As the combative rhetoric emanating from both the United States and North Korea shows no signs of abating, many are beginning to become increasingly concerned over the possibility of military action becoming a harsh reality.
Following a massive military parade in Pyongyang at the weekend, during which new long-range missiles were displayed (although experts have cast doubt over their operational readiness), United States and South Korean officials reported that North Korea had launched a missile – thought to be a test – only for it to explode just seconds later.
The Vice President of the United States, Mike Pence, described the act as a “provocation” during a speech in South Korea, and reiterated America’s commitment to its ally on the Korean peninsula.
Clearly, though, the bombastic posturing from world leaders has done little to help the quickly escalating situation, which has gone far enough now for military activity to seem a less-than far-fetched concept. North Korea has warned the United States against what it described as “military hysteria”, and maintained that the country is ready for war.
Earlier, news reports circulated revealing what appears to be a propaganda video shown during the Day of Sun festival in North Korea that depicts a submarine launching a missile at a US city, resulting in a massive explosion. Now, it seems that Russia and its President, Vladamir Putin, are preparing for the worst-case scenario.