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Let me get this straight.

First he was Hitler, and the greatest threat to world peace, and now he's just a paper tiger?

What is the German word for "consistency"???

Either the man is dangerous or he isn't. Which is it???

Reminds me of a great cartoon published by Herblock, in the early 50's I think, although I saw it long after it was originally printed. He was lead cartoonist for the Washington Post until he passed away a few years back. A big nuclear bomb was measuring the world with a tape measure as the diplomats talked away. Replace the diplomats with journalists, and it would work just as well.

Defense Tech is reporting the test fizzled, and the yield was probably less than a kiloton. Forget all the silliness you're likely to read about NK testing a "suitcase nuke." It's likely they tried to test a plutonium weapon, instead of a simpler uranium bomb. Plutonium occasionally decays by spontaneous fission, releasing neutrons, which cause bombs to fizzle by initiating the nuclear chain reaction before optimum conditions are met. Hence, the material is imploded, so that super-criticality can be reached much more quickly than in a gun-type weapon. A little finesse is needed to get a highly symmetric implosion, and to hit the material with a burst of neutrons at just the right time. If either of these conditions is not met, you get a "fizzle." The bad news is that even a "fizzle" would be devastating in the middle of a large city.

This article is ridiculous. And it's typical Stern like. The baseline is (as usually) it's the US fault. I saw the comment on consistency. Hey, the German word is Konsistenz. And, the Stern is very good in consistency. This magazin is well known for consistent anti-americanism! Sad but true.

This is definitely a really bad article. Not that I had expected otherwise from Der Stern. On the other hand I would have hardly noticed without this blog cause I see Der Stern together with Spiegel and Focus not in a remote way as examples of serious journalism (which seems to be hard to come by nowadays anywhere in the world anyways).

As I am German and have not yet given up hope completely for the Germans, Europeans and the media here as well I would like to point out that from what I've read up to now there seems to be some uncommon consensus on the condemnation of NK, politically as well as in the media. Even on Spiegel Online I could up to now not find anything as bad as the article above.

On http://www.spiegel.de/politik/ there is a quite uncommon lack of negativity towards Bush which seems to have been replaced by a diversity of reports about Russia and NK.
A commentary on Sueddeutsche points out that this problem will only be solved with help from the US and only sees hope in a common hard stance by China and the US towards NK.

Signs of hope? Success of this blog? Or just coincidence?
Probably the German saying "Die Hoffnung stirbt zuletzt" (Hope dies last) is a good way to describe my feelings towards the situation.

I blame China and Russia to support countries like North Korea or Iran to tinker atomic bombs. So what about putting there leaders on the cover. Putin is in my hometown Dresden today. A former KGB spy! Where are the protesters? Where are the headlines? Where is Mrs. Roth and all the faultfinder? Its a shame!

I'd love to hear what they suggest Bush should have done differently.

Personally I would have no problem if he gets some carriers in there and starts lobbing some ammo. Seoul would be pissed but they've been appeasing L'il Kim for far too long. And let Japan go nuclear. Taiwan too. Then let China just suck it up.

How would Der Stern like that? Too cowboy? Too unilateral?

tsk tsk

I have been reading this blog for many months and I used to think very well of Germans and Germany, but now my good thoughts are fading away. I live in South Korea and am outraged that Germans ACTUALLY believe the lies they are being told through STERN and DER SPIEGEL. I live in the city, Daejeon, where the nuclear bomb test was confirmed, at the Seismic Research Center of Korea. It registered between 4.0-4.5 on the Richter scale. North Korea needs to be held responsible for its actions. None of this is the US's fault. It has nothing to do with them at all. But no German is going to believe that, eh? It seems to me that the only people they care about are themselves and think so precious of themselves that they aren't willing to stick their necks out and risk their lives for anyone. They want us to believe that they've changed from their "former ways" but I see no real proof of it. The mindset and heart condition of the people that led them down "the wrong path" has not altered in any way that I can see. Actions speak louder than words. Talk is cheap if it doesn't lead to demonstrated action. Germans are hiding behind a wall of excuses and they need to be exposed for this. If they were truly sorry for the Holocaust, then they should be the first ones to stand up and fight for those who are being dragged to their deaths. They should be the epidomy of human sacrifice for the sake of others. But no, I don't see that. They still stand around and let people be killed by brutal dictators. I know this might sound harsh, but I am just really angry right now at what I see. I hope I didn't offend anyone, but the truth needs to be said, even if it hurts sometimes. I love German culture in a way that might surprise a lot of people, (and no not that Oktoberfest stuff) and am still thinking of doing my Ph.D. in Berlin, but some days I have my doubts. It hurts me to see such a great people with so much to live for, just throw it all away. Thanks ! 감사합니다 (Korean)

What ridiculousness. And if Bush had threatened North Korea with military force, is there any doubt Stern would be crying, "Warmonger!"?

