North Korea Cautions Against U.S.-South Korea Drills

Chase Baker
Chase Baker
Chase is a seasoned journalist and former resident of Iraqi Kurdistan. With a background in English and Philosophy from the College of Charleston, Chase covered the 2022 conflict in eastern Ukraine, including cities like Kharkiv, Bakhmut, and Kramatorsk. He has also produced short documentaries in Ukraine and the U.S., and has been with Atlas for three years.

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What You Need To Know:

On Tuesday, North Korea sharply condemned the yearly joint military drills by the United States and South Korea, issuing a stern warning of a potential “thermonuclear war.” This increased tension arises from recent trilateral agreements solidifying stronger ties among the leaders of the U.S., South Korea, and Japan at the Camp David summit.

Starting the Ulchi Freedom Shield summer maneuvers, South Korea and the United States initiated exercises on Monday. These drills aim to enhance their joint responses to North Korea’s ongoing nuclear and missile threats. Pyongyang has consistently criticized these exercises as a preparation for war.

The Details:

A commentary released through the KCNA news agency offered North Korea’s perspective. They view the Camp David summit as a dangerous step toward a “nuclear war provocation.” The commentary highlighted concerns that implementing the agreements from Camp David into ongoing military exercises could significantly raise the likelihood of a thermonuclear conflict on the Korean peninsula.

The leaders of the U.S., South Korea, and Japan held an independent meeting. Their shared goal was to strengthen both military and economic cooperation as a unified response to China’s growing influence and the persistent nuclear threats posed by North Korea.

In response, North Korea’s commentary stressed the need for proactive and overwhelming military actions, though without going into detail.

Additionally, North Korea revealed plans to launch a satellite between August 24 and August 31, aimed at the Yellow Sea and East China Sea. This follows a previous failed launch in May.

There are speculations among South Korean lawmakers that North Korea might test-fire an intercontinental ballistic missile or resort to other military provocations in protest against the joint exercises and the recent summit involving South Korea, the United States, and Japan.