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The history of nuclear weapons of North America and its provocative nature can be traced into the remote past of the medieval times, and also during the Korean War between the North Korea and the South Korea. The weapons were approved by the young North Korea leader Kim Jong-Un, which was followed by his army’s declaration of readiness to war. The country’s newest threats and provocations to the U.S. and allies have been met with sanctions from the United Nations and the international community at large. The paper will discuss the nature of the threats and the response of the UN and the international community.
The Current Problem of North Korea Nuclear Threat
The allegation of North Korea of developing nuclear weapons is a threat. From the October 2006 nuclear test carried out at the Pungye facility, as well as other assessments done before, confirm the production of nuclear weapons in the country. Previous tests show that it had plutonium jars for nuclear weapons approximated to be at least a half a dozen. Recently, it was assessed that in the past a Highly Enriched Uranium (HEU) capability was being pursued by North Korea. This program is thought through by the Intelligence Community (IC) judges and the program is still in progress today. The HEU capability, if developed fully, will be an alternative method of nuclear weapons, which would be independent of the facility at the Youngbyon producing plutonium. The IC is also not certain about the commitment of Kim Jong-II to ensure denuclearization which he promised to do in the 2007 Six-Party Agreement. Preparations are in progress to come up with a new intermediate range missile which can strike Guan, Okinawa and Alaska. The missile threat development by this country cannot be ignored (Levin, 89).
The United States faces the option of using military weapons since it will be a challenge to stop retaliation by the North Korean Military. The Southern Korean population could not be shielded from the North Korean missile strikes and their artillery. An attempt by the U.S. to strike these North Korean weapons will not block the retaliatory capabilities of the adversary, but it will only cause escalation of the conflict. One of the options available for America is deterrence reinforced with its explicit nuclear threats to limit the counter-attacks of North Korea. North Korea is surrounded by tension escalating on daily basis.
The History of the Korean War
Historically, North Korea was always believed to be opposed to meaningful reforms, proliferation. and has a pattern of provocative behavior. This signifies great challenges in the efforts to achieve a lasting stability, both regionally and globally (Levin, 89). The Korean War was a result of a conflict between North and South Korea which took place from 1950-1953. North Korea invaded South Korea forcing the United Nations’ member states to go to the aid of South Korea. The war was fierce as both sides overwhelmed each other alternatively with the North Korea getting the support of China from 1950-1951 January. The fighting became heavier in the following months especially near the 38th parallel.
Peace negotiations began in July 1951, although fighting was still going until 1952. However, peace negotiations ended on July 27 1953, and the resulting solution from the negotiations is the formation of a Demilitarized Zone. After some short time the Korean People's Army, the United Nations Command and the Chinese People's Volunteers signed an Armistice Agreement, and the leader of the treaty was the U.S. However, South Korea never signed the agreement and it has not done so to this day, hence, no official peace treaty has ever been signed between North Korea and South Korea. As a result, tensions have remained between the two nations which were shown, for example, in the unsuccessful attempt by North Korea in1968 to assassinate the president of Korea. Later in 1983, Myanmar was bombed leading to the killing of 17 South Korean officials. In 1987, North Korea was again accused of being responsible for South Korean airplane bombing. Frequent fights have occurred at both land and sea borders with each nation wanting to make the peninsula part of its own government system.
The tensions once again heightened in 2010 between North and South Korea after a longer period of no major war between them. South Korean accused North Korea of sinking a South Korean warship, Cheonan, on March 26 in the Yellow Sea, which is situated on the South Korean island of Baengnyeong. However, North Korea denied being involved in the attack and this awakened tensions between them ever since. Most recently, on November 23, 2010, an artillery attack North Korea launched on Yeonpyeong, a South Korean island, claiming that South Korea was conducting "war maneuvers”, which was refuted by South Korea stating conducting maritime military drills were conducted instead. Yeonpyeong, located near a maritime border between the countries was also attacked in January 2009. North Korea wants it to be moved towards the south. The attacks led to South Korean decision to begin doing their military drills practices early in December (Stueck, n.p).
Reason for Korea’s Threat on America
The threat of North Korea on America is partly due to the interest of the U.S. national security in Asia. It has produced an intercontinental ballistic missile that is capable of reaching the western part of United States, which they tested in 2006 (Levin, 89). One of the reasons for North Korea’s threat to America is the withdrawal of the United States from the ABM treaty from the 2002 to 2003, also forced North Korean Pyongyang to make an announcement of its considerations to withdraw from the Nuclear Non –Proliferation treaty (NPT). This led to inflammation of tensions arising from the nation’s violation of the 1994 Geneva Agreed Framework. Also, the development of the preemptive strategic doctrine by the Bush Administration triggered North Korea to start supremacy battles with America. The doctrine diminishes the reliance of United States of America on the principles of deterrence, a prerogative also claiming that the “preemptive attacks are not the exclusive right of America.”
