Trump: North Korea ‘a big, big problem’

U.S. President Donald Trump on Monday vowed to “deal with” North Korea, calling it “a big, big problem”, reports The Associated Press.

The comments come after North Korea’s ballistic missile test which took place over the weekend, though Trump did not specifically mention the test.

Speaking at a joint news conference at the White House with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Trump was not asked about the missile test, but he brought up North Korea when a reporter asked what are the “most important national security problems” facing the U.S.

“Obviously, North Korea is a big, big problem and we will deal with that very strongly,” Trump said, according to AP. He did not elaborate.

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China Warns Donald Trump Not to ‘Escalate’ North Korea Situation With Erratic Tweet

China has hit back at Donald Trump’s claim that Beijing isn’t doing enough to rein in rogue state North Korea, cautioning the U.S. President-elect not to “escalate” an already tense situation on the Korean Peninsula through his liberal use of social media.

On Monday evening, Trump took to Twitter to deny North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s claim that his nation was in the “final stage” of developing a nuclear-armed ballistic missile capable of hitting the U.S. mainland. Trump then followed up with another tweet to say China wasn’t doing enough to temper the young despot’s belligerence.

“China has been taking out massive amounts of money & wealth from the U.S. in totally one-sided trade, but won’t help with North Korea. Nice!”

In response, China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang told a press briefing on Tuesday that his government’s efforts were “widely recognized,” and that “we hope all sides will avoid remarks and actions to escalate the situation.”

The Korean Peninsula is the latest source of friction between the incoming Trump Administration and China to be aired via the President-elect’s Twitter account.

Last month, Trump revealed he accepted a congratulatory phone call from Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen in a breach of almost four decades of diplomatic protocol. Beijing still claims sovereignty over the self-governing island despite its effective split from the mainland in 1949 following China’s civil war.

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Yes, South Korea Does Have a Plan to Assassinate Kim Jong Un

After Kim Jong Un and North Korea conducted their biggest nuclear test yet, South Korea is bolstering its plan to “eliminate” the dictator should they feel threatened by nuclear weapons, according to CNN.

South Korean Defense Minister Han Min-koo revealed the information in parliament on Thursday, saying that a special forces unit is already on standby.

“South Korea has a general idea and plan to use precision missile capabilities to target the enemy’s facilities in major areas, as well as eliminating the enemy’s leadership,” he said.

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North Korea Just Accidentally Opened Up Its Internet

North Korea accidentally opened up access to its internal internet system on Wednesday, showing that there are only 28 sites available for North Koreans to access. Normally, websites on the country’s server are only available for people in North Korea.

A full list of the websites, which include one for booking flights, one for recipes, and one that is potentially a social network, is available here.

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North Korea and the Delusions of International Diplomacy

Last week North Korea conducted its fifth nuclear test, this one a 10-kiloton, miniaturized warhead that can be put on a missile. If North Korean claims are true, this successful test, along with the 20 long-range missile tests conducted this year, shows that a rogue thug state is on the brink of being able to send a nuclear-tipped missile as far as Chicago. President Obama responded with the usual empty diplomatic bluster, threatening “additional significant steps, including new sanctions to demonstrate to North Korea that there are consequences to its unlawful and dangerous actions.” Once again, the magical thinking of international diplomacy puts our national interests and security in mortal danger.

We’re well beyond a century’s worth of the delusional idealism of what historian Corelli Barnett calls “moralizing internationalism.” This is the notion that non-violent diplomatic “engagement,” economic sanctions, and transnational covenants and institutions like the U.N. can deter or stop aggression without a credible threat to use force.

A particularly surreal version of this stubborn belief appeared in early 1914, in the British National Peace Council Peace Yearbook:

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North Korea Tests Most Powerful Nuke Yet, Despite UN Sanctions

North Korea’s most powerful nuclear test on Thursday night was accompanied by an announcement that they now now have the ability to mount a nuclear warhead on a ballistic missile. The ten megaton explosion, their fifth since 2006, was recorded as a 5.3 magnitude seismic event by monitors in the US, Japan, China and Europe. The nuclear test coincided with the 68th anniversary of the founding of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea).

The North Korean claim of being able to launch a nuclear attack seems accurate since they successfully conducted a test on a medium-range ballistic missile on Monday.

“We’ve improved our ability to produce standardized and miniaturized nuclear warheads so we can produce as many as we want,” announced DKNA, North Korean national television. “This is our response to hostile powers, including the US. We sent out a message that if the enemies attack us, we can counterattack. The measures to protect our dignity and our right to exist from the US threat will continue.”

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