Captain Davis Allan Adams, U.S. Navy (retired), writes:
As North Korea inches ever closer to having the ability to strike the United States with nuclear-armed ballistic missiles, President Donald Trump has warned Pyongyang’s leaders “not to try the United States.” [i] His speech before the South Korean parliament, combined with his previous threat to respond to North Korean provocations with “fire and fury,” created a frenzy among much of the foreign policy establishment. The Trump administration’s approach to this crisis has led to widespread speculation that the United States is preparing to conduct preemptive strikes against North Korea, with “devastating consequences.” [ii] But the costs of failing to preempt North Korean aggression could prove equally destructive.
That’s because “if a limited military move against North Korea prompts an irrational shelling of Seoul and a wider war on the peninsula, then it is better to find out sooner than later. The only thing worse than a devastating war on the Korean Peninsula today is a war against an irrationally behaving, nuclear-armed North Korea capable of demolishing Honolulu, Tokyo, and Tumon tomorrow.”