North Korea nuclear program
For years, many people, myself included, have argued that nuclear weapons are so destructive, cruel and immoral that they should actually be made illegal. We live in a world that had the sense to ban landmines - an indiscriminate weapon that leaves people without limbs. This same world, until now, has not had the sense to ban a weapon that could destroy millions of lives, leave generations affected, and contribute even more damage to the world around us. But we can change this.
In Korea, we often use the Chinese proverb 轉禍爲福 (jun hwa wi bok), which means 'turning misfortunes into opportunities.' Though North Korea's course of actions is certainly disappointing, maybe we could take this as an opportunity to focus on the one strategy that is immune from nuclear weapons: changing the hearts and minds of ordinary North Koreans.
The regime shows no sign of giving up its nuclear program anytime soon: after all, it is one - though not the only - of the the core backbones of its continued survival, and, with reluctance, we need to recognise this, and work with what we have in front of us, here and now.
Evidence on North Korea's rationality must be reliable enough to count all of our lives on. No matter how unlikely, if Kim Jong-un is in fact willing to press the red button, our assuming that he never will may lead to irreversible consequences.
The pursuit of a war of words, as we are seeing, is unlikely to advance progress in resolving the conflict on the Korean Peninsula; it is time to think pragmatically.
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