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THE NUCLEAR THREAT

President Trump dines with Kim Jong Un in Vietnam as the historic two-day summit begins.

The Hot Topic: North Korea’s nuclear weapons program.

But North Korea isn’t the only one who has nukes.

Who Else Does & Why It Matters

Current Events

“The proliferation is a tremendous, I mean, to me, it’s the biggest problem in the world, nuclear weapons, biggest problem in the world.”

President Trump in July 2018
Current Events

Nukes: Who’s Got Them?

  • 9 nations own the world’s est. 14,500 nuclear weapons.
  • Russia & U.S. hold nearly all (13,400).
  • 80% fewer nukes vs. 1986 due to the Soviet Union’s fall & int’l Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) to stop the spread of nuclear weapons.
  • BUT 4 nuclear nations have NOT signed NPT: India, Pakistan, Israel & N. Korea.
Current Events

What About North Korea?

  • Est. 10-20 nuclear weapons with approx. 6 nuclear tests, last in Sept. 2017 – before U.S. talks.
  • North Korea says it needs nuclear weapons for protection, to prevent an invasion from foreign countries like the U.S.
  • Kim Jong Un has threatened & experts agree that it now has missiles that could reach mainland U.S., possibly D.C. or NYC.
Current Events

Conflict Concerns:
Not Just North Korea

  • U.S. VS. RUSSIA: Last week, President Putin said he will match any threat to Russia, setting off fears of a repeat Cuban Missile Crisis, which brought the world to the brink of a nuclear war in 1962.
  • PAKISTAN VS. INDIA: Tuesday, Indian warplanes crossed into Pakistan for 1st time in 50 years, in an airstrike on a “terrorist camp.”
Current Events

Bigger Picture

Bottom Line: Not every gov’t can afford nuclear weapons – the technology requires billions to build, maintain & launch.

But some could argue many countries don’t need them thanks to support from armed allies.

Most nuclear nations use weapons as “deterrence” to avoid conflict.

Current Events

In 70 years, there have been no nuclear attacks. Critics argue in the modern age the risks of a terrorist group getting a nuclear weapon are too high & all nations should denuclearize. That said, in 2016, the U.S. said it would spend $1T to modernize its nuclear arsenal.

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