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North Korea and the US unlikely to go to war: UBC professor

Line up of flags at Kumsusan Memorial Palace Of The Sun . (iStock, Photo)
Summary

A UBC Professor of Korean Civilization says Kim Jong Un and Donald Trump are trading schoolyard insults

Don Baker does not think there will be a war between the US and North Korea

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – Tensions between North Korea and the United States continue to escalate, worrying one of BC’s experts on Korea.

“I wish someone would just Donald Trump down and remind him that words matter,” says Professor of Korean Civilization at UBC, Don Baker.

“You really need level heads and I don’t see a level head in Pyongyang or in Washington DC. That’s what really worries me.”

North Korea has a rapidly developing nuclear program, and this week announced that it is finalizing a plan to launch four ballistic missiles over Japan toward the US island territory of Guam. That set off the US President, with Trump firing off tweets and threats heavy in provocative rhetoric.

Baker says this conflict has been exacerbated by North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and Trump.

“The scary thing is that you have two people on both sides of the negotiations who are very immature. They are shouting schoolyard insults at each other and both of them feel like if they back down, they will look foolish in front of the people they rule over.”

Baker notes the conflict between the Kim dynasty and the US has been going on for decades.

“I don’t think there will be a war, I think the chances are less than 50/50. But I think the chances are higher than say six months ago.”