‘Not if, but when’: N. Korea claims US warmongering makes potential nuclear war inevitable
“The large-scale nuclear war exercises conducted by the US in succession are creating touch-and-go situation on the Korean peninsula and series of violent war remarks coming from the US high-level politicians amid such circumstances have made an outbreak of war on the Korean peninsula an established fact. The remaining question now is: when will the war break out,” a spokesperson for North Korea’s foreign ministry said Wednesday in commentary provided by state news agency KCNA.
The US and its regional allies are in the midst of a massive and unprecedented five-day joint air force Vigilant Ace exercise which kicked off Monday. In the latest provocative show of force, the US Air Force dispatched B-1B aircraft, F-22 Raptor fighter jets, as well as several F-35 stealth jets and F-16 fighter planes over the Korean peninsula Wednesday. While the drills are allegedly ‘defensive’ in nature, top American and South Korean pilots are polishing their skills to carry out attacks on North Korean nuclear and missile installations in different war scenarios. A total of 12,000 personnel and over 230 military aircraft are engaged in the drills that will run until December 8.
The ongoing military maneuvers are accompanied by aggressive warlike rhetoric from Washington. Over the weekend, White House national security adviser H.R. McMaster warned that the possibility of war with Pyongyang is “increasing every day.” Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC), on Sunday, called for the evacuation of family members of US military stationed in the region. CIA chief, Mike Pompeo, on Saturday, said US intelligence agencies believe that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un does not have a clue how weak his position is.
“Those around him are not feeding him the truth about the place that he finds himself – how precarious his position is in the world today. It’s probably not easy to tell Kim Jong-un bad news,” he said in Simi Valley, California.
Pyongyang seems to be taking such warnings literally and is now preparing for war which the country is anxious can break out any moment.
“These confrontational warmongering remarks cannot be interpreted in any other way but as a warning to us to be prepared for a war on the Korean peninsula,” the spokesman said. “The careless remarks of war by the inner circle of Trump and the reckless military moves by the US substantiate that the current US administration has made a decision to provoke a war on the Korean peninsula and is taking a step-by-step approach to get there.”
Making clear that Pyongyang does not want a war, the spokesman said N. Korea “shall not hide from it.”
“Should the US miscalculate our patience and light the fuse for a nuclear war, we will surely make the US dearly pay the consequences with our mighty nuclear force which we have consistently strengthened,” the foreign ministry said. “If the US does not want to be burnt to death by the fire it ignites, it would better behave with prudence and caution.”
Pyongyang has repeatedly criticized the joint drills between the US and South Korea. Last month, the North's ambassador to the UN ruled out negotiations with Washington, citing America’s “hostile policy” against his country, as well as the continuing drills between the Americans and South Koreans. Russia and China have long called for the US and North Korea to accept their proposed "double freeze" plan which would see Pyongyang suspend its nuclear and ballistic missile tests in exchange for a pause in joint US-South Korea drills. However, that proposal has firmly been rejected by the US.