Thursday, July 2, 2009

Will there be "fireworks"?

There is some debate about whether North Korea's latest plan to piss off Obama and draw attention to the recent appointment of Kim Jong Il's third son as his planned successor involves launching rockets at Hawaii on the 4th of July. You can read about it here. The U.S. seems to be taking this as a strongly credible threat and beefing up security on the islands, although South Korea's military has seen no evidence of the missile preparations to date.

Once again, the general populace of South Korea remains completely unperturbed, despite escalating tensions and provoking actions and statements from their brothers to the North since Lee Myung-bak took office a year and a half ago. For once, I agree with them regarding this threat. First of all, it's not against mainland South Korea and instead focused on a U.S. soil attack, so there's no real reason for concern here. Second, the lack of activity (unlike the last missile launch) seems like it will either not happen or be rushed and fail. Finally, I may be growing desensitized--perhaps I'm starting to understand how if you grow up in a country under constant threat of attack you might not pay attention, even when that attack seems slightly more likely today than it did yesterday.

That said, I won't allow my apathy prevent me from hoping that indeed the "threat" proves to be as much of a joke as I think it will be for the sake of those in Hawaii (or any island nation in between should the missile fail to reach its intended target but still cause damages). Let's all hope for the same.

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