North Korea carried out a record number of ballistic missile tests in 2022, a practice that South Korea and the United States responded to with unprecedented military drills of their own.
Over the past decade, public support for acquiring nuclear weapons has hovered between 60 and 70 percent, hitting a high of 71 percent in a 2022 survey from the Chicago Council on Global Affairs.
But tensions with China — a nuclear-armed neighbor and ally of North Korea — have also played a key role. South Koreans who support a domestic nuclear weapons program largely said it was necessary to deal with threats other than Pyongyang or to boost Seoul’s standing in the international community, according to a 2022 poll from the Chicago Council.
If South Korea pursues nuclear weapons; would that generate Iran like economic sanctions?
South Korea signed the NPT, so, presumably, they would be in violation if they started a weapons development program. Of course, as Shiny-land has demonstrated, repeatedly, treaties are nothing but a piece of paper, and not a constraint on the Shiny.
This may be wanted by DC. Meaning if SK and/or Japan have nuclear weapons war with China in the area is harder for China to commit to.
SK and the US can then bomb Chinese forces in any war China starts. Japan would have more of a worry taking on China as a non nuclear power.
If the current war in Ukraine goes on and on, NK has leverage over SK. NK can invite in Russia for peace or against peace. SK is at NK’s whims. In reality SK and Japan are at China’s and Russia’s whims.
In Europe after WW II England and France built nuclear capacity to offset the chance that the US would not use them against Russia in an all out on the continent.
The US has to consider in Europe and Asia we wont use nukes regardless of war because then North America would be nuked.
Now that China is a super power Australia, Japan and South Korea need nuclear weapons. This actually saves American military personnel.
Japan has a well developed nuclear industry. If they decide they want nuclear weapons expect them to build them pronto.
This means nuclear proliferation. That is the wrong direction. More fingers on the button make more chances for errors or technology going to the wrong hands.
India and Pakistan were able to build theirs from spent nuclear fuel without building a plutonium plant. Technology is thought to have escaped from Russia during the Soviet melt-down. No doubt Iran and North Korea got their technology somewhere. Experts in need of funds may be easily encouraged to share their expertise.
Avoiding nuclear proliferation requires absolute confidence that the US and western allies will come to their defense in time of need. Otherwise, they want their own nukes. Ukraine was bad enough. Promises were broken. The uncertainty about defense of Taiwan is devastating to those who want to limit nuclear weapons.
We could use politicians with a longer range strategy. And there are times when the media is not our friend. Editors can be counted on to publish almost anything. And sometimes you wonder if our enemies are behind the “news.”
Politicians with a “longer term” strategy? Well, we could appoint someone as “President for life”, like a banana republic. But, with no accountability, the decisions made would probably no align with the interests of the governed, in either the short or long term.
Actually there are longer term objectives. The critters do not discuss them for two reasons. They become promises and then the public makes decisions instead of them. Notice supply side econ is not discussed ever these days? Reason number two no matter what they do have plans and time matters to them. It matters to the rest of us. If they announced even the old crap we will vote them out. No one is fooled any longer by supply side econ.
The austerity being forced right now is going to destroy many careers.