TOP NEWS U.S., South Korea begin joint military exercises as tensions thaw on Korean Peninsula USA Today U.N. Unveils Blacklist to Fight North Korea Sanctions-Busting New York Times After Expulsions, Options Dwindle in Russia and West’s ‘Diplomatic War’ Wall Street Journal Pakistan Conducts Second Test of Babur-3 Nuclear-Capable Submarine-Launched Cruise Missile The Diplomat EAST ASIA Telling the Stories of Defectors From North Korea New York Times4/2/18 The life of a North Korean defector is brutally carved into two parts: before and after. Kim Jong Un Mingles With K-Pop Stars in Overture to Seoul Bloomberg4/2/18 Kim’s surprise appearance at a rare pop concert in Pyongyang was the North Korean leader’s latest diplomatic overture as he prepares for an unprecedented potential meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump next month. Trump, Lacking Leverage Over North Korea, Takes Aim at South Instead New York Times3/30/18 On Thursday, President Trump said he might postpone finalizing the trade agreement with South Korea, which he had earlier described as “a wonderful deal with a wonderful ally,” until he secured a deal in denuclearizing North Korea. U.S., South Korea begin joint military exercises as tensions thaw on Korean Peninsula USA Today4/1/18 The United States and South Korea began their joint military training exercises Sunday as diplomatic relations have been thawing on the Korean Peninsula, according to the South Korean defense ministry. U.N. Unveils Blacklist to Fight North Korea Sanctions-Busting New York Times3/31/18 The United Nations Security Council has announced new measures against North Korea, blacklisting 27 ships, 21 shipping companies and one individual accused of helping the North evade previous sanctions. N. Korean nuclear site more active ahead of Kim meetings Japan News3/30/18 Increased activity at a North Korean nuclear site has once again caught the attention of analysts and renewed concerns about the complexities of denuclearization talks as U.S. President Donald Trump prepares for a summit with Kim Jong Un in the coming weeks. RUSSIA/FSU/EUROPE Russia has tested new nuclear missile that NATO calls ‘Satan 2’ ABC News3/30/18 Russia’s military on Friday said it had successfully carried out a second test launch of its most advanced nuclear-capable intercontinental ballistic missile. After Expulsions, Options Dwindle in Russia and West’s ‘Diplomatic War’ Wall Street Journal3/30/18 Tit-for-tat exchange leaves both sides weighing other means to escalate SOUTH ASIA Pakistan Conducts Second Test of Babur-3 Nuclear-Capable Submarine-Launched Cruise Missile The Diplomat4/1/18 The Babur-3 continues to see development as Pakistan pursues a sea-based deterrent. U.S. NUCLEAR POLICY Exclusive: On board the ‘Doomsday’ plane that can wage nuclear war CNN3/31/18 If Russia aimed a long range missile like the “Satan 2” it just tested or North Korea suddenly targeted the headquarters of the US nuclear arsenal, top commanders would have a small window to get to safety. Graham: John Bolton has ‘very healthy skepticism’ on North Korea The Guardian4/1/18 The Republican senator Lindsey Graham said on Sunday he was glad John Bolton will be Donald Trump’s national security adviser going into talks with North Korea, because of his “very healthy skepticism”. OPINION AND ANALYSIS The Right Way to Coerce North Korea Foreign AffairsVictor Cha and Katrin Fraser Katz 4/1/18 Ending the threat without going to war What Kim Jong Un’s China Trip Means for Trump The Atlantic3/30/18 And how the U.S. president can try to avoid getting played Trump’s Iran Threat May Wreck Talks With North Korea New York Times4/1/18 As he prepares for possible talks with the North Korean leader Kim Jong-un about controlling the North’s nuclear weapons program, President Trump is facing his most complicated national security challenge so far. Europe Will Now Decide if the Iran Deal Survives Wall Street Journal4/1/18 France, the U.K. and Germany can accept Trump’s conditions or kill the agreement. Trump may not intend to start a war. But he sure could bumble into one. Washington PostJackson Diehl 4/1/18 So now that he has assembled what some are calling his war cabinet, will President Trump actually start a war? Three strikes means Bolton should be out Bulletin of the Atomic ScientistsAlexandra Bell and James McKeon 3/30/18 The real confusing issue is why the President wanted an adviser who has been wrong so many times.