North Korea may find lessons in the Middle East as Pyongyang considers negotiating over its nukes.
Mideast strongmen have long used the doomsday weapon threat to secure a wobbly perch — but it’s proven to be a delicate dance and a gamble that didn’t always pay off.
Saddam Hussein, whose regime used chemical weapons during the Iran-Iraq war in the 1980s, gave hints of possessing even more powerful weapons of mass destruction and apparently bluffed his way into sparking the 2003 U.S. invasion that proved catastrophic for him.
Chastened, Libya’s Moammar Gadhafi then gave up a real program. That brought him an opening with the West but he lost a card that might have prevented the NATO air campaign that helped bring him down a few years later, in 2011.