After waking up in panic to sirens following the North Korean missile launch, the people of Japan are worried. In a conversation with Channel 2 News, a professor at Kyoto University of Foreign Studies said that many of the Japanese people fear an escalated situation with North Korea.

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“I woke yesterday and these alerts went off not only on loud speakers but also, it’s quite normal for people to get alerts to their phone,” Professor Nancy Snow from Kyoto University of Foreign Studies said during an interview with Channel 2 News today (Wednesday) recalling North Korea’s serious missile launch that flew over Japan. “You can imagine how people felt to be awakened by either their phones chirping with this emergency announcement or many of them would’ve been getting ready to go to work and would’ve received this dire news, which was to ‘take cover.’”

Snow added that the Japanese people mainly fear an escalation of the situation in the face of the US and Pyongyang’s “impulsive” behavior. “It’s been a long summer after a long spring,” Snow continued. “It’s been missile after missile. The rhetoric keeps getting hotter. It was a hot summer to begin with but also, there’s a feeling that well, just as the weather’s breaking and it’s getting a little cooler here in Tokyo, in comes the worst type of missile because it was the most aggressive that anyone has ever seen.”

Japan in fear

Japan in fear Photo Credit: Reuters/Channel 2 News

Snow emphasized the people’s fears concerning a North Korean nuclear attack, expressing concern about the uncertainty surrounding US politics and the Trump administration. “There’s a world view that the US isn’t as strong as it’s been because of this divided nation, but we need to figure out a solution that will bring in other countries, not just have the US deal directly with North Korea,” Snow added. “It puts a lot of countries in this region in a very difficult bind, more difficult than ever.”