Could North Korea Secretly Build an Iranian Bomb?

Pyongyang has the nuclear skills that Tehran craves.

Of course, it’s not just Tehran that is in need. Pyongyang is also needy for its own reasons, such as its self-imposed, collectivist economic woes and the increasing international economic sanctions it faces over nuclear and missile tests.

In addition, North Korea could use some technical assistance with its space launch program, where Iran is arguably more advanced, but which is integral—and critical—to Pyongyang’s intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) program.

Lastly, both countries despise the United States and some of its allies (e.g., South Korea and Israel). Accordingly, Iran and North Korea would benefit from the existence of another state that threatens America with nuclear-tipped ICBMs.

In other words, there’s plenty of political and military motivation for these two rogue states to get together on nuclear and/or missile matters, arguably even more so today than last summer, before the JCPOA came into effect.

Peter Brookes is a Heritage Foundation senior fellow and a former deputy assistant secretary of defense. Follow him on Twitter: @Brookes_Peter.

Image: Wikimedia Commons/Khamenei.ir

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