U.S. President Donald Trump has done a bang-up job of keeping pace with the threats coming out of North Korea in recent weeks, but Kim Jong Un may have just crossed a line Trump is unwilling to step over himself.
Threats have been flying back and forth between the adversarial nations from the first weeks of the Trump administration back in January. At first, North Korea’s incessant blabbering wasn’t much cause for concern; it was almost expected that Kim Jong Un would test the newest leader of the United States just to see what he could get away with. Trump, however, is no ordinary politician, and Kim soon realized that he had bit off a bit more than he could chew.
Then came a series of revelations that put the entire situation into dire perspective. North Korea launched two successful ICBM’s that experts believe were capable of hitting the contiguous U.S. just weeks before testing what is thought to be the nation’s first hydrogen bomb in an underground nuclear weapons site. Now, suddenly, Kim Jong Un’s words had a bit more weight to them.
Since then, Kim has yet to take his foot off of the gas pedal in his threats toward the U.S. Just this week he delivered one of his more ominous threats to neighboring nations, but squarely aimed at perking the ears of Washington D.C.’s leadership.
“North Korea told other countries on Monday to avoid participating in military action with the U.S. to avoid retaliation and warned that a ‘nuclear war may break any moment.’
“The threat was issued at the United Nations where North Korean Deputy U.N. Ambassador Kim In Ryong prepared remarks for a talk on nuclear weapons at a U.N. committee. He ended up not reading the threat out loud.
“’As long as one does not take part in the U.S. military actions against the DPRK (North Korea), we have no intention to use or threaten to use nuclear weapons against any other country,’ read the North Korean ambassador’s prepared remarks, according to Reuters.
“’The entire U.S. mainland is within our firing range and if the U.S. dares to invade our sacred territory even an inch it will not escape our severe punishment in any part of the globe,’ the statement said.”
North Korea’s pattern of threats and capitulations would normally find Kim Jong Un leveraging his nuclear arsenal against U.N. sanctions at this stage in the hyperbolic war of words. Instead, it seems that Kim is hellbent on becoming the victim of a U.S. military action for the sole purpose of playing up his weaknesses for favor on the world stage.
The U.S. has few, if any, reliable options for dealing with North Korea’s constant threats. Military action will certainly imperil neighbor nations to the DPRK, many of whom are allies to the United States. Furthermore, China and Russia have both expressed concerns over America’s role in North Korea, with the latter threatening that any action by the United States could be met with retaliatory force.