Opinion

Why have we been ignoring North Korea until now?

Attention people who might be saddened by the obliteration of California: the CIA recently declassified information stating that North Korea has the capability to hit our west coast with a nuclear weapon. If that doesn’t make you feel warm inside, North Korea has upped the ante by saying that they have absolutely no problem using those weapons against us.
This raises some important questions. First, Americans have a right to know why the Bush administration has been all but ignoring North Korea until just recently. Yet still many Americans go on supporting Bush and his war with Iraq while more immediate threats go unnoticed.
Also, should we feel safe because they have been told to put plastic sheeting and duct tape over their windows in case of chemical warfare-the modern version of the “crawl under your desk and put your hands over your head” fairy tale that they fed to our parents?
And as many Americans continue to hate the Germans and French for refusing to back us against Iraq, we must ask should any nation back a war that they disagree with, thus sanctioning the killing of thousands upon thousands of people just because they owe us a favor? Had they supported us, we might be at war right now in Iraq, perhaps making us even more vulnerable to a North Korean attack.
Unfortunately, I have no witty remarks to end this column. I just have one sober question to those who still fervently support Bush and his administration. Can you explain the fact that Osama bin Laden is still at large and making new threats to the United States, that North Korea indisputably possesses nuclear weapons and is just itching to use them against us, and that the Bush administration still wants the world to believe that Iraq is our biggest threat?
If you can give me one good reason why that is not just plain stupidity and why Bush’s total disregard of the frighteningly real threat of North Korea does not constitute a failure on the part of our president to protect the citizens of his nation, then I swear, I will vote for Bush in 2004.
However, if you can’t find a reason why we are still searching for a “smoking barrel” in Iraq while there is a fully loaded gun staring us in the face in North Korea, well, maybe you will finally see what I mean when I say that the Bush presidency up until this point has been an utter failure and an insult to the citizens of this country.

Travis Atria is a senior majoring in English Literature. His fan mail can be directed to Batman7777@aol.com.

February 21, 2003

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The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.