The Bush administration is backing away from its long-held assertions that North Korea has an active clandestine program to enrich uranium, leading some experts to believe that the original U.S. intelligence that started the crisis over Pyongyang's nuclear ambitions may have been flawed....THIS IS IMPORTANT.
The administration's stance today stands in sharp contrast to the certainty expressed by top officials in 2002, when the administration accused Pyongyang of running a secret uranium program -- and demanded it be dismantled at once. President Bush told a news conference that November: "We discovered that, contrary to an agreement they had with the United States, they're enriching uranium, with a desire of developing a weapon."
The accusation about the alleged uranium program backfired, sparking a series of events that ultimately led to North Korea's first nuclear test -- using another material, plutonium -- nearly five months ago.
Basically, out of a fit of madness, the Bush administration abandoned a non-proliferation regime that was working (the Agreed Framework) because of the now-dubious assertion that North Korea was working with Uranium. Because of the Bush Administration's actions -- and subsequent refusal to negotiate in the intervening years -- the North took back it's Plutonium, and made bombs much much faster.
As Rob puts it:
North Korea has nuclear weapons today because George W. Bush is a stupid, stupid man.I'd go one further. After all, it was a GOP talking point throughout the Clinton Administration that Clinton had been suckered by Pyongyang. Well before Bush came to office, the GOP-held Senate was ruining any chance for peace on the Korean Peninsula. So, no, it's not just Bush.
North Korea has weapons today because Republicans elect stupid, stupid people.