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Asian analysis

Articles: North Korea


As US loses patience, North Korea holds a chemical card

Asia Times, March 20, 2017

As nuclear tensions escalate on the Korean peninsula Pyongyang's mobile chemical weapons would likely factor into any confrontation with America
[read the article at www.atimes.com]

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Tougher scrutiny for North Korean-Southeast Asian ties

Asia Times, March 20, 2017

While China is often identified as North Korea's chief patron and protector, Southeast Asian nations also help to sustain the isolated regime
[read the article at www.atimes.com]

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Myanmar and North Korea: Friends in Need

The Irrawaddy, October 8, 2013

One doesn't have to look far to discover that the North Koreans have arrived in Yangon. And for the foreseeable future, kimchi is not likely to be the only thing that North Korea exports to Myanmar.
[read the article at www.irrawaddy.org]

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Is the Burma-North Korea relationship a thing of the past?

NK News, September 23, 2013

Evidence of continued relations persists despite U.S. push for ties with Naypyidaw.
[read the article at www.nknews.org]

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Burmese-North Korean ties have a long history

NK News, September 24, 2013

Despite Rangoon bombing, the mutual needs of Burma and North Korea have linked the pariah states
[read the article at www.nknews.org]

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Front companies, false flags hide North Korea-Burma ties

NK News, September 25, 2013

No longer a junta, the Burmese military retains grand ambitions.
[read the article at www.nknews.org]

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Deceiving the US over North Korean ties

Democratic Voice of Burma, February 2, 2012

Any statements made by Burmese officials regarding the military's cooperation with foreign partners should be taken with a large pinch of salt.
[read the article at dvb.no]

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North Korea's King is Dead, But the Military Still Rules

Asia Society, December 19, 2011

On the demise of Kim Jong Il
[read the article at www.asiasociety.org]

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Fog lifts on Myanmar-North Korea barter

Asia Times, March 4, 2011

The growing uncertainty among North Korea's trade partners in the middle east could explain why the country is now cementing ties with a client much closer to home: military-run Myanmar.
[read the article at www.atimes.com]

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Myanmar, North Korea in missile nexus

Asia Times, March 2, 2011

Military-run Myanmar's growing weapons ambitions threaten to destabilize the region and make the Southeast Asian country a new global weapons proliferation hotspot.
[read the article at www.atimes.com]

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North Korea's missiles aimed for Iran

Asia Times, January 12, 2011

North Korea's succession plan may appear farcical, but its newly-developed deadly wares are no joke - nor is the fact that countries are willing to trade in military equipment with North Korea and Iran despite UN Security Council sanctions.
[read the article at www.atimes.com]

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Brazil, North Korea: Brothers in trade

Asia Times, June 3, 2010

Recent indications are that Pyongyang has sought willing trade partners outside of Asia and its new closest commercial ally appears to be Brazil.
[read the article at www.atimes.com]

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Pyongyang Freely Plies the Seas

Far Eastern Economic Review, November, 2009

Bertil Lintner looks at North Korea's continuing ability to ship and trade weapons internationally despite tightening sanctions.
[read the article (pdf)]

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Clouded alliance - North Korea and Myanmar's covert ties

Jane's Intelligence Review, September, 2009

The nature of military co-operation between North Korea and Myanmar has come under international scrutiny amid fears of nuclear proliferation activities. Bertil Lintner investigates the historical ties and extent of collaboration between the two pariah regimes.
[more]

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Tunnels, Guns and Kimchi: North Korea's Quest for Dollars - Part II

YaleGlobal, June 11, 2009

In this second part of the series on North Korea's clandestine economy, Bertil Lintner describes the demise of many North Korean-owned restaurants in Asia due to the economic crisis - restaurants which were operated as money-laundering fronts.
[read the article at yaleglobal.yale.edu]

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Tunnels, Guns and Kimchi: North Korea's Quest for Dollars - Part I

