Does a “quieter” North Korea represent progress in dealing with the rogue state’s threat to peace?
On Sunday, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said the U.S. was “moving forward” with efforts to denuclearize North Korea and pointed to coordination with China, most recently on Mr. Kerry’s visit to Beijing.
Speaking on NBC’s Meet the Press, Mr. Kerry also cited a “quieter” North Korea since his previous visit to Beijing in April 2013 as evidence of progress on restraining Pyongyang’s aggression.
“I just came back from China, where we are engaged with the Chinese in dealing with North Korea. And you will notice, since the visit last year, North Korea has been quieter. We haven’t done what we want to do yet with respect to the denuclearization, but we are working on that and moving forward,” Mr. Kerry said.
Last spring marked one of the most intense periods of North Korean war-like rhetoric, during which Pyongyang threatened its neighbors and the U.S. with pre-emptive attack. Those warnings came after the North staged its third nuclear test in February and pledged to build up its nuclear arsenal.
Compared with that period, the level of verbosity this year has been relatively restrained. Pyongyang has also yet to make good on a threat to conduct another nuclear test.
But recent months have also been one of the most historically active by North Korea in testing missiles, including ballistic technology that experts believe the North is working on to develop a rocket capable of delivering a nuclear warhead.
A view of a multiple rocket launcher during an exercise in this undated photo released by North Korea’s Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) in Pyongyang July 15, 2014.
The North has fired around 100 missiles and other projectiles in multiple barrage
Read more: http://blogs.wsj.com/korearealtime/2014/07/21/kerry-quieter-north-korea-shows-u-s-making-progress/