North Korea Destroys Unification Arch to ‘Completely Eliminate’ Idea of Peace With South


North Korea has demolished the famous Arch of Reunification. This massive sculpture had stood near North Korea’s capital for decades as a symbol of hope that North and South Korea could be peacefully reunited. But satellite imagery published on January 23 shows that this arch is now just a memory.

Earlier this month, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un had ordered his government to destroy the arch to “completely eliminate” any idea in the minds of his people of a peaceful reunification with South Korea. This was part of Kim’s major U-turn on South Korea, when he called it the number one enemy of the North, and even said he plans to alter North Korea’s constitution to designate South Korea as his “invariable, principal enemy.”

The Diplomat said Kim’s about-face is momentous because it means “the Korean Peninsula has now devolved from a state of armistice to one where conflict looms at any moment.”

The stakes—if such a conflict erupts—could scarcely be higher because South Korea is a treaty ally to the United States and hosts 28,500 American troops. And North Korea is a nuclear power, with missiles designed to deliver its nuclear warheads that are getting far more advanced.

America is already partly involved in conflicts in Ukraine and the Middle East. Now a third flash point on the Korean Peninsula, potentially even more explosive than the others, could soon erupt.