The Trump administration is further escalating the conflict in North Korea following North Korea’s latest launch of an intercontinental ballistic missile. The move is yet another sign that the administration is choosing to leave diplomacy behind.
The United States flew a B-1B bomber over South Korea as part of a joint military drill. In the past, North Korea has taken such drills as a threat.
“Through the drill, the South Korean and U.S. air forces displayed the allies’ strong intent and ability to punish North Korea when threatened by nuclear weapons and missiles.” – South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff
Here’s the problem with that: as many experts have pointed out, North Korea responds to any show of force with more force. Historically, when North Korea’s leadership feels threatened, the potential for conflict escalates. And why would North Korea not respond in such a way when repeatedly threatened by a leader in command of one of the largest militaries in the world?
Diplomacy is the only sane option here. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has stated publicly that he will pursue diplomacy “until the first bomb drops.” But reports of his potential ouster may signal that others in the Trump administration are hell bent on all-out war.
A Show of Force
During the drills, the U.S. bomber simulated land strikes at a South Korean military field. According to International Business Times, this was the very first time that the U.S. deployed all six F-22 at one time on the Korean Peninsula, as well. There were two B-1B bombers, six EA-18G Growler electronic warfare jets, and dozens of F-15C and F-16 fighter jets. As if those weren’t enough, the drill was carried out alongside South Korea’s various fighter jets as well.
Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley recently stated that North Korea would be “utterly destroyed” if the United States were attacked. Those are fighting words. The South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-Wha said on Tuesday in an interview with CNN that a war on the Korean Peninsula would be “catastrophic” and “unimaginable.”
North Korea claimed that their newest missile, the ICBM Hwasong-15 can hit anywhere in the U.S.
Time to remove Trump from office, don’t you think?