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Flashback: NYTimes Editorial on N. Korea 10-18-94

If you ever wondered what Morons the people at the NYTimes were, this is a classic example. Unfortunately, it is now even worse than ever. Neville Chamberlain where are you? The na´ve Elitist establishment continues to daily put us in more danger, and at the same time, piously explain how it is our fault. Hypocrites - and worse - ones that will get many of us killed!

Flashback: New York Times Editorial 10/18/94

Diplomacy with North Korea has scored a resounding triumph. Monday's draft agreement freezing and then dismantling North Korea's nuclear program should bring to an end two years of international anxiety and put to rest widespread fears that an unpredictable nation might provoke nuclear disaster.

The U.S. negotiator Robert Gallucci and his North Korean interlocutors have drawn up a detailed road map of reciprocal steps that both sides accepted despite deep mutual suspicion. In so doing they have defied impatient hawks and other skeptics who accused the Clinton Administration of gullibility and urged swifter, stronger action. The North has agreed first to freeze its nuclear program in return for U.S. diplomatic recognition and oil from Japan and other countries to meet its energy needs. Pyongyang will then begin to roll back that program as an American-led consortium replaces the North's nuclear reactors with two new ones that are much less able to be used for bomb-making. At that time, the North will also allow special inspections of its nuclear waste sites, which could help determine how much plutonium it had extracted from spent fuel in the past.

A last-minute snag, North Korea's refusal to resume its suspended talks with neighboring South Korea, was resolved to Seoul's satisfaction. If Washington and Pyongyang approve the agreement, and if the North fulfills its commitments, this negotiation could become a textbook case on how to curb the spread of nuclear arms.

Hawks, arguing that the North was simply stalling while it built more bombs, had called for economic sanctions or attacks on the North's nuclear installations. The Administration muted the war talk and pursued determined diplomacy.

Reassuring the North paid off in the end. Given the residual mistrust between the two sides, the U.S. will now sensibly provide more tangible reassurance. It is moving toward diplomatic recognition, in the form of an exchange of liaison offices, and economic cooperation, in the form of heavy fuel oil from others in the U.S.-led consortium and the start of construction of new nuclear reactors.

In return, the North will put its nuclear program in a deep freeze by not refueling its nuclear reactor, arranging temporary safe storage of the spent fuel rods removed from that reactor and sealing its reprocessing facility to prevent the extraction of plutonium from those fuel rods. Implementing the freeze and allowing it to be verified are important tests of the North's good faith.

Then, in elaborately choreographed stages detailed in a confidential note, nuclear dismantling will proceed step-by-step with reactor replacement. That gives both sides leverage against reneging. At the end of stage one, with construction of the first reactor well under way but before key nuclear components have been supplied, the North will allow special inspections of its nuclear waste sites.

In stage two, as construction proceeds on the two reactors, the North will gradually ship its 8,000 spent fuel rods abroad for reprocessing. In stage three, as the second replacement reactor nears completion, the North will dismantle all its bomb-making facilities, including its old graphite reactors and reprocessing plant.

Critics say the U.S. is in effect bribing North Korea to comply with the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty. Yet Washington has previously provided inducements to others, including South Korea, to refrain from bomb-making. It has gotten the North to do a lot more than the treaty requires, like dismantle its nuclear installations.

From the start, the hawks' alternative to diplomacy was full of danger. Their solution -- economic sanctions and bombing runs -- might have disarmed North Korea, but only at the risk of war. President Clinton, former President Carter and Mr. Gallucci deserve warm praise for charting a less costly and more successful course.
 






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