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The North Korea Crisis: Nuclear Conflict Possibilities and the Dangerous Façade of Missile Defense

Beyond War Northwest presents: Dr. Jane Cramer, UO Political Science Professor

Thursday, January 25
5:30pm Gather, 6:00pm Presentation
Lillis Complex, Room 282


The current crisis with North Korea is extremely volatile, and potentially the closest the United States has come to a nuclear war since the Cuban Missile Crisis. Many US citizens fail to recognize how extremely dangerous this situation is because a nuclear war with North Korea appears to most people to be so unnecessary and catastrophic that it would be irrational, and so it is deemed “unthinkable.”

Unfortunately, North Korea’s leader, Kim Jong Un is extremely insecure domestically, so it is unlikely he will back down. From the U.S. side, President Trump appears to believe he has viable military options, and appears to believe he has a working missile defense system to back up these options. Further, President Trump keeps insisting he will not accept North Korea’s current missile and nuclear capabilities, thus he shows no real signs of backing down. The extreme danger arises because Kim Jong Un is paranoid that the U.S. will attempt “regime change” in some way, and he is ready to launch nuclear weapons if this is attempted. Neither side likely wants war, but war based on misperceptions is a very, very real possibility.

This talk and discussion will analyze some of the too many ways this volatile situation could result in war. This talk will also explain the numerous paths available for a diplomatic solution to this crisis, along with the limitations of these several potential diplomatic solutions. Finally, this talk will also fully explain why the deployment of missile defenses to the region has not provided increased security (U.S. missile defenses do not work). Further, the deployment of missile defenses has actually helped cause this conflict, and these “defenses” are preventing this conflict from being solved with help from China.

Finally, this event is dedicated to furthering the work of 2017 Nobel Peace Prize winner ICAN: The International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons. ICAN successfully passed an international treaty to abolish nuclear weapons in 2017 which was signed by 122 nations.  This treaty, and its real potential for providing increased security worldwide will be discussed.



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