If Kim Jong-un believes he can fire missiles at an Air France passenger plane, develop and test nuclear weapons, and make wild threats about nuking other nations, including the United States, he’s going to be in a world of trouble.
To be blunt, he would do everyone a whole lot of good if he would just shut up.
And if he doesn’t, if North Korea persists, the U.S. will be ready to lower the boom.
Right now, North Korea tests its missiles without regard to an international understanding that other nations be notified first so there’s no risk of aircraft or ships being struck.
Perhaps Kim doesn’t care, or perhaps this is his juvenile idea of throwing his weight around. But if he keeps it up, it’s not going to end well.
President Trump has been ratcheting up the rhetoric with regard to North Korea to the point where if Kim continues on his current path, the president will perhaps be compelled to take military action.
As an example, the president just announced that North Korea would “face ‘fire and fury'” if it persisted in threatening the U.S. with a nuclear attack. At that point, things would get more than just a little interesting.
“President Donald Trump warned North Korea on Tuesday it would face ‘fire and fury’ if it threatens the United States, prompting the nuclear-armed nation to say it was considering firing missiles at Guam, a U.S.-held Pacific island.
“As tensions escalated, Pyongyang said it was ‘carefully examining’ a plan to strike Guam, site of a U.S. military base.
A North Korean military spokesman, in a statement carried by state-run KCNA news agency, said the plan would be put into practice once leader Kim Jong Un makes a decision.”
An attack by North Korea on Guam, especially a nuclear one which would obliterate the island, is almost inconceivable.
Could Kim really be contemplating such a bold act of pure aggression? Perhaps only he and his closest military advisors know. Equally important, does he have the hardware to actually do this?
We begin with the principle that neither Kim Jong-un nor his generals are stupid people. We also assume, or at least fervently hope, that they are rational and not suicidal.
If this is the case, then there is absolutely no reason for North Korea to launch such an attack. Were they to do that, their reign would be over, even if they managed to survive the retaliation by hiding in some deep bunker.
It’s also possible that what Kim is really doing is bragging about his military to prevent a possible first strike by the U.S. or South Korea.
That theory has some validity, except for the fact that if he wished to deter what he thinks is a first strike, he’s going about it in all the wrong ways.
“The Washington Post reported on Tuesday that North Korea has successfully produced a miniaturized nuclear warhead that can fit inside its missiles, according to a confidential U.S. intelligence assessment.
“But U.S. intelligence officials told Reuters that while North Korea has accelerated its efforts to design an ICBM, a miniaturized nuclear warhead, and a nosecone robust enough to survive reentry through the Earth’s atmosphere, there is no reliable evidence it has mastered all three, much less tested and combined them into a weapon capable of hitting targets in the United States.”
So perhaps Kim is just full of hot air, making threats that he cannot make good on. At least not yet.
The question remains:
How do you deal with an aggressive enemy that threatens you with weapons it likely will acquire over the next few years?
On the answer to that question depends the fate of hundreds of thousands, if not millions of people.