North Korea

Experts guess that North Korea has less than ten nuclear weapons, a tiny amount compared to nations like China, the US or Russia. But the Hermit Kingdom’s unpredictable and belligerent behavior — on one of the world’s last remaining Cold War fault lines — make it an outsized threat to global safety and security.

Simply continuing past policies  —  applying more sanctions and beefing up military capabilities in the region  —  will almost certainly fail, but more ominously will likely result in one or more of three outcomes, all of them bad: accidental war or military miscalculation; weapons-grade plutonium or uranium secreted out of North Korea; and Pyongyang increasing its leverage by continuing to produce fissile material.

Latest News and Analysis on Nuclear Weapons in North Korea

  • By Paul Carroll and Joe Cirincione

    Headlines and pundits once again declare that we have a crisis on our hands in the wake of discovering that North Korea is building a new nuclear reactor and a uranium enrichment plant.

    November 24, 2010 - By Joe Cirincione
  • Joe speaks with KCRW's "To the Point" in a discussion on North Korea's recent military actions and U.S. policy options going forward.

    The interview begins 15 minutes 45 seconds into the show.

    November 24, 2010 - By Ploughshares Fund
  • In the last two weeks, North Korea unveiled the construction of a new nuclear reactor and a uranium enrichment facility. These advances in the nuclear program demand that the United States reassess its policies toward North Korea and reinvigorate its attempts to engage with the rogue regime.

    November 22, 2010 - By Reid Pauly
  • Expert analysis of construction at a North Korean nuclear site has generated concern and intrigue about the North's actions, The Washington Post

    October 5, 2010 - By Reid Pauly
  • Asia watchers are pouring over recent announcements from North Korea and speculating about their meaning. While there is little doubt that things are afoot in Pyongyang, it is not exactly clear what.

    October 1, 2010 - By Sarah Beth Cross
  • North Korean Leader, Kim Jong Il, may be lining up a successor to his rule in a historic meeting of the Workers Party.  Ploughshares Fund supports many of the top experts who are closely following these events.

    September 27, 2010 - By Reid Pauly
  • September 15, 2010 - By Sarah Beth Cross
  • News broke today of a new report detailing Burma's potential nuclear weapons ambitions.

    June 4, 2010 - By Elise Connor
  • As the 189 signatories to the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty gather in New York this week for the five-year review of the progress toward the goals of the treaty, Ploughshares Fund staff, board members and grantees are providing analysis and commentary on the range of issues under discussion, from Iran's nuclear program to global efforts to achieve a nuclear weapon-free world. 

    June 1, 2010 - By Deborah Bain
  • North Korean expert and Ploughshares Fund grantee Joel Wit argues that America must pursue "sustained diplomatic engagement" with North Korea.

    June 1, 2010 - By Elise Connor