This week, we’ve witnessed a whole new level of hysteria under the Trump administration.
On Tuesday, U.S. intelligence officials concluded that the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, better known as North Korea or the DPRK, successfully produced a miniaturized nuclear warhead that can fit inside its intercontinental ballistic missiles. Later that day, President Trump commented on the matter while trying to address the opioid epidemic.
“North Korea best not make any more threats to the United States,” Trump told reporters. “They will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen.”
It was at that point that Twitter split into full-on panic mode while the other half made jokes about an imminent nuclear winter.
“Your Twitter jokes are not funny,” Politico’s Seung Min Kim wrote. “If you’re tweeting jokes about the North Korean situation right now, you’re seriously doing it wrong.”
However, it was later reported that Trump’s “fire and fury” remarks were improvised, according to White House aides. But it was too late, the threat of a nuclear war with North Korea seemed all but imminent.
It’s now being reported that North Korea plans on striking the island of Guam (a U.S. territory) in the Pacific, which is 2,131 miles (3,430 kilometers) away.
In spite of all that, just because North Korea is threatening the United States with a nuclear strike, does not mean that nuclear war is imminent. The U.S. missile defense system is the most robust and precise in the world, and the military could use its THAAD (Terminal High Altitude Area Defense) defense system or Aegis destroyers to intercept any North Korean missiles. Of course, North Korea’s missiles could be highly inaccurate and the United States would just let it launch into the sea.
But even if it comes to that, the United States could wipe out North Korea in the span of 15 minutes, according to Ret. Air Force Gen. Tom McInerney. According to Defense Secretary Gen. Jim “Mad Dog” Mattis, any action taken by Kim Jong Un and his country “would lead to the end of its regime and the destruction of its people.”
If the North Korean government is suicidal, which we obviously have no way of knowing, then a nuclear war with the United States seems to be the preferred option. However, for a country so isolated from the outside world that’s unified against them, it can be argued that the survival of North Korea weighs heavy on the mind of Kim Jong Un. If you only had one shot to strike the United States with a nuclear weapon, why choose Guam? And most of all, why pick a fight with someone when you know you’re going to lose, badly?
So, millennials, relax on the whole nuclear war with North Korea narrative. You’re only keeping yourself up at night, and soon, publications will start blaming millennials for killing the sleep industry.