December 05, 2023

Learning the lessons of Libya: North Korea and Gaddafi

State media appears divided on the importance of Tripoli's 2003 disarmament

In discussions about North Korea’s nuclear weapons program and the current negotiations cycle surrounding it, many observers quote the Libyan example as one of the reasons why North Korea, under its current regime, will never fully surrender its WMDs no matter what incentives are given.

The logic is that although Muammar Gaddafi stopped his weapons of mass destruction program in 2003-4 in exchange for normalization of relations with the Western world, he was killed in 2011 when the same West supported his overthrow in Libya.