Nuclear Policy News – August 29, 2018

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Top News

Khamenei Sees No Hope for Europe to Salvage Iran Nuclear Deal

US State Dept. on Cancelled Trip to N. Korea: ‘Not the Right Time to Travel’
Voice of America

What the New US Nuclear Posture Means for Northeast Asia
The Diplomat

East Asia

Why U.S.-North Korea Nuclear Talks Have Stalled
Just a few months after Donald Trump’s historic handshake with Kim Jong Un in June, nuclear talks between the U.S. and North Korea are going nowhere

N.K. calls for implementation of inter-Korean summit deals amid stalled nuke talks
Yonhap News Agency8/29/2018
North Korea’s media reiterated calls for South Korea to faithfully implement summit agreements between their leaders Wednesday amid concerns nuclear talks between Washington and Pyongyang have been stalemated.

South Korean Leader Pushes Ahead on Plan to Meet Kim Jong-un
New York Times8/29/2018
President Moon Jae-in of South Korea sees a more urgent need to travel to North Korea next month and meet with its leader, Kim Jong-un, now that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s planned trip there this week has been canceled, Mr. Moon’s office said on Wednesday.

Here’s why Mattis won’t cancel upcoming maneuvers with South Korean forces
Defense News8/28/2018
Just days after a planned high-level summit between the U.S. and North Korea was called off, the Pentagon’s top official said Tuesday that no decision has been made to cancel major joint military exercises between the U.S. and South Korea planned for 2019.

Pentagon May Restart Major War Games Amid Rising Tensions With North Korea
New York Times8/28/2018
Defense Secretary Jim Mattis opened the door on Tuesday to restarting large-scale military exercises on the Korean Peninsula, appearing to contradict President Trump, who had labeled the war games costly and “provocative” two months ago in trying to lower tensions with North Korea.

Middle East

Khamenei Sees No Hope for Europe to Salvage Iran Nuclear Deal
Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei says the government should stop pinning its hopes on Europe saving the international nuclear deal that’s been battered by the U.S. withdrawal.

U.S. Nuclear Policy

What the New US Nuclear Posture Means for Northeast Asia
The Diplomat8/29/2018
Changes in the 2018 U.S. Nuclear Posture Review could alter the strategic environment in East Asia.

Opinion and Analysis

Time to Withdraw from the INF Treaty
National Institute for Public PolicyDr. Colin S. Gray and Matthew R. Costlow
“To be serious about arms control is to be serious about compliance.” President Ronald Reagan’s axiom, though stated during the Cold War, holds special relevance for today. If ever there was a test case for the level of seriousness which the United States assigns to compliance, the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty is it. Since formally accusing Russia of breaking its INF Treaty commitments four years ago, the United States has not succeeded in bringing Russia back into compliance. In fact, Russia apparently is continuing to produce and deploy the Treaty-violating system in greater numbers, even after two rounds of diplomatic meetings. That is in addition to numerous other possible INF Treaty concerns not addressed in State Department compliance reports.

The Trump administration’s new ‘Iran Action Group’ won’t work — for these 3 reasons
Washington PostNicholas Miller
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo recently announced that he had created an Iran Action Group to coordinate and implement policy toward Tehran, saying Iran had unleashed “a torrent of violence and destabilizing behavior against the United States, our allies, our partners and, indeed, the Iranian people themselves.” Coming after the administration’s decision to pull out of the Iran nuclear deal and reimpose sanctions, this announcement signaled again that the Trump administration intends to act more aggressively against Iran.

Special Interest

US State Dept. on Cancelled Trip to N. Korea: ‘Not the Right Time to Travel’
Voice of America8/28/2018
Video – CNN and the Washington Post are reporting that North Korea sent a letter to the United States last week warning that talks on denuclearization are “at stake and may fall apart.” According to those reports, harsh rhetoric in the letter prompted President Donald Trump to abruptly cancel a planned trip to Pyongyang by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, just hours before he was set to depart last Friday. VOA’s Diplomatic Correspondent Cindy Saine reports from the State Department.

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