While the Biden White House has been knee deep in multiple disasters at home and in other nations, North Korea, it seems, has started up one of its nuclear reactors which is capable of creating weapons-grade material that is needed for nuclear weapons.
According to a new Intl. Atomic Energy Agency report, a nuclear power plant and radiochemical lab within the city of Yongbyon — around 65 miles north of Pyongyang — reveals signs of reactivation after some time of being dormant.
#Breaking #NorthKorea nuclear activities are “cause for serious [email protected] ~ appears to have Restarted #Yongbyon Nuclear Reactor – IAEA says in report obtained by @CBSNews // UnitedNations pic.twitter.com/sjGeKh01Mk
— Pamela Falk (@PamelaFalk) August 30, 2021
“There were no signs of reactor operation from early Dec. of 2018 to the start of July 2021,” the report says. “However, since July 2021, there were signs, including cooling water, which is consistent with the work of a reactor.”
For those watching at home, North Korea’s discontinuation of nuclear manufacturing in 2018 followed President Donald Trump’s June 2018 negotiation with Kim Jong-un which was meant to achieve denuclearization. And it seems the stopped operations were kept in place just long enough for North Korea to see President Biden’s White House and decide that it could resume work with its nuclear program.
“The steam plant that connects to the Radiochemical Laboratory operated for around five months, from mid-Feb 2021 until early July of 2021. The work time of the Radiochemical Lab in 2021 is much longer than seen in the past during potential waste treatment or maintenance actions.”
This five-month time frame, the IAEA says, “is consistent with the time needed to process a completed core of irradiated fuel” based on the reactor’s information and previous announcements of similar activity from the North Korean government.
Before, spent fuel rods from the Yongbyon reactor were used to form fissile material for the country’s nuclear weapons at the close by radiochemical lab despite some propaganda claims that the activity was simply harmless training.
With President Joe Biden struggling to deal with the crisis he created in Afghanistan while showing fealty to Russia and China since taking office, it is not surprising that North Korea will take advantage of the situation to regroup to its former nuclear ambitions in what is yet another example of Biden’s pledge to “build back better” applying to our nation’s adversaries.
Author: Scott Dowdy