YaleGlobal, June 09, 2009

Bertil Lintner reveals how North Korea has been secretly helping Burma - another pariah regime - to build an extensive tunnel network as emergency shelter and for other unknown purposes.
[read the article at yaleglobal.yale.edu]

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Book Review: Exodus to North Korea

Far Eastern Economic Review, December, 2007

Bertil Lintner reviews Exodus to North Korea: Shadows from Japan's Cold War by Tessa Morris-Suzuki.
[more]

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Odd couple: The royal and the Red

Asia Times, October 31, 2007

North Korean Premier Kim Yong-il is scheduled to pay a four-day visit to Cambodia in early November, underscoring the curious close relationship between one of the world's last communist dictatorships and one of Asia's most ancient monarchies.
[read the article at www.atimes.com]

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North Korea's Living Exports

Asia Times, July 25, 2007

It has been known since the early 1990s that North Korea exports manpower to eastern Russian logging sites. But two remarkable incidents over the past years reveal that the foreign-currency-strapped nation also sends laborers to other, somewhat less expected places in the world.
[read the article at www.atimes.com]

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A Perilous Escape From Pyongyang

Far Eastern Economic Review, June, 2007

Bertil Lintner reports on the growing number of North Korean asylum seekers turning up in Thailand.
[more]

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North Korea and the poor man's bombs

Asia Times, May 9, 2007

A key step in the solution to the nuclear crisis on the Korean Peninsula may be in sight as the North Korean Foreign Ministry said on Monday that it is ready to shut down the nuclear reactor at Yongbyon as soon as its funds in a Macau bank have been released.
[read the article at www.atimes.com]

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North Korea's IT Revolution

Asia Times, April 24, 2007

The state of North Korea's information-technology (IT) industry has been a matter of conjecture ever since "Dear Leader" Kim Jong-il famously asked then-US secretary of state Madeleine Albright for her e-mail address during her visit to the country in October 2000.
[read the article at www.atimes.com]

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North Korea's burden of crime and terror

Asia Times, April 20, 2007

North Korea may in the end get its US$25 million, which has been frozen in a Macau bank since September 2005. But the United States and North Korea still have a long way to go before relations between the two countries can be normalized.
[read the article at www.atimes.com]

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North Korea's golden path to security

Asia Times, January 18, 2007

While the West and Japan have targeted North Korea's overseas bank accounts to curtail its weapons program, Pyongyang has recently turned to more ingenious ways of maintaining its international businesses through substantial exports of gold, silver and other valuable metals.
[read the article at www.atimes.com]

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North Korea's underground railroad to Thailand

Asia Times, November 9, 2006

In mid-October, North Koreans Kim He-shim, Kim Su-ok, Lee He-yong and Lee Chol-yong crossed the Mekong River and landed somewhere near northernmost Thailand's river port of city of Chiang Saen. They were certainly not the first, nor the youngest, nor probably the last North Korean refugees to make the 5,000-kilometer-plus trip from North Korea to Thailand.
[read the article at www.atimes.com]

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Korea: Pyongyang's 60-year obsession

Asia Times, October 10, 2006

North Korea's "Great Leader", Kim Il-sung, was obsessed with nuclear weapons even before the Democratic People's Republic of Korea was proclaimed on September 9, 1948. Bertil Lintner examines this ongoing obsession.
[read the article at www.atimes.com]

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The North Korean Enigma: Sons and Heirs

Asia Times, August 18, 2006

While the rest of the world was anxiously following news about North Korea's recent missile tests, Kim Jong-il's second son and possible heir apparent, Kim Jong-chul, had his mind focused on entirely different matters. He was among the fans who followed British rock and blues guitarist Eric Clapton on his German tour, which took him to Frankfurt, Stuttgart, Leipzig and Berlin.
[read the article at www.atimes.com]

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Myanmar and North Korea share a tunnel vision

