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Ear to the Ground

Bush Blames Clinton Again

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Posted on Oct 12, 2006
Bush and Clinton
Left: forbes.com/Right: time.blogs.com

George W. Bush, retreating to familiar ground, has blamed the Clinton administration for North Korea’s nuclear arsenal.  But the official who brokered the Clinton-era deal with North Korea called the idea “ludicrous,” and defended his efforts.


Washington Post:

Robert L. Gallucci, the chief negotiator of the accord and now dean of the Georgetown School of Foreign Service, said it is a “ludicrous thing” to say that the Clinton agreement failed. For eight years, the Agreed Framework kept North Korea’s five-megawatt plutonium reactor frozen and under international inspection, while North Korea did not build planned 50- and 200-megawatt reactors. If those reactors had been built and running, he said, North Korea would now have enough plutonium for more than 100 nuclear weapons.

By Gallucci’s account, North Korea may have produced a small amount of plutonium for one or two weapons before Clinton came into office—during the administration of Bush’s father—but “no more material was created on his watch.” When Clinton left office, officials saw signs that North Korea may have been attempting to create a clandestine uranium enrichment program, but nothing was definitive.

Such a program would violate the Agreed Framework. When the Bush administration decided it had conclusive proof of that enrichment in July 2002, it confronted North Korea and terminated fuel oil deliveries promised under the Agreed Framework. In response, North Korea evicted the inspectors, restarted the reactor and retrieved weapons-grade plutonium from 8,000 fuel rods that had been kept in a cooling pond. Intelligence analysts now think that, before Monday’s apparent nuclear test, North Korea had enough plutonium for as many as a dozen weapons.

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By Mike Grello, October 12, 2006 at 11:47 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The North Korean news service stated that they were expanding their nuclear program because they did not feel safe.  Imagine the North Koreans believing that we have a bigger wing nut running our country than they do theirs.
Imagine.

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By Tom Weidermeijer, October 12, 2006 at 9:58 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I am 40 years old and I am really tired of this administration always pointing fingers at everyone, especially, in my opinion, the only good president since I have been alive.

Slate, this morning, had an excellent article on John McCain’s ridiculous comments about Clinton and North Korea. 
http://www.slate.com/id/2151354/nav/tap2/

The thing that worries me most is that the Republicans are SO good with the media spin that even logical, reasoning people, like my dad still, somehow, believe them.

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By Broiler, October 12, 2006 at 7:51 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

How can we get both parties to move on?
Before the finger pointing, do you think it’s prudent
to confirm if Monday’s test was actually nuclear?

“But North Korea’s blast was so tiny that the seismic wave is almost indistinguishable from routine subterranean background noise, experts say.”
- Excerpted from the report:
Korean nuclear test looks like a dud
http://www.abc.net.au/science/news/stories/2006/1763160.htm

From what I’ve read, North Korea, despite being ambitious
in trying to blackmail the free world, is likely on the verge of
full economic and social collapse. Is it possible that the current
spasms are the death throes of the Kim Jong-Il regime?

Our biggest nuclear challenge with North Korea might be
who cleans up the mess when their nuclear program
goes off like a firecracker in the hand of a foolish kid?

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