PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Many people are beginning to wonder how imminent military action might be as tensions remain high between the United States and North Korea.
Michael Horowitz, a professor of political science at the University of Pennsylvania and the associate director of the university’s Perry Would House, believes Americans should not be too concerned about a war breaking out with North Korea, unless three things happen.
Horowitz says the escalating dialogue is worrisome, but he believes the U.S. is nowhere near an actual military event with the communist regime.
“I don’t think we’re on the brink of nuclear war. I don’t think there is the need to stockpile supplies. I don’t think there is the need to evacuate any area,” said Horowitz.
Horowitz does believe reports stating North Korea has miniaturized its nuclear arsenal are accurate.
He says if some type of military engagement took place, it would be preceded by three obvious events.
“One — the evacuation of families of U.S. military personnel and diplomats in South Korea. Two — the movement of more aircraft carriers and naval forces toward the Korean peninsula. And three — the movement of more U.S. military forces toward Guam,” said Horowitz.
Right now, none of that has happened, and Horowitz hopes it stays that way.
“If North Korea actually attacked the U.S., North Korea would cease to exist as a country, but I think the leaders of North Korea know that is one reason why a conflict is not that likely,” he said.
Horowitz also points out these tensions are much different than what the U.S. experienced during the Cold War, since the U.S. and North Korea do not have any way of directly communicating.