Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Two Children with the Fate of the Globe in Their Tiny Grubby Hands

North Korea has said it is considering a missile strike on the US Pacific territory of Guam, just hours after Donald Trump warned the regime that any threat to the United States would be met with “fire and fury”.


Pyongyang said it was “carefully examining” a plan to strike Guam, located 3,400km (2,100 miles) away, and threatened to create an “enveloping fire” around the territory.


Guam’s governor, Eddie Calvo, on Wednesday attempted to reassure residents that there was “no threat” of a North Korean strike, but added that the island was prepared for “any eventuality”.

Calvo added: “Guam is American soil … We are not just a military installation.”
And now would be a good time to ask for statehood. How could you be refused?
In response, South Korea’s president, Moon Jae-in, called for an overhaul of the country’s armed services, citing an “urgent” need to improve its ability to defend against North Korean missile attacks.


A ministry spokesman said the South was committed to dialogue and sanctions, and urged Pyongyang to end its provocations.
You might consider urging the asshat in Washington to do the same.
Beijing issued a brief foreign ministry statement on Wednesday calling on “all parties to avoid any words or actions that might escalate the situation”.
A bit late.
The UN security council responded last weekend by unanimously agreeing sanctions designed to deprive the regime of around a billion US dollars in hard currency.
Also a bit late. And unnecessarily provocative.
Japanese fighters conducted joint air drills with US supersonic bombers near the Korean peninsula on Tuesday, Japan’s air self-defence forces said. A day earlier, two US B-1 bombers flew from Guam over the Korean peninsula as part of its “continuous bomber presence”, a US official said.
No escalation there.
US security and defence officials in Guam, which is within range of North Korean medium- and long-range missiles, said there was no imminent threat to people there or elsewhere in the Northern Mariana Islands.
So, why all the military show?
But North Korea experts played down the potential for a military strike on Guam. “There’s rhetoric on both sides – it’s like two bullies in the playground yelling at each other,” said Robert Kelly, associate professor at Pusan National University.

“I think the North Koreans just pulled the Guam threat out of the air. Sure, there’s some sort of rough plan on a shelf somewhere, because Guam is an important American reinforcement point, but I don’t think there is anything immediately in the offing.

“They just needed to say something in response – you poke the North Koreans in the eye and they poke you back.”
The Trump Doctrine in North Korea.

I'd like to think that there are generals and Congress people who would put the quash on military action against North Korea, but Trump already knows that he can get near universal media praise when he drops bombs, as happened when he unloaded on Syria. He may well be that desperate as his favorability numbers plummet and the Mueller investigation ramps up. Would he engage North Korea in nuclear war to stop Mueller? I think we know the answer to that.

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