitter cold.  It’s also slightly eerie.
May 16, 2017
For decades, North Korea’s continued advancements in ballistic missile technology has sustained U.S. interest in missile defense that can protect the U.S. homeland from nuclear-tipped intercontinental ballistic missiles.
May 12, 2017
From day one, South Korea’s new President, Moon Jae-in, has shown he will be a different type of leader. He confirmed a campaign promise that he would consider visiting Pyongyang before Washington to tackle the North Korean nuclear issue, albeit only if the conditions were right.
May 12, 2017
In his first days in office, newly elected South Korean President Moon Jae-in has tried to reassure the governments of the United States, Japan, and China that he will work to reduce tensions with North Korea, however his preference for engagement over sanctions has some experts wondering if
May 9, 2017
Can there be serious negotiations so that diplomacy may end the growing threat of a military confrontation on the Korean Peninsula? Not yet, is my guess.
May 3, 2017
There is an important emerging gap in thought over whether North Korea is several years away from having the ability to threaten the continental United States with a nuclear-armed missile, which many journalists are reporting, or whether North Korea actually already has that capability now. 
May 2, 2017
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, at age 33, is continuing his father’s and grandfather’s pattern of wild threats and bluster to cloak development of nuclear warheads and missile delivery systems that has caused problems for American presidents since Dwight Eisenhower.
April 25, 2017
President Donald Trump may be the only world leader impressed with the impact of the recent United States use of Tomahawk missiles in Syria and later the giant, GBU-43/B MOAB bomb in Afghanistan.
April 23, 2017
Official statements and public discussions on China’s willingness to punish or otherwise influence North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in a direction favorable to U.S. interests have been markedly optimistic in recent days.
April 5, 2017
Over the past decade, Japan has had to deal with external threats, from Chinese assertiveness in the seas surrounding the island nation to North Korea’s nuclear ambitions.
March 9, 2017
In the span of one week we have seen North Korea test four missiles, evidence of U.S. attempts to sabotage North Korea’s missile program with cyber capabilities, the deployment of the controversial THAAD missile defense system to South Korea, and China proposing that the U.S.
March 7, 2017
Despite UN resolutions and international opposition, North Korea test-launched four intermediate range ballistic missiles on Monday that reached within 200 miles of Japan. The test demonstrates not only Pyongyang’s disregard for more sanctions, but also its progress in missile technology.
February 14, 2017
North Korea’s latest test on Sunday of a nuclear capable Pukguksong-2 intermediate range ballistic missile displayed its inexorable advance in acquiring missile technology.  The test disrupted a dinner between President Donald Trump and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and has earned North Kore
February 14, 2017
The United States relies on missile defense systems to protect its allies and its troops stationed all around the world. Yet in some instances, the deployment of such systems is a strain on regional stability.
February 14, 2017
North Korea’s missile test on Sunday reaffirmed the case for greater missile defense in South Korea, but it did nothing to change China’s perspective on the matter. Beijing believes that any U.S.
January 19, 2017
From South Korea’s point of view, the year of 2016 will be remembered as one of the most challenging years since the armistice of the Korean War was signed in 1953.
January 12, 2017
Kim Jong-un’s New Year’s speech has triggered fevered speculation about the possibility of an impending North Korean intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) test, even provoking President-elect Donald Trump to tweet, “it won’t happen.”  Yet for anyone paying attention to North Korea’s developme
January 10, 2017
Historically, South Korea’s geographical position among larger and—in the case of its neighbor to the north—adversarial countries has placed it in a precarious foreign policy situation.
January 10, 2017
Within a week North Korea has gone beyond its New Year’s Day promise that it was close to testing an ICBM (Intercontinental Ballistic Missile), claiming it can launch one “anytime and anywhere.” This is unwelcome ne
December 8, 2016
In our graduate school, we emphasize the importance of understanding the history, culture, and political system of an adversary, which often gives you a better appreciation of how they view strategic issues of geopolitical concern.  When the students discuss tension with North Korea, we note the
December 1, 2016
As the incoming administration continues to define its contours, and as President-elect Donald Trump begins to outline a foreign policy strategy for the next four years, it’s worth reassessing the U.S.  approach toward one of Washington’s persistent challenges: North Korea.
October 16, 2016
Chinese rivalry with the U.S. for regional dominance will be central to U.S. East Asia policy for the incoming administration.  China’s aggressive use of economic leverage, its mercantilism and revanchism will continue to complicate U.S.
September 21, 2016
The latest North Korean nuclear test has caused the international community to once again reexamine all of the available policy options for how to hinder and eventually end North Korea’s nuclear program and create a nuclear weapons-free Korean peninsula.
September 18, 2016
The latest North Korean nuclear test was the largest to date, yet the international consensus on a response is as fractured and indecisive as ever.
September 18, 2016
The fifth North Korean nuclear test has left policy makers scrambling for both short term and long term solutions to a problem that, so far, has no solution. Many experts have called for a return to a multilateral negotiation framework such as the Six Party Talks.
September 18, 2016
The United States and its allies in East Asia have had sound reasons for the current approach to dealing with North Korea.  However, it carries with it a danger exemplified by the latest and largest North Korean nuclear test.  North Korea has been rightly dubbed by many experienced diplomats, the
July 2, 2016
Amid the continuing leitmotif of missile tests, nuclear weapons development, and unwavering anti-South Korean and anti-U.S. rhetoric, North Korea’s cyber activities have once again risen in the order of importance among security and political circles.
July 1, 2016
If confirmed, North Korea has perpetrated the first state-sponsored digital bank robbery in history.  It shows that North Korea is getting desperate and therefore that sanctions are working but at the same time that the international community must take additional steps to safeguard commerce and
July 1, 2016
North Korea’s army of 6,000 hackers have been implicated in a multimillion dollar bank heist, the theft of intelligence from finance and defense firms, and the infiltration of infrastructure networks—all in the first six months of 2016.
June 30, 2016
North Korea is threatening the Global Community with its reckless nuclear and missile behavior.   They have consistently disregarded U.N. Security Council Resolutions and have made clear, especially to China and the U.S., that they are a nuclear weapons state.
May 22, 2016
Two weeks have passed since the close of North Korea’s 7th Workers’ Party Congress and, for the moment, the country’s streak of provocations that kicked off 2016 have abated.
May 22, 2016
Following the conclusion of North Korea’s 7th Workers’ Party Congress, many questions remain regarding the future direction of economic and foreign policies. The Cipher Brief spoke to Gordon Chang, author of Nuclear Showdown: North Korea Takes on the World to learn more.
May 22, 2016
Amidst the fanfare of North Korea’s 7th Workers’ Party Congress, Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un’ promotion to Party Chairman was one of the few substantive announcements to emerge.
May 19, 2016
What’s in a nickname? A term of endearment? A backhanded compliment laden with criticism of one’s flaws? In South Korea, a politician’s nickname – given affectionately and sometimes not so lightly by the public – conveys his or her most salient attributes and character.
May 17, 2016
North Korea held its Seventh Workers’ Party Congress last week. The primary focus of the Congress was to consolidate Kim Jong-un’s domestic power base and clarify the policy direction for the country’s future development.