Expert examines North Korea missile threat and foreign policy

1 year 1 day 20 hours ago Wednesday, August 16 2017 Aug 16, 2017 Wednesday, August 16, 2017 8:36:00 PM CDT August 16, 2017 in News
By: Stephanie Lorenc, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - KOMU 8 News sat down Wednesday with University of Missouri political science professor Cooper Drury to get an expert's opinion of recent tensions with North Korea, particularly missile threats.

Drury said North Korea's experimentation with and development of nuclear weapons started during the Clinton administration when it created the Agreed Framework. 

"It was basically a deal where we would provide them, with some other nations, with certain fuel oil and some money and they were going to build a light water reactor. This is so they wouldn't then weaponize the material," Drury said.

Drury said the United States does not have any ties now with North Korea and doesn't know how effective North Korea's missiles and military are.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un recently threatened to fire missiles toward the U.S. territory of Guam. Reports on North Korean state television said Kim has since delayed those plans.

"The problem is, if you’re Kim and you actually fire a missile and hit Guam, the U.S. has to respond, and it’s going to respond aggressively. Also, you have to know that you're not going to come out of it either alive or in good shape, so you don't launch the first strike. That would be deadly for yourself," Drury said. 

Kim's missile threats came after President Donald Trump said North Korea would be met with "fire and fury" if the country continued to provoke the U.S. Trump then responded by saying those comments may not have been tough enough The escalating rhetoric has lead many observers to discuss nuclear war scenarios.

Drury said the threat of a nuclear showdown is actually a strategic win for Kim.

"When we elevate them as a threat to the United States and we tell them that we will attack them or do these things, we are elevating their importance and that’s very powerful for Kim, so he can go to his countryman and say 'see, I’m standing up to the president, I’m standing up to this imperialist power,'" Drury said. 

Kim's image is created solely for his own people to see his superiority and strength as a world leader, Drury said.

"For Kim to be strong he has to keep the people around him happy and strong, he needs to present strength, so his generals are very important to him so he’s going to to funnel money to them, he’s going to let them build up. In fact, he’s going to encourage and order them to build up their military. This makes him look powerful," Drury said.

Drury said he believes Kim's decision to delay any military aggression towards Guam is a smart move politically.

"Kim said my generals have given me the plan, but I’ve decided to wait a little bit. So politically this is wonderful for him because he is now seen as the one showing digression in moderation, so he looks like the diplomat and the United States begins looking like the aggressor," Drury said.

Kim Jong Un was seen as potentially a weak leader when he first took from his father, according to Drury, but his actions spoke louder than words.

"People were unsure if he had a full grasp on power. He was quite young, I think in his early 30’s when he first took power, but then, very quickly, he began consolidating his rule, a lot of it through pretty ruthless purges and killings, including some of his own family members. So he shifted things along different from his father. In that he seems to be more aggressive," Drury said.

Drury does not think the United States is going to end up in conflict considering where things are now and the ideology of North Koreas leader.

