Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Playing with Fire and Fury

by Pa Rock
Citizen Journalist

Playing endless golf would seem to be an emboldening experience for America's Golfer-in-Chief.  Yesterday he climbed out of his golf cart long enough to make his rashest and brashest statement yet against the government of North Korea.  Trump, never the diplomat, threatened the North Koreans with a schoolyard taunt that could have catastrophic consequences.  Our bellicose leader warned:

"North Korea best not make any more threats to the United States. They will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen."

Fire and fury.  That left no room for misunderstanding.  Our temperamental and tyrannical leader was threatening their temperamental and tyrannical leader with a nuclear holocaust.  It didn't take long for Kim Jong Un, the leader of North Korea, to fire back his own threat with a suggestion that his country would retaliate by hurling a nuke at the U.S. Territory of Guam, a small island in the Pacific that houses two American bases and over 6,000 United States troops.

John McCain, a senator from Trump's own Republican Party who chairs the Senate Armed Services Committee, warned that Trump needs to hold off on threats unless he is "ready to act."  McCain labeled Trump's "fire and fury" comment as "mostly bluster."

McCain is right.  Trump is mostly hot air and bluster, but, with the nuclear codes close at hand, he is by no means impotent.  And when two bullies go toe-to-toe, sooner or later someone will throw a punch.

I take exception to Donald Trump's threats to the peace and order of the world. It doesn't seem right that someone who barely has the approval of a third of his countrymen should avail himself of our national megaphone without benefit of sound diplomatic advice or the counsel of individuals steeped in history.   Dealing with a dangerous nuclear adversary should involve multi-level discussions covering a wide spectrum of issues vital to both nations - and not be relegated to off-the-cuff threats and braggadocio.

Some of Trump's advisers need to make an effort to explain to him what the world would look like after the first nuclear bomb is unleashed.   North Korea only has shared borders with two other countries, South Korea and China.  Seoul, the important industrial city that is the capital of South Korea, is only thirty-five miles south of the border with North Korea.  A nuclear strike on North Korea would destabilize South Korea, one of our most important allies in the region, and it would be tantamount to an attack on China - a nation capable of a significant nuclear response.

And then there is that retaliation thing.  Yes, Kim Jong Un might lob a missile with a miniaturized nuclear warhead toward Guam, and he might just hit the very small target.   But he could also change his mind at the last minute and go for a closer and bigger prize - such as Tokyo - where millions could be maimed and killed in the carnage.

If Trump thinks he has had immigration issues before, just wait until he sees the floods of people rushing about seeking safety once a nuclear device has been exploded on humanity.  One nuclear explosion would kill thousands, imperil millions, disrupt economies, and throw the world in chaos for decades.  A second nuclear explosion would bring down civilizations.

And when the world begins to crumble,  the towers of megalomaniacs will be little more than hoary curiosities of a bygone era - and entertainments such as golf will disappear beneath mankind's struggle for basic survival.

No comments: