TOKYO: Korea’s launch of a ballistic missile over Japan was unprecedented, but President Trump’s response has not been a renewal of his warning that “all options are on the table” and a reminder that the possibility of a military action has yet to dissuade North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
The missile launch seemed designed to cause just the right amount of damage – enough for Kim to show he would not be intimidated, but not to invite the “fire and rage” that Trump warned could follow continued threats in North Korea.
The launch Tuesday morning was the first test of such a sophisticated weapon in the landmass of an American ally and a clear warning in the United States that North Korea could easily go to US military installations in Guam or elsewhere. U.S. the Pacific region.
He arrived during joint military exercises between the United States and South Korea that infuriated the communist regime armed with nuclear weapons. It also came despite recent talks by Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.
“The world has received the high message from North Korea loud and clear: this regime has signaled its contempt for its neighbors, for all members of the United Nations and for minimum standards of acceptable international conduct,” Trump said in an account done in the morning.
“Threatening and destabilizing actions only increase the isolation of the North Korean regime in the region and among all nations of the world,” he said. “All the options are on the table.”
The United States requested an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council. which this month approved unanimously the most severe economic sanctions to date in a nation that is already one of the most heavily sanctioned in the world.
“No country should have missiles flying over them like those of 130 million people in Japan, which is unacceptable,” US ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said before this session.
North Korea “violated all the UN Security Council resolutions we had, and I think something serious should happen,” he added. “A lot is a lot.”
[North Korean missiles fly over Japan, causing an unfortunate reaction from Tokyo]
Trump spoke on the phone with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe hours after the launch, and the two leaders “pledged to increase the pressure on North Korea and do everything possible to convince the international community to do” according to a statement from the White House.
This is a reference to the rigorous international sanctions that have not hitherto prevented North Korea from developing nuclear bombs and intercontinental ballistic missiles. The United States asserts that North Korea could not circumvent sanctions if other countries, including China, applied it more rigorously.
Asked about the effectiveness of sanctions and international denunciation, given that North Korea does not seem to care about movements, U.N. Jonathan Allen insisted that these actions have merit.
“They sent this really important message from around the world, and they have an impact on North Korea,” Allen told reporters at the United Nations.
The missile looked like a Hwasong-12, the mid-range ballistic missile that North Korea is threatening to fire in waters close to the US territory of Guam.
But North Korea did not do it southeast toward Guam. Instead, it launched the missile in a northeasterly direction, over Japan and into the Pacific Ocean.
It was, as Stephan Haggard, a political scientist and Korean expert at the University of California at San Diego, said, “perfectly calibrated to create bad political practices.”