Is North Korea testing missiles?

On March 4th, North Korea launched and tested two missiles capable of holding nuclear warheads, which oddly enough, the US government wasn’t too worried about. This is mainly because it was a short-range missile unable to hit anywhere in North America. But why would the North Korean government even want to have nukes in the first place?

North Korea isolated itself from the rest of the world with its weird creation of a communist monarchy that would make Vladimir Lenin and Karl Marx roll in their graves. But why is it testing missiles in the first place? Well, North Korea is basically surrounded by historical enemies, and their biggest ally, China, is slowly ending their ties to the hermit kingdom. Their polar opposite is South Korea, which they’re still technically at war with for over 70 years now. Both with drastically different ways of life and governments and both wishing to reunify the Korean people, but neither country is willing to let their own government fall. And then there is Japan with its brutal rule over the Koreas in the 20th century.

Imperial Japan invaded and annexed the formerly unified country of Korea in 1910. Japan made speaking Korean illegal and forced them to speak Japanese. Imperial Japan destroyed and burned over 200,000 historical documents that the government didn’t approve of. The ones they didn’t burn were used as propaganda to make the Korean people look primitive and weak. They made 725,000 Korean workers move from their homeland and spread them across Japan and Japanese colonies to fuel their war before World War II. Thousands of women were made to be “comfort women” (sexual slaves for Imperial soldiers).

It’s understandable why North Korea hates Japan when the Japanese government has done this. The Japanese government has never actually apologized or compensated North Koreans, only their southern neighbors. The missile tests being launched into the Sea of Japan could be seen as a sign of strength after the monstrous tyranny of the Japanese government.

The North Korean government is not stupid. They might win a war against their southern neighbors but never against South Korea and its allies– whether or not they are the invaders or if they’re invading, but they can make sure that they never are invaded in the first place. They know that the US would probably overthrow the government if they didn’t have nukes. When Ukraine gave up their nukes, the Russians invaded 30 years later. This only reassured them on what might happen if they gave up nukes and ICBMs (intercontinental ballistic missiles). The capital of South Korea is only 35 miles away from their border. If anyone would try to invade, conventionally hundreds of thousands, maybe even millions of civilians would die in minutes from a few missile launches. North Korea doesn’t just want to have nukes and missiles, it has to in order for the dictatorship to survive.

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