Socialist Worker

West's hypocrisy over North Korea's nuclear weapons

Issue No. 2153

The West has condemned the recent test firing of a nuclear warhead by North Korea, warning of “tough measures” against the state.

North Korea reported that it detonated a 20 kiloton warhead under a mountain. The warhead is similar to the ones that the US dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki during the Second World War.

The stand-off between North Korea and the West is a dangerous escalation of tensions. North Korea responded to the threat of sanctions by test-firing missiles capable of hitting Japan.

Socialist Worker is deeply opposed to nuclear weapons. Yet when it comes to proliferation of the weapons, the biggest criminals are the US and Britain.

Both countries are upgrading their nuclear missiles, with Britain spending billions replacing its Trident nuclear arsenal.

Meanwhile Israel has escaped any sanctions despite refusing to sign up to the global treaty on nuclear weapons. It confirmed recently that it has over 50 warheads.

North Korea promised to wind down its weapons programme in 2007 on the offer of aid. But this was abandoned after the US suspended its programme to help the country meet its energy needs and end its diplomatic isolation.

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Tue 26 May 2009, 18:19 BST
Issue No. 2153
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