At the beginning of President Trump’s term in 2017, we can all remember the verbal warfare between President Trump and the North Korean Dictator Kim Jong Un. Tweets and words were flying back and forth every day. When President Trump did the unthinkable and made peace with the North Korean leader, everyone was surprised. They were even more surprised when President Trump was the first American President to ever step foot on North Korean soil. In the last few months, Kim Jong Un has been pushing America’s limits and buttons. Now, all we hear are crickets after President Trump displayed how serious he really is by not backing down from Iran and taking out their prize possession, General Soleimani.
It seems as though Kim Jong Un is having second thoughts about running his mouth about America as everything is silent after everything has calmed down from the attacks between America and Iran. Every leader wants to be seen as courageous and not back down when threats arise. The last time North Korea was asked if the U.S. issued strikes on their nation, would it stop Kim from pursuing their nuclear programs and advancing them. The response was no in 2018.
Kim stated before President Trump resolved the issue, “The empire of America would go to the hell, and the short history of the U.S. would end forever, the moment he destroys even a single blade of grass on this land.” At the time, it was nothing more than threats. President Trump was more so making a promise, the same as he has been doing with Iran. With North Korea, we can recall, no strikes were ever ordered by our Commander in Chief, so we will never find out if North Korea was serious.
With Iran breaking the rules in taking more uranium than allowed to build a nuclear bomb, America does not have to worry about a nuclear war with Iran because they were stopped in their tracks. However, with North Korea, America has much to worry about when it comes to nuclear capabilities from the country. Adam Mount, a senior fellow at the Federation for American Scientists, stated, “North Korea is right next to Iran on the state sponsor of terror list. And the administration is now justifying the assassination of Soleimani by calling him a terrorist.”
Mount added, “Soleimani’s killing would likely strengthen North Korea’s resolve to expand its nuclear deterrent. In case something happens to their leadership, they can credibly threaten to impose costs.” Kim Jong Un’s silence can mean one of two things since the recent threats have declined. One, he realizes President Trump means business, and he is afraid, or two, he is taking precautions and going back to his nuclear program to build atomic weaponry.
Soleimani’s death is a lesson to be learned from dictators and those who impose terror throughout the world. American and President Trump do not mess around. Kim’s regime feels as though they need nuclear weapons to protect themselves after Pyongyang stated their case by using Saddam Hussein and Moammar Gadhafi as examples. America will not attack North Korea unless they give us a reason to, but they still do not trust us. The feeling is mutual.
Van Jackson, a former official in the Defense Department under the Obama administration, told reporters, “North Korea already believed the US couldn’t be trusted. It already believed its nuclear weapons were the only thing that made its fate different than Iraq or Libya.”
Though peace came about between America and North Korea, trust has not worked its way in with the three summits between the two leaders. Kim knows all about how powerful our sanctions are as it has crippled their nation. The last we have heard from Kim was on New Year’s Day when he gave a speech saying, “We will never give up our nuclear weapons if the U.S. persists in its hostile policy.” He added, “The US labeled our state as its enemy, ‘axis of evil’ and target of its ‘preemptive nuclear strike’ and applied the most brutal and inhumane sanctions against and posed the persistent nuclear threat to the latter over the past seven decades.”
Jackson concluded, “There are a lot of questions about North Korean nukes that we don’t have answers to, and until we do, it’s crucial that we don’t make foreign policy decisions that introduce greater risks of nuclear instability.” There is no doubt North Korea would be dealt with slightly different.