Nautilus Peace and Security Weekly – 29 August 2013

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"Nautilus Peace and Security Weekly – 29 August 2013", NAPSNet Weekly Report, August 29, 2013,

Untitled DETERRENCE: Legality of the threat or use of nuclear weapons, Yen-Chiang Chang, Energy Policy, 2009, 37:6, pp. 2131-2135

Chang examines the NPT and CTBT re the threat or use of nuclear weapons and the ICJ advisory opinion on the legality thereof.  He concludes that lack of explicit enforcement mechanisms make the treaties ineffective and notes that ICJ did not explain what “extreme circumstances of defense” might make use of nuclear weapons legal.  [subscription required]

August 15 KCNA shows North Korean Leader Kim Jong-un visiting apartments for scientists at Kim Il-sung university in Pyongyang. (Xinhuanet).DPRK: N.Korea Seeks Four-Party Nuclear Talks, Yonhap News Agency, (26 August 2013)

Cautious optimism continues after North Korea asked for Four Party Talks.  Explicitly including ROK signals some DPRK flexibility and possibly acceptance of “trustpolitik” to a degree. China’s chief Six Party negotiator is in North Korea – likely to study their arrangements to talk.  U.S. Assistant Secretary Daniel Russel will visit China, Korea and Japan just as U.S. Human Rights Envoy Robert King leaves after 10 days in the same three countries.

hurricaneENERGY SECURITY: The Next Hurricane, and the Next, Editorial, New York Times [23 August 2013] commenting on Hurricane Sandy Rebuilding Strategy, report of a Task Force

The Times editorial reports that the US “President’s Hurricane Sandy Rebuilding Task Force … identifies 11 climate-related disasters costing an estimated a $100 billion in damages in the last year alone,” and calls Hurricane Sandy “yet another harbinger of the calamities that await in an era of climate change”.  The Task Force report asks for revised building codes, the current ones “making it too easy for homeowners to patch what they have rather than spend extra to prepare for another Sandy”. In Miami, expansion of sewage facilities have to take into account climate – or climate change. But beachfront homes will increase.

flags Photo: The DiplomatGOVERNANCE AND CIVIL SOCIETY: China VP tells S. Korea he’s ‘very furious’ over Japan’s rightward shift, Ida Torres, Japan Daily Press (21 August 2013)

China’s Vice Premier told ROK lawmakers that China is “very serious” about Japan’s shift to the right and push to revise its Constitution, calling for a coordinated approach with the ROK to address issues with Japan. China and the ROK are both calling for Japan to change its stance and continue to rule out talks in the near future. An Asahi Shimbun poll found that 59% of respondents do not support a revision of Japan’s Constitution.

disaster managementCLIMATE CHANGE ADAPTATION: Using Science for Disaster Risk Reduction: Report of the ISDR Scientific and Technical Advisory Group, Southgate RJ et al., The United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction – UNISDR (2013)

The more widespread integration of science into disaster risk reduction policy will depend on science being ‘useful’, ‘useable’ and ‘used’. The science can: (i) be driven by the need to address the adverse effects of disasters on lives, livelihoods, economies and societies (ii) enable more focused disaster risk assessment (iii) reduce the impact of disasters by better forecasting, and (iv) improve disaster risk mitigation programs.

The Nautilus Peace and Security Weekly Report presents articles and full length reports each week in six categories: Austral security, nuclear deterrence, energy security, climate change and security, the DPRK, climate change adaptation and governance and civil society. Our team of contributors carefully select items that highlight the links between these themes and the three regions in which our offices are found—North America, Northeast Asia, and the Austral-Asia region. 

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