President Trump tweeted Friday that the U.S. military is “locked and loaded” if North Korea acts “unwisely,” escalating an exchange of threats between the nuclear-armed nations.
American and South Korean officials said they would move forward with large-scale military exercises later this month that North Korea calls a rehearsal for war. Pyongyang has laid out plans to strike near the U.S. territory of Guam.
Trump tweeted Friday: “Military solutions are now fully in place, locked and loaded, should North Korea act unwisely. Hopefully Kim Jong Un will find another path!” His tweet caps off a week of war rhetoric that has alarmed international leaders.
Despite tensions and talk of war, life on the streets of the North Korean capital remains calm. There are no air raid drills or cars in camouflage netting as was the case during previous crises. Schoolchildren carry brooms as they walk to various public spaces to sweep and weed the grass in efforts to keep the city clean.
North Koreans have lived for decades with the state media message that war is imminent, the U.S. is to blame and their country is ready to defend itself. State-run media ensure that the population gets the North Korean side of the story, but don’t convey any sense of international concern about the situation. (AP)
Photography by Wong Maye-E/AP