The Nuclear bomb is a powerful weapon. Both militarily and politically, this bomb has more power than any other technological advancement in the twentieth century. It brought Japan to its knees to expedite the end of World War II. Although it had devastating effects on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, one could argue it prevented the deaths of hundreds of thousands of more Japanese and Americans that would have died had the fighting ensued.
In the twenty-first century, the Nuclear weapon is being used by nations to bring stability to reduce the threat from enemies. It is widely believed that Israel secretly possesses nuclear weapons to reduce the threat to its state; Pakistan recently became a nuclear state in 1998 which the people of Pakistan consider a great advancement to curb the threat of an Indian nuclear threat, which first tested its nuclear weapons in 1974.
The Uranium bomb dropped on Hiroshima was equivalent to 20,000 tons of ordinary explosives. It instantly incinerated 70,000 people, and left roughly another 180,000 wounded who would later die from the radiation. The explosion created a temperature of 6000 degrees Celsius, three times higher than the melting point of iron. Four months after the bomb was dropped, as many as 140,000 had died from the bomb.
The United States has long posed a threat to its enemies and the current “War on Terror” has only increased its enemies will to possess a deterrent to the US threat. North Korea, with its million-man strong army recently tested its nuclear weapons. I think leader Kim Jong II is looking for attention from the US and feels that they will be taken seriously if they show they are capable of creating a nuclear weapon.
I don’t believe that North Korea needs nuclear weapons as a deterrent to a US invasion. A US attack could have devastating effects that America might not be willing to accept; as well North Korea doesn’t have significant strategic value to the United States. The war in Korea (1950-1953) cost America 136,935 casualties with at least 33,651 deaths in only 3 years. A military report estimated that the US and South Korean forces may suffer 300,000-500,000 casualties within the first 90 days of fighting if a ground invasion were to take place.
Recent Nuclear proliferation is a very scary thing and is being used as a bargaining tool to obtain financing or support from other countries. I believe that further military action will make unstable nations even more unstable. Unfortunately in our world, sometimes bribery or financial aid is the best way to maintain peace and avoid war and convince a country to give up their weapons. Given the grave consequences of US military action in North Korea, I wouldn’t be surprised if a secret deal is already in the works. The US can’t avoid another war front, especially against a North Korea army.
R. Jeffrey Smith, “North Korea Deal Urged by State Dept.,” Washington Post, November 15, 1993, p. A15.