Saturday, August 12, 2017

National Council of Churches calls for cessation of ‘hostile acts and rhetoric’ between US, North Korea


[National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA] The National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA calls for an immediate cessation of hostile acts and rhetoric between the leaders of North Korea and the United States. Steps must be taken immediately to avoid the possibility of a cataclysmic nuclear war. Increased tension and destabilizing actions and rhetoric by both sides make such a war more likely. In the past months, we have seen aggressions by both the United States and North Korea. In May the United States deployed the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) missile system in South Korea. This was seen as a destabilizing move by China and other neighbors and a threat by North Korea (see previous NCCCUSA and NCCK letter to President Trump on this matter). Critics point out that THAAD is incapable of countering North Korean missiles with their low-angle trajectory; thus, this so-called defensive system is being used in an aggressive manner. At the same time, North Korea’s testing of missile technology is well known. The nation’s development of a miniaturized nuclear weapon brings destabilization unseen since the end of the Cold War, and its apparent new capacity to launch intercontinental ballistic missiles is of great concern. Recent comments by the leaders of the United States and North Korea threatening hostilities are beyond alarming. Such threats, of “fire and fury…the likes of which the world has never seen” by President Donald J. Trump, and “all-out war wiping out all the strongholds of enemies, including the US mainland” by spokespersons of Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un, only serve to bring our countries, and the world, to the brink of war. We therefore urgently call upon both leaders to tone down their similar and mutually inflammatory rhetoric.

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