Can The World Live With Another Nuclear Power?

September 4, 2017 Off By Michael

Illustration by Martin Rowson, Guardian 2017

Can the world live with another nuclear power? This is the question of the hour as North Korea pushes the envelop. The United States and her western allies are in a quandary as the North Koreans get closer and closer to nudging their way into the super power club.

Currently there are eight nation-states who possess nuclear capability. The west wants to keep the number at eight, but thus far none of the diplomatic pressure leveled upon North Korea has driven them off of their march towards gaining the ability to destroy the world.

The eight nuclear powers are the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Russia, China, India, Pakistan, Israel and now for all intents and purposes North Korea can be added to this list.

Is it time for the major powers to rethink limiting nuclear arsenals to only a few nations?

Is it worth risking nuclear war to prevent an independent country from developing these weapons?

These are the questions that the United Nations, in conjunction with the super powers, must grapple with in the first half of the 21st century. The failure to do so is international political malpractice.

In the beginning of the age of nuclear weapons, it made sense to limit the development of this enormous power to a few countries.

The United States was the first nation to deploy the N-Bomb in an act of war. As far as anyone knows the US remains the only nation to launch not one but two such attacks in the history of war.

When the Russians entered the club shortly after the US, it did not take both countries long to figure out that the best deterrence to all out nuclear war was the possession of nuclear missiles.

Could it be that Kim Jong-Un, with the Americans just across his border, figured out that the best defense to being overrun by South Korean and US forces is by having nuclear capability?

If this is the case, can the west just let Kim be?

Harold Michael Harvey is an American novelist and essayist. He is a Contributor at The Hill, SCLC National Magazine, Southern Changes Magazine and Black College Nines. He can be contacted at