USA flies bombers over Korean peninsula in show of force

Thomas Berger, Professor of International Relations at the Frederick S. Pardee School of Global Studies at Boston University, was recently interviewed for an article on whether economic sanctions alone will be enough to prompt North Korea to abandon its nuclear weapons program.

Trump dubbed Kim "Rocket Man" and threatened in a September 19 speech at the United Nations to "totally destroy" North Korea if the U.S. is forced to defend itself and its allies.

North Korea's foreign minister has said Donald Trump "has lit the wick of a war", according to a Russian state news agency.

'We need to settle the final score, only with a hail of fire, not words'. On July 4th, that happens to be the Independence Day of the United States, North Korea test-fired its Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM), reportedly powerful enough to reach to the USA mainland.

'Our principal position is that we will never agree to any talks in which our nuclear weapons will be the subject of negotiations'.

North Korea has pursued its missile and nuclear programs in defiance of worldwide condemnation and sanctions.

Q: Tensions started rising between the US and North Korea after Donald Trump came to power.

The United States fought a bloody conflict in Korea from 1950-1953 that ultimately ended in stalemate and the continued division of the peninsula after hundreds of thousands of Chinese troops entered on the side of the north, turning it into a war of attrition.

"It is because the USA and the puppet forces are planning to keep the U.S. strategic assets in and around south Korea on a permanent basis by expanding the scale of their deployment while kicking up the racket of nuclear war drills against the North".

As loud, startled murmurs filled the hall, Trump described Kim in an acid tone, saying, "rocket man is on a suicide mission for himself and his regime". North Koreans, from childhood, have been brought up to idolize the Kim family as if they were gods.

"I think I have a little bit different attitude on North Korea than other people might have", he told reporters at the start of talks with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau at the White House. "We will do something nice for you.' North Korea said 'cool, we will take it, and we will also build nukes'".

(Incidentally, the Trump administration has been more explicit about what the United States does not seek - namely, regime change and accelerated reunification of Korea - than what it does want.) Several U.S. officials have claimed that they will not accept a freeze in North Korea's nuclear program, because, as Secretary of State Rex Tillerson put it, "if we freeze where they are today, we freeze their activities with a very high level of capability".

On Wednesday, the US and South Korea flew two strategic bombers over the Korean peninsula in a joint military exercise - another show of force against Pyongyang amid the mounting tensions.

Vanessa Coleman

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