It’s that time of the month again. The time when North Korea again threatens to engage the U.S. in nuclear war, President Trump issues some vague response and North Korea then shows off their latest technological progress towards making a nuclear weapon that can reach the U.S.
This time around, however, U.S. officials have determined that North Korea now has miniaturized a nuclear warhead and mounted it on an ICBM. According to U.S. intelligence, the communist state now has the U.S. mainland within firing range.
Before we all scream and panic, however, first imagine how North Korean citizens feel. One wrong move on the part of their leader could earn the entire U.S. arsenal of missiles flying over their borders and turning Pyongyang into a ball of fire. That’s pretty obviously the worst case scenario. But it’s not likely to happen, right?
Last year, definitely not. But under the unpredictable Trump administration, there’s no telling when or why we could see a nuclear missile launched. Keep in mind that once Trump orders that a nuclear missile be fired, nobody can stop that order, short of a mutiny by the entire U.S. military.
It’s no wonder why North Korea is arming itself now. It’s almost common sense to do so. An unpredictable demagogue is sitting in the Oval Office right now, with his finger figuratively over the red button. However, if North Korea has the capacity to bomb an American city, Trump will think twice before launching any nukes. Hopefully, at least.
However, there’s a much simpler solution to all of this. Pacifism.
There’s no excuse for the U.S., or any nation, for that matter, to have huge warehouses full of nuclear weapons simply for the purpose of “keeping themselves safe.” It’s becoming clearer by the day that America isn’t going to get North Korea to give up their nukes not because North Korea wants to destroy us, but because we want to destroy them, as least as far as they can see. America continues to run military exercises even when North Korea has expressly stated that they will only launch an ICBM in retaliation to our actions.
Why are we putting ourselves in danger? Why are we inviting North Korea to blow us up? There are much more pressing matters to our national security in the form of movements that can’t be negotiated with. Terrorists, both foreign and domestic, are much more likely to cause damage to the U.S. than a country that has nothing to gain by attacking us.
The only way to get North Korea to stop threatening us is to stop threatening them. Adopting a set of policies that will not only prevent the U.S. from attacking any country that does not attack us first, but also forbid military exercise outside of U.S. borders or military bases will not only calm the fears of North Korea, but prevent disasters caused by rash actions by the military or our leaders.
The world isn’t ever going to be rid of violence. However, there’s no excuse for the American government to encourage it, directly or indirectly. Disarming ourselves is the first step to de-escalating tensions and achieving universal peace.
The Denome’s Advocate is a weekly political column with a liberal slant.
Follow Thomas Denome on Twitter at @thomas_denome