Just a few days ago the US territory of Guam was the ideal place to ignore the world’s problems. That was before it became a target for North Korea’s wrath.
A vital American military outpost, with both air and naval bases, some 6000 troops are stationed on the pacific island.
Despite lying nearly 10,000 kilometres from the US mainland, any attack on Guam would be an attack on the United States.
Tony Babauta, former Assistant Secretary of the US Department of Interior and a resident of Guam said: “We’re often known as a military installation and a place for US military forces to project peace and stability in the region. It’s unfortunate that it takes tensions like this within the region order for people to learn more about Guam, but aside from the tensions in the region between the United States and North Korea, Guam is a wonderful place to be. It’s paradise.”
Authorities have stressed there is nothing to fear from Pyongyang’s angry rhetoric.
Many of Guam’s residents remain relaxed, but the escalation in military threats between the US and North Korea has left others nervous.
“What is the President doing to protect us. I blame him. He’s rich, good. He’s rich, he’s got all the money, he’s protected. What about us? What about those who don’t have any protection to help them? I just don’t agree with this. It is scary,” said one resident.
“I have a cousin who lives in South Korea. He texts the family chat, saying don’t worry about it, go on with your lives, drink beer, have fun, enjoy the sun – so, no worries,” said another Guam resident.
For the moment, that ‘Keep Calm and Carry On’ attitude continues to display itself on the tourist reliant island’s beaches, with few letting the threat of war get in the way of their holiday.