The alliteration might sound good as it rolls off the tongue or typed into a tweet.
“Fire and fury” has given way to “locked and loaded.” Is it realistic? Or logical? Does it further the cause of peace?
I want to consider for a brief moment something about this confrontation between the United States and North Korea. It is the rhetoric that flies out of the pie hole of Kim Jong Un, the boy with the bad haircut who runs North Korea.
Kim sounds like the two previous Kims who ruled the nation before he inherited the regime. His father and grandfather both said much the same thing about how they would destroy South Korea, Japan, the United States or any nation that “interfered” with the “internal” politics of the Korean Peninsula.
One key difference, though, is that the current Kim reportedly can deliver a nuclear weapon aboard a missile to faraway targets.
But has he acted on his threats? Daddy Kim blustered and bellowed until his death. Grandpa Kim did invade South Korea in 1950, precipitating the Korean War; the shooting lasted until 1953 with the signing of a ceasefire, but there has not yet been a peace treaty signed that officially ends the state of war between South and North Korea.
The more serious change in the rhetorical barrage, of course, comes from our side. The U.S. president has decided to fire back with tweets and assorted public pronouncements about how he intends to release “fire and fury” on Pyongyang if that government keeps threatening the United States. Donald Trump now has said that the U.S. military is “locked and loaded” in the event the commies do anything foolish.
The president’s bellicosity does not make me feel safer. It gives me little comfort. It doesn’t provide any assurance that the current Kim is going to work overtime to find restraint in his own bizarre impulses.
Diplomatic decorum would dictate that the president — the commander in chief of the world’s mightiest military — remain calm, reasoned and rational. Kim knows the United States can obliterate his country. Is he going to doom his people — and himself — to certain death now that he allegedly has the capability to launch a nuclear weapon at the United States of America?
I don’t know. I do know that he hasn’t delivered on any of the threats he has made already. As for the man he is staring in the face, Donald Trump, he doesn’t need to boast in front of the whole world about being “locked and loaded.”
We get the point, Mr. President. We’re the biggest, baddest dudes on the block. I’m quite sure Kim Jong Un knows it, too.