Categories for Nuclear

27,304. 8/10/2019

NORTH KOREA/NUCLEAR/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “….also a small apology for testing the short range missiles, and that this testing would stop when the exercises end. I look forward to seeing Kim Jong Un in the not too distant future! A nuclear free North Korea will lead to one of the most successful countries in the world!” 

Donald Trump, Twitter.com, August 10, 2019 6:58 am

27,150. 8/2/2019

NUCLEAR/RUSSIA/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT/UN: “The United States formally withdrew from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty with Russia Friday [8-2-19], as the US military prepares to test a new non-nuclear mobile-launched cruise missile developed specifically to challenge Moscow in Europe, according to a senior US defense official. The US withdrawal puts an end to a landmark arms control pact that has limited the development of ground-based missiles with a range of 500 to 5,500 kilometers and is sparking fears of a new arms race…The new US missile test, which CNN reported Thursday [8-1-19], is expected to take place in the next few weeks and will essentially be the Trump administration’s answer to Russia’s years-long non-compliance with the INF treaty, the senior US defense official said. A senior administration official told reporters that the US will be testing the cruise missiles that were forbidden by the INF treaty because ‘Russia cannot maintain military advantage,’ but claimed that it will take years for the US to deploy those weapons.”

Veronica Stracqualursi, Nicole Gaouette, Barbara Starr and Kylie Atwood, “US formally withdraws from nuclear treaty with Russia and prepares to test new missile,” CNN Politics, CNN.com, August 2, 2019 1:10 pm 

 

27,143. 8/2/2019

NORTH KOREA/NUCLEAR/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “Kim Jong Un and North Korea tested 3 short range missiles over the last number of days. These missiles tests are not a violation of our signed Singapore agreement, nor was there discussion of short range missiles when we shook hands. There may be a United Nations violation, but..” 

Donald Trump, Twitter.com, August 2, 2019 10:05 am

26,954. 7/26/2019

NORTH KOREA/NUCLEAR/SOUTH KOREA/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “President Donald Trump on Friday [7-26-19] downplayed North Korea’s missile tests that took place the day before, saying he wasn’t surprised by the short range launches and shrugging off the volatile nation’s warning to South Korea. Despite North Korea calling the tests a ‘solemn warning’ to its southern neighbors, Trump argued to reporters in the Oval Office that he didn’t view the incident as a setback to potential nuclear talks with leader Kim Jong Un because ‘many people have those missiles’…A reporter then said the president didn’t sound surprised by the tests, to which Trump responded: ‘Not at all.’ The Associated Press reported that North Korea called the tests a ‘solemn warning’ targeted at ‘South Korean military warmongers.’ Though Pyongyang pointedly avoided calling out the U.S., the test of ‘a new type of tactical guided weapon’ came as the U.S. and South Korea planned to hold joint military drills in the region. But the president brushed off those concerns, as well, asserting that they weren’t his problem.”

Caitlin Oprysko, “Trump downplays latest North Korean missile tests,” Politico, July 26, 2019 5:53 pm

26,684. 7/18/2019

FOREIGN POLICY/IRAN/NUCLEAR/SANCTIONS/SENATE/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “Iran’s foreign minister said on Thursday [7-18-19] that he was willing to meet with American senators to discuss possible ways out of the nuclear crisis with the Trump administration and, for the first time, floated an opening bid of modest steps that Tehran would be willing to take in return for simultaneous lifting of sanctions President Trump reimposed last year. The American-educated foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, would not say whether he was planning to meet Senator Rand Paul, Republican of Kentucky, who has proposed himself as a quiet emissary to Iran from the Trump administration. Mr. Zarif, meeting with a group of about 15 reporters at the Iranian mission to the United Nations, one of only three buildings where he is allowed to be while in the United States, was coy about whether he planned to meet with Mr. Paul but said, ‘I am seeing people from Congress.’”

-David E. Sanger, “Iran’s Foreign Minister Proposes Modest Deal to End Impasse With U.S.,” The New York Times online, July 18, 2019

26,645. 7/17/2019

IRAN/NUCLEAR/OBAMA/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “Donald Trump has long trashed the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement as ‘the worst deal ever,’ a ‘disaster’ that didn’t cover nearly enough of the Islamist-led country’s nefarious behavior. In recent weeks, however, the president has indicated that the Barack Obama-era deal might not be so bad after all. Trump has repeatedly urged Iran to engage in negotiations with him, while saying that Tehran’s nuclear ambitions are his chief concern — ‘A lot of progress has been made. And they’d like to talk,’ Trump asserted Tuesday [7-16-19] at the White House. His aides and allies, meanwhile, have recently suggested that Iran and other countries should follow the guidelines of a deal they themselves have shunned as worthless. At times, analysts and former officials say, it sounds like Trump wants to strike a deal that essentially mirrors the agreement that his White House predecessor inked — even if he’d never be willing to admit it. Iranian officials seem willing to egg him on, saying they’ll talk so long as Trump lifts the sanctions he’s imposed on them and returns to the 2015 Iran deal.”

