North Korean-An Environmental Kingdom

Hong Ryun - Columbus, Ohio
Entered on June 5, 2008
Age Group: 30 - 50
Themes: environment

I believe there is still a chance for North Korea to wipe off its negative image. Though small in size, North Korea certainly has made a name for itself as an extraordinary international player in the world. Surprisingly daring statements by this tiny nation has lately caught a global attention for quite a while.

Abduction, nuclear bomb, one-man rule, starvation, drought, no respect for the human right of its citizens: With so much publicity and the ever growing negative image, do I still believe this militaristic nation could and should arise above its self-inflicted image in the international community? Yes, I do, only if its focus shifts from an ultimately militaristic power to an environmental superpower.

If North Korea has been using its nuclear development to show off its naked power in the global stage, that was a wrong choice. If it used a diplomatic card to earn financial handouts, that was wrong, too. To quench its thirst to be a world number one, North Korea should choose the environmental measures for its central agenda in its foreign policy.

Why environment? I would say WHY NOT environment? Even if you are not an avid reader of newspapers to arrest current affairs, one cannot help but be aware of the imminence of our environmental crisis. Every day we hear news of climate changes occurring somewhere in the world, of the sky-rocketing oil price, seemingly out of control, and of the rainforests rapidly disappearing even before children learn about it, all pointing to the signs of an imminent, catastrophic danger reckoning us.

If North Korea (NK) shifts the focus of its style of diplomacy from its current stress on military hardware to that on environment friendliness, I am sure that NK can shed off its negative reputations and reborn fresh as an eco friendly superpower. It may be much easier for NK, unlike other highly developed nations to make this shift.

An undeniable fact, to put it bluntly, is that NK is an underdeveloped nation. So there might be less work to restructure a country like NK were we to build a necessary infrastructure there. Yes, Inject all the bold ideas coveted for the enhancement of an environmentally friendly globe from the scratch. Welcome all the proposals with the cutting-edge state-of-art technology yet to be applied in today’s world. It should be the world first testing ground to implement all the bona-fide goodies for a greener and healthier earth. We all know that NK is eager to bring about economic development. Then, why not seek financial support for its eco-friendly development, instead of a villain-like “evil” nuclear development? Under its tightly controlled system, I am sure that the implementation of highly systematic eco friendly policy can be relatively smooth sailing.

As an individual who shares a Korean heritage, I lament for NK’s negative image–a country to which my ethnic origin traces back. As one of billions of global habitats, I believe what I proposes here for NK is a splendid idea that will do much good not only for North Korea but also for the rest of the international community. As the world first absolutely eco friendly nation, I believe NK can regain her self- confidence as well as the global respect for itself. I can’t wait to see Kim Jong-Il and Al Gore taking off hand in hand for a global tour to raise the level of environmental awareness for the mankind.