Harsh rhetoric threatening nuclear war and the destruction of the United States was issued from Pyongyang this week as North Korea once again has escalated -- at least on the verbal level -- tensions between the two countries. The nation's state media agency, KNCA, condemned President Donald Trump's deployment of a naval task force to the region, then launched into a 2,000-word editorial that accused the U.S. of provocative military actions and threatened not only a "preemptive nuclear strike" but promised to reduce the White House "to ashes" and ensure that America's imperialism "will be over."
Several reports have indicated that North Korea, despite warnings from the United States that all options were on the table -- which, of course, includes the possibility of a preemptive military strike -- with regard to dealing with the despotic regime's nuclear weapons program and its increased belligerence in the region, was not interested in toning down its aggressive criticisms and threats toward the U.S. and its allies. Even increased pressure from China, the Kim Jong-Un regime's only real ally, has not deterred the Asian nation from its current posture.
The extensive piece, according to the Daily Express, accused the U.S. of plotting to destroy North Korea's capital, Pyongyang. It went on to issue a "stern warning" to the U.S. and its allies.
From the KNCA editorial: "This is a stern warning to the US imperialists and their stooges running amuck for aggression and war moves. The world will clearly witness how the crime-woven history of the US imperialists will be over, how the despicable remaining days of the south Korean puppet forces will come to an end and how national reunification, the cherished desire of the Korean nation, will be achieved."
The editorial used as evidence of the United State's future designs the recent joint military drills conducted by American and South Korean troops, an even that occurs annually. According to the editorial, 330,000 troops participated in this year's "all-out war" rehearsals for the invasion of North Korea. (The number is likely accurate, as some 317,000 troops from the U.S. and South Korea were involved in last year's military exercises, according to The Diplomat. It has been announced that the combined exercises conducted this year were the largest in history.)
The piece, according to the Daily Star, labeled the military exercises "hideous state-sponsored terrorism" that were the "most vicious and adventurous in history." It then went on to promise that Kim Jon-Un's forces "will retaliate" and "the crime-woven history of the US imperialists will be over." Calling the United States a "hotbed of evil," it called for the U.S to be hit with an "indiscriminate preemptive nuclear strike" that would transform the superpower into "something that cannot come back to life again."
Of course, this is not the first time Kim Jong-Un and/or the state media have threatened nuclear war with the United States. Last week, a video depicting a nuclear attack on the U.S. was shown on North Korean television. And during the aforementioned military exercises in March, North Korea's Foreign Ministry threatened that if "the U.S. and the South Korean puppet forces fire even a single bullet at the territory of the DPRK," Pyongyang was ready to retaliate with nuclear weapons.
The U.S. has not been tacit during Pyongyang's continuing firestorm. Besides Secretary of State Rex Tillerson's comments in February that the U.S. would take a harder "new approach" to North Korea and its nuclear weapons program, Vice President Mike Pence supported the all-options-are-on-the-table stance in his Asian diplomatic tour in April, stating, "We will defeat any attack and meet any use of conventional or nuclear weapons with an overwhelming and effective American response."
However, CNN reported last week that the Pentagon was attempting to be less confrontational with North Korea of late, hoping that a diplomatic solution could be found before resorting to any military action.
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