Editorials

North Korea bluster deadly serious

United States Secretary of State Rex Tillerson speaks as South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha, sits at left, during a meeting on North Korea in Vancouver, British Columbia, Tuesday, Jan. 16, 2018. Officials are discussing sanctions, preventing the spread of weapons and diplomatic options.
United States Secretary of State Rex Tillerson speaks as South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha, sits at left, during a meeting on North Korea in Vancouver, British Columbia, Tuesday, Jan. 16, 2018. Officials are discussing sanctions, preventing the spread of weapons and diplomatic options. AP

The New York Times has reported that the United States military now is preparing for what at one time would have been unthinkable, even with the reckless, blustering Donald Trump in the White House: war with North Korea.

But the Times report says that from North Carolina’s Fort Bragg to military bases all over the country, gunships and cargo helicopters are training hard, under live artillery fire, and that troops are simulating a foreign invasion. Reserve forces are going to train in exercises that will help them if need be move troops overseas quickly.

The notion of such a war, spurred on by Trump’s penchant for angry, chest-puffing attacks and Kim’s ineptitude – and of course, his nation’s foolish development of nuclear weapons – is frightening and so unnecessary.

Certainly Kim might not be inclined toward negotiation, as he appears entirely unqualified to run his country, a country where the citizens are in dire straits in so many ways. But Kim is facing not just pressure from the United States but from Russia and China, both nearby, both of whom don’t want any kind of war involving North Korea, where the launch of an errant nuclear missile could plunge the world into the last war.

It’s almost as if playground bully Trump thinks he’s moving toy soldiers around in a sandbox. And he loves to vent his anger with no bounds.

But the difference now is that Trump isn’t negotiating with another developer over a piece of Manhattan real estate or sitting on a television show set making pronouncements about whether a contestant on “The Apprentice” made money on a pizza shop.

This is real, and the lives of millions of Americans and other citizens of the world are literally at stake, and in a war involving North Korea in whatever phase of nuclear weapons development that country is in, the outcome would be uncertain.

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