The war of words continues to escalate in North and South Korea as both sides found themselves responding to comments by the other. North Korea was upset at comments made by a South Korean general who said his nation would militarily respond if attacked from the north. The paranoid North Korean government interpreted his remarks as a threat and warned they would unleash a sea of fire that would destroy South Korea. Part of the problem stems from the election to the office of president of Lee Myung-bak, who had campaigned on a platform of being more pragmatic and clear in dealing with North Korea. His comments were interpreted in the North as representing a shift from the past 10 years in which South Korean governments have attempted to develop positive economic relations with the Communist North.
The South Korean president should never forget he is dealing with a paranoid government and they must be handled with care and diplomatic use of language. North Korea fired som missiles into the sea to prove it could fire missiles. The best response is silence and ignoring the action.
Issues of nulcear weapons in North Korea are best addressed by the international community including China and the United States. There is no need for South Korea to assume some type of leadership role, let the world handle it.