More News

Grid
List
BOONVILLE – About 100 people rode their bikes early Saturday to help raise funds for the 43rd annual Missouri River... More >>
8 hours ago Saturday, August 18 2018 Aug 18, 2018 Saturday, August 18, 2018 2:23:00 PM CDT August 18, 2018 in News
PLATTE CITY, Mo. (AP) — Sheriff's deputies in northwestern Missouri's Platte County say they've seized more than 200 pounds of... More >>
8 hours ago Saturday, August 18 2018 Aug 18, 2018 Saturday, August 18, 2018 1:48:56 PM CDT August 18, 2018 in News
BLACK JACK (AP) — A baby bobcat found in eastern Missouri and being nursed back to health might be mistaken... More >>
8 hours ago Saturday, August 18 2018 Aug 18, 2018 Saturday, August 18, 2018 1:42:55 PM CDT August 18, 2018 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Funding cuts to in-home care for the disabled could force some Missouri residents into nursing homes,... More >>
8 hours ago Saturday, August 18 2018 Aug 18, 2018 Saturday, August 18, 2018 1:34:39 PM CDT August 18, 2018 in News
MILLER COUNTY - Miller County Sheriff Louie Gregoire said two people suffered gunshot wounds Friday night. Gregoire said the suspect... More >>
9 hours ago Saturday, August 18 2018 Aug 18, 2018 Saturday, August 18, 2018 1:23:00 PM CDT August 18, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The North America Diving Dogs dock diving competition was in its second of three days Saturday at the... More >>
9 hours ago Saturday, August 18 2018 Aug 18, 2018 Saturday, August 18, 2018 1:01:00 PM CDT August 18, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Police Department is investigating an attempted burglary of an off-campus sorority house near MU. In... More >>
11 hours ago Saturday, August 18 2018 Aug 18, 2018 Saturday, August 18, 2018 11:01:00 AM CDT August 18, 2018 in News
MOBERLY - The Moberly Police Department is currently investigating an armed robbery of Break Time North, 1210 East US 24.... More >>
12 hours ago Saturday, August 18 2018 Aug 18, 2018 Saturday, August 18, 2018 10:18:00 AM CDT August 18, 2018 in News
(CNN) -- New court documents filed in the case of a Colorado man suspected of killing his pregnant wife and... More >>
22 hours ago Saturday, August 18 2018 Aug 18, 2018 Saturday, August 18, 2018 12:09:31 AM CDT August 18, 2018 in News
WASHINGTON (AP) — It's not just audiotapes. Omarosa Manigault Newman has a stash of video, emails, text messages and... More >>
23 hours ago Friday, August 17 2018 Aug 17, 2018 Friday, August 17, 2018 10:57:37 PM CDT August 17, 2018 in News
WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. health officials on Thursday approved a new generic version of EpiPen, the emergency allergy medication that... More >>
1 day ago Friday, August 17 2018 Aug 17, 2018 Friday, August 17, 2018 8:10:26 PM CDT August 17, 2018 in News
(CNN) -- The bomb used by the Saudi-led coalition in a devastating attack on a school bus in Yemen was... More >>
1 day ago Friday, August 17 2018 Aug 17, 2018 Friday, August 17, 2018 7:41:13 PM CDT August 17, 2018 in News
(CNN) -- A judge has ordered a mental evaluation for the man accused of starting the Holy Fire that has... More >>
1 day ago Friday, August 17 2018 Aug 17, 2018 Friday, August 17, 2018 7:14:03 PM CDT August 17, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — An ethics panel says there's reason to believe that former Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens broke the... More >>
1 day ago Friday, August 17 2018 Aug 17, 2018 Friday, August 17, 2018 5:43:44 PM CDT August 17, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - A community Facebook post on a Jefferson City page said a student got dropped off at the... More >>
1 day ago Friday, August 17 2018 Aug 17, 2018 Friday, August 17, 2018 5:22:00 PM CDT August 17, 2018 in News
BRANSON (AP) — A former employee of a southwestern Missouri paddlewheel tourist boat alleges in a lawsuit that he suffered... More >>
1 day ago Friday, August 17 2018 Aug 17, 2018 Friday, August 17, 2018 4:36:01 PM CDT August 17, 2018 in News
LINN- Forbes Magazine named State Technical College of Missouri as the third best two-year trade school in the country. ... More >>
1 day ago Friday, August 17 2018 Aug 17, 2018 Friday, August 17, 2018 3:44:00 PM CDT August 17, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA (AP) — The Islamic Center of Central Missouri in Columbia is finally moving forward with an expansion project after... More >>
1 day ago Friday, August 17 2018 Aug 17, 2018 Friday, August 17, 2018 2:37:00 PM CDT August 17, 2018 in Top Stories
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 74°
11pm 73°
12am 72°
1am 71°
2am 72°