North Korean Nuclear Ability Seen to Far Outpace Iran’s
By DAVID E. SANGER and WILLIAM J. BROAD
WASHINGTON — The Obama administration has concluded that North Korea’s new plant to enrich nuclear fuel uses technology that is “significantly more advanced” than what Iran has struggled over two decades to assemble, according to senior administration and intelligence officials.
North Korea is smaller and much poorer than Iran, has no oil money, and is run by people who make the Iranian rulers look like George Washington for sanity.
Looking at 2009 PISA test scores (p. 155-157), North Korea didn't take the test, but 26% of South Korean 15-year-olds scored in the top two ranks of math tests, the fifth best performance out of 65 regions, behind only Shanghai, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Taiwan.
Iran didn't take the test, but trying to find remotely similar countries, we see Turkey with a respectable 6%, Qatar 2%, and Jordan with under 1%. In science, 12% of South Koreans scored in the top two ranks versus 2% of Turks and vanishingly small percentages of most other Muslim countries.
This is all reminiscent of eight years ago when we were assured by The People Who Know that Saddam Hussein was this close to building his own Bomb using crack Iraqi scientists and engineers.