Local man in South Korea addresses tension between U.S. and North Korea

American living in South Korea shares his thoughts on North Korean tension

YONGIN, SOUTH KOREA - A man who previously lived in West Michigan, and is now living in South Korea, is sharing his feelings about the war of words between North Korean leaders and President Trump.

Erik Turkelson used to work at WZZM 13 and moved to South Korea, where his brother is stationed in the army. Turkelson teaches English at a university near the capital city of Seoul.

He's lived there for 14 years, has married a Korean national and now has two children.

Turkelson says even though South Koreans are concerned about the tension and threats of violence, they're going about their daily lives, business as usual.

"I think we should have caution about what we see online or on the news about how the tensions are so high it's going to break at any moment. That doesn't seem to be the case.

"But the tensions are there and they are changing peoples' plans somewhat, especially with foreigners here that I know. But many of us are still here and we're going to stay here."

Turkelson also does not believe the rhetoric President Trump has been using changes the situation much.

He says now there are tough talkers on both side of the conflict, when before North Korean leader Kim Jong Un was the tough talker. He calls Trump's back and forth with North Korea a "war of hyperbole."

"We’re more worried about the possibility of U.S. bravado leading to preemptive strikes than we are about the North Koreans launching a surprise attack beyond something like potshots at small targets and bank hacking attempts."

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Matt Gard is the Senior Producer of the 13 Morning News. If you have a story idea, you can contact him on Twitter, @mgard_wzzm13 or by e-mail, MattGard@wzzm13.com.

© 2017 WZZM-TV


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