Should I Be Scared Of North Korea? It's Tempting To Imagine The Worst

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No matter how hard you've tried to tune them out, you've probably seen a handful of startling headlines about North Korea lately. If you're wondering what Kim Jong-un and his recluse nation will do next, you're not alone. Still, in spite of the headlines, the tension, and the threats, it's better to be vigilant than to be scared of North Korea.

If you're concerned, first, it's important to make sure you know the facts: North Korea has reportedly developed a miniaturized nuclear warhead that could fit within its bombs. With those weapons, the country's military has threatened to strike Guam, a U.S. island territory located in the Pacific. These announcements have come after months of North Korea testing missiles, including one intercontinental ballistic missile that could potentially reach Alaska.

Knowing those facts, it's understandable if you feel concerned. But, remember, the above-mentioned facts aren't the only ones to keep in mind. For one thing, President Trump offered his most vehement rhetoric yet this week when he promised to meet any North Korean threat with "fire and fury like the world has never seen."

OK, so maybe Trump's words aren't enough to calm you. That's also understandable. In that case, the U.S. defense system should provide some relief.

The United States has satellites constantly monitoring for a missile launch. If a missile is launched (at this point, it's not clear whether North Korea would ultimately follow through with its threats), U.S. defense systems would likely be able to shoot the missile down. If the on-land systems can't mitigate the threat, U.S. Navy ships in the Pacific could also shoot down a missile, according to CNN.

In other words, there are several lines of defense between a North Korean missile and the American people, even those on the Pacific islands of Guam and Hawaii. Although it makes sense to be worried or scared any time another country threatens to directly attack the United States, the threats from North Korea shouldn't cause everyday Americans to live in gut-wrenching fear.

Rather than live in fear, try to remain vigilant. As much as the headlines can intimidate you, they also serve to inform the public. By paying attention, you'll know the facts of the situation as it inevitably continues to unfold. Then, you can prepare or react accordingly. As you probably know by now, news coming out of both the United States and North Korea is incredibly unpredictable these days. Resist the urge to jump to conclusions and instead seek out the news that will keep you properly informed and ready for whatever happens.