With the United States and South Korea set to begin joint military exercises on Monday—and as Trump administration officials attempt to de-escalate tensions after the president threatened to bring “fire and fury” upon North Korea—the regime of Kim Jong-un published an editorial in a state-run newspaper on Sunday calling the planned war games “reckless behavior” that is “driving the situation into the uncontrollable phase of a nuclear war.”
“Time has proven that coercion doesn’t work. There’s an urgent need to hit the reset button on U.S.-Korean policy.”
—Medea Benjamin, CODEPINK
The editorial added that the military exercises amount to “pouring gasoline on fire,” and warned that the U.S. would not be able to “dodge the merciless strike” the regime claims it is prepared to launch.
“The Korean People’s Army is keeping a high alert, fully ready to contain the enemies,” the editorial continued. “It will take resolute steps the moment even a slight sign of the preventive war is spotted.”
“If the U.S. is lost in a fantasy that war on the peninsula is at somebody else’s doorstep far away from them across the Pacific, it is far more mistaken than ever,” the editorial concluded.
The U.S.-South Korea military exercises are set to last for ten days, and they will consist of 17,500 American troops and 50,000 South Korean troops.
As the Associated Press noted, the drills “hold more potential to provoke than ever,” and some are calling on the U.S. and South Korea “to postpone or drastically modify drills to ease the hostility on the Korean Peninsula.”
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