NAPSNet Daily Report 09 December, 1999

Recommended Citation

"NAPSNet Daily Report 09 December, 1999", NAPSNet Daily Report, December 09, 1999,


I. United States

PLEASE NOTE: Please note: There will be no Daily Report for Friday, December 10, as Nautilus staff will be attending a workshop on Information Technology and American Foreign Policy Decisionmaking. The Daily Report will return on Monday, December 13.

I. United States

1. DPRK Nuclear Reactor

Associated Press (“N. KOREA REACTOR DEAL EXPECTED,” Seoul, 12/09/99) reported that US officials said Thursday that the Korean Peninsula Energy Development Organization will formally sign a US$4.6 billion contract on December 15 with ROK’s Korea Electric Power Corporation to build two nuclear power plants in the DPRK. ROK officials said that the contract will designate the ROK power utility as the prime contractor. Experts said that at a normal pace of construction, the first reactor could be built by 2007, five years behind its original schedule.

2. PRC Construction of Missile Base

Agence France Presse (“BEIJING DENIES SECOND MISSILE BASE NEAR TAIWAN,” Beijing, 12/09/99) reported that the PRC denied on Thursday the report that it is constructing a second short-range missile base that will put all Taiwan’s major military bases within striking distance. Foreign ministry spokeswoman Zhang Qiyue said, “this kind of reporting is fabrication out of nothing, it is not worth commenting.” Asked about the report, the US Defense Department declined comment on what it said were “alleged leaks of intelligence information.”

The Washington Times (Bill Gertz, “CLINTON CONCERNED ABOUT MISSILE THREAT TO TAIWAN,” 12/09/99, 1) reported that US President Clinton voiced “grave concern” Wednesday over the growing PRC missile threat to Taiwan. When asked about the reported PRC missile base construction, Clinton said, “China is modernizing its military in a lot of ways, but our policy on China is crystal clear. We believe there is one China.” Clinton also said the dispute between the PRC and Taiwan “has to be resolved through cross-strait dialogue. And we oppose and would view with grave concern any kind of violent action. There’s been a lot of buildup of tension on both sides that I think is unnecessary and counterproductive. And the politics of neither place should lead either side into doing something rash. And I hope this will not happen.” [Ed. note: This article was one of the top stories of the US Department of Defense’s Early Bird news service for December 9.]

3. New PRC Submarine Missile

Defense Daily (Pennington Way IV, “CHINESE OFFICIAL: NEW DF-31 MISSILE TO GO ON SUBMARINES,” 12/09/99, 4) reported that PRC Major General Gong Xianfu said on December 8 at a National Defense Industrial Association luncheon that the PRC navy will place the Julang-2 (JL-2) ICBM aboard its ballistic missile submarines. The new missile will probably be deployed in the vertical tube launchers of the nuclear-powered Type 094 submarines. Gong said that the PRC was consolidating its national defense sector in order to better protect their territory and maritime rights. He also said the PRC was attempting to promote world peace as part of the military’s “reorganization” and “downsizing” efforts. [Ed. note: This article was included in the US Department of Defense’s Early Bird news service for December 7.]

4. Cross-Strait Relations

Agence France Presse (“TAIWAN DEFENDS PLAN TO DEVELOP LONG-RANGE MISSILES,” Taipei, 12/09/99) reported that Lin Chong-pin, vice chairman of Taiwan’s Mainland Affairs Council which oversees cross strait relations, said the leaked US intelligence reports on the construction of PRC missile bases showed that it was vital for Taiwan to develop long-range missiles to defend itself. Lin said, “as the Chinese communists refused to renounce the use of force … any measure that will be helpful to the strengthening of our defense deserves serious consideration.”

5. PRC-Russian Relations

Associated Press (Charles Hutzler, “YELTSIN WINS CHINESE SUPPORT,” Beijing, 12/09/99), Reuters (Paul Eckert, “YELTSIN, JIANG HOLD ‘NO NECKTIE’ SUMMIT,” Beijing, 12/09/99), and Agence France Presse (“YELTSIN ARRIVES IN CHINA TO WIN SUPPORT FOR CHECHEN OFFENSIVE,” Beijing, 12/09/99) reported that at a meeting with the chairman of the PRC National People’s Congress Li Peng, Russian President Boris Yeltsin warned the US and President Clinton for criticizing Russia’s campaign in Chechnya. Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov told reporters after the Yeltsin-Jiang meeting that, “Jiang Zemin completely understands and fully supports Russia’s actions in combating terrorism and extremism in Chechnya.” PRC Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Zhang Qiyue said at a separate briefing that the PRC “understands and supports the efforts made by Russia in safeguarding national unity and territorial integrity.” Zhang also said that Yeltsin and Jiang both agreed that there should not be “one country dominating the world.” PRC and Russian foreign ministers also signed three accords establishing the countries’ 2,630- mile border and the joint use of disputed islands.

