Mountain of troubles

Posted: November 8, 2017 at 2:57 a.m.

A few weeks ago, the big news coming out of North Korea was that a mountain was falling in on itself after so many nuclear tests underneath it. Which goes to show how dangerous a little knowledge can be. Those putting together these mini-nukes--with plans for bigger, more mobile ones in the future--apparently can't pull off these tests without losing their test site in a crash of rock.

What's more troubling is the more recent stories out of the Hermit Kingdom:

Nearly two dozen defectors, who made it over the border with their heads intact, tell the papers that the testing area is a wasteland. Babies are being born with defects. Most of the trees and vegetation around the area are dead. Wells have dried up. Not that you'd want to drink the water anyway.

Authorities apparently left the locals to fend for themselves, not even giving them warning about the explosions. Only a few family members of military types or high officials were told to take precautions.

The hills have no trees. The streams have no fish. Even the mushrooms have disappeared.

And what does the government do?

According to one defector: "People who boarded trains to the border with samples of soil, water and leaves from [the testing site] were arrested and sent to prison camps."

That's Pyongyang's response.

North Korea might not be able to feed its people, or export products, or create any kind of thriving economy, but it does know how to build prisons.

And stock them.

Editorial on 11/08/2017