SEOUL, South Korea - Seven years of U.N. sanctions against North Korea have done nothing to derail Pyongyang's drive for a nuclear weapon capable of hitting the United States. They may have even given the Kim family's propaganda maestros ammunition to whip up anti-U.S. sentiment and direct attention away from government failures.
After fresh U.N. sanctions leveled at North Korea on Thursday for its latest nuclear test, the question is: Will this time be different?
Since 2006, North Korea has launched long-range rockets, tested a variety of missiles, and conducted three underground nuclear explosions, the most recent on Feb. 12. Through it all, Pyongyang has been undeterred by a raft of sanctions - both multilateral penalties from the United Nations and national sanctions from Washington, Tokyo, and others - meant to punish the government and sidetrack its nuclear ambitions.