Thing have officially shifted into very dangerous overdrive with North Korea.
Earlier today, it was confirmed that the North Koreans had developed the ability to miniaturize a warhead to place on a missile.
US experts had not thought they were that far along but were surprised today.
And now the North Koreans are actually making a specific threat against U.S. territory.
North Korea said on Wednesday it is “carefully examining” a plan to strike the U.S. Pacific territory of Guam with missiles, just hours after U.S. President Donald Trump told the North that any threat to the United States would be met with “fire and fury”.
A spokesman for the Korean People’s Army, in a statement carried by the North’s state-run KCNA news agency, said the strike plan will be “put into practice in a multi-current and consecutive way any moment” once leader Kim Jong Un makes a decision.
They said they would have no problem acting first.
In another statement citing a different military spokesman, North Korea also said it could carry out a pre-emptive operation if the United States showed signs of provocation.
Earlier Pyongyang said it was ready to give Washington a “severe lesson” with its strategic nuclear force in response to any U.S. military action.
Trump had earlier warned North Korea.
Washington has warned it is ready to use force if need be to stop North Korea’s ballistic missile and nuclear programs but that it prefers global diplomatic action, including sanctions.
The consequences of any U.S. strike would potentially be catastrophic not only for North Koreans but also South Korea, Japan and the thousands of U.S. military personnel within range of any North Korean retaliatory strikes.
“North Korea best not make any more threats to the United States. They will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen,” Trump told reporters at the Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, New Jersey.
The UN Security Council unanimously passed the toughest sanctions yet against North Korea, with even their protector China voting yes last week.
North Korea is painting themselves into a very bad corner and giving every justification for a strike.
The United States has 28,500 troops in South Korea to guard against the North Korean threat. Japan hosts around 54,000 U.S. military personnel, the U.S. Department of Defense says, and tens of thousands of Americans work in both countries.
Seoul is home to a population of roughly 10 million, within range of massed pre-targeted North Korean rockets and artillery, which would be impossible to destroy in a first U.S. strike.
Any strike could potentially have devastating effects on the region if North Korea retaliates against South Korea of Japan.