The petulant child ruler who routinely threatens the world with his nuclear arsenal sounded off again and — wait, which one of them are we talking about? They’re virtually mirror images of one another, although, if a comparison had to be made, Kim Jung Un comes across in this day and age as the more rational of the two. This is where world diplomacy has plummeted to due to Donald Trump’s buttons being pushed all the time by the least comment by anyone; and we’re talking emotional buttons — for now.
North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un just stated that the “Nuclear Button is on his desk at all times.” Will someone from his depleted and food starved regime please inform him that I too have a Nuclear Button, but it is a much bigger & more powerful one than his, and my Button works!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 3, 2018
Sanctions and “other” pressures are beginning to have a big impact on North Korea. Soldiers are dangerously fleeing to South Korea. Rocket man now wants to talk to South Korea for first time. Perhaps that is good news, perhaps not – we will see!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 2, 2018
The president’s tone also generated a mix of scorn and alarm among lawmakers, diplomats and national security experts who called it juvenile and frightening for a president handling a foreign policy challenge with world-wrecking consequences. The language was reminiscent of Mr. Trump’s boast during the 2016 presidential campaign that his hands, and by extension his genitals, were in fact big enough.
“I guess the president regards this as a show of strength,” Representative Jim Himes, Democrat of Connecticut and a member of the House Intelligence Committee, said on CNN. “But as everybody who’s ever been in a, you know, first grade playground recognizes, it’s usually the person who’s most aggressively pounding their chest that is in fact the weak one on the playground.”
From a former State Department counselor:
Spoken like a petulant ten year old. But one with nuclear weapons – for real – at his disposal. How responsible people around him, or supporting him, can dismiss this or laugh it off is beyond me. https://t.co/uKu6p1KUWp
— Eliot A Cohen (@EliotACohen) January 3, 2018
Michael Flynn Jr. chimed in with this:
— ????????MFLYNNJR???????? (@mflynnJR) January 3, 2018
Many security experts have said there is no reasonable military option for restraining North Korea that would not involve unacceptable loss of life, which is one reason South Korea’s president, Moon Jae-in, is more eager for dialogue. But Mr. Trump and his national security adviser, Lt. Gen. H. R. McMaster, have argued that there is a viable military alternative.
Whether intended or not, the diverging messages between Mr. Trump and Mr. Moon could create a good-cop, bad-cop situation in which the South Koreans use the specter of a militant United States as leverage to win concessions from North Korea.