Living in a nuclear world

Reflecting on the impact of the first nuclear tests in North Korea

The world didn’t always use to be like this. There was a period in which we were all outside more and weren’t caught up in whatever fun colorful game attracted our eyes. As humans, we used to actually go out to the movies and enjoy some fresh air in the process rather than lying on our lazy butts rewatching Friends all day long. 

In the world of politics and international affairs, there was more of a sense of communicating and discussing with your opponent rather than being shady and calling them out on personal aspects of their lives. Not to mention, the most severe change we as Americans have witnessed was North Korea testing their first nuclear weapon.

Nearly 15 years ago, North Korea was still as vibrant and violent as ever. Under the communist regime, they were planning something unforgettable. Something that would not only turn heads, but would keep America on its toes. On October 9, 2006, North Korea tested their first nuclear missile in an undisclosed lot. Originally intended as a contribution to defending the peace and stability of the Korean Peninsula and the area around it, the communist country claimed to launch a nuclear missile unless face-to-face talks with the United States were planned.  

North Korea further pushed the envelope when they denounced UN sanctions over its nuclear test as a declaration of war. In addition, the United States and other nations suspected that North Korea was seeking to conduct a second nuclear test despite international pressure. Once word got out about imminent war and second nuclear weapon, people were freaking out. Even the United Nations were sent into a deep panic. For months, American Scientists were debating to reboot their own nuclear missile program after years of taking a silent policy towards the debatable issue. It wouldn’t be until years after the event that the American government would at least try to decrease North Korea’s growing nuclear militia.  

Public Opinion: In modern times, America seems numb to the deadly events that occur around us. From Nuclear missile testing to deadly mass shootings, things just don’t hit the same way like they used to in 2006. 

They happen so often that most Americans don’t even act so surprised about them. In fact, these horrific events have become punchlines for many late night comedians and in our everyday conversations. The numbness of these disastrous events happen so suddenly and so quickly that the media always finds a way to manipulate the details to conform with their underlying political tones and cause for reform. 

Plus, these details can be misconstrued online and spread across online, providing us with fake news within our personalized bubble that further divertes us from the truth. It is as if we are stuck on repeat, listening to the same jargon that dominates our television screens and social media outlets.        

More of North Korea’s nuclear tests still followed in the late 2000’s and into the 2010’s. However, one thing remains: the threat of all out nuclear war with North Korea and Kim Jong-un. During Donald Trump’s presidency, there have been multiple talks between North Korea and the United States of America, resulting in either increased or decreased tensions. Currently, relations are still tense between Kim Jong-un and the United States, with a ‘terrible’ event looming if a better deal wasn’t reached. One thing is for certain: nuclear weapons are here to stay and they aren’t going away anytime soon.

~Elijah Williams, Staff Writer~


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