Local Veterans Comment on North Korea

By: Lauren Forsythe Email
By: Lauren Forsythe Email


"They keep increasing their capabilities, and that can be concerning especially when they are developing long range weaponry," says Ret. U.S. Marines Major Jim Wright says.

North Korea could be preparing to test launch a missile any day now.

Area Korean War veterans say the conflict was never really over, which has them worried about what might happen.

"They keep increasing their capabilities, and that can be concerning especially when they are developing long range weaponry," says Ret. U.S. Marines Major Jim Wright says.

Wright says it's not unlike a country to test its weapons.

He lived in South Korea during the Olympics in 1988 and '89.

He remembers the period as a more stable time between North and South Korea.

"They look at things differently than we do. If they say they are going to do something, then they are going to do it," Wright says.

Since the Korean War Peace Treaty was signed in 1953, conflict between the North and the South has been at a halt.

He says the border divides them geographically and on their outlook on life.

He remembers the South as a peaceful group of people, while the North was run by dictatorship.

"Kim Jong Un has been brought up his entire life to think that they are the master race, that they are better off than they probably actually are. So, they think they are smarter than everyone else, they are more entitled then everybody else," Wright says.

Korean War veteran Ret. Col. Robert Spiller remembers protecting the boarder in 1952.

He could always tell how safe the boarder was by how much noise was being made.

"Things were very quiet, noise wasn't a big thing in those years. Nobody came through the lines and we just held it up there," Col. Spiller says, "They wouldn't let them in not where I was and of course I wouldn't go across the line either."

Protecting the Korean border was Col. Spiller's first deployment when he was just 22 years old, and the same boarder has divided the North and South for 60 years.

U.S. Officials say if a missile is launched, and affects the U.S. military base in Guam, it could affect the peace treaty between the U.S. and Korea.


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