Nahal Toosi, “Trump’s better deal with Iran looks a lot like Obama’s,” Politico, July 17, 2019 5:05 am

26,448. 7/11/2019

CHINA/FOREIGN POLICY/NORTH KOREA/NUCLEAR/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “As he tries to tackle the greatest challenges to American power in Asia, President Trump is overturning policy toward China and North Korea that for decades was as canonical as Confucian ritual. With North Korea, he is engaging with the enemy in hopes that negotiations will yield a surrender of nuclear weapons. With China, Mr. Trump says the United States must take a big step back from an economic relationship that has strengthened a formidable rival. The shifts were prompted by internal changes in each country, combined with Mr. Trump’s unorthodox instincts and the views of his senior Asia advisers. The administration now has growing bipartisan support in Washington to widen an emerging global conflict with China and build diplomacy with North Korea.

-Edward Wong, “Trump’s Asia Gamble: Shatter Enduring Strategies on China and North Korea,” The New York Times online, July 11, 2019

26,247. 7/3/2019

IRAN/NUCLEAR/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “Iran has just issued a New Warning. Rouhani says that they will Enrich Uranium to ‘any amount we want’ if there is no new Nuclear Deal. Be careful with the threats, Iran. They can come back to bite you like nobody has been bitten before!” 

Donald Trump, Twitter.com, July 3, 2019 3:33 pm

26,239. 7/3/2019

IRAN/MILITARY/NUCLEAR/SANCTIONS/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “Iran will begin as early as Sunday [7-7-19] to enrich uranium ‘in any amount that we want,’ President Hassan Rouhani said Wednesday [7-3-19], declaring that Tehran would exceed the levels specified under its 2015 accord with the United States and other global powers. Mr. Rouhani’s pledge to accelerate the country’s uranium enrichment is the latest step in an escalating confrontation with the United States that is already shaking the region as Washington and Tehran face off over President Trump’s withdrawal from the nuclear pact and imposition of crippling economic sanctions on Iran. Restarting the production of highly enriched uranium could constitute a first step toward the construction of a nuclear weapon. It may be a potentially fatal blow to the 2015 deal itself, which sought to provide Iran with relief from international economic sanctions in exchange for restrictions on any efforts by Tehran to develop such a weapon. And because it raises the possibility that Iran might seek a bomb — which Iran insists it does not want — the enrichment is also likely to reopen questions about whether the United States or Israel might take military action against Iran’s nuclear facilities to delay its success.”

David D. Kirkpatrick and Farnaz Fassihi, “Rouhani Says Iran Will Begin Enriching Uranium at Higher Level in Days,” The New York Times online, July 3, 2019

26,225. 7/2/2019

IRAN/NUCLEAR/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “Iran was violating the 150 Billion Dollar (plus 1.8 Billion Dollar in CASH) Nuclear Deal with the United States, and others who paid NOTHING, long before I became President – and they have now breached their stockpile limit. Not good!”

Donald Trump, Twitter.com, July 2, 2019 11:06 pm

26,177. 7/1/2019

IRAN/NUCLEAR/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “Iran on Monday [7-1-19] violated a key provision of the 2015 international accord to restrict its nuclear program and signaled that it would soon breach another as it seeks more leverage in its escalating confrontation with the United States. International inspectors confirmed that Iran had exceeded a critical limit on how much nuclear fuel it can possess under the agreement, which President Trump abandoned more than a year ago. By itself, the move does not give Iran enough material to produce a single nuclear weapon, though it inches it in that direction. Hours later, Iran’s foreign minister said his nation now intended to begin enriching its nuclear fuel to a purer level, a provocative action that, depending on how far Tehran goes with it, could move the country closer to possessing fuel that with further processing could be used in a weapon. The moves completed a sharp shift in strategy for Iran, which for the past 14 months had continued to respect the terms of the complex deal it struck with the Obama administration, even after Mr. Trump reimposed sanctions in an effort to strangle Iran’s economy by driving its oil revenues to zero.”

