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Asia Today ISSN 1861-4604 Friday, December 15, 2017


Calling Trump deranged, North Korea mulls H-bomb test

Trump vowing to destroy North Korea

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PYONGYANG, North Korea - The world watched in fear the last time the North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and U.S. President Donald Trump had a war of words. 

Now, as the threats and declarations intensify, yet again world leaders are trying to find a solution to calm the tensions in the Korean peninsula, which have left people in the region worried about a war breaking out.

During his debut United Nations General Assembly speech, Trump make a dangerous statement - vowing to destroy North Korea, if it continues to intensify its nuclear program.

North Korean diplomats, who remained absent for Trump's fiery speech, responded a day later.

In a scornful response, North Korea's foreign minister, Ri Yong Ho, said, ”If he was thinking he could scare us with the sound of a dog barking, that's really a dog dream.”

In Korean, a dog dream is one that is absurd and makes little sense.

When asked about Trump's use of the “Rocket Man" nickname, Ri said, "I feel sorry for his aides."

Now, a day after the statement, the Rocket Man has himself spoken up.

On Friday, North Korea said it might test a hydrogen bomb over the Pacific Ocean and its leader Kim Jong Un promised to make a “mentally deranged” Trump pay dearly for his threats.

Kim Jong Un did not specify what action he would take against the United States or Trump. 

South Korea said it was the first direct statement of its kind by a North Korean leader.

Ri Yong Ho meanwhile delivered televised remarks, in which he said North Korea could consider a hydrogen bomb test of an unprecedented scale on the Pacific Ocean.

Almost immediately, Japan described the threat as “totally unacceptable.”

Earlier this week, addressing world leaders at the UNGA in New York, Trump called Kim Jong Un the “Rocket Man,” saying he is “on a suicide mission for himself and his regime.”

The U.S. president said if the rogue nation continued its nuclear testing program, “We will have no choice but to totally destroy North Korea.”

He said, “No nation on Earth has an interest in seeing this band of criminals arm itself with nuclear weapons and missiles. If the righteous many do not confront the wicked few, then evil will triumph.”

Trump further said that America has “great patience” but that North Korea’s actions “threatens the entire world with unthinkable loss of life.”

Trump urged world leaders, claiming that the United Nations had a responsibility to stop the “terrorists and extremists (who) have gathered and grown in strength to every region in the planet.”

After Trump’s speech, many experts claimed that threatening another country with destruction was unprecedented for a U.S. President.

The comments by the American President took some diplomats aback, but many others didn’t respond with much surprise as Trump's speeches typically employ colorful rhetoric.

On Friday, Kim Jong Un said the North would consider the “highest level of hard-line countermeasure in history” against the United States and that Trump’s comments had confirmed his own nuclear program was “the correct path.”

On September 3, Pyongyang conducted its sixth and largest nuclear test.

It has also launched dozens of missiles this year attracting several rounds of new sanctions aimed at crippling the nation’s economy, forcing it to put an end to its dangerous nuclear program. 

Kim Jong Un said in a statement carried by the KCNA state news agency on Friday, “I will surely and definitely tame the mentally deranged U.S. dotard with fire.”

KCNA also carried a report that made a rare criticism of official Chinese media.

It said their comments on the North’s nuclear program had damaged ties and suggested Beijing, its only major ally, had sided with Washington.

The report singled out the official People’s Daily and its sister publication, the Global Times and said Chinese media was “openly resorting to interference in the internal affairs of another country” and driving a wedge between the two countries.

Meanwhile, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called for statesmanship to avoid “sleepwalking” into a war.

Even South Korea, Russia and China all urged calm.

On Thursday, Trump announced sanctions on North Korea, stopping short of going after Pyongyang’s biggest trading partner, China.

The U.S. President praised as a move by its central bank ordering Chinese banks to stop doing business with North Korea as “tremendous.”

The additional sanctions on Pyongyang, including on its shipping and trade networks, showed that Trump was giving more time for economic pressures to weigh on North Korea after warning about the possibility of military action on Tuesday.

Trump said the new executive order on sanctions gives further authorities to target individual companies and institutions that finance and facilitate trade with North Korea.

He said, it “will cut off sources of revenue that fund North Korea’s efforts to develop the deadliest weapons known to humankind.”

The new executive order gives U.S. Treasury Department the authority to target those that conduct “significant trade in goods, services or technology with North Korea.”

The White House said in a statement that North Korea’s energy, medical, mining, textiles, and transportation industries were among those targeted.

It added that the U.S. Treasury could sanction anyone who owns, controls or operates a port of entry in North Korea.

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