Top News North Korean Negotiator Expected to Visit U.S. as Relations Thaw Wall Street Journal Pentagon Sees China Seeking Nuclear Bomber to Compete With U.S. Bloomberg Iran says it will be ready for new satellite launch in a few months Reuters U.S.-Russia Nuclear-Arms Pact Moves Closer to Collapse Wall Street Journal US weighs new ways to detect and track enemy missiles Associated Press East Asia Confusion over North Korea’s definition of denuclearization clouds talks Washington Post1/16/19 It is one of the central questions in the negotiations over North Korea’s nuclear program: What does Kim Jong Un want in return for giving up his weapons? Specifically, the issue is what Kim means by his insistence on the “complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula” — and whether that includes a demand for U.S. troops to leave South Korea and pull nuclear-armed American bombers and submarines out of the surrounding region. North Korean Negotiator Expected to Visit U.S. as Relations Thaw Wall Street Journal1/16/19 North Korea and the U.S. appeared to be moving toward a rekindling of denuclearization talks, setting the stage for a widely expected second summit between the two country’s leaders. Kim Yong Chol, North Korea’s lead nuclear negotiator and the country’s former spymaster, is expected to travel through Beijing on Thursday, according to a spokeswoman at China’s foreign ministry. Gen. Kim has booked a United Airlines flight headed to Washington that day, South Korea’s semiofficial Yonhap News Agency reported. Pentagon Sees China Seeking Nuclear Bomber to Compete With U.S. Bloomberg1/15/19 China is likely developing a long-range bomber capable of delivering nuclear weapons and a space-based early warning system it could use to more quickly respond to an attack, according to a new report from the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency. The development of the bomber, when combined with China’s land-based nuclear weapons program and a deployed submarine with intercontinental ballistic missile technology, would give Beijing a “triad” of nuclear delivery systems similar to the U.S. and Russia, according to the report published Tuesday. South Korea’s new defense report backs off from calling North Korea its enemy Military Times1/15/19 North Korea is no longer South Korea’s “enemy,” though Pyongyang’s nuclear program still poses a security threat, according to Seoul’s biennial defense document published Tuesday. It’s the first time since 2010, the same year 50 South Koreans were killed in attacks blamed on the North, that the enemy label hasn’t been applied, and a further sign of better ties between the rivals. Middle East Iran says it will be ready for new satellite launch in a few months Reuters1/16/19 Iran will be ready for a new satellite launch in a few months’ time after a failed attempt this week, President Hassan Rouhani said on Wednesday, ignoring U.S. and European warnings to avoid such activity. Iran’s bid to send a satellite into orbit failed on Tuesday as the space vehicle, named Payam, did not reach adequate speed in the third stage of the launch. France condemns failed Iran satellite launch, urges halt to ballistics tests Reuters1/16/19 France on Wednesday condemned a failed Iranian satellite launch that it said used technology applicable to long-range missiles and urged Tehran to stop all ballistic tests which are not in line with U.N. resolutions. It was the latest in a string of French comments expressing irritation at Iran’s ongoing ballistic missile program despite attempts over the last two years by France and other European powers to open talks on the subject with Iranian authorities. Russia/FSU/Europe U.S.-Russia Nuclear-Arms Pact Moves Closer to Collapse Wall Street Journal1/16/19 Russia and the U.S. moved closer Wednesday to abandoning a weapons treaty that has restrained them from developing short and medium-range nuclear missiles since the Cold War. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that U.S. negotiators had rejected an offer to inspect its missile system known as 9M729, which Washington says violates the pact. U.S. Nuclear Policy US weighs new ways to detect and track enemy missiles Associated Press1/15/19 The Trump administration is considering ways to expand U.S. homeland and overseas defenses against a potential missile attack, possibly adding a layer of satellites in space to detect and track hostile targets. Details on how far the administration intends to press this in a largely supportive Congress are expected to be revealed when the Pentagon releases results of a missile defense review as early as Thursday. Opinion and Analysis A Window into Kim’s Nuclear Intentions? A Closer Look at North Korea’s Yongbyon Offer War On the RocksChristopher Lawrence 1/15/19 The goal of U.S. policy should be to probe for an answer to that question while leaving its security and alliances better off even if the answer is “no.” An overly ambitious strategy that demands complete denuclearization in the remainder of Trump’s current term will likely fail at both of those goals and risks continued deadlock. But if the administration pursues Kim’s Yongbyon offer as a beginning step in the nuclear rollback process, the president could either bolster the credibility of the denuclearization process or improve America’s diplomatic position by calling North Korea’s bluff.