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North Korea

How Kim Jong-un's Nuclear Arsenal Could Lead Us To Peace

North Korea may now be too dangerous to be attacked. But that may force all to find a diplomatic solution.

Do you trust this man?
Do you trust this man?
KCNA
Yann Rousseau

-OpEd-

PARIS — As soon as North Korea's sixth nuclear test was announced on Sunday, the litany of condemnations against Kim Jong-un's umpteenth "provocation" started up yet again. But despite all the "strong condemnations," the world's most powerful countries will most likely prove incapable of forging a coherent response. The regime in Pyongyang, meanwhile, is convinced that it has finally attained the key to peace.

Any sanctions declared against North Korea over the coming weeks will end up hurting the population, but it won't make Kim Jong-un yield. If the young leader has taken the liberty of angering Beijing, its last true ally, annoying its Russian neighbor or taunting U.S. President Donald Trump, who has pledged to meet North Korean threats with "fire and fury," it's because he knows that the international community can no longer stop him.

After decades of efforts, the regime built by Kim Jong-un's grandfather is on the verge of acquiring nuclear power — the only thing that can guarantee the country's survival through deterrence. North Korea is now equipped with intercontinental ballistic missiles capable of hitting the U.S. or Japan. Soon, it will also have miniaturized nuclear warheads. With this kind of arsenal, North Korea will have to be taken seriously. We will have to retire any thoughts of an armed intervention as the resulting scenarios are unimaginable.

Even Trump won't risk a third world war.

The country may now be too dangerous to be attacked. The South Korean capital of Seoul and its 10 million inhabitants, as well as U.S. military bases are located just 60 kilometers from the border with North Korea. It would only take seven minutes for a Nodong missile to hit the center of Tokyo, killing tens of thousands of people. Although Trump said on Sunday that he hasn't ruled out the military option, even he probably won't risk a third world war — and his own allies and military advisors are urging him to abstain from any such action.

While the North Korean "victory" might be scary, it doesn't mean that the world has become more dangerous after the latest nuclear test. Instead, North Korea is likely to feel reassured by its nuclear deterrence capability and will no longer have any interest in continuing its provocations. Kim Jong-un knows that North Korea is certain to lose if it risks triggering an all-out war.

Despite the short-term friction, North Korea's nuclear arsenal could lead to an appeasement strategy in the long term. After years of tension, a new dialogue with Washington and Seoul might even become a possibility. A North Korea with nuclear deterrence capability might, strangely enough, help the region discover a new form of stability.

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Society

Jehovah's Witnesses Translate The Bible In Indigenous Language — Is This Colonialism?

The Jehovah's Witnesses in Chile have launched a Bible version translated into the native Mapudungun language, evidently indifferent to the concerns of a nation striving to save its identity from the Western cultural juggernaut.

A Mapuche family awaits for Chilean President Gabriel Boric to arrive at the traditional Te Deum in the Cathedral of Santiago, on Chile's Independence Day.

Claudia Andrade

NEUQUÉN — The Bible can now be read in Mapuzugun, the language of the Mapuche, an ancestral nation living across Chile and Argentina. It took the Chilean branch of the Jehovah's Witnesses, a latter-day Protestant church often associated with door-to-door proselytizing and cold calling, three years to translate it into "21st-century Mapuzugun".

The church's Mapuche members in Chile welcomed the book when it was launched in Santiago last June, but some of their brethren see it rather as a cultural imposition. The Mapuche were historically a fighting nation, and fiercely resisted both the Spanish conquerors and subsequent waves of European settlers. They are still fighting for land rights in Chile.

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