Actually, the North Korean nuclear test may have the positive effect in the region of placing more responsibility on the shoulders of South Korea, Japan and China. Isn't that what Stern and the German Left want - a more multipolar world?

They should be the epidomy of human sacrifice for the sake of others. But no, I don't see that. They still stand around and let people be killed by brutal dictators.

Well, well, well. Welcome aboard.

If Bush/USA are Paper Tigers, could I conclude that Germany is a Paper Chicken?
Let's all sit around a Table and Talk, then talk some more , then let's have a consensus then not act on anything, then blame Bush/USA.
That's how I see the EU and Germany. The MSM is only the tool to instruct the citizens properly according to their own Agenda.
I can't wait until Russia lures them in with monopolistic "Unlimited Energy" and starts to extort the EU, their dear partner?

Like Pamela, I wonder what they think Bush should have done. Does the article offer any suggestions?

I note that the Democrats in the US are playing this same blame game, right now -- while at the same time offering no solutions of their own (which, considering it was a Democratic administration's foreign policy that set this crisis up in the first place, isn't surprising).

can't wait until Russia lures them in with monopolistic "Unlimited Energy" and starts to extort the EU, their dear partner?

Oh hell, I can't wait till Iran sets one off after telling the EU to take a hike for all these years. Good luck blaming that on the Amis.

But guess what? We may not have to worry about any of it.

According to the Russian astronomer Nikolai Fedorovsky, a giant comet flying at top speed is bound for Earth. Should the comet stay on the collision course, it may hit the planet in late October. The impact will cause devastating tsunamis, earthquakes and avalanches, says Fedorovsky. He saw the killer comet in a telescope two weeks ago. He managed to calculate the comet’s trajectory.
Giant comet may collide with Earth late October

If we're lucky, it hits Iran - who will blame it on Israel - or the NORKS who will blame it on the US.

I, of course, will blame it on the EU.

Media outlets here in the US reporting that North Korea admits the yield from the test was smaller than expected (which is support for Helian's theory) AND that they are considering 'sending a nuclear-tipped missile towards the United States'.

Wanna see the entire Korean Penninsula glow in the dark?

I don't speak German very well, but can someone answer a question for me? Does Stern stand for German? Is it properly supposed to be, the Stern Volk?

Mike H

Der Stern = The Star

Here's a free translation engine on the web
Free Translation engine

Thank you Pamela, I'm glad to hear that it doesn't mean German.

And guess who's sold those light water nuclear reactors worth 200,000,000 $ to the Norks?

Donald Rumsfeld! Yes Sir!

Rummy was director of Zurich ABB for 10 years until he became secretary of defense 2001.


Just like in Iraq!!!

What would the axis of evil be without Rummy!

Time to write a cover version of Benný and the Jets:

Rummy and the Norks



Um, little history lesson. Iraq's nuclear reactor in Osirak was supplied by the French (just like Dimona in Israel). Not by Rumsfeld.

The light-water reactor was supplied to NK after long discussions with NK, Japan and the US. This was Clinton's achievement in the 1990s - and all dealings were above the table - non of them were against international treaties or norms.

Unlike the years of nuclear research, which went against NK's signature to the NON-proliferation treaty, supplied by the likes of Abdul_Qadeer_Khan. Pakistan's father of the Islamic bomb. Here's a snippet:

The Pakistani official who made the announcement said that Khan had admitted to transferring technology and information to Iran between 1989 and 1991, to North Korea and Libya between 1991 and 1997 (U.S. officials at the time maintained that transfers had continued with Libya until 2003), and additional technology to North Korea up until 2000.[5] On February 4, 2004, Khan appeared on national television and confessed to running a proliferation ring; he was pardoned the next day by Musharraf, the Pakistani president, but held under house arrest.[6]

Emphasis mine.

But wait, NK had

1) Signed the Non-Proliferation Treaty.
2) Signed agreements with the USA & Japan for a light water nuclear reactor.

