So What Is The Real North Korean Threat?
November 6, 2017
Where will the stock markets go as panic comes and goes regarding the North Korean threat? The threat is not new, and there is little the United States would probably choose to do. The markets have already begun to ignore new jostling and rhetoric.
The threat is most likely benign. Kim Jung-Un (KJU) is the youngest leader in his family. His grandfather, Kim Il-Sung ruled for 45 years (1948-1994) and died at age 82 in 1994. KJU's father, Kim Jong-Il, took the reins in his fifties upon the death of his father Il-Sung in 1994. KJU continued the family tradition and took control of the country upon his father's death in 2011 while he was in his early thirties.
KJU has managed to take out all potential challengers to his regime. He can easily lead his country as long as Fidel Castro led the Communist Party in Cuba between his age and lack of leadership challengers.
He has nothing to gain in actively nuking another country as mutual assured destruction (MAD) would be in play. Even though neighboring countries do not want a nuclear North Korea, they will easily become one. Any challenge to that title would require a war with North Korea which is in no one's best interest.
KJU wants to lead, and especially do so for a long time. He can easily accomplish this unless he gets in his own way. There are other sides of this potential conflict to consider and prepare for. A main concern is complacency from the "boy crying wolf" mindset that may already be setting in.
The real North Korean threat could be against Japan. North Korea despises many western allies, but blames Japan for much of their country's issues. KJU has launched at least two missiles through sovereign Japanese airspace without a physical reaction from anyone. They may continue these antics if there is no retaliation. The continued "non-threatening" missile fly-overs are a good way for North Korea to begin a conflict. The continuous assumption that each launch toward Japan is "just another provocative show of force with no bite" could allow KJU to actually strike a population center in Japan.
The stock markets have already stopped reacting to the North Korean threat. An actual attack could significantly rattle them due to the level of complacency surrounding this and other issues. It is HIGHLY UNLIKELY North Korea will strike but it is better to be prepared. Owning stocks bound to go up in the event of an immediate conflict is the best defensive strategy to prepare.