The Asan Forum

Iran and North Korea pursue the same ultimate goal: nuclear armament. However, they have chosen fundamentally different strategies and approaches. There are also stark differences in the legal regimes governing their nuclear activities, levels of commitment of stakeholders to halt and roll back the respective nuclear programs of the two states, and in the nature of alternatives to a diplomatic solution they face.

First and foremost, there is a subtle but clear difference in strategies. Iran’s immediate objective at the current stage is not nuclear weapons. It is to develop “capabilities” that can be used in manufacturing nuclear weapons whenever they decide to produce and deploy them. To this end, Iran has taken a smarter tactic of pretending to comply with the NPT under the cloak of peaceful uses of nuclear energy. Even though there have been some violations of the IAEA safeguards along the way, they have been resourceful enough to take advantage of the loopholes and gaps in the current international nonproliferation regime in building their nuclear capabilities. Iran has thus far concentrated on reducing the distance from the breakout to the nuclear threshold.

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천영우 전(前)청와대외교안보수석은 2014년 1월부터 아산정책연구원 고문으로 있으며, 2013년 6월 사단법인 한반도미래포럼을 설립하여 이사장 직을 맡고 있다. 이명박 대통령 임기 후반 2년 반 동안 청와대외교안보수석을 역임하였으며(2010.10-2013.2) 그 이전 약33년간 직업외교관으로서 다양한 경력을 쌓았다. 외교부 본부에서는 제2차관(2009-2010), 한반도평화교섭본부장과 6자회담 수석대표(2006-2008), 외교정책실장(2005-2006)등 요직을 두루 거쳤으며, 재외공관 보직으로는 주(駐)영국 대사(2008-2009), 주(駐)유엔한국대표부 대사(차석)(2003-2005) 등을 역임하였다. 부산대학교에서 불어를 전공하고(1977), 미국 Columbia University에서 국제학 석사(MIA)를 취득하였다(1994).