An interesting and useful analysis, but it does not mention the alliance between Iran and North Korea, which have been cooperating on nuclear and missile technology for years. It appears that North Korea, which has tested three nuclear devices and successfully launched a satellite, is likely to do more of both this year. That suggests that North Korea may be more advanced than Iran.

Negotiators apparently hope to give Iran increased access to gold and other precious metals in exchange for access to its Fordow enrichment site,

something that could be used as part of barter transactions that might allow Iran to circumvent increasingly tight financial sanctions.

There are also plans to impose more stringent sanctions on North Korea further limiting its access to gold and diamonds.

With that package, the Iran – North Korea nuclear and missile partnership seems likely to flourish to an even greater extent than presently. Iran should be able to limit its own uranium enrichment and pay North Korea to do all or most of that work. Should that happen, Iran should have little difficult beyond transport in securing greater quantities of more highly enriched uranium than it can now provide itself.

With Iranian payments for enrichment, North Korea should be able to buy more of the stuff it needs further to improve its own rocketry and nuclear technology. As I noted at the link,

With increased access to gold and other precious metals Iran could, in addition to continuing to share nuclear weapon and missile technology, reduce or even cease Uranium enrichment and instead buy enriched Uranium from its partners in North Korea — made even more hungry for gold and other money substitutes by EU sanctions. With such money substitutes otherwise put in shorter supply, and with Iran getting an abundance, North Korea might well be happy to give Iran a really good deal.

To the extent that North Korea is dependent on China, that dependence might well be reduced further – thereby further reducing whatever already diminished moderating influence China still has on North Korea.

China Daily Mail

North Korea ChinaNorth Korea’s third nuclear test is a game changer not only for the United States and Japan, but also for the regime’s last ally, China.

The official Chinese reaction to North Korea’s latest provocation was stern: China is “strongly dissatisfied and resolutely opposed” to the test, and it is calling for the resumption of international talks. But China’s stance lacks meaningful bite, because its leaders fail to recognise that they no longer need to succumb to their unruly neighbour’s blackmail.

In carrying out the test, the North Koreans once again compromise China’s national interests. The international community is again firmly focused on China’s relationship with its rogue ally, and expects that, as an emerging superpower seeking to reassure the world of its peaceful rise, China will play a constructive role. However limited China’s influence may be, the North Korean regime can sustain itself only with Chinese backing.

With North…

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About danmillerinpanama

I was graduated from Yale University in 1963 with a B.A. in economics and from the University of Virginia School of law, where I was the notes editor of the Virginia Law Review in 1966. Following four years of active duty with the Army JAG Corps, with two tours in Korea, I entered private practice in Washington, D.C. specializing in communications law. I retired in 1996 to sail with my wife, Jeanie, on our sailboat Namaste to and in the Caribbean. In 2002, we settled in the Republic of Panama and live in a very rural area up in the mountains. I have contributed to Pajamas Media and Pajamas Tatler. In addition to my own blog, Dan Miller in Panama, I an an editor of Warsclerotic and contribute to China Daily Mail when I have something to write about North Korea.
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One Response to

  1. jericho777 says:

    Reblogged this on Jericho777's Blog.

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