Most people should be familiar with the nuthouse that is North Korea, and most of those same people are familiar with the antics of said nuthouse. North Korea, currently headed by Kim Jong-Un, has been faithfully carrying on its long-standing habit of threatening the US and other countries with nuclear power and other weapons of mass destruction. Their threats are not usually taken very seriously; apparently, little validity can be given to the threats of a country that believes their supreme leader is the son of a god.
Even still, the recent threats coming from North Korea have caused some stirs of concern. As put in the words of U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, “Of particular concern are North Korea’s nuclear and ballistic missile programmes, its proliferation activities, and its chemical weapons.” With these concerns in mind, the US, as well as some other countries, particularly South Korea, actions have been taken to deter North Korean threats of nuclear power. Hagel went on to say, “Given these concerns, as Minister Kim noted, today we signed a bilateral strategy for tailored deterrence against the threat of North Korean nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction.”
What, exactly, this new defense strategy consists of is still a bit hazy. However, according to the joint statement Hagel made with Kim Kwan-jin, the US and South Korean governments will be “better integrating” their weapons and forces together, so that they might provide a better defense against the North Korean threat. This seems like a fairly obvious thing to do, but makes sense in context; Hagel was on a four day trip to South Korea in commemoration of the 60th anniversary of the US and South Korea’s mutual defense pact. His visit included ceremonial duties, such as speeches and tours of the demilitarized zone.
The two officials also signed an official document that may delay the transfer of wartime power from Washington to Seoul. It seems that, while they aim to work better together, the US government is still set on being the true powerhouse when it comes to meddling in foreign affairs. Or, at least, it will be… once it decides to reboot from the shutdown.
[Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.]