North Korea fired artillery into civilian areas of South Korea’s island of Yeonpeong in the early morning hours on November 23 claiming it to be an inadvertent mistake during a training exercise. South Korea is said to have retaliated with artillery fire of its own.
A prior conflict between the two nations lead to nearly 2 million deaths. Leaders in the region warn against escalation and overreaction. This comes after an attack and accusations from North Korea of a border violation of its waters by South Korea during a naval operation and a North Korean threat to retaliate.
Two of the world’s largest and most powerful nations border the peninsula and are showing concern. The leaders of Russia are urging restraint after what they are calling unacceptable clashes. A Russian spokesman is stating that there have been three instances of this kind during the year with this one being the most serious and deserves condemnation.
Both sides are known to have nuclear weapons and massive military capabilities. Likewise, both sides are allied with the same powerful nations as in the 1950, and these nations possess these weapons, as well.
The growing tensions and an escalation between the two sides are being called a colossal danger. An ongoing conflict between the north and the south would risk a substantial loss of life.
The last major conflict lasted from June of 1950 to June of 1953 when an armistice was signed. China and the United States intervened in the last conflict and were deeply entangled for years. Nearly 55,000 Americans and over 1,000,000 Korean and Chinese lost their lives in the war. Even after this enormous loss of life, it resulted in no change in the border or anything else on the Korean peninsula.
Western powers are quick to blame the government of North Korea for the latest skirmish. A conflict between the two nations has been mentioned in western news, recently, and has been described as a positive development for the present economic situation. An escalation in this affair does not seem unlikely. Military conflict is known to be used by nations in economic crises as a solution to unemployment and currency value issues. Military corporations and central bankers stand to gain the most from a development of this kind.
With such powerful allies on both sides, North and South Korea have the potential to create a major turmoil in the world. There are much more powerful weapons available now, and the two nations are still under an armistice from the last war. Economic leaders of the world would benefit from an escalation, which makes a worsening of the situation all the more likely.