David E. Sanger, “Iran Breaches Critical Limit on Nuclear Fuel Set by 2015 Deal,” The New York Times online, July 1, 2019

26,175. 7/1/2019

NATIONAL SECURITY/NORTH KOREA/NUCLEAR/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “As President Trump reveled in his historic weekend stroll into North Korea, administration officials were sharply at odds on Monday [7-1-19] over what demands to make of Kim Jong-un, the North Korean leader, while preparing to restart negotiations on a nuclear deal. Pushing an internal debate into the open, John R. Bolton, the national security adviser and the most prominent hawk in the administration, reacted angrily to a report in The New York Times about the possibility of a deal to effectively freeze North Korea’s nuclear activity in return for American concessions. Some officials are considering a freeze as a first step toward a more comprehensive agreement for Mr. Kim to give up his entire nuclear program. Mr. Bolton has long insisted that the North Koreans dismantle their nuclear program and give up their entire arsenal of warheads before getting any rewards.”

Edward Wong, “Trump Officials Are Split Over Approach to North Korea Talks,” The New York Times online, July 1, 2019

26,140. 6/28/2019

G20/NORTH KOREA/NUCLEAR/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “President Donald Trump is making an unconventional gambit to restart nuclear negotiations with North Korea, inviting dictator Kim Jong Un to meet him Sunday at the demilitarized zone separating North and South Korea. Kim didn’t immediately accept the last-minute offer, but Trump said he would go to the heavily fortified border regardless, and just may step across into North Korea territory while there…Trump’s invitation took world leaders, and even some of his own advisers, by surprise. Indeed, the president claimed that he had only come up with the concept hours before tweeting it out. And goodwill between the two counties has also cooled since Trump cut short his second summit with Kim Jong Un in February, putting a freeze on months of nuclear negotiations. North Korea welcomed the request but said it was waiting for an official proposal. ‘I consider this a very interesting suggestion, but we have not received any official proposal,’ said Choe Son-hui, North Korea’s first vice foreign minister, in a statement carried on the official Korean News Agency.”

Anita Kumar and Matthew Choi, “Trump’s DMZ gambit with Kim aims to restart nuclear talks,” Politico, June 28, 2019 7:37 pm

26,134. 6/28/2019

IRAN/MILITARY/NORTH KOREA/NUCLEAR/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “As the US crisis with Iran continues, carrying with it the frightening prospect of a possible military confrontation with Tehran, one question looms large. If Donald Trump can summit, negotiate and send self-described love letters to Kim Jong Un, one of the world’s last true authoritarians — a man whose country (like Iran) is on America’s state sponsors of terror list; who has up to an estimated 60 nuclear weapons; who has launched missiles at Japan and threatened South Korea; and whose record on human rights and abuses against his own people justifiably puts him in the evil category — why can’t he sit down with senior Iranian officials to figure a way out of the current crisis? The quick answer of course in the context of the current crisis is that having watched the United States withdraw from the 2015 nuclear accord and reimpose sanctions, the most recent of which are directed against the Supreme Leader, Tehran isn’t interested in talking, and the administration, tethered to its maximum pressure campaign, isn’t all that interested either right now, even though Trump has repeatedly offered to sit down with President Hassan Rouhani without preconditions.”

Aaron David Miller, “If Trump can negotiate with Kim Jong Un, why not Iran?,” CNN Politics, CNN.com, June 28, 2019 3:22 pm

26,111. 6/27/2019

IRAN/NUCLEAR/SANCTIONS/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “President Donald Trump arrived at a gathering of world leaders Thursday [6-27-19] searching for support for a new deal to curtail an increasingly aggressive Iran. He’s not likely to find any. Not only do other countries still support a 2015 nuclear pact, they’re skeptical Trump can strike a better agreement within the time constraints of his fast-approaching reelection campaign, especially after Iran recently proclaimed the end of diplomacy with the U.S. The pressure is on. Iran threatened to violate limits set under the 2015 international nuclear agreement, angry at Trump for unilaterally pulling out of the pact and for slapping harsh sanctions on the country. The move threatens to kill the deal for good, leaving the global community without any comprehensive restrictions on Iran’s nuclear ambitions — let alone its funding of violent proxy groups in the region activities — activities Trump has long said he wants to pursue as part of an expansive agreement.”

