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Friday, November 24, 2017
HomeAlaska NewsNorth Korea’s environmental disaster; Gov. Walker calls for Navy base in Alaska

North Korea’s environmental disaster; Gov. Walker calls for Navy base in Alaska

For 24 years, North Korea vowed to give up its nuclear ambitions in exchange for aid packages, and yet it carried out its sixth and most powerful nuclear test on Sunday. The politics of appeasement may not be the way forward.

Is North Korea at risk of an environmental disaster? It has detonated nuclear weapons five times under the same mountain. Scientists in China worry the mountain will implode, and radiation will escape and drift across the border.

Our site this week for all things North Korea is 38north.org

Hawkins

Not to be outdone, Alaska has reported 30,580 30,672 earthquakes this year.

While we’re on the topic, check out the footage of the nuclear detonation at Amchitka, Alaska in 1971. It rattled the china, and then some.

GOV. WALKER CALLS FOR A NAVY BASE

Other leaders are calling for more missile defense, which would include beefing up those in Alaska, where we have a strategic advantage. Many are calling for more diplomacy, as well, and help from China.

Gov. Walker, however, is calling for a Navy base to be built in the 49th state. He did so in a statement that was sent to the media but not posted on his web site.

A Navy base in Alaska is not exactly a national priority, and is even lower on the list than our need for more ice breakers and Coast Guard presence.

Strong missile defense would seem the most important strategy.

Sen. Dan Sullivan has spent the past two years working hard to keep the Army’s 4-25 unit at JBER. We haven’t heard of our delegation advocating for a Navy base, but it doesn’t appear that Walker consulted with them before releasing his statement.

“Such a base would also provide key support for collaborative exercises and training with the maritime forces of our allies,” Walker said.

As one Washington-based expert put it, “Walker seems out of touch when he repeats the call for building a Navy base, but that’s his go-to stance.”

Walker’s statement in full:

Governor Walker’s Statement on Latest North Korea Development

September 3, 2017 ANCHORAGE —Governor Bill Walker today released this statement on the latest news of North Korean activity:

“North Korea has just completed its sixth test of a nuclear weapon, which may be its most powerful one yet.  It has done so after recent apparently successful tests of long-range missiles.  I am committed to doing everything in my power to keep Alaskans and all Americans safe from the growing threats of this rogue nation or others in the Pacific region bent on developing weapons of mass destruction. 

“Senator Bob Corker of Tennessee is the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations.  He has called for ‘a comprehensive strategy that not only places an emphasis on deterrence but also empowers our allies and partners in the region, who must do far more to confront this threat.’  A navy base in Alaska can be a key part of this strategy.

“Our location provides the quickest access to Asia for any base which would also be under the protective umbrella of the missile defense unit at Fort Greely which protects most of North America.  This combination assures a powerful force for military deterrence will remain available to our Commander-in-Chief even if North Korea or another rogue nation were to launch a missile attack.  Such a base would also provide key support for collaborative exercises and training with the maritime forces of our allies. 

“As made clear during World War II, Alaskans understand what it means to be on the frontline of defending this nation.  Alaskans also understand what it means to be attacked on U.S. soil by a foreign nation.  The time is now to make our lands safer for today and for future generations.” -Governor Bill Walker

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Suzanne Downing had careers in business and journalism before serving as the Director of Faith and Community-based Initiatives for Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and returning to Alaska to serve as speechwriter for Gov. Sean Parnell. Born on the Oregon coast, she moved to Alaska in 1969.

Latest comments

  • I love your reporting and writing style.

  • “Walker seems out of touch when he repeats the call for building a Navy base, but that’s his go-to stance.” <—Walker seems to be just plain out of touch.

  • NAVAL BASE your kidding, oh wait he finally found a place to run his gas line!
    By the time a Naval Base would be complete he would be long gone.