Here we are, roughly 200 days into the Trump administration and tensions have reached their highest point with North Korea yet.
Yesterday, Trump went toe-to-toe rhetorically with North Korea, stating that their further threats to the United States would be met with “fire and fury, the likes of which the world has never seen.” This comes on the heels of a leaked intelligence report that North Korea’s nuclear capabilities are rapidly advancing and that their nuclear armed missiles could soon reach the United States.
This type of rhetoric from Trump wasn’t helpful at all and his tweets this morning echoing such sentiments won’t doing anything to cool down irrational heads. And Trump played right into the hands of classic DPRK propaganda: He responded in a heated fashion to Kim Jong Un’s inflated claims of North Korean might and power.
Kim can now show his people that the United States is treating North Korea with some legitimacy. And to be fair, it’s not like they’re not a grave threat to the world’s economy. But we cannot over react to a nutcase, which is what Trump did, because it is dangerous. There is no telling what Kim Jong Un could do. Seoul, Tokyo and other major Asian cities are within striking distance of their weaponry.
We need diplomacy to deescalate the situation. Rex Tillerson is in Asia now doing just that, hopefully it will trickle up to Trump.