When North Korea launched another intercontinental ballistic missile on Tuesday, the world held its breath. The back-and-forth between Kim Jong Un and President Donald Trump has caused tensions to rise to unexpected heights.
President Trump has been as cavalier in his dealings with Kim as he has with any American politician. Now, North Korea is talking tough on its nuclear program.
A North Korean spokesman recently said that the country's nuclear program exists only to attack the United States:
It’s Korean people’s resolute decision that (North Korea) should face off the U.S. only with nuclear (weapons) to achieve the balance of power.
Our nuclear deterrence is a sword of justice aimed at fighting (U.S.) nuke and Asia and any country in the world need not worry about our threats as long as they do not join invasion and provocations toward us.
The spokesman even went on to boast of North Korea's ability to catch the United States off guard:
Today's reality shows that our obtaining of nuclear (weapons) shatters the U.S. ambition to secure its supremacy in the Asia-Pacific region and safeguards peace and security on the Korean Peninsula and its region.
Tension between President Trump and Kim came to a head during Trump's tour of Asia. Kim referred to Trump as “old,” and the president responded in a tweet:
Why would Kim Jong-un insult me by calling me “old,” when I would NEVER call him “short and fat?” Oh well, I try so hard to be his friend - and maybe someday that will happen!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 12, 2017
Certainly, matters have taken a more serious turn now that North Korea has said the United States is its sole target. Yesterday, the president vowed to handle North Korea, saying:
“We'll take care of it.”
And today, President Trump announced even stronger sanctions against North Korea:
Just spoke to President XI JINPING of China concerning the provocative actions of North Korea. Additional major sanctions will be imposed on North Korea today. This situation will be handled!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 29, 2017