How to Keep Talking

Christopher Hill, it turns out, does his best work by moonlight. The U.S. Assistant Secretary of State and chief negotiator at the six-party North Korean nuclear talks had a Chinese draft proposal in hand that could jump-start the long-stalled negotiations. The proposal offered Pyongyang the possibility of a light-water reactor for producing electrical power in the future if it agreed to completely dismantle its nuclear programs, both military and civilian. But Hill needed assurances from the other delegations—China, Russia, Japan, South Korea—that they would not help North Korea get the reactor until international inspectors verified that Pyongyang had kept its word....

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