There Are No Good Options When It Comes to North Korea. Here’s Why.

A history.

President Trump stood in front of the United Nations General Assembly on Tuesday morning to warn of North Korea’s total destruction if it threatened the US with force. “The United States has great strength and patience, but if it is forced to defend itself, or it’s allies,” he said, “We will have no choice but to totally destroy North Korea.”

Trump’s speech at the annual gathering of world leaders in New York marked yet another escalation in violent rhetoric between the US and North Korea. The past summer has been marked by both frequent ballistic testing by North Korea, including a hydrogen bomb test in September, and Trump retaliating with threats of “fire and fury like the world has never seen.”  

To understand how we got here, we need to go back to the end of World War II. Watch the video above for a look at the timeline of U.S. and North Korea relations. 

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is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

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