If humanity has diminished over the next 50 years, it would notbe due to an asteroid imploding on earth, or because a disease wiped outhumans, it would fall on international relations and foreign policy.Civilization lives in a world where hundred thousand nuclear weapons exist,suicide terrorism strikes without warning, and a population can be forgottenand left to poverty due to the way international systems function. Today’sworld is changing rapidly. Countries are becoming more significant and gain morepower on the global stage. Over the past half-century, the internationalrelations community has become accustomed to headlines regarding wars,terrorism and nuclear attacks. Through recent U.S administrations, fromPresident Clinton to President Trump, there have been multiple alerts regardingone specific headline: North Korea and nuclear weapons.
Since 1994, theUnited States has been involved in an increasing series of diplomatic crisisconfrontations with North Korea over the development of atomic weapons.North Korea, also known as the Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, is a communist nation which borders China with North and South Korea.The county was once associated with the communist of the Cold War and hasavoided Westernization, is one of the most isolated nations of the world.Several violent situations over the past decades have continued tensionsbetween North and South Korea. These conditions exist since North Korea hasbeen continuously abstruse about its intentions with nuclear power. NorthKorea’s nuclear program is expanding at an immensely increasing rate whiledrawing criticism from both allies and foes.
The program’s history dates backto 1950 when the Soviet Union helped establish a nuclear research center. Theprimary focus of the facility was to focus on research and nuclear power.However, as the nation developed, and by 2005, began obtaining nuclear weapons.North Korea has conducted five nuclear exams.
The bomb is said to haveincreased in force significantly, compared to the first exam done in 2005. China is North Korea’s most important source of trade, food, andenergy. China has helped maintain Kim Jong-Un’s command and has opposed harshsanctions placed on North Korea by the international system in hopes to avoidcomplete government collapse. The constant missile launches and nuclear testsin Pyongyang have complicated the Beijing relationship, which has support forthe maintenance of the Six-Party Talks, an agenda designed to denuclearizeNorth Korea. The assassination of Kim Jong-nam, Kin Jong-un’s banishedhalf-brother, in Malaysia, stimulated concern from China about the constancyand course of North Korea’s government. Strains on the relationshipbetween the nations began to surface October 2006, when Pyongyang tested anuclear weapon and Beijing supported a UN Security Council sanction.
After North Korea’s nuclear test August 2017, North Korea wascalled upon to “stop taking wrong actions that exacerbate the situation and arenot in its interest” (Albert). Beijing only accepted the UN resolution 1718after amendments were made, removing necessities for economic sanctions.Recently, China supported UN resolution 2375 after revisions were made,excluding an embargo on oil and authorization to use strength when ships do notobey authorized inspections (Albert). Most western experts and officials aresuspicious China is genuinely dedicated to applying the new limited traderestrictions. The bilateral trade between the two nations has steadilyincreased tenfold between 2000-2015 while peaking at $6.
86 billion in 2014(Albert). China majority of energy and food supply, accounting for more than90% of North Koreas trade volume. Since 1995, Japan, China, South Korea and theUnited States have provided more than 75% of food to the nation (Albert). Sincethe downfall of the Six-Party Talks in 2009, aids have stopped from allcountries besides China. China’s support for North Korea goes back to the Korean War,1950-1953 when troops stormed the peninsula to aid its ally. Since the war,China has given political and economic backing to all of Korea’s leaders. Atthe moment, North Korea’s stability is China’s primary interest. Jennifer Lind,states that “China would prefer if North Korea did not have nuclear weapons,their greatest fear is regime collapse” (CNN) and that the Chinese apprehensionthat the failure of the North Korean government will send refugees across theirborder.
Beijing began prevention tactics more than a decade ago, constructing abarbed-wire fence. However, under Kim Jong-un, border control has intensified,and there has been a significant decrease in the outflow of refugees. Eventhough China indicates that it will stand up against North Korea, there isreasonable doubt that China will solve the issue alone. Many delegates believeChina will be unable to tighten its economic ties to deter the nuclearambitions, while others believe the North Korean leader no longer genuinelycares what China thinks.
Regardless if China can influence Pyongyang’sbehavior, North Korea’s nuclear program is formulating into an enormous problemfor China’s yearning for maintaining stability. Furthermore, diplomatic relations between North Korea and theRussian Federation were established in 1948, shortly after North Korea wasproclaimed. They were two close allies during the Cold War, and the relationsbetween the nations have disappeared due to the fall of the Soviet Union.Russia is North Korea’s second most significant ally. In 2015, the “Year ofFriendship” brought a numerous amount of trade agreements, which are highlydepended on to handle the sanctions placed by the United Nations. Currently,Russia’s President Vladimir Putin desires to insert Russia into a geopoliticalstandoff with the United States and North Korea. Additionally, the United States and North Korea have anextremely hostile relationship, developing after the Cold War. The UnitedNations divided Korea after WWII, aiming as a temporary measure.
Unfortunately,the disintegrating relations between the United States and USSR prevented areunification. Aggressive and erraticcompetition is experienced between the United States and North Korea, even withtension increasing between the two nations due to retribution sanctions imposedby the Trump administration and the ongoing missile testing being carried outby Kim Jong-un. The United States pushesNorth Korea to conclusively let go of its nuclear program in return for aid,business and strategic benefits. Experts say the United States and China havedifferent views on how to reach the denuclearizing goal. Washington relies onusing force to negotiate, while Beijing tends to advocate for the resumption ofdiscussions in the form of “freeze for freeze.
” Tensions have been rising inthe Korean Peninsula after North Korea conducted an intercontinental missile inAugust. Since the 1960’s, North Korea has been developing nuclear weapons. Thecountry’s nuclear program was established during the Soviet era, with thedevelopment of the first nuclear reactor in 1965 in Pyongyang. North Korea’sleader, Kim Jong-Un, has increased the number of missile procedures since hecame into power in 2011, after the passing of his father, Kim Jong-II. The Trump administration has changed the U.S policy toward NorthKorea. President Trump stated in a press conference in April 2017, that “ifChina is not going to solve North Korea, we will” (Albert).
President Trump haswarned the United States will be prepared to take action against Pyongyang ifChina continues to remain unwilling. Furthermore, President Trump spoke at theUN General Assembly, September 2017, that the United States would have “nochoice but to destroy North Korea” (Albert). On the contrary, the United Statesappears to be more attentive in China’s economic weight over North Korea. Manydelegates argued that the United States should enforce stricter sanctions,penalizing the Chinese banks that endorse North Korean companies.
INR THEORY:All three of these nations have come to the same conclusion: NorthKorea’s strategic nuclear program is a complex issue with no simple solution.North Korea will never give up its program, willingly. The objectives need toshift from denuclearization to dissuading North Korea from ever using theweapons. North Korea is trying to ensureits security by decreasing the prospect of destructive war against itself,rather than securely preparing for an invasive war. According to defensiverealism, a state’s first precedence is to establish or preserve securitythrough means of securing a place on the international front rather thanattempting to multiply its power (Waltz, 1979, p 126).