Since Kim Jong-Un took power over North Korea after the death of his father, he has been running the country emphasizing just how much power he has over his people: frequent military parades, public executions of political enemies, and consistently reminding the people about the “dangers” of the West (particularly the United States of America).
The greatest example of his power exercises is the North Korean nuclear missile program. Kim Jong-Un has escalated the missile program by conducting more tests on nuclear weapons than his father and grandfather did combined. Just recently, North Korea has launched twenty-two missiles in fifteen tests, one of the missiles being an ICBM and two of them being launched over Japan.
The escalation in missile testing has world leaders reacting. South Korea, in response to North Korea, had some drills of its own and dropped bombs near the border. Japanese Prime Minister Shizo Abe emphasized that Japan’s priority is to “protect the public.” Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said that the launch was “the most serious and grave threat ever to us.”
But United States President Donald Trump appears to be the most outspoken about dealing with North Korea. Back in August, he emphasized that should North Korea strike the United States, they would be met with “fire and fury.” And during his speech at the United Nations General Assembly, Trump threatened to “totally destroy” North Korea should the United States come to the defense of its allies. He also called Kim Jong-un “Rocket Man” and said that he “is going on a suicide mission”. And this afternoon, Trump signed an executive order to cut off funding for North Korea’s missile programs. The order permits the Treasury Department to “target any individual or entity that conducts significant trade in goods, services, and technology with North Korea.”
But despite the opposition from other countries, particularly the United States, North Korea is not backing down in their nuclear program and are prepared to take down any country in their way. After Trump threatened “fire and fury”, North Korea threatened to blow up Guam. They also likened Trump’s speech at the UN to a “dog’s barking.”
As the missile launch tests continue, additional sanctions are being placed onto North Korea.