Key Points

Despite the lingering biases, suspicions, and occasional disagreements that rightly concern Herman, the overwhelming alignment of vital national interests has consistently driven the U.S.-Israel alliance forward. That’s a track record very much worth preserving. Arthur Herman’s important essay helps shows the way for ensuring that it will be.

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One strategic rule by now should be obvious: Do not enrich thine enemy. Or, to paraphrase a quote attributed to Lenin: Don’t sell your enemy the rope with which to hang you, or let him steal from you the technology for building gallows.

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In addition to targeting individual North Korean hackers and coordinated groups of hackers that conduct more complex cyber operations – commonly known as Advanced Persistent Threat groups – the U.S. government should continue investigating non-North Korean individuals and entities helping Pyongyang enhance its sanctions evasion and resistance capabilities. Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network should also continue subjecting cryptocurrency exchanges to the same anti-money laundering standards to which it holds money service businesses, thereby undercutting the regime’s ability to engage in illicit financial activities in the cryptocurrency space.

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A Maximum Pressure 2.0 strategy rests on the foundation of sustained pressure and military strength to support diplomacy. Pressure and deterrence are essential to the success of working level negotiations. Ultimately, however, the choice about North Korea’s future belongs to Kim. He can make the strategic decision to denuclearize (which also entails putting an end to his chemical, biological, and missile programs). If Kim makes the wrong choice, then Maximum Pressure 2.0 will weaken the north, and bring Korea one step closer to unification and a United Republic of Korea (UROK).

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To be successful, maximum pressure 2.0 should include diplomatic, military, cyber, economic and financial sanctions, and information and influence activities. There will undoubtedly be challenges associated with implementation. And no plan fully survives contact with the adversary. But this campaign offers the best hope of securing American, South Korean, and international interests on the Korean Peninsula without war.

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EVENT: Instruments of American Power: Implementing Foreign Policies and Protecting Against Global Threats

October 10, 2019 | 12:00

EVENT: Securing the Courts: Exploitation of the Judicial System by Foreign Adversaries

September 13, 2019 | 12:00