North Korea

Experts estimate that North Korea may have enough plutonium and highly enriched uranium for 20 to 25 nuclear weapons, a tiny amount compared to nations like China, the United States or Russia. But the crisis with North Korea presents one of the greatest global security threats today. And the crisis is only getting worse as Pyongyang races to develop its ability to strike targets farther and farther away.

Verbal threats and other provocations between the North and the US have stoked this growing fire, bringing us to the brink of war in mid 2017. North Korea has developed an ICBM capable of reaching the United States and reportedly has a miniaturized nuclear warhead to match. If diplomatic action isn’t taken soon, it may be only a matter of time before a devastating regional war breaks out in the region. Threatening military action 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. Ploughshares Fund and its grantees are committed to preventing a humanitarian catastrophe and finding a peaceful resolution to the North Korea crisis.

Latest News and Analysis on Nuclear Weapons in North Korea

  • Zarif at the G7, US-North Korea negotiations, India and No First-Use and stopping hurricanes

    MICHELLE: Welcome back to another Early Warning. I'm Michelle Dover, Director of Programs here at Ploughshares Fund. Today I am joined by my colleagues, our resident Roger Hale fellow here at Ploughshares, Catherine Killough, and Research Associate at the Federation of American Scientists, Matt...

    August 26, 2019 - By Ploughshares Fund
  • Controversy at State Department, prospects for US-DPRK talks, and Iranian oil tanker

    JOE: Great, I want to start with you, Mary, right off on Iran because you've got a couple of stories to cover today and let me start with something that's not happening in the Middle East, but it's happening in Foggy...

    August 19, 2019 - By Ploughshares Fund
  • Emergency meeting in Vienna, North Korea’s recent missile launches

    Michelle: This weekend we saw an emergency meeting in Vienna with officials from Iran, Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China, basically everybody except the US who signed up to the deal. And the point of the meeting was to see whether there was a way to save the agreement in light of the...

    July 30, 2019 - By Ploughshares Fund
  • Women in the Room Where It Happens

    In one year, the world witnessed the prospect of a nuclear war on the Korean Peninsula turn into awe-inspiring peacemaking by Korean leaders. Now, a historic opportunity to end the seven-decade Korean War is within reach. The majority of South Koreans want a peace agreement to end the Korean War...

    April 3, 2019 - By Ploughshares Fund
  • Korea: Two Ambassadors, Two Perspectives

    Ploughshares Fund Executive Director and Chief Opearting Officer Philip Yun recently had a chance to moderate a discussion at the Commonwealth Club in San Francisco — a rare visit with the US and South Korean Ambassadors. The two ambassadors discussed the economic and political relationship...

    March 27, 2019 - By Ploughshares Fund
  • The Opportunity For Diplomacy With North Korea

    As President Trump prepares to meet with Chairman Kim Jong Un for a second summit, Ploughshares Fund today released a new report with recommendations for continued US-North Korea diplomacy. Drawing on the lessons of past negotiations, this report urges President Trump and US lawmakers to seize a...

    February 25, 2019 - By Ploughshares Fund
  • Push for principled progress on US-DPRK diplomacy

    The United States has a rare opportunity to advance the twin goals of denuclearization and a lasting peace regime on the Korean Peninsula, commitments that the two nations made during their unprecedented Summit in Singapore in June 2018. With this in mind, pro-diplomacy organizations urge...

    February 21, 2019 - By Ploughshares Fund
  • The Next Trump-Kim Summit

    Although the situation with North Korea has improved from a year ago, the crisis still presents one of the greatest global security challenges. Ploughshares Fund's investment strategy makes the impact of all of our grants larger than the sum of each individual grant. Our inter-locking network of...

    February 4, 2019 - By Ploughshares Fund
  • Remembering the Hawaii False Alarm

    January 13 marks the one-year anniversary of the false Hawaii missile alert. That’s when nearly every radio, television and cell phone in Hawaii broadcast a mistaken official message that read, "Ballistic missile threat inbound to Hawaii. Seek immediate shelter. This is not a drill." Hawaiians...

    January 9, 2019 - By Ploughshares Fund
  • Will you help Ploughshares Fund?

    As we reach the end of another tumultuous year in US nuclear policy, the work and mission of Ploughshares Fund has never been more urgent. I'm writing to ask you to consider giving generously today. Last year at this time, North Korea tested its most powerful missile yet — one capable of...

    December 11, 2018 - By Philip Yun