Stop North’s further nuke development
North Korea caught everyone by surprise on Jan. 6 by claiming a successful hydrogen bomb test. North Korea did not notify the test to any countries. Even China, North Korea’s strongest ally, failed to receive any notice on advance.
This is not the first time. After withdrawal from the Non-Proliferation Treaty in 2003, there were three nuclear tests. Prior tests were believed to be for primitive atomic bombs and North Korea notified the test plans to China and the United States. Hydrogen bomb test, whether true or not, without any notice is taking the situation to another level. This requires the whole world to take different level of measures.
According to multiple sources, there have been no evidence of hydrogen bomb detonation and now the test appears to have involved an atomic bomb. Regardless, this test demonstrates North Korean leader’s strong determination to expand nuclear armaments despite being the world’s worst economy. Kim Jong-un was able to push ahead multiple nuclear tests during only four years incumbency. Hydrogen bomb is his biggest achievement and there are no signs of slowing down.
There are speculations that North Korea’s nuclear technology already reached the level that could threaten the United States as well as Korea and Japan. The Institute for Science and International Security reported that North Korea’s nuclear and missile programs have gathered significant momentum and that North Korea could stockpile, in five years, up to 100 warheads.
Whenever North Korea provoked the world with nuclear tests, there were worldwide condemnations and demands for strict measures. However, North Korea continued the developments and now claims a successful detonation of hydrogen bomb. This is a clear evidence of miserable failures in imposing effective resolutions.
Now is not be the best time for the world to focus on North Korea. European countries have to deal with economic crisis, terrorism and refugees. America has a presidential election coming up and President Barack Obama may be reluctant to change the “strategic patience” policy. China may not be willing to take any further actions beyond condemnations.
Nevertheless, we need to understand that it would be the best interest of all countries to find an effective way to deter further nuclear development of North Korea. If North Korea continues, there may be a day when it threatens the world with hydrogen bombs on top of ICBM. And when that happens, negotiation with North Korea would be much tougher, if not impossible, and enormous cost and pain will have to be endured by the whole world.
by Park Yun-jeong, Student at Goyang Foreign Language High School