A Projectile Problem

Lauren Cain, Staff Writer

This year, serious concern over the notorious, communist nation, North Korea, has resurfaced as a result of recent developments surrounding the country’s nuclear program, and murky details about their launching of satellite Kwangmyongsong – 4 on February 7th.

In early January, North Korea shocked the world, claiming to have successfully tested a hydrogen bomb. At first, this statement was put down to nothing more than a lie after scientific analysis. However, now the U.S. is saying that it is possible that the country may have tested certain components of this dangerous bomb.

“By all indications, it looks like North Korea did perform some kind of nuclear test, which could possibly be a hydrogen bomb,” stated John Doe*, a Department Chief at CIA. “The open questions, which the US government and others are assessing, are what magnitude and how sophisticated this device actually was,” he said.

Despite the uncertainty about their claim’s credibility, another question is why North Korea is trying to test this tool of destruction in the first place.

“North Korea is most interested in presenting itself as a serious threat so that it can get what it wants,” said Langley Current Affairs teacher, Mr. Kuhn. And what they want, according to Mr. Kuhn, is “food and fuel,” along with “self-preservation”.

In addition to the alleged hydrogen bomb test, North Korea has launched satellite Kwangmyongsong – 4 into outer space in the beginning of February. The country claims that the satellite is for scientific purposes, but many other countries believe that the launch itself was a cover for a ballistic missile test, an action that North Korea is currently prohibited to perform by numerous UN Security Council resolutions. The reason for such an assumption is that technology used to propel this satellite is very similar to technology used to send a nuclear warhead.

“In this case, I don’t think the concept of ‘innocent before proven guilty’ applies,” said freshman Sammy Thomas when asked whether she believes North Korea’s suspicious insistence that the satellite is for scientific purposes. She continued, “I do believe that a solid foundation for doubt exists, and that we cannot necessarily believe anything surrounding this country and their intentions.”

In response to these events, U.S. President Barack Obama has placed new sanctions on North Korea. These sanctions are supposed to halt North Korea’s out of country funding for their weapons program as an attempt to stop its nuclear ambitions. Overall, these new sanctions in combination with North Korea’s recent actions have many people asking what will come next with this alienated countries.

*Name has been changed for confidentiality purposes.