North Korea Tests Nuke


North Korea faced united global condemnation and calls for harsh sanctions Monday after it announced it had detonated an atomic weapon in an underground test. President Bush said North Korea has "defied the will of the international community," and the U.N. Security Council planned a meeting this morning, where the U.S. and Japan are expected to press for more sanctions on the impoverished North.

Bush said the action "deserves an immediate response" by the U.N. Security Council."

There were conflicting reports on the size of the blast in northeast North Korea. South Korea said it was relatively small, while Russia said it had been perhaps as powerful as the nuclear bombs the U.S. dropped on Japan during World War II.

The explosion prompted worldwide concern it could seriously destabilize the region, and even Pyongyang's ally China said it strongly opposed the move. South Korea's spy chief said there were possible indications the North was moving to conduct more tests.

…If details of the test are confirmed, North Korea would be the ninth country known to have nuclear weapons, along with the United States, Russia, France, China, Britain, India, Pakistan and Israel.

…A nuclear North Korea would dramatically alter the strategic balance of power in the Pacific region and seriously undermine global anti-proliferation efforts. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said the test would mark the beginning of a "dangerous nuclear age" in north Asia.
That China is condemning the test and encouraging North Korea to return to disarmament talks is good news. The bad news is that sanctions are only going to worsen the situation for the people of North Korea, who would have starved to death long ago if not for the goodwill of the international community. Talk about a need for regime change.

North Korea “insists its nuclear program is necessary to deter a U.S. invasion,” which is just as absurd as it is a believable excuse, thanks to Bush’s “Axis of Evil” rhetoric. In any case, we’re left with another giant frigging mess.

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