Utah Valley University professor on threats of imminent nuclear war from North Korea

Local News

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4 News) Tensions continue between North Korea and the United States with new threats and demands coming from leaders on both sides. Professor Ryan Vogel, Director of National Security Studies at Utah Valley University joins Emily Clark to talk about these latest threats.

 North Korean officials have dismissed invitations to negotiate with the United States, saying
that “before we can engage in diplomacy with the Trump administration, we want to send a
clear message that the DPRK has a reliable defensive and offensive capability to counter any
aggression from the United States.”

In order for North Korea to achieve this goal it must further develop its ability to conduct an
above-ground nuclear detonation and demonstrate the capability for long-range ICBM reach.
It is thought that North Korea is close to reaching both of these objectives.

The Trump Administration has hinted that this kind of development would constitute a red
line that would demand U.S. action in response. Trump and senior officials continue to threaten imminent action against North Korea. However, Secretary of State has recently said that diplomacy will continue “until the first bombs drop.”

The issue comes down to whether North Korean development of its nuclear weapon and
ICBM delivery capacity and reach truly constitutes a red line for the United States, and if so,
what the United States intends to do in order to stop that development from happening. The Trump Administration must be careful not to demand something that they cannot
achieve and that they’re not actually willing to use force for.

It appears that North Korea is not going to give up its nuclear program and will likely not
stop its development until it has achieved a successful and complete deterrent. This is uncharted territory for the world — North Korea represents a dangerously unpredictable nuclear power.

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