North Korea asked Israel for $1 billion to stop giving missile technology to Iran

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North Korea offered to stop selling missile technology to Iran and other enemies of Israel in exchange for $1 billion in cash from the Jewish state, according to former senior North Korean diplomat who has now defected. The account of the offer can be read in Password from the Third Floor, a book published earlier this year by Thae Yong Ho. Thae, a member of a prominent North Korean family, defected with his wife and children in 2016, while he was serving as a senior member of the diplomatic staff of the North Korean embassy in London. News of Thae’s defection emerged on August 16, 2016, when a South Korean newspaper reported that he had disappeared from London after having escaped with his family “to a third country”. Thae later emerged in Seoul, from where he publicly denounced the North Korean regime. Continue reading

As the G-7 Implodes, SCO Meeting Confirms the New Century of Multipolarity

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The historical changes we are witnessing have never been so evident as in the last few days. The G7 summit highlighted the limits of the Atlantic alliance, while the SCO meeting opens up unprecedented possibilities for Eurasian integration.

At the G7 meeting in Canada in recent days, we witnessed unprecedented clashes between Trump and G7 leaders over the imposition of tariffs on trade. We must now conclude that the event has been relegated to irrelevance, as the G7 has heretofore derived its clout from speaking as one voice. Trump even went further, refusing to sign the final draft of the organization’s joint statement after Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau lashed out at Trump’s trade decisions. Trump showed how little he cares for his allies, leaving the summit a day early to arrive early for the meeting with Kim Jong-un in Singapore to make preparations for the long-awaited encounter between the two leaders. Continue reading

Lying in Wait

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PYONGYANG/BERLIN (Own report) – Taking advantage of North Korea’s strategic reorientation, Germany’s FDP-affiliated Friedrich Naumann Foundation is resuming its activities in that country. Recently, the North Korean leadership officially ended its policy of a balanced build up of its military and the economy, to prioritize the country’s economy, a move, experts note, President Kim Jong Un had been seeking to make for years. However, he initially prioritized the development of the nuclear deterrence capability, to safeguard against a possible US attack. He is now seeking to have UN sanctions lifted, to allow foreign companies into the country. Important steps have already been made. Possibly the Naumann Foundation – which had established contacts to Pyongyang already in 2002 and in 2004 organized a workshop on the country’s “economic modernization” – also played a role. Its activities should now intensify. German companies, according to reports, are “lying in wait”.

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N. Korea will never fully give up nuclear weapons: top defector

North Korea will never completely give up its nuclear weapons, a top defector said ahead of leader Kim Jong Un’s landmark summit with US President Donald Trump next month.

The current whirlwind of diplomacy and negotiations will not end with “a sincere and complete disarmament” but with “a reduced North Korean nuclear threat”, said Thae Yong-ho, who fled his post as the North’s deputy ambassador to Britain in August 2016.

“In the end, North Korea will remain ‘a nuclear power packaged as a non-nuclear state’,” Thae told the South’s Newsis news agency. Continue reading

Senior North Korean counterintelligence official believed to have defected

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One of North Korea’s most senior intelligence officials, who played a major role in building Pyongyang’s nuclear weapons program, has disappeared and is believed to have defected to France or Britain, according to sources. South Korean media identified the missing official as “Mr. Kang”, and said he is a colonel in North Korea’s State Security Department (SSD), also known as Ministry of State Security. Mr. Kang, who is in his mid-50s, enjoyed a life of privilege in North Korea, because he is related to Kang Pan-sok (1892-1932), a leading North Korean communist activist and mother to the country’s late founder, Kim Il-sung. Continue reading

China using students as spies

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The 350,000 Chinese students in the U.S. “are here legitimately and doing great research and helping the global economy,” said Bill Evanina, director of the National Counterintelligence and Security Center, but others are used as tools to facilitate nefarious activity. (Associated Press/File)

 

A senior U.S. counterintelligence official recently said publicly what many officials and experts have been warning privately for years: China is using its large student population in the United States to spy.

Bill Evanina, director of the National Counterintelligence and Security Center, a DNI agency, said recently that China poses a broad-ranging foreign intelligence threat that includes the use of academics, students, cyberespionage and human agents to steal secrets from the government and private sectors.

“I look at the China threat from a counterintelligence perspective as a whole-of-government threat by China against us,” Mr. Evanina told a conference last week at The Aspen Institute.

“We allow 350,000 or so Chinese students here every year,” he said. “That’s a lot. We have a very liberal visa policy for them. Ninety-nine point nine percent of those students are here legitimately and doing great research and helping the global economy. But it is a tool that is used by the Chinese government to facilitate nefarious activity here in the U.S.” Continue reading

Chinese Banks Are Laundering North Korean Cash

A truck returns over the Friendship Bridge from the North Korean town of Sinuiju to the Chinese border city of Dandong, in China’s northeast Liaoning province. (CHANDAN KHANNA/AFP/GETTY IMAGES)

 

‘The North Korea crisis is a massive distraction from the real threat posed by China and Russia.’

Chinese support of the North Korean government remains firmly in place and vital to the regime’s survival. Revelations emerged on April 12 that two major Chinese banks are providing a key financial lifeline to the nuclear-armed rogue regime of tyrant Kim Jong-un.

Both the Agricultural Bank of China and China Construction Bank have been “identified in a 2016 U.S. asset-seizure case as providing accounts for a Chinese trading company that helped North Korea launder its money,” Bloomberg wrote.

The two have been shown to hold and transfer cash entering and leaving Pyongyang, and facilitating its laundering through United States financial institutions.

