As U.S.-South Korean military aerial drills begin this week – the largest aerial exercise ever, North Korea over the weekend warned that the United States is “begging for nuclear war” if it goes through with the drills, and that America has “reckless nuclear war mania.”
The U.S. sent six F-22 stealth fighter jets to the Korean Peninsula to prepare for a joint drill with South Korea this week, in a huge show of force against North Korea – despite warnings from the country led by dictator Kim Jong Un.
President Donald Trump and the U.S. are “begging for nuclear war” with the exercises, the North Korean Foreign Ministry said in a televised statement over the weekend, CNN reported, adding that the drills are an “extremely dangerous nuclear gamble.”
And, the U.S. would be “fully responsible” for any nuclear war because of its “reckless nuclear war mania,” CNN reported.
“Then on Sunday, commentary run by [North Korean] state TV called this week’s US-South Korea joint air exercises a ‘dangerous provocation’ pushing the region ‘to the brink of a nuclear war,’ according to CNN,” Business Insider reported. “North Korean media regularly threatens the U.S. and its allies and blames the US for tensions on the peninsula.”
“Vigilant Ace” exercises are slated to kick off Monday and go through Friday.
This comes after North Korea last week launched a new Hwasong-15 intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) that it claims was the “most powerful” to date. Experts and officials have since said the latest launch shows that North Korean missiles could reach anywhere in the world.
The ICBM was launched Tuesday from Sain Ni and traveled more than 600 miles before crashing into the Sea of Japan, within Japan’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). The ICBM was in flight for more than 50 minutes.
The BBC reported that, based on its trajectory, the missile could have traveled more than 8,000 miles, which means it could reach “any part of the continental United States.”
“But it seems likely, the analysis adds, that the missile had a very light mock warhead, meaning it might lack the power to carry a nuclear payload, which is much heavier, over that distance,” the BBC pointed out. “North Korea, however, says the Hwasong-15 could reach mainland US carrying a ‘super-large heavy warhead.’”
The missile launch defied international sanctions on the country led by dictator Kim Jong Un, and it drew ire across the globe, as this was the highest missile North Korea has ever launched – reaching nearly 2,800 miles at its highest.
U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said the missile test went “higher, frankly, than any previous shot they have taken,” and that North Korea can hit “everywhere in the world, basically.”
North Korea had not tested a missile in more than two months – odd, considering the regime led by dictator Kim Jong Un has conducted now-16 missile tests this year alone, and also launched a nuclear bomb.
North Korea in early September conducted its sixth ever successful nuclear missile launch and claims that the country now has a Hydrogen bomb it can place on an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).
The most recent North Korean missile test was on Sept. 14, when North Korea launched an intermediate-range missile over Japan into the Pacific Ocean.