Anita Kumar, “Trump wants a new nuclear deal with Iran. No one else does.,” Politico, June 27, 2019 5:17 pm

26,095. 6/27/2019

IRAN/NATIONAL SECURITY/NUCLEAR/OBAMA/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: ”For President Donald Trump, it’s déjà vu all over again on Iran. Iran’s expected breach on Thursday [6-27-19] of the uranium stockpile limits set by the 2015 nuclear deal is reviving a fierce debate within the Trump administration and on Capitol Hill about just how hard Trump should go to undermine the agreement. Even though Trump pulled out from the deal struck by President Barack Obama, an important portion of the agreement was left intact that allows work on Iran’s civil nuclear program and facilitates international projects to encourage its advancement. The State Department has issued waivers to allow those projects to continue and doing away with them would almost certainly blow up the deal entirely. That’s precisely the goal that Trump administration hawks, led by national security adviser John Bolton, have been pursuing — thus far, with only limited success. The next inflection point in the battle is likely to come Thursday, when Iran has said it will surpass the enrichment levels established by the deal.”

Eliana Johnson and Burgess Everett, “Trump’s hawks ramp up campaign to shred last part of Iran nuclear deal,” Politico, June 27, 2019 5:02 am

25,974. 6/24/2019

ENERGY/IRAN/NUCLEAR/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “….a dangerous journey. We don’t even need to be there in that the U.S. has just become (by far) the largest producer of Energy anywhere in the world! The U.S. request for Iran is very simple – No Nuclear Weapons and No Further Sponsoring of Terror!”

Donald Trump, Twitter.com, June 24, 2019 7:08 am

25,955. 6/22/2019

IRAN/NUCLEAR/OBAMA/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “Iran cannot have Nuclear Weapons! Under the terrible Obama plan, they would have been on their way to Nuclear in a short number of years, and existing verification is not acceptable. We are putting major additional Sanctions on Iran on Monday. I look forward to the day that…..” 

Donald Trump, Twitter.com, June 22, 2019 1:56 pm

25,932. 6/21/2019

IRAN/MILITARY/NUCLEAR/OBAMA/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “While tweeting details about his decision to abort a planned strike against Iran, Trump ridiculed the Iran nuclear deal and President Barack Obama while praising his own decision to leave the agreement. Here’s a closer look at some of the claims he made during his tweet thread. Trump wrote that through the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action with Iran, Obama ‘gave (Iran) 150 Billion Dollars.’ Facts First: The Iran Deal unlocked Iranian assets that were previously frozen due to sanctions, but it’s unclear how much those assets were worth — $150 billion is the highest estimate provided by US officials and it’s thought that Iran could not have accessed all of that money because much of it was tied up in projects overseas. Trump’s assertion that Obama ‘gave’ Iran this money is not quite accurate. As part of the deal (which multiple countries were involved in), Iranian assets that existed in banks and financial institutions across the world were unfrozen. Estimates for the value of these assets vary.”

Holmes Lybrand, “Fact-checking Trump’s tweets on Obama’s payments to Iran,” CNN Politics, CNN.com, June 21, 2019 5:04 pm

25,916. 6/21/2019

IRAN/NUCLEAR/OBAMA/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “President Obama made a desperate and terrible deal with Iran – Gave them 150 Billion Dollars plus I.8 Billion Dollars in CASH! Iran was in big trouble and he bailed them out. Gave them a free path to Nuclear Weapons, and SOON. Instead of saying thank you, Iran yelled…..” 

Donald Trump, Twitter.com, June 21, 2019 8:03 am

25,890. 6/20/2019

CHINA/NORTH KOREA/NUCLEAR/TRADE WAR/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “China’s leader, Xi Jinping, arrived in North Korea’s capital on Thursday [6-20-19] to a 21-gun salute at the airport, the release of thousands of balloons and crowds lining the streets, as his car wound its way to the mausoleum where the North’s founder lies. The elaborate ceremonial welcome for Mr. Xi, making his first visit to the North since taking power seven years ago, seemed designed as an upbeat makeover of what has been a dour relationship between him and the North’s young leader, Kim Jong-un. The two are engaged in separate disputes with President Trump — one over trade, the other over the North’s nuclear weapons. American officials have said they expect Mr. Xi to try to make headway with Mr. Kim on the nuclear issue, then use that as leverage with Mr. Trump on trade next week, when the two are expected to meet in Japan. Such expectations grew on Wednesday [6-19-19] when a rare article by Mr. Xi appeared in the North Korean ruling party’s official newspaper, Rodong Sinmun.”

