Defense Minister Ehud Barak said North Korea's nuclear test bodes ill for efforts to control Iran's nuclear program because it shows how even an impoverished and isolated nation can defy the international community.
North Korea carried out its second nuclear test May 25. US and South Korean intelligence officials believe a third one may be imminent.
Pyongyang also has threatened war with any country that tries to stop its ships on the high seas.
Barak said that "North Korea's nuclear test showed how even a third-grade dictator who can hardly feed his own people with potatoes ... can defy the whole world including the United States, the Europeans, Russia and China, and end up being a military nuclear power."
Barak was speaking Monday at the Paris Air Show.