According to scientists the doomsday clock is now at two minutes until twelve o’clock. If things don’t change, the break out of a nuclear war is closer than we know it. This clock was created in 1947 to represent the likelihood of a man made catastrophe, with one of the main focus points being nuclear weapons. Everytime the safety of our world is increased or threatened the clock moves forward or backward with 12 o’clock representing the end. North Korea has been a major influence in the nuclear threat amongst the years and is currently the biggest threat to our world today, because of is growing arsenal in the hands of their unstable authority. Conflicts between the U.S and North Korea have been ongoing throughout history and now recent threats have yet again, stirred up the discussion of the safety of our country, leaving everyone in fear of another World War.
Despite the fact that Nuclear weapons can be dangerous in the hands of anybody, North Korea is the most concerning. It remains one of the most repressive authoritarian states in the world. Being ruled by the Kim family, and the Workers Party, it has been under a dictatorship for the past seven years. In early years of Kim Jong-Un’s power, he has continued to use public executions, arbitrary detention, and forced labor to gain obedience from citizens. Travel restrictions have been put into place to prevent North Koreans escaping his control in any way. The media there is also heavily monitored by the state, keeping citizens in the dark about what is really going on in the world.
North Korea’s has also shown to be growing their military as well as their nuclear weapons. According to a vox article “U.S intelligence officials believe North Korea can produce a new nuclear bomb every six or seven weeks” (Vox, 2018). Which means that this country could possibly have 50 nuclear weapons by 2020. Today the U.S may be required to strengthen its military and missile defense. This poses a threat to both sides and could have a major effect on many people, if tension keeps rising. Major conflicts with our country like these are important to discuss. These issues could have a big impact on many people in both the U.S and Korea, as well as other countries.
The rivalry between U.S and North Korea has been ongoing since the Cold war. After the war, Korea was divided into two separate regions between the Soviet Union and U.S. Unsettled conflicts between both sides led to the invasion of the North by the South, which was the start of the Korean war. Years after tension levels still haven’t changed. North Korea’s current leader, Kim Jong Un, continues to provoke this issue with development of nuclear arsenal, with targets on the U.S.
Beginning in 2003, North Korea has broken the NPT treaty and conducted six nuclear tests throughout the years after. Their nuclear weapons program continues to create new missiles intended for long range strike. With the many strike threats from the North, the U.S military is faced with a tough decision of how to protect our country and keep the situation from escalating at the same time. The support for U.S forces to defend South Korea has also increased over the years which is also another reason for the tension between the North and the U.S.
Continuing threats to strike the U.S and the recent changes between King Jong Un and President Trump have caused worry amongst people. With the North showing off their growing arsenal and President Trump doing the same as a way to intimidate them, the fear of a nuclear war has become more real. The U.S situation with North Korea is sensitive and the right way to handle it is a tough decision. The U.S has withdrawn their nuclear weapons in the past, but redeployment of these weapons has been discussed. Although reinforcing our nuclear power would be an effort to keep our country safer, it would likely do the opposite. Doing this would not only increase the nuclear threat on North Korea but also countries like China and Russia, who would also see it as an act of aggression.
This has been a pressing issue that has lingered for years and still remains a big problem for our country’s safety. As history has shown the U.S has tried nearly everything by negotiating agreements from normalization of relations, security guarantees, economic and food aid, to solve this problem. Unfortunately, in every situation, North Korea has continued to violate these agreements and refuse cooperation, putting U.S in the place we are today. We have wasted too much time relying on sanctions and UN resolutions that keep falling through.
According to experts, our only possible hope for a peaceful resolution is now through China. This is because China remains the only country with connections and influence over Kim Jong Un. China needs to get involved and negotiate an agreement that upon the given protection of North Korea that they would disarm their nuclear missile programs. In order to make this happen U.S government officials need to take action by approaching China with this idea and making it clear that an agreement is important to the safety of both countries in the end. It has been clear for many years that Kim Jong-Un is on a destructive path that needs to be stopped, and working with China is our only option to a non-violent solution.
Article by Nina Ecaterinis
“(LEAD) N. Korea Threatens Missile Strike near Guam.” Yonhap News Agency, english.yonhapnews.co.kr/news/2017/08/09/0200000000AEN20170809001051315.html.
“North Korea Events of 2016.” Human Rights Watch, www.hrw.org/world-report/2017/country-chapters/north-korea.
Adreon, Leonard. “How to Handle North Korea: Either China Helps, or It’s War.” Washington Examiner, Washington Examiner, 8 Oct. 2017, www.washingtonexaminer.com/how-to-handle-north-korea-either-china-helps-or-its-war/article/2636649.
Vox. (2018). North Korea’s growing nuclear threat, in one statistic. [online] Available at: https://www.vox.com/world/2017/4/25/15420608/north-korea-nuclear-weapon-trump-kim-jong-un-war [Accessed 9 Mar. 2018].