In the midst of the Chinese New Year celebrations, reports of a third nuclear test conducted by North Korea were shot around the Internet. Indeed, North Korea has conducted its third and largest underground nuclear test on 12 February.
Approximately an hour before noon, Singapore time, an earthquake in the northeast region of North Korea was detected by its neighbouring countries and the United States. Speculations state that it might have been a nuclear test, given that the earthquake was detected just north of the previous nuclear sites, where North Korea had conducted tests in 2006 and 2009. It was later confirmed by officials in North Korea that these speculations were right.
Despite warnings from the United Nations to halt all atomic weapon developments, North Korea continued such development and according to the authorities in Pyongyang, the capital of North Korea, scientists have managed to set off a miniaturised nuclear device with a greater explosion force compared to its predecessors. The implications suggest the North Korea could possibly have the required technology to launch a nuclear attack on the United States, should they develop a missile capable of crossing the distance in between.
This nuclear test has caused the tension between North Korea and its surrounding countries, as well as the U.S, to skyrocket.
In response to this act of aggression, the United Nations have imposed even stricter sanctions on the already impoverished country, as reported by BBC News.
However, North Korea shows no signs of backing down. According to The New York Times, North Korea nullified the 1953 Korean War armistice on the eleventh of March, before cutting off the Red Cross hotline between the North and the South.
Many have compared this incident to the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962, when nuclear missiles supplied by the Soviet Union were spotted on the island on Cuba, just south of North America. This nuclear threat greatly alarmed the United States. After a tense discussion that lasted 13 days, the leaders of Soviet Union and America reached an agreement and the missiles were dismantled and shipped back to the Soviet Union, thus concluding the crisis. To some, the nuclear threat posed by North Korea resemble the threat posed by Cuba during the crisis.
Recently, the U.S army has sent two bomber planes capable of carrying nuclear weapons over Pyongyang. In retaliation, North Korea’s leader Kim Jong Un placed their missile units on standby for immediate actions, targeting the U.S, South Korea as well as the U.S military bases in Guam and Hawaii, according to their state news. Soon after, on the 27th of March, North Korea cut off the remaining hotline, a military hotline, with South Korea.
On the 30th of March, North Korea declared that they have entered a state of war with South Korea.
The question is, are we going to witness a nuclear war, a third World War? Or is North Korea simply posing out a hoax due to an internal power struggle?
– Guo Zi Yi (3U)