The North Korea Crisis Continues
In what is turning out to be the news story of early 2013, the worldwide tensions over North Korea’s nuclear threats have yet to dissipate. Now a full two months into the crisis, it seems that Kim Jong-un’s nation isn’t likely to follow up any of their attack threats, but will instead attempt another mid-range missile test. This is in line with what South Korea has been predicting, but it will still be heavily frowned on by the United States and the rest of the United Nations.
According to Reuters, United States Secretary of State John Kerry says that any such test by North Korea would be a “huge mistake.” While White House Press Secretary Jay Carney continues to stand behind the fact that no United States officials believe Jong-un’s communist nation has any nuclear weapon capabilities, Kerry instead focused on how the U.S. would respond to any hostile acts by North Korea, be it towards our country, South Korea, or any other major allies. “Kim Jong-un needs to understand, as I think he probably does, what the outcome of a conflict would be,” Kerry said.
Meanwhile, BBC News reports that Secretary Kerry is also beginning to pressure China over the North Korean situation. Kerry will be making a trip to China to discuss the matter, part of a four day tour of Asia that also includes a stop in Seoul, South Korea. BBC quotes Kerry as saying that “no country in the world has as close a relationship” with North Korea as China does and that they need to start being harder on Kim Jong-un and his regime to begin defusing the incredible tension that has built. If China truly wants North Korea denuclearized, as does nearly every other nation, then they should “put some teeth” into their stance.
Finally, Kerry reiterated that any missile launch by North Korea would only make matters worse for them. The North Korean people, according to him, “are desperate for food, not missile launches.”
It’s hard to disagree. No matter what, though, it’s important to remember that Kim Jong-un’s threats and general hostile nature towards South Korea and their allies continues, so the temptation to merely mock the leader and his poor nation must be avoided. To see an already hurting nation devolve into catastrophic violence would be a truly tragic turn of events.