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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Oct. 18, 2006 / 26 Tishrei, 5767

Why is North Korea America's headache?

By Jack Kelly

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | As the U.S. takes the lead in formulating the international response to North Korea's (apparently fizzled) nuclear test, there is a question which ought to be asked:


Why is this our problem?


In 1950, this was easy to answer. The fledgling democracy in South Korea was too weak to protect itself.


North Korea was then an agent of an international Communist conspiracy. We intervened in Korea less to protect the South Koreans than to protect Japan. But that was more than half a century ago. The Soviet Union has collapsed. The Communists who run China these days seem more interested in making money than in making war.


North Korea remains Stalinist, has a formidable military, and still dreams of conquering the South. But its objectives are peninsular, not global, and it has little likelihood of obtaining them, even without American intervention.


That's because South Korea also has a formidable military, which could be made much more formidable if the South Koreans chose to do so. South Korea today has more than twice the population of North Korea, 24 times the national wealth.


Our greatest fear is that North Korea will sell nuclear technology and/or missile technology to another rogue state, or to a terror group.


That concern is real, but the fizzling of the North Korean nuclear test suggests it may be overblown.


The North Koreans have been trying to convert the "spent" uranium fuel rods used in nuclear power reactors into plutonium to build bombs. But they screwed up the reprocessing, speculated my friend Jack Wheeler in his newsletter, "To the Point News."


North Korean dictator Kim Jong Il wants the bomb yesterday, so North Korean scientists are under enormous pressure to make enough plutonium to build one. The longer you leave the rods in the reactor, the more uranium is converted into plutonium. But if you leave the rods in too long, you'll screw the pooch. That's because the ratio of isotopes in the plutonium changes the longer you leave it in the reactor.


For the reaction to assemble fast enough for a nuclear detonation, at least 90 percent of the plutonium must consist of the P-239 isotope. If more than ten percent consists of the P-240 or P-242 isotopes, the explosion will fizzle.


If that's what happened, then the North Korean stockpile of plutonium is too polluted with P-240 and P-242 to be made into bombs, Jack said.


And if that's so, neither North Korean expertise nor North Korean nuclear materials will be of much value anytime soon to Islamic terrorists.


The network of A. Q. Khan, the Pakistani nuclear scientist, is said to have played a major role in North Korea's nuclear development. If that's so, we have a more proximate threat of nuclear proliferation. The Pakistani bomb worked, and Islamists like (the now deceased) A. Q. Khan are more likely to assist Islamic radicals in pursuit of the bomb than are the North Koreans.


Our other fear with regard to North Korea is that in a future conflict, it might launch nuclear tipped ballistic missiles at the United States. This was always a remote possibility, because it would be tantamount to national suicide on the part of the North Korean regime. And after the fizzled nuclear test and the botched test last July of its long range Taepo Dong II missile, it doesn't seem like the North Koreans will have the capability to hit our cities anytime soon, however much they might want to.


We wouldn't have to worry so much about North Korean nukes descending on Seattle or San Francisco if we weren't continuing to guarantee South Korea's military security, even though there is no longer a compelling reason why we should.


I suspect our prominence in Korean affairs is more a hindrance than a help in getting the nations of the region to rein in their rogue neighbor.


If China and South Korea don't go along, sanctions against North Korea can't work. China has viewed North Korea as more of an asset than a liability, chiefly because of the discomfort the Norks have caused us. Remove us from the equation — or lower our profile — and China may focus more on the headaches Kim Jong Il causes them.


And as long as South Korea can rely on its security pact with us, it has no reason to modify its appeasement policy toward the Norks. Remove or reduce that security guarantee, and South Korea would have to toughen up.


"There are no permanent alliances, only permanent interests," said Lord Palmerston, a 19th Century British foreign secretary. On the Korean peninsula, our interests are no longer served by our alliance.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

JWR contributor Jack Kelly, a former Marine and Green Beret, was a deputy assistant secretary of the Air Force in the Reagan administration. Comment by clicking here.

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© 2006, Jack Kelly

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