Rachna Shah
Sep 2, 2017

Why is North Korea Still Launching Missiles?


An article by Sputnik News believes that North Korea continues to launch missiles because: 1) to demonstrate their ability to launch a missile that reaches Guam, 2) to demonstrate Pyongyang's confidence in the reliability of their system, 3) to refute President Trump's claims, and 4) to escalate tensions in the region.


Do you agree with these 4 reasons? Do you believe that there are others? If so, what are they?


Source: https://sputniknews.com/asia/201709021057028234-north-korea-missile-launch-aims/

Kya Chanlevitz
Sep 2, 2017

I don't think it's purely coincidental that the rise of missile tests in North Korea correlates with Trump's first term in office. Trump has not been silent about dealing with NK, especially with the notorious "fire and fury" comment. So I could see how it could relate to refuting him. However, Trump is also know for his rash behavior and so I do think there's a possibility that him having the nuclear codes might make North Korea (or really anyone) a bit anxious.

Jonah Goldman
Sep 5, 2017

While it may not be purely coincidental that the rise of missile tests directly coincides with Trump's first term in office, those four reasons are certainly not the only ones. One of the main reasons I feel many people gloss over when discussing North Korea is the fact that their increase in intimidation and weapon technologies are an attempt to indirectly damage South Korea. Tourism and foreign investment to South Korea has dropped more and more the further along the North Korean Missile program gets. North Korea is making threats and upgrading their missile capabilities simply to damage the surrounding economies in any way possible. North Korean will not strike first, but the real wild card is President Trump and his sometimes irrational actions.

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