TOP NEWS Koreas Set Bold Goals: A Final Peace and No Nuclear Arms New York Times China deploys advanced DF-26 missile Defense News Macron sees Trump dropping Iran nuclear deal BBC Pompeo becomes U.S. secretary of state as North Korea, Middle East issues await Reuters EAST ASIA Koreas agree to get rid of nuclear weapons Politico4/27/18 The two Koreas have agreed to rid their peninsula of nuclear weapons but failed to provide any new specific measures how to achieve that. Koreas Set Bold Goals: A Final Peace and No Nuclear Arms New York Times4/27/18 The leaders of North and South Korea agreed on Friday to work to remove all nuclear weapons from the Korean Peninsula and, within the year, pursue talks with the United States to declare an official end to the Korean War, which ravaged the two nations from 1950 to 1953. Korean War to end this year and nuclear project to wind down, North and South agree Newsweek4/27/18 North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and South Korean President Moon Jae-in have signed an agreement promising to bring peace to the Korean peninsula. China deploys advanced DF-26 missile Defense News4/26/18 China’s advanced DF-26 intermediate-range ballistic missile has been incorporated into its rocket force, boosting its ability to counter opponents on land and at sea, a defense ministry spokesman said Thursday. With Cameras Rolling, Korea’s Leaders Put a Peaceful Spin on Propaganda New York Times4/27/18 A carefully choreographed diplomatic dance at the Korean border added a surprise extra step on Friday, instantly turning a moment destined for the history books into a viral meme for the social-media era. North and South Korea agree to work toward ‘common goal’ of denuclearization Washington Post4/27/18 The leaders of North and South Korea made a bold pledge Friday to work toward a “common goal” of denuclearizing their peninsula and formally ending the Korean War by the end of this year, following a historic day of talks on the border that has divided them for almost seven decades. MIDDLE EAST Mattis says Iran nuclear deal includes ‘robust’ verification Military Times4/26/18 Defense Secretary Jim Mattis on Thursday emphasized the value of certain aspects of the Iran nuclear agreement, even as President Donald Trump considers pulling out of the 2015 deal, which he has attacked repeatedly and this week called “insane.” Macron sees Trump dropping Iran nuclear deal BBC4/26/18 French President Emmanuel Macron has said he may have failed in efforts to persuade Donald Trump to stick to an international nuclear deal with Iran. Mattis plays down link between Iran nuclear deal and North Korea talks Reuters4/26/18 Defense Secretary Jim Mattis played down concerns on Thursday about whether a potential U.S. withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal would undermine attempts to strike an agreement with North Korea to dismantle its nuclear weapons program. US and Israeli officials intensify the drumbeat against Iran CNN4/27/18 US and Israeli officials issued tough warnings about Iran’s activities in Syria and beyond on Thursday, in the lead-up to President Donald Trump’s May 12 decision on whether to stay in the Iran nuclear deal. RUSSIA/FSU/EUROPE Merkel to Press Trump on Russia Sanctions Foreign Policy4/26/18 Merkel and Macron are focused on European business when pushing back on Russia sanctions. Their concern for the Iran deal is different. U.S. NUCLEAR POLICY Pompeo becomes U.S. secretary of state as North Korea, Middle East issues await Reuters4/26/18 The U.S. Senate confirmed Mike Pompeo as President Donald Trump’s secretary of state on Thursday, and the former CIA director set off immediately on a trip to meet key allies in Europe and the Middle East. OPINION AND ANALYSIS North Korea’s despot has one goal: survival The Economist4/26/18 Kim Jong Un wants a long, happy life, unlike those of his subjects How the ‘insane’ Iranian nuclear deal might survive CNN4/26/18 The clock is ticking towards the May 12 deadline when US President Donald Trump will decide whether the US will withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal or sign up to extending it. How Trump and Merkel can fix the Iranian nuclear deal The HillBenjamin Weinthal and Toby Dershowitz 4/26/18 Trump faces the challenge of convincing Merkel that she is half-wrong: The nuclear deal can contain the Iranian nuclear program, but only if its most glaring flaws are fixed. Trump’s Middle Ground on Iran Deal Sanctions Waivers Is a Myth Foreign PolicyRichard Nephew 4/26/18 I helped negotiate the nuclear deal — and I know what would undo it.