A North Korea Crisis for Christmas

A North Korea Crisis for Christmas

Gordon G. Chang

Security,

Gordon Chang: “There will be a year-end crisis this year, but it will be one that takes Pyongyang by surprise. All Kim needs to do is ask Xi Jinping what happens when Trump gets frustrated and loses patience.”

There will be a North Korea crisis for Christmas this year.

Hours after President Donald Trump admonished North Korea supremo Kim Jong Un on Sunday, Kim’s right-hand man, Kim Yong Chol fired back, calling the American leader “a heedless and erratic old man.”

Trump issued his warning, in the form a two-part tweet, after Pyongyang took steps to pressure the White House.

Kim is about to make his next move soon—and it appears he will make a mistake.

“Kim Jong Un is too smart and has far too much to lose, everything actually, if he acts in a hostile way,” Trump wrote in a two-part tweet Sunday. “He signed a strong Denuclearization Agreement with me in Singapore. He does not want to void his special relationship with the President of the United States or interfere .  .  .  with the U.S. Presidential Election in November.”

Hours before, the North announced it had conducted a “very important test” at the Sohae satellite launch site—probably a static engine test for an intercontinental ballistic missile—and more significantly announced it was calling off “denuclearization” discussions with the United States. “We do not need to have lengthy talks with the U.S. now and the denuclearization is already gone out of the negotiation table,” said Kim Song, North Korea’s U.N. ambassador, in a statement.

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