Despite North Korea's history of bait and switch on international agreements, signing on to the nuclear weapons deal that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced last week was the right thing to do. In exchange for food aid, North Korea, where food is in punishingly short supply, agreed to suspend uranium enrichment, nuclear weapon and long range missile tests, and to allow international inspections of its main nuclear complex.

North Korea has an exasperating habit of reneging on bargains when that suits its purpose. But it has a new leader, Kim Jong Un, who succeeded his father two months ago. With this deal we'll see if he can be trusted to keep his word. Its nuclear program will come under the watchful eye of international monitors for the first time in five years. And hungry people will be fed. That's a lot of potential upside.


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