page 44 banner edition 153 september 2017
Edition 153-September 2017
Will common sense prevail over madness
Racial slurs, fistfights and missiles, can only end in disaster
By Thomas Terrio

Quite obviously the United States of America is preparing for war with North Korea. Kim Jong-un’s recent rhetoric and sabre rattling of ballistic missile technology has not failed to be noticed in Washington, Moscow, Beijing or Tokyo. To say the least, his bellicose attitude of Korean superiority in the region is nothing less than—sick minded.

The insanity of the situation along with the exception of global stock markets—people who obviously see the danger in such a confrontation—appears to have been ignored mostly by foreign leaders in France, Germany, and Great Britain outside the United Nations Security Council.

In spite of all this, the dangers of nuclear war and its ramifications on planet Earth is something we all will share if such an event should occur. If you think global warming is a problem, a nuclear winter with a limited nuclear exchange or dirty bomb, will be a far more severe experience. A limited nuclear confrontation or dirty bomb has unforeseen consequences we may not have the ability to overcome. For example, a dirty bomb is better understood as a “Weapon of mass Disruption,” wreaking havoc within a few miles or blocks. However, a nuclear bomb creates an explosion millions of times more powerful than a dirty bomb. The cloud of radiation from a nuclear bomb could spread hundreds of square miles killing millions and causing latent cancer deaths for thousands more.

U.S. Geological Survey data on North Korea's alleged hydrogen bomb detonation on September 3, 2017

Donald Trump’s shaky presidency has become an opportune moment for America’s adversaries like North Korea to show aggressiveness beyond their normal display of bravado. Furthermore, after the riots in Charlottesville, Virginia how can America be considered the defender of democracy by its long-standing allies, when it cannot come to terms with its own national dissent, racial hatred, and political polarization.

The danger with aggressive rhetoric between the United States and North Korea is how madness may prevail over common sense. The menace we now face as a global community is an aggressive North Korean dictator who refuses to stand-down against the leader of a super-power, whose me-first approach to politics has already set the world on its ear.

The United States under Donald Trump with his lack of political experience may appear to be too much of an easy target to resist for an ignorant dictator and subject to nuclear blackmail. Lest we forget, one lunatic in the world is one lunatic too many. Remember in February of this year, Kim Jong-un assassinated his half-brother in public at Kuala Lumpur’s international airport with the deadly VX nerve agent, which is banned under the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention.

On August 29, in pursuit of a nuclear weapon capable of reaching the continental United States, North Korea fired a ballistic missile over the Japanese island of Hokkaido, population 5.5 million; forcing Japanese authorities in Tokyo to warn residents in its path to seek shelter. Air raid sirens were sounded, several bullet trains were halted and public television programs were interrupted with emergency announcements. Japan above all nations, understands the terror and total devastation of nuclear weapons.

On September 3, North Korea detonated what it claims to be a hydrogen bomb. The United States Geological Survey confirms a possible—magnitude 6.3 explosion—22 km east north east of Sungjibaegam, North Korea located near the site where North Korea has detonated nuclear explosions in the past.

In my view, it’s to our advantage to think beyond our own skin for the sake of our children and their children too. To believe no race, religion, or nation should dominate another; to believe love has the potential to create in each human being the idea they can achieve anything. This may be wishful thinking, but possible nevertheless.

Humanity was meant for more than racial slurs, fistfights over flags, or missiles fired in provocation ending in a thermonuclear war; or when it comes to places like Charlottesville, Virginia—a second American Civil War. The truth is peace in America and peace in Asia benefits everyone in the global community. In the words of the late Martin Luther King Jr., “Peace cannot be kept by force; it can only be achieved by understanding. Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”

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