North Korea test-fired four “Hwasal-2 strategic cruise missiles” from the city of Kim Chaek towards the Sea of Japan on Friday morning, according to reports in North Korean media. This announcement coincided with joint military exercises hosted by the Pentagon and involving US and South Korean forces.
In response to what it sees as persistent “hostile and provocative practices” by the US, North Korea has warned that these actions may be construed as a ‘declaration of war’, according to a statement by Kwon Jong-gun, the director-general of the North Korean Foreign Ministry’s US affairs department, as reported by state-run Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).
Editor’s Note: The U.S., ROK, DPRK, and Japan need to proceed carefully. A conflict on the Peninsula would spread. The aftermath for the region would be ugly on multiple levels. Beyond the death and destruction from kinetic conflict, eventually the region would be faced with the migration of millions of malnourished, stunted and wasted North Koreans. This outcome is of particular concern to China as they share an 840-mile common border.