Noam Chomsky: America Poses a Unique Threat to World Safety

Trump's brinkmanship is nothing new. Time and again, the U.S. has abandoned diplomacy for violence.

Photo Credit: Jeremy Danger/Flickr

Shortly before North Korea completed its latest missile test launch, Noam Chomsky sat with Democracy Now's Amy Goodman to examine some of the tensions that have been simmering between the U.S. and North Korea for the past half-century.

"Now, maybe Americans don’t remember very well, but North Koreans [remember their country being] absolutely flattened, literally, by American bombing... [It was] a major war crime," the renowned philosopher and linguist explained. 

During the Korean War, U.S. threats to use a nuclear weapon led North Korea to seek its own nuclear deterrent, and the small country's massive defense spending, Chomsky explains, has slowed its economic development and literally starved its people. 


"Over and over again, possibilities for diplomacy and negotiation [have been] abandoned, dismissed, literally without comment, in favor of increased force and violence," he noted.

"In fact, that's also the background for the 1953 moment, when, [during the first thermonuclear weapons tests], the [Doomsday] clock moved to two minutes to midnight, and the U.S. faced the first serious threat to its security since probably the War of 1812," Chomsky added. 

Trump's election has pushed the Doomsday clock to two and a half minutes before midnight, the latest it has been since that "moment" 64 years ago.


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Alexandra Rosenmann is an AlterNet associate editor. Follow her @alexpreditor.