North Korea's nuclear test announcement is clearly intended to send a message to President Bush, trying to lure the U.S. into a direct two-party talk for its own survival. It looks like, though, the timing has been well thought out, as North Korea would hate to see the top meeting between the Japanese and South Korean leaders widely publicized. In a sense North Korea seems to have succeeded in clouding PM Abe's visit to South Korea in terms of news reporting. The Abe administration is now facing a real challenge in dealing with the serious international affair, affecting Japan most adversely. Especially, PM Abe's ability to pursuade China and South Korea to punish North Korea will be tested.