North Korea crisis: Kim has called Trump’s bluff

North Korea crisis: Kim has called Trump’s bluff, by Greg Sheridan.

Earlier this week, in some of the most extraordinary public comments made by a US president, Trump threatened nuclear war with Kim if he made “any more threats” to the US. …

So the next day the North Korean government dismissed Trump’s threats as “a load of nonsense” and threatened general hellfire and damnation against the Americans, but added a quite specific threat. By the middle of this month, it would have finished a detailed plan to fire four missiles into the waters around the American Pacific territory of Guam and produce a wall of fire. …

For the first time since World War II, the US has threatened the first use of nuclear weapons, and neither the Defence Secretary nor Secretary of State knew it was coming. Trump, apparently intentionally, echoed the words of Harry Truman who, before dropping the second atomic bomb on Japan in 1945, told the Japanese “they may expect a rain of ruin from the air, the like of which has never been seen on this earth”.

hat-tip Stephen Neil