Is It Already Too Late to Stop North Korea?

William Perry urges deterrence on North Korea crisis
Parsing Tough Rhetoric On North Korea 15:00 Download
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13 August, 2017

North Korea threatening to launch nuclear missiles at Guam, a US territory where more than 7,000 service members are stationed. Bombs land on places believed to hide long-range missiles deep below the earth.

"Ultimately, the country will reach a point. whether or not we want to live in a world where North Korea possess not just nuclear weapons, but the ability to strike the United States", he said.

Millions of people around the world are concerned about the growing threat of nuclear war. This U.S. analysis also estimated that North Korea has up to 60 weapons, although again, others estimate the number is lower. The policy and practice of the United States on threats to use nuclear weapons has been consistent for many decades, and for presidents of both political parties.

The North Korean stand-off is a crisis that, at worst, threatens nuclear war, but it's complicated. "We either do nothing, go to war or negotiate a stand down, and so far we've seen no sign that they're willing to negotiate". North Korea's entire defence budget is believed to be a fraction of what the USA military spends on gas and jet fuel alone. North Korea is one of the most isolated nations on Earth, and it wasn't clear whether the previous leader, Kim Jong Il, was insane like a fox or a real madman. The Chinese weren't deterred by India's nuclear weapons when they recently threatened to start a war with India, over Indian troops entering Chinese territory. In fact, equity prices are falling all over the world from the war talk.

The Korean peninsula was divided after World War Two and the communist North developed into a Stalinesque dictatorship. The S&P 500 also took a 0.8 percent hit.

Few doubt that the United States has the power to ultimately come out the victor in a shooting war. Plus, three of the biggest shipbuilders are in South Korea. "If that potentially means Seoul is extremely heavily damaged, missile strikes possibly on Japan - and North Korea is a smoking hole in the ground - then clearly that's not a victory that suits anyone's long-term interests", said Euan Graham, who tracks east Asian security issues as director of the international-security program at the Lowy Institute in Sydney.

"They know that would be suicide", said Jean H. Lee, a global fellow with the Wilson Center, who is former Pyongyang Bureau Chief for the Associated Press.

The theory that the United States could precisely take out North Korea's small nuclear arsenal and resolve the situation, then, is clearly preposterous on its face, as North Korea's retaliatory capabilities are substantial and were built long before the nuclear program. North Korea initially signed the treaty, but pulled out in 2003.

"What the president was doing was sending a strong message to North Korea in a language that Kim Jong Un would understand, because he doesn't seem to understand diplomatic language", Tillerson told reporters on the plane. But it can have enough of them to carry out a “revenge from the grave” and impose unacceptable losses on the U.S. if it attacks North Korea.


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