Courtesy of The Cold Equations, here is a handy cheat sheet for dictatorial longevity.
|Country||Prior relations with the US||Nuclear weapons program||US treatment of country||Status of leader|
|Egypt||Allied||Not significant||Pressured ally to step down||Permanent vacation|
|Libya||Moderately warm lately, despite past difficulties||Abandoned under US pressure||Bombs away||Probably on his way out|
|Syria||Strained to hostile||Not a lot of info, probably has some program||Mild economic sanctions||Life is sweet|
|Iran||“America is the Great Satan”||Probably going to join the nuclear club soon||Ineffectual, intermittent saber-rattling||Happy as a clam|
|North Korea||Hostile||Has some nukes, ICBMs are in the works||Ineffectual sanctions, endless talks, unkind portrayal in 2004 movie “Team America: World Police”||You know what sucks about being Kim Il-Jong? Nothing.|
Also via TCF, North Korea is pointing to the US/NATO/al Qaeda action in Libya as a reason why it will never, ever, ever give up its nuclear weapons or reduce the size of its million-man army of Lilliputians. How’s that for a proliferation-prevention FAIL?
Let’s make this an Open Thread.