North Korean leader Kim Jong Un wants an “exponential increase” in how many nuclear weapons his country has. In addition to increasing the country’s nuclear arsenal, Kim has developmental plans for a military satellite and has begun testing for a solid-propellant ICBM.
Last year, North Korea approved a law that allows them to use nuclear weapons in specific situations. They also openly threatened to use them first if they felt the need.
Kim conducted more rocket launches than ever after the law got approved. In the coming year, he plans on implementing a strategy to develop North Korea’s national defense and nuclear force. His test launches come at unusual times and from various locations, showing that North Korea can launch attacks anytime, from different directions, and using differing attack types.
Having more nuclear weapons will give Kim increased negotiating power with other countries. Mass weapons production can help North Korea target South Korea, and the ICBMs may allow them to strike the U.S.
Kim feels that the U.S. and other countries have fallen behind in military advancement compared to North Korea. The increased attention to nuclear weapons and rockets is related to Kim’s view that the U.S., South Korea, and Japan exhibit hostile military behavior.
South Korea’s Defense Ministry issued another warning to North Korea that using these weapons would result in retaliation. Even still, North Korea recently tested three short-range ballistic missiles near South Korea.
South Korea recently accused North Korea of flying drones across the border and retaliated by sending their drones toward the North.
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un vowed to increase the production of nuclear warheads 'exponentially' and build a more powerful intercontinental ballistic missile, state media reported Sunday. https://t.co/0WgTPTM9pa
— CBC News (@CBCNews) January 1, 2023
Senior diplomats from the U.S., South Korea and Japan discussed Kim’s plans and decided to leave the lines of communication with North Korea open at this time. However, provocations from North Korea can disrupt the opportunity for communication. Additionally, while the U.S. is willing to communicate, Kim has refused to speak with U.S. leaders since 2019.