In Letter, Iran Says its Ready for Nuclear Talks
Bradley Klapper, Associated Press – February 16, 2012
Iran has told world powers it is ready to resume talks as soon as possible over its disputed nuclear program, according to a letter obtained Wednesday by The Associated Press, an offer that could reflect its difficulty in coping with tough U.S. and European sanctions, or amount to another delaying tactic as it moves ahead with activities that could bring it closer to developing an atomic bomb.
Iran Nuclear Claim Met by Skepticism
Patrick J, McDonnell and Ramin Mostaghim, Los Angeles Times – February 16, 2012
Iran on Wednesday heralded what it called a pair of significant advances in its controversial nuclear research efforts, but Western observers generally downplayed the developments as more hype than substance.
How History Lessons Could Deter Iranian Aggression
Fareed Zakaria, Washington Post – February 15, 2012
We are hearing a new concept these days in discussions about Iran — the zone of immunity. The idea, often explained by Ehud Barak, Israel’s defense minister, is that soon Iran will have enough nuclear capability that Israel would not be able to inflict a crippling blow to its program.
S.Korea, U.S. to Hold Anti-Submarine Drill Next Week
Yonhap News Agency – February 16, 2012
South Korea and the U.S. will conduct a joint exercise next week to counter North Korean submarines off the west coast, officials said Thursday.
In North Korea, role of foreign currency grows
Chico Harlan, Washington Post – February 15, 2012
Its state-run economy in ruin, North Korea is turning to the kinds of private business activity that it technically considers criminal, allowing commerce driven by private citizens with stashes of foreign currency.
Obama Plan to Reduce Nukes is Good for Budget, Boosts Moral Authority on Global Nonproliferation
Lawrence Korb and Alex Rothman, Think Progress – February 15, 2012
The Obama administration is reportedly considering major reductions in the size the U.S. nuclear arsenal. The administration has reportedly asked the Pentagon to evaluate three options for further cuts: to approximately 1100, 800, or 400 weapons. Any of these scenarios would take the United States well below the ceiling imposed by the New START treaty, which requires the United States and Russia to reduce their nuclear arsenals to no more than 1,550 deployed weapons.