N Korea’s latest threat is serious

North Korea clearly is working feverishly to increase its military capability and to heighten worry about it among other world leaders. To what end?

Last week, it was reported North Korea test-fired a missile from a submarine. If true, that is an incredibly provocative move. Pyongyang already has nuclear weapons and medium-range missiles. Being able to fire a nuclear-armed missile from a submarine would put every nation in the world at risk.

Are the North Koreans once more playing a relatively short-term game, perhaps trying to scare some concessions out of South Korea, the United States or someone else? Or is this a long-term strategy perhaps intended to make the regime untouchable in any way?

Another critical question: Are U.S. leaders prepared to deal with whatever the North Koreans have in mind?

Previously, North Korea has been a primarily regional concern.

That has changed. Now, Pyongyang’s demonstrations of military capability make it clear North Korea is a threat to world peace.

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