Build nuclear weapons, S. Korean media urges

Build nuclear weapons, S. Korean media urges

People stand watching a television display at a train station in Seoul on September 3, 2017 showing a news broadcast about North Korea's latest nuclear test.  / AFP PHOTO / Ed JONES
People stand watching a television display at a train station in Seoul on September 3, 2017 showing a news broadcast about North Korea's latest nuclear test. / AFP PHOTO / Ed JONES

The home of K-Pop is an anxious place these days as South Koreans increasingly question the country's dependence on the US for defence.

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S. Korean media urges Seoul to develop own nukes

Seoul, Sept 4, 2017, AFP – South Korean media called Monday for Seoul to consider building its own nuclear weapons amid growing doubts over its decades-old alliance with Washington following North Korea's sixth nuclear test.

Pyongyang on Sunday triggered global alarm with by far its most powerful test to date, after it claimed it had successfully tested a hydrogen bomb that could be mounted onto a long-range missile, which analysts say is a major advancement in its nuclear programme.

The South, which hosts 28,500 US troops to defend it from the North, is banned from building its own nuclear weapons under a 1974 atomic energy deal it signed with the US, which instead offers a "nuclear umbrella" against potential attacks.

But growing nuclear and missile threats from its belligerent northern neighbour is prompting some in the South to call for its own nuclear armament.

South Korean soldiers sit on the top of a military armoured vehicle on the road in the border city of Paju on September 3, 2017. The "artificial quake" in North Korea on September 3, thought to be its sixth nuclear test, was five to six times more powerful than the tremor from Pyongyang's fifth test, the South's weather agency said. / AFP PHOTO / DONGA ILBO

"As nuclear weapons are being churned out above our heads, we can't always rely on the US nuclear umbrella and extended deterrence," the mass-circulation Donga Ilbo newspaper said in an editorial Monday.

The US stationed some of its atomic weapons in the South following the 1950-53 Korean War, but withdrew them in 1991 when the two Koreas jointly declared they would make the peninsula nuclear-free.

That pact was no longer binding, the editorial said, and added: "There is no reason for us to cling onto the declaration when it has become the 'denuclearisation of South Korea', not the denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula".

The Seoul government should not "hesitate" in reintroducing US tactical nuclear weapons as well as building its own atomic devices.

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Vocabulary

  • advancement (noun): the process of helping something to make progress or succeed; the progress that is made - การพัฒนา, การรุดหน้า, ความเติบโต, ความคืบหน้า
  • alarm: fear and anxiety that somebody feels when something dangerous or unpleasant might happen or has happened - ความกังวล
  • alliance: a coalition; an arrangement to work together - พันธมิตร
  • amid: during the time when something else is happening - ท่ามกลาง
  • analysts (noun): people whose job involves examining facts or materials in order to give an opinion on them - นักวิเคราะห์
  • armament (noun): a weapon, especially a large gun, bomb, tank, etc - อาวุธยุทโธปกรณ์
  • armoured vehicle: a military vehicle that is heavily protected by a metal covering - รถหุ้มเกราะ
  • artificial: made by people instead of being something natural - ที่ประดิษฐ์ขึ้น
  • banned: officially not allowed to do something - ถูกห้ามอย่างเป็นทางการ
  • belligerent: wishing to fight or argue - เป็นปฏิปักษ์, ก้าวร้าว
  • binding (adj): that must be obeyed because it is accepted in law; that must be done - ที่ผูกมัด
  • border: the official line separating two areas, regions or countries - เขตแดน อาณาเขต
  • churn out (verb): to produce large amounts of something - ผลิตเป็นจำนวนมาก, ให้เป็นจำนวนมาก
  • claim: to say that something is true although it has not been proved and other people may not believe it - อ้าง
  • cling: to hold on to something tightly - ติดแน่น
  • consider: to give careful thought to something before making a decision - พิจารณา
  • deal (noun): a formal agreement, especially in business or politics - ข้อตกลง, การตกลงซื้อขาย, การซื้อขาย
  • decades: periods of ten years - เป็นสิบๆปี
  • declare: to announce officially that something is true or happening - ประกาศ ยืนยัน
  • defend: to protect against an attack - ป้องกัน,ต้าน
  • denuclearisation (noun): the process of taking away all nuclear weapons -
  • deterrence: a thing that makes somebody less likely to do something (= that deters them) - การยับยั้ง,การกีดขวาง
  • device (noun): a machine or piece of equipment that does a particular job - อุปกรณ์ เครื่องมือ เครื่องจักร
  • doubts (noun): feelings of being uncertain about something/someone or not believing something - ความสงสัย
  • editorial: a newspaper article in which the editor gives their opinion on an issue in the news - บทบรรณาธิการ
  • hesitate: to pause before you do or say something, often because you are uncertain or nervous about it - ลังเล
  • host (verb): to store, hold or contain; to provide what is necessary for something - ให้สถานที่หรือสิ่งอำนวยความสะดวก, ทำหน้าที่เป็นเจ้าภาพ
  • jointly: done together - อย่างร่วมกัน, พร้อมกัน, ด้วยกัน
  • long-range: not close; from a long distance - ระยะไกล
  • mass-circulation (noun): (of a newspaper, magazine, etc.) selling large numbers of copies to a big audience of readers -
  • media: radio, television, newspaper, the Internet, considered as a group - สื่อ
  • missile: a flying weapon which has its own engine so that it can travel a long distance before exploding at the place that it has been aimed at - ขีปนาวุธ
  • mount: to fix something into position on something, so that you can use it, look at it or study it - ตั้ง, จัดตั้ง
  • pact: an agreement between two or more people or organisations in which they promise to do something - ข้อสัญญา, ข้อตกลง
  • peninsula: a long piece of land that is mostly surrounded with water, but is joined at one end to a larger area of land - คาบสมุทร
  • potential: possible in the future - ที่อาจเป็นไปได้
  • prompt: to cause someone to take action - กระตุ้น
  • quake: earthquake, a sudden shaking movement of the ground - แผ่นดินไหว
  • reintroduce (verb): to start to use something again - เริ่มใช้อีกครั้ง
  • rely on: to need something in order to continue living, existing, or operating - อาศัย, พึ่งพาอาศัย
  • station: to cause, especially soldiers, to be in a particular place to do a job - ตั้งฐานปฎิบัติการ,ตั้งประจำ
  • tactical: designed to be used over relatively short distances - ระยะสั้น
  • threat: saying that you might do something bad or harmful, especially in order to make someone do something - การขู่เข็ญ การคุกคาม ทำให้กลัว
  • to date: until now -
  • tremor: a shaking of the earth; an earthquake - การสั่นสะเทือน
  • trigger: to cause - ก่อให้เกิด กระตุ้น
  • urge: to advise someone very strongly about what action or attitude they should take - ผลักดัน, กระตุ้น
  • weapon: an object such as a knife, gun, bomb, etc. that is used for fighting or attacking somebody - อาวุธ
  • withdrew (noun): (past of 'withdraw') taken away or taken back, to no longer be involved in something - ถอน, ถอนตัว
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