A third war in sixteen years?

Michael Krepon writes: Donald Trump spirals downward. He has no other place to go. Due to circumstances comprehensible only in retrospect, he became president. The corners he has cut and the deals he has struck will be his undoing. He is temperamentally unsuited to be president and to have sole authority to launch a nuclear strike. In due course, he will be ushered out, the victimizer posing as ultimate victim. Bipartisan sighs of relief will accompany his departure. He will rally what remains of his base, until they, too, will eventually move on, disinterested in whatever shiny object he tries to sell.

The first order of business for American citizens during the Trump presidency is to do everything in our collective power to limit the damage he can do. Since the most harm could result from a preventive war to disarm North Korea of its nuclear weapons, this aspect of damage limitation must have the highest priority.

Kim Jong Un is doing his part to prompt another preventive war. As provocations go, overflying Japan with a ballistic missile and carrying out another nuclear test are almost, but not yet, chart-toppers. These actions warrant even greater economic penalties, especially from China and Russia, as well as other clarifications of the folly of this young Maximum Leader’s current course. Tit-for-tat military rejoinders to his provocations also merit consideration — but only if they do not prompt conventional warfare and the use of nuclear weapons. [Continue reading…]

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