Top News Chinese diplomat says U.S. responsible for tension over Iran nuclear deal CGTN Iranian FM: Tehran still willing to negotiate with U.S. Washington Post India successfully test-fires K-4 submarine-launched nuclear capable missile Economic Times of India United States NNSA Administrator, Energy Secretary reportedly in row over 2021 nuclear weapons budget Exchange Monitor1/24/20 The head of the U.S. National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) and the Secretary of Energy are reportedly at odds over the weapons agency’s 2021 budget request, which would be at least $17.5 billion and perhaps as high as $20 billion for the coming fiscal year. OPINION: Physicists mobilize to reduce the nuclear threat. Again. Bulletin of the Atomic ScientistsStewart Prager, Steve Fetter, Alexander Glaser, Zia Mian, Frank von Hippel 1/27/20 We live in an increasingly dangerous nuclear world, a time at least as perilous as the worst years of the Cold War. OPINION: Why does the U.S. spend so much on defense? Defense OnePatrick Collins 1/26/20 common in nearly every election cycle for at least one candidate to claim that the United States spends too much on defense. Elizabeth Warren said it last year in a Foreign Affairs article, Bernie Sanders in a Vox interview, and we are likely to hear it again as the general election approaches. East Asia Chinese diplomat says U.S. responsible for tension over Iran nuclear deal CGTN1/24/20 China believes the United States is responsible for tension over the Iran nuclear deal, a senior Chinese diplomat has said, urging Washington to stop its wrong acts and leave room for international diplomatic mediation. North Korea urges citizens to ‘break through barriers’ as nuclear standoff continues Reuters1/26/20 While a North Korean deadline for the United States to soften its stand on denuclearization talks passed uneventfully over the New Year, state media and propaganda efforts have been focusing on the prospect of a long confrontation with the United States. ANALYSIS: Maximum pressure made permeable: The trouble with Washington’s North Korea sanctions War on the RocksChristopher J. Watterson Sanctions against North Korea are not working. Despite economic hardship, Kim Jong Un has doubled down on building North Korea’s nuclear arsenal and economic independence. Middle East Iranian FM: Tehran still willing to negotiate with U.S. Washington Post1/25/20 Iran is not ruling out negotiations with the United States even after an American drone strike that killed a top Iranian general, the country’s foreign minister said in an interview released Sunday. Iran has capacity to enrich uranium at any percentage: nuclear agency Reuters1/25/20 Iran has the capacity to enrich uranium at any percentage if Iranian authorities decide to do so, the deputy head of the country’s nuclear agency said in a report posted on its website on Saturday. Russia/Europe EU seeks more time in effort to resolve Iran nuclear dispute Voice of America1/24/20 The European Union’s top diplomat said Friday that more time is required to unravel a dispute between countries involved in the Iran nuclear agreement, as the Europeans struggle to keep alive a deal hampered by U.S. sanctions. South Asia India successfully test-fires K-4 submarine-launched nuclear capable missile Economic Times of India1/24/20 India on Friday successfully test-fired the K-4 nuclear capable submarine-launched ballistic missile off the coast of Visakhapatnam for the second time in the past five days, in a major milestone to augment its strategic arsenal and delivery systems. ANALYSIS: At border of 2 nuclear-armed nations: machine guns, anxiety and dancing New York TimesJeffrey Gettleman 1/25/20 Long before the action starts, the crowd starts building, thousands of people, from all walks of life, inexorably pulled toward each other from two different directions — children riding their fathers’ shoulders, young mothers walking briskly beside them, older folks struggling to keep up.