Wednesday, January 7, 2015

U.S Sanctions on North Korea Are Likely to Be Ineffective

After I had seen that President Obama announced new economic sanctions on North Korea, satirical movies and nuclear programs seem to have more in common than I thought. The United States has imposed sanctions on North Korea for the past 60 years mainly because of nuclear threats, but on January 2, three North Korean organizations and ten North Korean individuals closely affiliated to the regime became prohibited from using the U.S financial system. This all occurred after the FBI confirmed North Korea’s involvement in the hacking of Sony’s movie The Interview. Although retaliation is a reasonable response, I believe economic sanctions imposed on North Korea are ineffective.

Economic sanctions on other countries have proven to work in the past, but a country’s diversity must be accounted for when predicting the future effect of these sanctions. For instance, the Russian economy sufferedfrom being sanctioned by the U.S because it has government officials with large quantitiesof assets in U.S banks. North Korea’s global isolation prevents it from needing to be submissive to the U.S. The country receives 90 percent of all of its energy from China, one of its only allies. China has been unsympathetic to Sony being hacked and won’t be supportive of the sanctions imposed on North Korea, which means North Korea can still rely on the one country they solely need economically.

In a letter to House and Senate Leaders, President Obamaexplained, “The order is not targeted at the people of North Korea, but ratheris aimed at the government of North Korea.” I believe that exactly the opposite will occur of what the President is planning on. The people of North Korea will be harmed more than the government itself. North Korea is economically unstable, but far from politically unstable. By that I mean the regime has total control of the people and what’s going on in its country. It does not care of the well-being of its people as long as it does not have to submit to political demands.

Many still question of whether North Korea was even involved in the hacking. That is now completely irrelevant because the U.S needs to focus on what they can do within the country to prevent cyber attacks. The administration is so concerned about international threats that is has failed to strengthen internal security in this vulnerable cyber age we are living in today. The government needs to work on establishing a stronger relationship with the private sector in order to prevent even more dangerous attacks like this in the future.


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