North Korea is being aware that the armistice that facilitated halting of the Korean War had an ambiguous legacy that was in South Korea, and the people in this country still retained the hope that the ROK –DPRK “Agreement on Reconciliation, Non-Aggression, cooperation and exchanges” was followed. North Korea understood that that idea would have been embraced by progressive leaders in the South Korea, Also, given America’s long standing to an enforceable international Agreement to have a war, is considered to be a utopian by American skeptics. Probably, Pyongyang was fighting for the prerogative to embarrass the conservatives in Washington and create a complication between the U.S. and the more idealistic and liberal Seoul leaders.
China and Other Country's Decision to Stop North Korea Nuclear Weapon
North Korea is a primary security threat in the Northeastern part of Asia. The other challenges arise from the aging yet lethal forward position coupled with the missile program (Levin, 89). The decision is a result of the clear danger North Korea is posing to the U.S and its close allies, following the North Korean Army’s pronouncement adding to hysterical rhetoric that has continued to increase from North Korea. Although the country does not have the economic power in relation to the south, its claims of nuclear power is an attempt to emphasize that it is able to pull an as equal weight as other powerful states in the world. This would be one way of preparing to the collision with other nations, which can easily lead to war. All the actions of Kim Jong Un, the leader of North Korea, have been found to be provocative, reckless, dangerous, and this behavior will not be acceptable by the United States, hence, will not allow the DPRK as a nuclear state (North Korea nuclear weapons attack on US, n.p.).
The project is funded directly by businesses in South Korean as a payment to the North Korean government. What the North Korean workers receive is not known ultimately, although all indications have shown it is not substantial, that is, the GDP of North Korean per capita is $1,800 per year, and, thus, is found to be among the world’s most poorest countries (FRANCIS, N.p).
Why North Korea Wants Nuclear Weapons
North Korea’s dealing with nuclear weapons can be traced back to the country’s fraught past with its character thought to have been inherited from the medieval times, and later refined by the cold war’s mistrust and violence. The weapons are not for economic purposes. Pyongyang, the North Korean nuclear weapons production site, is devoting its scarce resources in massive amounts to such projects. This suggests intention to gain nuclear weapons or intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) capabilities so that it can be allowed the title of a nuclear state. North Korea is not willing to trade them for a peace treaty or international acceptance. The country believes that its nuclear and missile tests provide opportunities to demonstrate, gain knowledge from and improve their weapons. Pyongyang has opted not to concentrate on the Unites States “upping the ante” with the America, but has sought to build better ballistic missiles nuclear weapons (Cha, 2013).
North Korea seems to blame the US of remaining hostile to the country and, therefore, they need to remain firm in their threats to take an “even stronger second and third rounds of action” Its seems to enjoy making provocations to its adversaries, which serves to threaten them, thus, hindering prospects of a lasting peace on the Peninsula. It has a strong intention of unifying the nuclear and the missile programs and is determined to mount a nuclear device on a missile to create a miniaturized device. North Korea believes that the nuclear weapons will enable it to become a prosperous and strong nation (North Korea is a serious threat to U.S. n.p.).
The threat posed by North Korea is perceived either as a real danger or as mere threats. The main target is the United States of America, since it is in the forefront dismissing North Korea’s weapons of mass destruction, which the country has been claiming to use to produce energy. The nation’s main reason of defiance to the rest of the world is their focus to become accepted as a nuclear state. The U.S. swears not to accept the endeavor of North Korea since the country has heightened the threats of carrying out more tests of its missiles and nuclear weapons. As a result of the sanctions and the hard stance of the U.S., new plans to restart a nuclear reactor shut down previously have been launched by Pyongyang. The tensions in the Korean Peninsula have also escalated with the North Korea’s threats of wage war against South Korea and the United States.
The international community has also criticized the threats issued by the defiant North Korea since it threatens to cause mass destruction and the country’s choice of the expensive process of making nuclear weapons at the expense of promoting economy and, hence, the standard of its citizens. The fights between the North and the South Korea have always been provoked by the former, and this happens without good reason but out its own selfish interests. Previous tests show that it had plutonium jars for nuclear weapons approximated to be at least a half a dozen. Recently, it was assessed that at least in the past, a Highly Enriched Uranium (HEU) capability is being pursued by North Korea. This program is thought by the Intelligence Community (IC) judges that that program is still in progress today. Therefore, the future of the relationship between the North Korea and the rest of the world is quite unpredictable but there are chances of war.