North Korea’s attitude toward President Trump recently took an alarming turn from blatantly declared hatred to unsettling indifference, and no one knew what Kim Jong-un’s regime was planning next. Of course, Pyongyang was closely watching Trump’s every move during his tour of Asia (to ascertain whether he’s “crazy”). They were — naturally — upset when Trump slammed North Korea (during a speech in South Korea) for its dictatorship and human rights violations. And then Trump indirectly referred to their leader (within a tweet) as “short and fat.”
Now, Trump pulled that last move while expressing the desire to be Kim Jong-un’s friend, but that’s not happening. Instead, a mouthpiece for the regime published a scathing editorial in a North Korean state-media paper, Rodong Sinmun, while effectively stating that Trump must die for his comments. The Independent has translated this mess:
“The worst crime for which he can never be pardoned is that he dared [to] malignantly hurt the dignity of the supreme leadership. He should know that he is just a hideous criminal sentenced to death by the Korean people.”
How serious is this rhetoric? Considering that Trump stated, “Do not underestimate us, and do not try us,” and the regime responded with a death threat, one can assume that some urgent State Department meetings will take place on the subject. Pyongyang seems to have cooled their frequency of missile launches and nuclear tests of late, but there’s clearly still plenty of activity taking place at North Korea’s main nuclear test site. In other words, we probably won’t be waiting long before those tests fire up once more.
(Via The Independent)