These two banks, China’s second- and third-largest, each have more assets than JPMorgan Chase & Co., America’s largest bank.

In 2016, the Obama administration declined to enforce money-laundering laws against the banks. The Wall Street Journal noted at the time that this decision sent a signal to Beijing that “Chinese banks aiding North Korea are untouchable.”

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The US Fading into Irrelevance – A Good Thing for the World

 

Chaos reigns in the United States, spreading to its closest allies. The war amongst Western elites is in full swing, manifesting itself from commercial wars to failed diplomacy, empty threats of war, corruption, and announced military withdrawals and attacks.

To sum up the last few weeks of international events, it is worth comparing the direction taken by the multipolar troika of Russia, China and Iran, and the one taken by the fading unipolar order led by the United States, Israel and Saudi Arabia. Continue reading

Pentagon Steps Up North Korea Military Planning

Without a doubt, the talks are a major breakthrough in the nuclear impasse, but to be clear, it’s only in the very beginning stages. Although it’ll seem hypocritical to many after seeing high-level talks will happen, Washington is laying down its insurance policy. There is no guarantee that anything will come to fruition with the talks, and second, there’s no guarantee Kim Jong-un won’t use this for only his benefit like Russia, China and Iran do. They make treaties to break them because they know the United States will commit to its obligations.

It’s in America’s blood to take the moral high road in this sense. The axis powers know no morality in cases like this and use deals to extract concessions. They are users and manipulators, not cooperators. A majority of the public doesn’t see this, however, due to good propaganda that projects the ideal positive spotlight on them that they want.

 

North Korean threats to turn the South Korean capital of Seoul into a “sea of fire” are not propaganda, the Senate Armed Services Committee was told. (Associated Press/File)

 

The Pentagon is intensifying military planning for war on the Korean Peninsula despite the apparent thaw between North Korea and the United States over Pyongyang’s nuclear weapons and long-range missile program.

Pentagon officials say the military planning has increased in recent weeks and involves reworking and refining Op Plan 5027, as the war plan for a conflict against North Korea is called.

The activity is being done by planners in the Pentagon in coordination with officials from U.S. Forces Korea, the military command in South Korea. The objective is to determine how best to execute President Trump’s order to eliminate the North Korean nuclear program. Continue reading

Ayatollah Khamenei is lone nuclear holdout after Kim’s invitation to Trump

 

North Korea’s Kim Jong Un invitation to meet US President Donald Trump to talk about denuclearization has left Iran’s Ayatollah Ali Khamenei high and dry. He is now the only world ruler still holding out against discussing his country’s nuclear program. Instead, the ayatollah using it as muscle for trying to impose Iran’s will on the United States in the Middle East. “Rocket man” in Pyongyang may have factored into his provocative policies the inevitability of having to face Trump at some point to discuss terms for the denuclearization of the Korean peninsula, while preserving his regime. His escalations were countered by the pressure of biting world sanctions, in the imposition of which even China was active. Now, Khamenei can no longer escape the realization that he will have to face the US and renegotiate the changes Trump is demanding for filling in the loopholes in the nuclear deal which Tehran signed with six world powers in 2015. Continue reading

Trump says South Korea will make major announcement on North Korea

Washington (CNN) President Donald Trump told reporters Thursday that South Korea will make a “major announcement” concerning North Korea at 7 p.m. ET.

It was not immediately clear what the South Korean announcement would entail, but it came after a South Korean delegation came to the White House to brief officials on its most recent talks with North Korea — the most significant talks between the two countries in more than a decade.

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Kim Jong-Un meets South Korean delegation, agrees to summit just South of DMZ

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un greets South Korean envoy Chung Eui-Yong on March 6. / KCNA via Reuters

 

North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un said he would give up the North’s nukes if the safety of his rule was guaranteed, according to a South Korean official who met with Kim in Pyongyang on March 6.

U.S. President Donald Trump tweeted: “Possible progress being made in talks with North Korea. For the first time in many years, a serious effort is being made by all parties concerned. The World is watching and waiting! May be false hope, but the U.S. is ready to go hard in either direction!” Continue reading

US intelligence chief says ‘decision time’ on N Korea draws ‘ever closer’

Director of National Intelligence (DNI) Dan Coats testifies during a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on “Worldwide Threats” on Capitol Hill. February 13, 2018. Photo: Reuters/Leah Millis

 

Crisis termed ‘existential problem’ for US

US Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats reportedly said Tuesday that the time for making a final a decision on Washington’s response to North Korea’s nuclear and ballistic missile programs is drawing “ever closer.” Continue reading

North Korea used Berlin embassy to acquire nuclear tech, says German spy chief

 

North Korea used its embassy in Berlin to acquire technologies that were almost certainly used to advance its missile and nuclear weapons programs, according to the head of Germany’s counterintelligence agency. For many decades, Pyongyang has used a sophisticated international system of procurement to acquire technologies and material for its conventional and nuclear weapons programs. These secret methods have enabled the country to evade sanctions placed on it by the international community, which wants to foil North Korea’s nuclear aspirations. Continue reading

President Trump Keeping Promise On EMP Protection

 

President Donald Trump on Monday (December 18, 2017) in what may well be remembered as an historic speech describing his new “America First” National Security Strategy, broke new ground by promising to protect U.S. critical infrastructures from “cyber, physical, and electromagnetic attacks.”

After 8 years of the Obama Administration ignoring the existential threat posed by electromagnetic pulse (EMP), President Trump deserves the gratitude of his nation for being the first president to include EMP in his National Security Strategy.  Continue reading