The world is no longer deceived by those nations of the world who mask their intent at acquiring nuclear weapons with the mask of peaceful programs.

However on another note, vis-a-vis, your obvious contempt for Rumsfeld. What do you propose now? Or are you too comfortable in your ivory tower in Europe?

How's Europe's tri-party approach been working thus far with Iran?

I should also add that the light-water reactor was never completed. Clearly, The DPRK (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea ) already had other such clandestine uranium refinement facilities in operation. They never had any intention of abiding by their treaty obligations. And besides, light water reactors are not ideal for creating weapons-grade uranium, hence Clinton’s agreement.

Perhaps Olaf thinks that if Clinton and Schröder were still in office, the DPRK wouldn’t be so belligerent and hostile.


Well, far be it from me to have much hope that facts get in the way of your self-comforting moral superiority, but you might want to learn a bit about nuclear reactors.

Light water reacters are not considered breeders for purposes of weapons-grade fissible materials because the breeding ratio (how much fissible material produced vs. consumed) is too low.

Although ratios in the newer reactors are somewhat higher - I believe they are referred to as 'enhanced consumers' or 'enhanced burnup' - still not enough for weapons.

If Helian, our resident nuclear physicist shows up, he can probably tell you more.

At any rate, this blog is not the place to be flaunting your cluelessness, regardless of the entertainment value it provides to the rest of us.

Please do not disturb people like Olaf with facts. It might destroy their little dreamworld and this could cause mental disturbances...

this could cause mental disturbances...

I think evidence of pre-existing mental disturbance is more than abundant


@James: You're right about the light-water reactors; they are generally not good for creating weapons-grade materials. They are one of the two types of reactor commonly used for power generation. That's why they were in the Agreed Framework.

Here's something that is puzzling me: If what the NoKos tested was a plutonium weapon, where did they get the plutonium? As far as we know, they don't have a breeder reactor capable of producing that. So, it stands to reason that they got it from somewhere else. Russia's gratuitious (and, as it turns out, premature) celebration of the test results suggests that it might have come from them. If so, and Lil' Kim is playing off Putin against the Chicomms, isn't that the sort of thing that should make Beijing nervous? They don't seemed concerned about it, but I wonder. Given that, maybe now is the time to lay something like this on China:

"The United States views North Korea as a breakaway province of China. [Turn the old Taiwan thing against them] Therefore, we will hold China responsible for any and all hostile actions taken by North Korea against the United States or its allies. Any attempt by North Korea to launch a nuclear weapon will result in retalitory strikes against not only against North Korea but also Beijing. China, you have a choice: either control your rogue client, or discontinue all aid to North Korea and join the United States in pursuing a permanant solution."

Cousin Dave
If what the NoKos tested was a plutonium weapon, where did they get the plutonium? As far as we know, they don't have a breeder reactor capable of producing that.

DPRK does indeed have fast breeder reactors probably at the Yongbyon facility. It is those reactors they agreed to shut down under the Agreed Framework in return for light water reactors. The assumption is that Russia gave them the initial technology, but Russia, IIRC, backed off from supplying any more tech help when DPNK withdrew from the NPT. Also, I don't think anybody is really sure how much our buddy Dr. Khan may have helped them.

If it was a plutonium test, they would have got it from fuel rods from the breeder reactors.

"And guess who's sold those light water nuclear reactors worth 200,000,000 $ to the Norks?
Donald Rumsfeld! Yes Sir!"

Ok, so another lefty proves himself clueless! Quelle surprise! He does bring to mind the other photos that the MSM in both of our countries can't seem to find.
- The photo of Jacque Chirac and Saddam Hussein shaking hands in Iraq.

- The photo of Madeline Albright toasting with Kim Jong-il in North Korea.

If anybody knows where they might find copies to post ! ! ! Then the current full court media press here in the U.S.A. by the clintonoids, on how they had "solved the North Korean problem" until Bush messed it up, will flame out on the truth just like the "Foley scandal" has.


I agree with almost all of these comments. Here I thought I was the only American who thought the European news was a bit skeeewwedd against us on the other side of the Atlantic.
In fact, I took a note out of Kurt Vonnegut's book and wrote about the North Korea junk on my own web page a couple days ago (World Waits for U.S...)
It makes me wonder about what I read and see here. I'm getting tired of hearing things like, "Well, now we have school shootings and serial killers just like you do in the U.S." What the hell is that?

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