Irene Jung The Science Academy STEM Magnet 7th Grade
Over the years, there has been a lot of tension between South Korea and North Korea due to North Korea’s nuclear weapons program. Now, it may be time to put these problems to the side, for both Koreas are participating in the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics “under the same flag.” Some South Koreans believe that this union will not change a thing in Korean relations, but other have hope that relations will improve.
South Korean President Moon Jae-in sees the PyeongChang Games as an opportunity to improve relations between the two countries. While some South Koreans whole-heartedly agree with this sentiment, many others do not believe that North Korea should be participating at all. They feel that “North Korea isn’t a country that will change easily” and wonder “why [they] are doing this” at all. North Korean leader Kim Jong Un says he is willing to send delegations to the Winter Olympics, but experts view this behavior as an attempt to weaken “U.S.-led sanctions against the North” and buy time to advance his Nuclear Weapons program.
Despite skepticism, experts actually believe Moon made the right decision to resume contact with North Korea during the Winter Olympics. South Korea’s Unification Ministry says “they [South Korea] aim to use the Winter Olympics as an opportunity to re-establish communication with North Korea.” However, even with positivity and faith, it will be hard for South Koreans to have hope in bringing peace back with North Korea.
Overall, the debate between whether North Korea should be participating is being tossed around, and there are many different opinions. Some say North Korea shouldn’t participate, some feel it would be a good way to spread a bit of peace, and some feel both ways in that, while the games might not fix everything, it would be nice to see the two countries together, “marching in harmony after so much rivalry and separation.”
<Irene Jung The Science Academy STEM Magnet 7th Grad