Jane Perlez, “Xi Jinping Arrives in North Korea, With Many Eyes on Trump,” The New York Times online, June 20, 2019

25,887. 6/20/2019

IRAN/NUCLEAR/SANCTIONS/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “The Trump administration has portrayed Iran’s recent moves, including its threat to resume stockpiling low-enriched uranium in violation of the nuclear agreement, as proof that Iran is an implacable rogue state, bent on acquiring nuclear weapons, that can be contained only through the threat of military force. Iran has indeed often acted as a regional provocateur, but in this case some nonpartisan experts on Iran and on United States policy in the Middle East see something different. They say Iran appears to be pursuing a provocative but calibrated strategy to counter what its leaders see as a potentially existential American threat — as severe economic sanctions strangle the economy and cut off vital oil revenues — as well as to preserve the nuclear agreement. In doing so, Iran is falling back on tactics associated with its reputation as a rogue state, including asymmetric military escalation, like threatening oil shipments, though Iran denies American accusations that it attacked tankers last week, or the downing of an American drone on Thursday (in disputed circumstances), and nuclear blackmail.”

Max Fisher, “Iran’s Gambit: Force the World to Rein In Trump,” The New York Times online, June 20, 2019 

25,874. 6/19/2019

EU/IRAN/NUCLEAR/SANCTIONS/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “As the Trump administration continues its hardline approach on Iran, the European Union — in a bid to preserve the Iran nuclear deal — is reluctant to impose sanctions for potential violations of that deal, two diplomatic sources told CNN. Federica Mogherini, the top EU foreign affairs official, has conveyed this sentiment in meetings over recent days, the sources said, even as Tehran has said it would scale back its commitment to the deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA)…Representatives for the EU did not immediately reply to a CNN request for comment. On Monday, Iran’s atomic energy agency spokesman, Behrouz Kamalvandi, said that the country would accelerate its low-grade uranium enrichment and surpass the 300-kilogram uranium stockpile deal limit on June 27. Mogherini downplayed the comments when asked about them on Monday [6-17-19].”

Michelle Kosinski, “EU may be slow to sanction Iran deal violations, sources say,” CNN Politics, CNN.com, June 19, 2019 6:22 pm

25,827. 6/17/2019

IRAN/NORTH KOREA/NUCLEAR/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “After coming to office vowing to solve two very different nuclear crises, President Trump finds himself in a bind familiar to his predecessors: careening toward a confrontation with Iran and stalemated with North Korea. Iran’s announcement on Monday [6-17-19] that it expects within 10 days to blow past the limits on how much nuclear fuel it can stockpile opens a new and perilous phase of its confrontation with the West. After a year of restraint, during which Iran complied with the terms of an agreement that Mr. Trump very publicly abandoned, there is a greater sense than at any time in recent years that what began as an effort to drive Iran to the negotiating table may instead push the two countries into a conflict leaders on both sides insist they do not want. Iran is still well more than a year away from being able to build a weapon — perhaps much longer. North Korea, by contrast, already has dozens, and appears to be adding to its arsenal at a rapid clip, according to American intelligence experts, despite Mr. Trump’s insistent wooing of the North Korean leader, Kim Jong-un.”

David E. Sanger, “Trump Careens Toward a Confrontation With Iran,” The New York Times online, June 17, 2019

25,820. 6/17/2019

EU/IRAN/MIDDLE EAST/MILITARY/NUCLEAR/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “President Donald Trump is at a make-or-break moment with Iran. Tehran said Monday [6-17-19] it will soon take steps that likely violate the 2015 nuclear deal Trump himself abandoned, an announcement that came just days after the U.S. accused the Islamist-led country of sabotaging international oil tankers. The Pentagon announced Monday that it is sending 1,000 more troops to the Middle East for ‘defensive purposes.’ In Europe, meanwhile, leaders are starting to acknowledge that they may have to walk away from the nuclear agreement or devise a new one. The confluence of events will test Trump’s weak appetite for military action, his ability to rally allies he has frequently snubbed and his seriousness about actually striking the better deal with the Iranians that he once promised. Along the way, Trump must win over officials well-aware of his history of misstatements and uneasy about relying on U.S. intelligence when a potential new Middle East war could result. One test will come Tuesday, when Federica Mogherini, the European Union’s foreign policy chief, visits Washington to meet with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and other Trump aides.”

Nahal Toosi, “Iran tests Trump’s desire to actually strike a new deal,” Politico, June 17, 2019 6:51 pm