CNN's Barbara Starr reports on the mistake in classification that led to North Korea intelligence being revealed. General James "Spider" Marks explains what the report means about North Korea's military and nuclear weapons capabilities.
At a hearing today, Colorado Congressman Doug Lamborn revealed mistakenly declassified information from a U.S. intelligence report about North Korea’s nuclear capabilities. Anderson Cooper speaks with Rep. Lamborn about that information, and what it means for North Korea’s nuclear threats.
Editor’s Note: Anderson Cooper will report the latest developments on North Korea's threats and the United States' response tonight on AC360° at 8 and 10 p.m. ET. He'll be joined by former U.S. Ambassador to China Jon Huntsman and CNN's Christiane Amanpour.
With North Korea expected to soon test more missiles, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel warned Wednesday the hermit nation is "skating very close to a dangerous line." Intelligence suggests North Korea could be planning “multiple missile launches” in the coming days, according to Pentagon officials. Here’s the AC360° 411 on North Korea:
Anderson Cooper talks to Fran Townsend and Bob Baer about the possibility that Israel will take action against Iran.
Defense Sec. Panetta concluded there's a "growing likelihood" Israel will attack Iran to stop their nuclear strength.
Editor's Note: The opinions expressed in this blog are solely those of Julian Zelizer.
Julian E. Zelizer
Special to CNN
In the week leading up to the meeting of world leaders in Washington, President Obama has been demonstrating a strong commitment to nuclear arms control.
Last week, he signed the first major agreement with the Russians since 2002, which reduces the number of nuclear warheads and long-range missiles.
Obama released the Nuclear Posture Review, saying the United States would not use nuclear weapons against countries that complied with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, even if they attacked with conventional weapons. At the same time, the president said the countries that refused to abide by the treaty could be subject to nuclear reprisal.
Although Obama's Nuclear Posture Review does not go nearly as far as many of his supporters were hoping, some Republicans immediately attacked.
Sens. John Kyl and John McCain warned that "we believe that preventing nuclear terrorism and nuclear proliferation should begin by directly confronting the two leading proliferators and supporters of terrorism, Iran and North Korea. The Obama administration's policies, thus far, have failed to do that, and this failure has sent exactly the wrong message to other would-be proliferators and supporters of terrorism."
Some Democrats, constantly leery about appearing weak on national security, will buckle as the politics of nuclear weapons heats up when the treaty with the Russians reaches the Senate for ratification. But the administration should pursue this treaty aggressively and with confidence that they can win public opinion on this issue.
The president must remind fellow Democrats, as well as Republicans, that historically the public has tended to strongly support nuclear weapons treaties, and the presidents who pursue them.
Obama's summit represents a 'small step toward slowing the decline of international cooperation on nuclear issues', says Calabresi.
Ask an Obama Administration official why the President is bringing nearly 50 heads of state all the way to Washington just so they can collectively declare that loose nukes are bad, and you'll get a version of this: America can only be safe if international cooperation is strong.
That may be true, and hawks and doves in Washington agree there's little downside to the summit itself. But even the most idealistic internationalists know that the number of nuclear-armed states is likely to grow rather than shrink in coming years, weakening the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) and increasing the production of dangerous materials around the globe. So, a more accurate definition of the summit's purpose may be that it is, at best, a small step toward slowing the decline of international cooperation on nuclear issues.
The gathering will produce more paper than progress, Administration officials concede. There will be the nonbinding communiqué, wherein the leaders will declare the dangers of nuclear proliferation. They will pledge to take new national and international measures to secure nuclear materials within four years. The summit will produce a "work plan" of steps that individual states will take to secure their nuclear materials; that too will be nonbinding. And individual countries will announce their own measures, to the extent that they want to do more.