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This week, I got an alert on my phone from an international news agency that Japan gave a warning that the threat from North Korean is both “critical” and “imminent”.   These words underscore the sudden nature that a war could break out.  But in the past, these words have not scared people in the Republic of Korea.  So it becomes  question of why are they not afraid or running scared of this treat?  Here are a few reasons why.

Words from Defectors

Every year, thousands of North Koreans risk it all to find freedom.  While it takes a long time, the destination is South Korea.  Those who are lucky enough to make it have revealed that many in the North are scared, including some members of the military there.  While very few things are really known, it has been said that having to fly a mission over Seoul is considered a nightmare situation for many pilots in the North.  Time will tell if this nightmare becomes a reality.

Threat Are Nothing New

North Korea has made numerous public threats to South Korea over the years.  These threats are part of the reason for the existence of a popular YouTube channel.  Eat Your Kimchi was started, in part, because at the time that Simon and Martina moved to South Korea, North Korea started sending threats about a “sea of fire” coming.  To try and calm down their families fears, they started uploading videos to YouTube showing what their life was like.  Then other people started watching and they have grown to where they are today.  That was several years ago and there have been several threats since then.  That is why so many Koreans are used to these threats.  But you may have forgotten how used the Korean people are to these threats.

The Korean War Never Ended

You can visit Seoul today and it would probably feel like a Korean version of New Your City.  You may hear about drinking, night life and wonderful street food wherever you go.  This would probably cause you to forget that there was never an actual end to the Korean War, making it one of the longest wars in human history.  How long has it been going on?  For about 67 years.  This means that most Koreans have lived in a war zone and a mental state of war their entire life.  While there are current conflicts that have been going on longer than the Korean War, few if any have affected the lives of as many people as this war has.

Had the Korean War ended, than life in Korea may be different today and the fear of losing peace would be more serious.  But since being threatened with instant death and destruction has been a lifelong ordeal, it’s sad to say that this is just a mindset that many in South Korea deal with.  Like all wars, this too will end one day.  But until then, it seems inevitable that the North will keep giving threats and the South will have to live with it until someone actually does something.  Hopefully this explains to you why when North Korea says something, some in South Korea simply go on with their daily routine.