The U.S. President, Mr. Donald Trump, told the world yesterday that he was disappointed in China for not doing anything for the U.S. in North Korea. This, only weeks after praising the Chinese President and cozily sharing a chocolate cake with him in Florida. North Korea of course, for the second time this month, tested a missile that probably shows that they have the nuclear capabilities and means to reach the continental U.S.. After outsourcing this matter to China, Mr. Trump is now saying that “We will handle North Korea. We handle everything”. I get it. You have to sound tough, especially when a country slightly smaller than Mississippi (the 32th largest State in the U.S.) plays by its own rules irrespective what others may think. Is Trump going to handle North Korea? I honestly don’t think so. It is time that Mr. Trump and the world accept that North Korea has nuclear warheads and that it will soon build Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles (ICBMs). Basically it is an irreversible fact of life. As frightening as it may seem that a fragile state as North Korea (mind you that according to the 2017 Fragile States Index Pakistan, another nuclear Country, is considered even fragiler that North Korea) has a nuclear arsenal, we will have to live with that. We should stop thinking and saying that Kim Jong Un is a lunatic. I think that North Korea has shown everyone that they are strong willed and regardless of the living standards of the majority of its population, was able to (almost) complete their nuclear dreams. I do not think Mr. Trump has any viable options to stop Kim Jong Un. Should South Korea build its own nuclear program to deter their northern neighbors? Maybe. This idea is based on deterrence, the same logic that both the United Kingdom and France applied to develop nuclear bombs, which they still have by the way. India and Pakistan used the same calculation in the past. To my knowledge the only example of a mutual decision to stop nuclear programs remains Argentina and Brazil. That ship has sailed however for the Korean peninsula. Maybe Kim can be convinced that once he has a completed his nuclear program, he will dedicate his attention to other things like economic development of his country. The good thing however is that Kim must be aware (remember I do not think the guy is a madman) that if he uses the nuclear option, he and his country will be destroyed.

Author: alexdavidrosaria

Alex Rosaria is from Curaçao. He has a MBA from University of Iowa. He was Member of Parliament, Minister of Economic Affairs, State Secretary of Finance and United Nations Development Programme Officer in Africa and Central America. He is an independent consultant active in Asia and the Pacific.

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