6. US-PRC Energy Research

Washington Post (Martha M. Hamilton, “U.S.-CHINA ENERGY RESEARCH URGED,” 12/09/99, A43) reported that a report by the US National Research Council and its PRC counterparts on December 8 recommended increased collaboration between the US and PRC governments on developing cleaner energy technology and increasing energy efficiency to reduce emissions that contribute to global warming. The report recommended that the US Congress authorize the Agency for International Development, the Trade and Development Agency, and the Overseas Private Investment Corporation to work in the PRC to encourage cleaner, more efficient energy use. – All three groups are currently barred from going to the PRC. The report also suggested that the PRC might provide a market for clean-coal technologies that are in limited demand in the US because utilities have converted to cleaner natural gas plants.

7. US-PRC Relations

Associated Press (“U.S. AMBASSADOR TO CHINA HOPEFUL,” Beijing, 12/09/99) and Agence France Presse (“NEW US AMBASSADOR ARRIVES IN BEIJING,” Washington, 12/09/99) reported that US Ambassador to the PRC Joseph Prueher arrived in the PRC on Thursday to take up his post. Upon arrival Prueher gave a statement saying, “the relationship between our nations is vital to both of us, to the Asia-Pacific region and to our world. Our common interests transcend the issues that keep us apart.” Prueher also said he looked forward to “promoting direct, candid dialogue and to steadily strengthening the structure of, and confidence in, the U.S.-China relationship.”

8. Pear Harbor Documents

Associated Press (Joseph Coleman, “PEARL HARBOR DOCUMENTS UNCOVERED,” Tokyo, 12/09/99) reported that Japanese Tokai University professor Takeo Iguchi uncovered and publicized documents this year in the Japanese media which appear to show that Japanese officials took special pains in the days before the December 7, 1941, Pearl Harbor attack to keep it secret. Iguchi said, “they deliberately hid the intention of entering into hostilities.” While historians widely agree that Pearl Harbor was hit with a meticulously planned secret attack, it is widely believed in Japan that the Japanese government tried to issue the US an ultimatum beforehand. Iguchi said the finding may not mean much for historians elsewhere, but it damages Japanese efforts to cast the attack in a softer light. Iguchi said, “many Japanese believe that the final memorandum was an official declaration of war, and a fair one. So this discovery is something that would surprise them, given what they’ve been told by some Japanese historians and writers.”

9. Japanese Rocket Program

Associated Press (“JAPAN TO CANCEL KEY ROCKET PROGRAM,” Tokyo, 12/09/99) reported that Japan’s Science and Technology Agency will stop development of the troubled H-2 rocket after two failed launches this year. Agency spokesman Toru Nakahara said Thursday that the agency decided the National Space Development Agency of Japan (NASDA) should concentrate instead on developing the next generation of rockets–called the H-2A–in the wake of the November failure of an H-2 to put a satellite into orbit. Nakahara said the science agency has decided to focus on developing the H-2A because of the prohibitive expense of fixing the defects in the last H-2.

10. US-Singapore Relations

Singapore Straits Times (“US-S’PORE TIES ‘HELPS UN FORCES IN E. TIMOR’,” 12/07/99, 37) reported that the Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff General Henry Shelton was given Singapore’s highest military award on December 8 for helping to foster closer military ties. Shelton said that a strong US military presence in the region and permission to use Singapore airspace allowed the US to support international forces in East Timor effectively. He also said the rapport between the US and Singapore has helped them work together on international issues effectively. Asked to comment on US-Singapore relations, he said, “We have a great series of exercises; Singapore hosts our naval forces that are operating in the region; and we have aircraft that have hundreds of transits through the area daily.” Shelton also added that the US was prepared to work with a commander from any nation chosen by the United Nations (UN) to head the UN peacekeeping force to be deployed in East Timor.

The NAPSNet Daily Report aims to serve as a forum for dialogue and exchange among peace and security specialists. Conventions for readers and a list of acronyms and abbreviations are available to all recipients. For descriptions of the world wide web sites used to gather information for this report, or for more information on web sites with related information, see the collection of other NAPSNet resources.
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Produced by the Nautilus Institute for Security and Sustainable Development in partnership with:
International Policy Studies Institute Seoul, Republic of Korea
The Center for Global Communications, Tokyo, Japan
Center for American Studies,
Fudan University, Shanghai, People’s Republic of China
Asian Institute,
Monash University, Clayton, Australia

Timothy L. Savage:
Berkeley, California, United States

Gee Gee Wong:
Berkeley, California, United States

Kim Hee-sun:
Seoul, Republic of Korea

Hiroyasu Akutsu:
Tokyo, Japan

Peter Razvin:
Moscow, Russian Federation

Chunsi Wu:
Shanghai, People’s Republic of China

Dingli Shen:
Shanghai, People’s Republic of China

Leanne Paton:
Clayton, Australia


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