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Report Summary: Responding to North Korean Nuclear First Use: Minimizing Damage to the Nuclear Taboo

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Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (JHU/APL) 11100 Johns Hopkins Road Laurel United States

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This study addresses the issue of responding to the first use of nuclear weapons by North Korea, with an emphasis on restoring the taboo against nuclear use. In support of this goal, we conducted a workshop on April 23-24, 2019, to bring together experts in norm theory, nuclear strategy, and Northeast Asia. Building on workshop discussions, we developed recommendations for US government stakeholders. Primary among these is that the Department of Defense DoD take restoration of the nuclear taboo seriously as a US objective after an adversarys first nuclear use and undertake appropriate analyses and planning in advance to provide effective nonnuclear retaliatory options for the president.

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Technical Report,01 Sep 2018,30 Sep 2019



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Approved For Public Release;

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