North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has called for waging another “arduous march” to fight severe economic difficulties. He is comparing the difficult times North Korea is now facing to that of the 1990s famine that killed hundreds of thousands of North Koreans. Kim had previously said his country faces the “worst-ever” economic situation due to the coronavirus pandemic, U.S.-led sanctions, and heavy flooding last summer. While it has been known that North Korea has been struggling as of late, it is the first time he publicly drew a parallel with the deadly famine. For the United States, this could mean possible humanitarian intervention. While relations with North Korea are strained, I do not believe Biden wants to see another humanitarian crisis occur there. We will see what the future holds and if their economic situation is as severe as Kim says it is, and if there will be anything the U.S. wants to or will do about it.

Erin M.