November 05, 2003

This is not a situation where it could be worse...

Bulletin From The International Affairs Department

It's worse.

Here's a link and discussion at Rantburg pointing to a Yahoo news article that said:

A year after North Korea provoked a crisis with the United States by admitting a secret effort to make weapons-grade uranium, U.S. officials say the program appears to be far less advanced than diplomats had feared.

Do tell. Who says?

Intensive international monitoring and North Korean ineptitude have significantly slowed efforts to build a plant to produce highly enriched uranium,...

Ineptitude is not a bug in dictatorial/communist/socialist regimes.

It's a feature.

...says a State Department official involved in U.S. attempts to stop the spread of nuclear weapons.

When it comes to ineptitude, it takes one to know one.

A U.S. intelligence official says the CIA, which has conducted extensive surveillance of North Korea, is "not certain there even is" a uranium-enrichment plant.

The blind leading the blind.

He says North Korea may have overstated its capability as part of a strategy of "bluff and bluster to extract concessions from the United States."

Plausible, but only if one assumes that the assessment of non-performance is correct.

If it turns out that North Korea's uranium production is not advanced, it could be much easier to work out a new deal to end the North's bombmaking efforts.

It'll do no such thing. More later.

Though North Korea is believed to have enough fuel for two to eight nuclear weapons, those weapons would use plutonium derived from a long-acknowledged nuclear complex at Yongbyon. The reason it's still unclear whether there is a uranium program is that such efforts are difficult to monitor. Plutonium programs, however, emit krypton gas that can be measured from the atmosphere.

"Can be measured" is not the same as "has been measured." Neither the source, nor the article, actually mentions whether krypton gas has been measured. Absence of mention does not imply absence of presence.

Enriching uranium is a large scale project: Enrichment facilities in Tennessee were built there in order to take advantage of cheap and abundant electric power from the TVA hydro-electric dams. "Cheap and Abundant" are not adjectives that one can apply to ANYTHING in North Korea right now, other than Juche-based propaganda and Kimmie's ego.

Well, remember what I said about this turn of events not making this situation easier to resolve? Here's why:

"I would find this report encouraging" because it would indicate the North's nuclear threat is less grave than portrayed, says Sen. Evan Bayh, D(oofus)-Ind., a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee.

Like I said, the blind leading the blind. Brain-dead Bayh and the State Department are acting like the Frat boys who, totally unprepared for the big mid-term on Friday, find out that it's been postponed to Monday, and in celebration blow off studying and instead party all weekend. By Sunday evening, they're so smashed that they're even less capable and prepared on Monday to take it, much less pass it, than they were three days earlier.

NOW is NOT the time to slack off, dammit. NOW is NOT the time to say, "Aww, po' man!". NOW is NOT the time to "be conciliatory" and "offer something to save face" or to "strengthen the hand" of some idiot flunky in the NKor government who they hope can shove a rational thought into Kimmie's ego-swollen brain. I've tried with less afflicted beings, and I can assure you, THERE IS NO ROOM AT THE INN.

I do not care how charitable, liberal, and kind hearted anyone is when bargaining with any other human being on the planet: If Kimmie at this moment was a car salesman, nobody, I repeat, nobody, would cut him any slack, but would go for the jugular with a clear conscience and not give a damn if he loses his shirt on the sale. The man will get scalped. (And a fine scalp it would be indeed. Heck, if Kimmie had been with Custer at the Little Big Horn, the General could have thrown him to the oncoming indian hordes and escaped alive with his entire command in the confusion caused by the braves fighting amongst themselves over who would do the honors and get the prize.)

Things have just got worse: When given more time, the Wise get cracking and use it to solve the crisis, while the Foolish waste it by comforting themselves that they have more time to solve the crisis.

Ahhh, FUCK! What a time to find out how so truly representative of the United States Congress is, in that half the members are below average in intelligence.

Posted by ptah at November 5, 2003 10:08 PM
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