I wanted to dismiss this latest threat from Kim Jong-Un as just more bluster, but something was pricking me in the back of the head. I've read all this before.
Sure enough, the statements coming out of North Korea sound a lot like statements from the German government in August of 1939. France and England didn't think Hitler would go to war then. But what about Kim?
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un signed off on the order at a midnight meeting of top generals and "judged the time has come to settle accounts with the U.S. imperialists in view of the prevailing situation", the official KCNA news agency said.
KCNA said North Korea and the United States could only settle their differences by "physical means". The North has an arsenal of Soviet-era short-range Scud missiles that can hit South Korea but its longer-range Nodong and Musudan missiles, which could in theory hit U.S. Pacific bases, are untested.
Apparently, the tantrum-throwing man child didn't like President Obama's show of force yesterday when we flew 2 B-2 Stealth bombers from the American mainland all the way to the South Korean border with North Korea, and back to the US.
I haven't seen a single analysis that believes Kim is readying for war. He probably isn't. But at this point, it wouldn't take much to start one. We might not believe Kim's bluster, but perhaps his troops do. The risk of accidental war is going up when you couple the fanaticism of North Korean troops with Kim's war mongering talk.
Reuters has more:
North Korea has cancelled an armistice agreement with the United States that ended the Korean War and cut all communications hotlines with U.S. forces, the United Nations and South Korea.
"The North Koreans have to understand that what they're doing is very dangerous," U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel told reporters at the Pentagon on Thursday.
"We must make clear that these provocations by the North are taken by us very seriously and we'll respond to that."
The U.S. military said that its B-2 bombers had flown more than 6,500 miles to stage a trial bombing raid from their bases in Missouri as part of the Foal Eagle war drills being held with South Korea.
The bombers dropped inert munitions on the Jik Do Range, in South Korea, and then returned to the continental United States in a single, continuous mission, the military said.
It was the first time B-2s flew round-trip from the mainland United States over South Korea and dropped inert munitions, a Pentagon spokeswoman said.
Victor Cha, a North Korea expert at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, said the drill fitted within the context of ramped-up efforts by the Pentagon to deter the North from acting upon any of its threats.
Asked whether he thought the latest moves could further aggravate tension, Cha, a former White House official, said: "I don't think the situation can get any more aggravated than it already is."
South Korea denied suggestions that the bomber drills contained an implicit threat of attack on the North.
"There is no entity on the earth who will strike an attack on North Korea or expressed their wishes to do so," said a spokesman for the South's Unification Ministry, which deals with North Korea.
Few believe North Korea will risk starting a full-out war.
Few may believe it but we have to react as if it is a genuine threat. Let's just hope that cooler heads prevail in North Korea before we find ourselves in a war nobody wants.