Jack Slominski & Jonah Slominski
On January 6, North Korea bragged about a “spectacular success” of one of its first testings of a hydrogen bomb. This was carried out by leader Kim Jong Un, who said on state television that this will “make the world...look up to our strong nuclear country.”
There is some speculations about whether this testing actually occurred. Norsar, a group that monitors nuclear testing, estimated, based on seismic readings, states that the explosion was far less of an actual hydrogen bomb that was previously tested in 2013. The group later stated that the testing took place deep underground, and it would be difficult to monitor the radiation levels created by this bomb.
Mike Chinoy, a person located at the University of Southern California’s U.S.-China institute states that, “evidence seems to suggest it wasn’t a full hydrogen bomb.” He also stated that with every test, North Korea comes closer to having the ability of miniaturizing nuclear weapons and to equip them onto long range weapons. He said, “whether this was a full H-Bomb or not, it is still a worrying development.”
The United Nations security council, which is consisted of 15 countries, including superpowers Russia, China, and the United States, met on Wednesday, Jan. 7, to discuss how to prevent North Korea from getting more nuclear weapons and how North Korea should be punished for its testing. The U.N previously imposed embargos on North Korea, but those so far have not stopped North Korea from testing nuclear weapons. It will be interesting to not only see whether or not North Korea actually tested a hydrogen bomb, but how the world reacts if the testings did actually happen. If previous U.N embargos did not stop nuclear testing, maybe stronger and stricter punishments need to be handed out.
On January 9, North Korea called for a peace treaty with the United States and an end to U.S military exercises in South Korea. The United States State Department responded, saying it is still open for dialogue between the two countries, but North Korea would have to show steps towards denuclearization. The U.S still has joint military activities with South Korea, since technically North and South Korea are still in a state of war, as the conflict from 1950-1953 ended with a truce, not a peace treaty. How North Korea reacts to this remains to be seen, and it will be interesting to see what happens as this goes on.