Fire and Fury in North Korea

by The Cowl Editor on September 14, 2017


Kim Jong-un and Donald Trump
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and President Donald Trump. Photo courtesy of Jonathan Cristol / CNN.

by Laura Arango ’20

Opinion Staff

With two world wars already under our belt, the United States may very well be on the verge of a third one. Our infamous president Donald Trump made headlines on Aug. 9 for his powerful promise to unleash “fire and fury like the world has never seen” on North Korea.

Some Americans believe that this form of aggressive rhetoric is exactly how the United States should be approaching global tensions. They claim that President Obama’s soft approach to foreign policy made Trump’s look much more intense than past administrations.

Clearly, his threat did nothing except further escalate tensions between the two countries. Only a day after Trump’s ominous threats, North Korea stated that it was working on a proposal to launch four intermediate-range, Hwasong-12 missiles into the sea. The missiles are in the direct path of the tiny island of Guam, a U.S. territory located in the Pacific Ocean.

It would only take a mere 14 minutes for a missile fired from North Korea to reach Guam. By launching one such missile, North Korea could destroy 160,000 lives in under 30 minutes.

Our president is irrationally threatening a country that holds nuclear weapons within its military arsenal and his staff has had to downplay his words in order to mediate the tensions.

However, it is difficult for staff members to protect their beloved president when he tweets comments such as, “Military solutions are now fully in place, locked and loaded should North Korea act unwisely. Hopefully Kim Jong-un will find another path!”

It is unclear when Twitter became the primary source of communicating world news, but the president seems to be at the frontlines of this revolutionary social media breakthrough.

More recently, it was only this past Sunday that leader Kim Jong-un praised the success of North Korea’s sixth and largest nuclear test in response to the United States’ initiative to drive for tough new sanctions on North Korea, to be upheld by the United Nations.

There was quite literally a party thrown in North Korea celebrating the Sept. 3 successful hydrogen bomb that could be easily fitted onto a rocket.

Kim Jong-un does not seem rattled by the rest of the world’s disapproval of his actions and explicitly demonstrated this carelessness at the dinner he held to congratulate the scientists and others responsible for the nuclear program.

As tensions continue to escalate between the U.S. and North Korea, we can only hope that our Congress and the president will take the correct measures to de-escalate these tensions.

However, given that our president’s primary means of communication is through Twitter, it does not seem hopeful that he will make the correct choices. But perhaps, with pressure from the rest of the world, we can work together in hopes of a positive negotiation with North Korea.