Feature

Nuclear bombs available soon

The week's news at a glance.

Pyongyang

North Korea said last week that it had reprocessed all of its 8,000 spent rods from nuclear power plants into bomb-grade material. If the claim is true, it means North Korea has enough plutonium to build two to three nuclear bombs within a few months, doubling the estimated size of its arsenal. Western officials fear that the desperately poor nation might sell the bombs to terrorist groups. The admission prompted former U.S. defense secretary William Perry, an expert on the region, to criticize the Bush administration for failing to contain North Korea. “I’m damned if I can figure out what the policy is,” Perry told The Washington Post. North Korea’s nuclear program “poses an imminent danger of nuclear weapons being detonated in American cities.” The U.S. has sought to pressure North Korea into giving up its nuclear program without offering inducements or entering into negotiations.

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