In 2002, North Korea was a communist state located in East Asia. It had an estimated population of 22 million people and was ruled by the authoritarian regime of Kim Jong-il. The country was heavily isolated from the rest of the world and had limited economic ties with other countries. Its economy was heavily reliant on foreign aid and subsidies from China, with most citizens living in poverty. The country also suffered from severe food shortages due to poor agricultural production and lack of access to international markets. In terms of education, according to computerannals, North Korea had a very low literacy rate with only about 50 percent of adults being able to read and write. Additionally, there were limited opportunities for political participation as all citizens were required to support the ruling party or face severe punishment. Despite these issues, North Korea had managed to maintain its independence since it was established in 1948 and still remained one of the most secretive countries in the world at that time.
North Korea. According to Countryaah website, national day of North Korea is every August 15. The country’s relations with the US deteriorated significantly when US President George W. Bush at the beginning of the year stamped the country as the “axis of evil” in the world due to the North Korean hold of long-range robots and suspicions of a North Korean nuclear weapons program. Bush’s statement aroused strong reactions in North Korea.
Later in the fall, however, North Korea acknowledged that there was a secret nuclear weapons development program, which was contrary to a 1994 agreement. North Korea said he wanted to negotiate the case if the United States agreed to a non-assault pact, which guaranteed the country’s sovereignty and economic development. But the US responded by stopping all aid to the North Koreans, including oil supplies.
In the summer, a fierce battle broke out between South and North Korean naval vessels near the Yellow Sea border. One South Korean vessel was sunk, and six South Koreans and an unknown number of North Koreans were killed. The incident was described as the worst military confrontation in several years between the two arch enemies.
Despite the sea battle, a cautious approach continued between South Korea and North Korea during the year. a joint mine clearance program was launched at the demilitarized zone that separates the countries. Subsequently, work began on building a highway and a railroad between the countries.
A breakthrough in the bitter relationship between Japan and North Korea was made in September during a visit by Japan’s Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi in Pyongyang. The country’s leader Kim Jong Il then acknowledged that between 1977 and 1983, North Korea kidnapped Japanese citizens to force them to spy on their homeland. Japan had long claimed that was the case and Kim publicly apologized to the Japanese for the kidnappings. The Japanese who were still alive were allowed to visit their former homeland and then chose to stay there, but their future destiny was unclear as their children remained in North Korea.
Domestic politics gave conflicting information about where power was low. At the beginning of the year came reports that the military had taken over more reform-oriented forces and that this was a consequence of the US’s toughening political line.
No signs of political liberalization could be discerned, but North Korea took a first step toward economic reform. In August, Kim announced that the planning economy would be abandoned. The food shortage in North Korea was reported to continue to be large and the UN warned that food aid from the outside world was not enough.
2017 The United States and North Korea mutually threaten each other with annihilation
North Korea-US relations deteriorated drastically following Donald Trump’s takeover of the US presidential office in January 2017. In July, North Korea tested its first intercontinental rocket, Hwasong-14, at two test shootings. The rocket flew both times below 1000km and crashed into the Japanese sea, but would reach Alaska and probably also the mainland United States. However, North Korea has not yet mastered the “miniaturization” technique of its nuclear weapons, so the rocket could carry them all the way to the United States.
In February 2017, China suspended its imports from North Korea in accordance with sanctions adopted by the UN Security Council. The decision sparked a rare and harsh criticism of China from North Korea a few weeks later.
In February, Kim Jong-un’s big brother Kim Jong-nam was murdered at Kuala Lumpur airport in Malaysia. The Western press speculated that the assassination had been carried out by North Korea in an attempt to prevent the United States from putting Kim Jong-nam in a position to take power in the north following a coup in the country.
In April, the United States deployed a THAAD anti-missile system in South Korea. The system was met with sharp criticism from not only China, Russia and North Korea, but also many parts of the South Korean community who saw that with the US armament, the war was drawing closer.
In an attempt to divert attention from the domestic political crisis in the United States, Trump in April brought out the military instruments. He bombed Syria and Afghanistan, declaring that he had sent a naval combat group against North Korea with the aircraft carrier Carl Vinson at the head. North Korea again responded with threats of “lowering” the aircraft carrier.
Following North Korea’s rocket launches in July, Trump threatened North Korea with annihilation in August. North Korea responded again by threatening to bomb US military bases in Guam. The reality was that while the United States had huge nuclear and military arsenals, North Korea’s capabilities were at the experimental stage. During the second rocket launch in July, the missile was blown to pieces as it reached Earth’s atmosphere. North Korea did not master this technique, nor did the installation of nuclear weapons in the missile.
In September 2017, US Donald Trump threatened from the pulpit of the UN General Assembly North Korea with total nuclear annihilation. The only country that subsequently clapped Trump’s speech was Israel. Several other countries – including Sweden – found that the speech was a serious violation of the UN’s rules of procedure. The UN is the organization of peace and it was unheard of to threaten another country with annihilation during an official speech to the General Assembly. Subsequently, Trump threatened China and other countries that continued to trade with North Korea. The threats put China in a difficult situation. On the one hand, under no circumstances would China accept North American takeover of North Korea that would directly confront the two superpowers. On the other hand, the US threatened trade sanctions against China, if the country did not “bring North Korea under control”. In October, it was revealed that there were indirect negotiations between the US Secretary of State and North Korea. However, the Secretary of State’s mandate was uncertain as Trump immediately disowned his Secretary of State and threatened war.
Despite the total military dominance of the United States and the ability to indisputably obliterate North Korea, the consequences would be unclear. Not only would nuclear war involve massive radioactive pollution of South Korea in particular, but also China and Japan. And in any case, North Korea could cause enormous damage to South Korea’s capital Seoul just a few kilometers from the north. In a rational world, therefore, war was not appropriate, but neither Trump nor Kim Jong-Un were rational, but in many parts of the world were considered the world’s most dangerous men.
Both Russia and China in September attempted to de-scale the tense situation by proposing that North Korea cease its nuclear efforts and South Korea and the United States should suspend their military maneuvers near the border with the north. The military maneuvers continued. In October, the US, South Korea and Japan launched a large-scale naval exercise in the Chinese and Japanese Oceans. The exercise included over 40 warships, including 3 nuclear-armed submarines and a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier. The exercise further escalated tensions in the region and was met with fierce protests from North Korea. Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu also condemned the exercise. He condemned both the North Korean missile tests and the North American military drills, which were the entire backdrop of the North Korean missile and nuclear program.
In November 2017, the United States placed North Korea again on the list of “states sponsoring terrorism” after being off the list for 9 years. The list includes the countries where the United States is openly working to remove those in power.