I received the following very perceptive speculation about the north's next move in response to the article below. My response to him follows:
I wonder if this is a high-stakes scam? N.K. reportedly told China yesterday that they intended to conduct two more nuclear tests in 2013 if direct talks with the U.S arent't held. Suppose Iran did pay NK for witnessing this previous test. NK threatens to conduct two more in 2013 without direct talks. The U.S. or China, etc. pay them not to and NK/Iran split the proceeds.
I think the mafia-like crime family of the Kim regime is all about high stakes scams. I think your assessment is entirely plausible. The missile and nuclear tests have advanced their programs and demonstrated their will to act in the face of sanctions and international condemnation. Now just the threat of another test could lead to some kind of concessions (and remember one of the fundamental reasons for provocations is to gain political and economic concessions) in order to prevent another test. Ironically there are some that will be patting themselves on the back if some kind of agreement is reached that will prevent a 4th test because they will believe that diplomacy has prevailed when instead we could be feeding right into the regime's hands. I think the north knows how to give us what we think we want and is surely masterful at trading away nothing of their own in return for concessions. They probably have no need to conduct further tests at the moment but the threat of such tests could cause us to act in exactly the way they want. And we would not do so had they not conducted the missile and nuclear tests. I think the Iran connection is also extremely useful in increasing our sense of urgency and the desire to do something to prevent further nuclear tests (and also advancing the Iranian regime's nuclear program). I think that what this could indicate is that the north knows us better than we know the north.
FEARS RISE ABOUT IRAN – NORTH KOREA NUCLEAR CONNECTION
DID IRAN PAY NORTH KOREA MILLIONS OF DOLLARS TO ATTEND TEST FOR RESEARCH REASONS?
February 18, 2013
Iran paid North Korea tens of millions of dollars to witness the most recent nuclear test, Japanese news agency Kyodo reported this weekend.
According to Kyodo’s source, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad approved the payment in November after a meeting of his national security team. The pay-to-view request was reported to have come from the head of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization, Fereydoon Abbasi-Dabani, an individual who was also present at the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on cooperation in science, technology and education between North Korea and Iran last September.
Despite the allegation, Kyodo said it is unclear whether the Iranian scientists actually witnessed the test. However, the unnamed diplomatic source was quoted as saying the proposal casts further doubt on Iran’s claims that its nuclear program is peaceful. He added it would be “very worrying” if Iran got nuclear test knowhow from North Korea.
Separate reports in The Sunday Times said the test was allegedly witnessed by the “father of Iran’s nuclear program” Mohsen Fakhrizadeh-Mahabadi. That the Iranian payment was supposedly made through the Bank of Kunlun in Beijing may bolster American calls for increased sanctions related to North Korea’s financial transactions, along the lines of measures taken against Banco Delta Asia in 2005.
(Continued at the link below)