What to Do with North Korea Now? No Answers Yet
On April 5, North Korea delivered on a North Korean promise. It launched a long range missile, also known as a Taepo-dong 2, a 3-stage rocket, in the direction of Japan. While monitors of the launch attest the rocket traveled for about 13 minutes before plunging into the Pacific Ocean, North Korea continues to insist it successfully delivered a satellite into orbit with the launch—something it had been promising for a few months to do. Arguments over the true intentions of the launch—including issues of sovereignty and peaceful rights to the development of space—seemed likely to derail any United Nations Security Council (UNSC) decisions. However, an agreement was finally reached on April 13 denouncing the launch. This sent North Korea into a wild tantrum of threats (to restart nuclear development) and breaks (from the Six Party Talks).
North Korea’s actions and statements, if borne out, place the country back on a path to advancing its nuclear-weapons program. April ended with more questions than answers about what the U.S. plan of action will be.