Two hundred foreign journalists currently in the North Korean capital of Pyongyang for the nation’s national holiday, “The Day of the Sun,” have been told by authorities to get ready for a “big and important event.” Speculation is that the event is an underground detonation of a nuclear weapon.
According to Reuters, North Korean authorities have provided no additional details, including time or place, of the upcoming event.
What has been disclosed is that the location of the event is 7.5 hours travel time from Pyongyang.
Twitter user ‘Jester Actual’ tweeted: “UPDATE Foreign media inside N.Korea have been put on buses & their phones have been confiscated. They have been issued ‘PRESS’ armbands.”
Another Twitter entity, ‘The Spectator Index, posted: “BREAKING: US intelligence officials believe North Korea has positioned a nuclear device inside a tunnel in preparation for a test”
If, as many predict, North Korea does detonate a nuclear weapon, the location is almost certainly the Punggye-ri test site, as it is the only known nuclear test site within the country, and a place where prior nuclear tests have occurred.
The North Korean saber-rattling is likely tied to U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision to move a Naval strike force to the waters off the Korean peninsula. That move, of course, was precipitated by the increase in international tensions caused by North Korea’s mercurial and unpredictable dictator Kim Jong-un’s incessant threats and provocations, including recent ballistic missile tests.
An important turn of events is that the official Chinese government position is that North Korea should not set off a nuclear weapon at this time and should, in fact, refrain from further provocations. North Korea is, of course utterly reliant on its relationship with China both economically and militarily.
Reuters reported that:
North Korea should halt any plans for nuclear and missile activities “for its own security”, a Chinese newspaper said on Wednesday, warning that the United States is making clear it doesn’t plan to “co-exist” with a nuclear-armed Pyongyang.
North Korean state media cautioned on Tuesday of a nuclear attack on the United States at any sign of American aggression, as a U.S. Navy strike group steamed toward the western Pacific – a force U.S. President Donald Trump described as an “armada”.
Trump, who has urged China to do more to rein in its impoverished ally and neighbor, said in a tweet that North Korea was “looking for trouble” and the United States would “solve the problem” with or without Beijing’s help.
The Korean Peninsula has not been so close to a “military clash” since North Korea conducted its first nuclear test in 2006, China’s influential state-run tabloid the Global Times said in an editorial.
“Not only [is] Washington brimming with confidence and arrogance following the missile attacks on Syria, but Trump is also willing to be regarded as a man who honors his promises,” the paper, run by the ruling Communist Party’s official People’s Daily, said.
“The U.S. is making up its mind to stop the North from conducting further nuclear tests. It doesn’t plan to co-exist with a nuclear-armed Pyongyang,” it said.
“Pyongyang should avoid making mistakes at this time.”
It appears that President Donald Trump’s moves in diplomacy, from the Tomahawk missile strike on the Syrian air base and his meeting in Mar-a-Lago with Chinese President Xi Jinping is bring positive results.
Bill Clinton, during his time in the White House, had stated that his Democratic administration had worked out a deal that would keep North Korea from acquiring nuclear weapons. That was proven to be a huge lie.
Fortunately, America is now blessed with a leader who takes the security of the nation seriously.