Asia Times, July 19, 2006

Under perceived threats from the US, Myanmar and North Korea are strengthening their strategic ties in a military-to-military exchange that includes weapons sales, technology transfer and underground tunneling expertise.
[read the article at www.atimes.com]

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The long reach of North Korea's missiles

Asia Times, June 21, 2006

North Korea may be a poor country, but it has some of the most developed missile systems in the world. Not even years of near-economic collapse, famine and hunger have hampered the country's missile-development programs, which are meant both as a preemptive defense - to scare off potential attackers - and for export.
[read the article at www.atimes.com]

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North Korea's creepy-crawly capitalism

Asia Times, May 26, 2006

North Korean capitalism is thriving - just not inside North Korea. Pyongyang has steadily established a string of legitimate and less legitimate front companies across East and Southeast Asia, aimed at earning the cash-strapped government badly needed hard currency. And, as Bertil Lintner finds out, business is booming.
[read the article at www.atimes.com]

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North Korea: The Pixel People

Far Eastern Economic Review, July 15, 2004

Ever wondered how North Korea organizes its stadium mass displays? The answer, in a word, is discipline.
[more]

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North Korea: Shop Till You Drop

Far Eastern Economic Review, May 13, 2004

It's got shopping, advertising, trading companies and new incentives to make profits. Despite North Korea's many problems, the small changes seen in Pyongyang now could be the first steps towards a market-oriented economy.
[more]

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Burma: Dangerous Bedfellows

Far Eastern Economic Review, November 20, 2003

Evidence of a blossoming military relationship between pariah regimes in Rangoon and Pyongyang is causing growing concern overseas.
[more]

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North Korea: Myth Making - Dynastic Lies and Secrets

Far Eastern Economic Review, July 10, 2003

Grandiose creation myths prop up North Korea's communist dynasty. In Kim Jong Il's fabled past, much is hidden and the rest is made up--even his place of birth.
[more]

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Korean Peninsula: A Railway Line in Limbo

Far Eastern Economic Review, June 12, 2003

Construction of rail links between the rival Koreas moves ahead slowly. But politics and economics hold up dreams of a link to Europe.
[more]

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North Korea's Missile Trade Helps Fund Its Nuclear Program (yaleglobal.yale.edu)

YaleGlobal, May 05, 2003

With an estimated forty per cent of North Korea's foreign exchange earning coming from weapons sales-of which missile export is a major part-halting their sale is not only good for global stability but for curbing North Korea's nuclear program as well.
[read the article at yaleglobal.yale.edu]

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Book Review: Conflicts Revisited

Far Eastern Economic Review, April 10, 2003

Bertil Lintner reviews this true story of a group of "independent commandos" from Britain's Royal Marines who operated under United States command behind enemy lines in North Korea in the 1950s.
[more]

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North Korea: It's Hard to Help Kim Jong Il

Far Eastern Economic Review, March 27, 2003

A Japanese crackdown could test the loyalty of the resident Koreans who send millions of dollars every year to support North Korea.
[more]

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North Korea: Paper Trail Exposes Missile Merchants

Far Eastern Economic Review, February 13, 2003

When Slovakian police raided a luxury apartment in Bratislava the occupants had fled. But a trove of documents left behind by the North Korean couple who lived there indicated that they were missile-trade agents for their country.
[more]

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North Korea: Pyongyang's Banking Beachhead in Europe

Far Eastern Economic Review, February 13, 2003

Since 1982, the North Koreans have had their own bank in Austria's capital, Vienna. It's called the Golden Star Bank and is 100% owned by the Korea Daesong Bank, a state enterprise headquartered in Pyongyang. Bertil Lintner reports.
[more]

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North Korea - Coming in from the Cold

Far Eastern Economic Review, October 25, 2001

As the global war against terrorism gains momentum, East Asia's most reclusive state faces some hard decisions: Will it continue to sell ballistic missiles, illegal arms and contraband or will it clean up its act?
[more]

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