That said, there are steps that can and should be taken to reduce the danger of deadly accidents. Pyongyang has threatened to fire missiles towards the Pacific island of Guam and US President Donald Trump has warned it would face "fire and fury" if it threatened the United States.
Although North Korea is actually wrong in its assessment of the threat the United States poses, its desire to enhance its security by being able to retaliate after such an imagined attack is understandable.
But it comes at an especially sensitive time now, following the exchange of a series of threats between President Donald Trump and North Korea.
South Korea is not only within the reach of likely North Korean attacks, but it also finds itself in the middle of an evolving strategic confrontation between the US, the current hegemon, and China, the aspiring hegemon. The reverberating global effects would likely provoke a downturn worse than the Great Recession. That is a risky fantasy, on several counts.
US Vice President Mike Pence says "all options" are on the table to respond to North Korea, adding there is no future for the regime in Pyongyang with the possession of nuclear weapons. Park Jong-hong, Arirang News. Secretary Mattis and Gen. Joseph Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, understand completely both the dangers and the limited value of any such a strike. The crisis of the last couple of weeks has led the South Korean stock market to decline a few percent, but that means back to where it was in May.
Guterres spoke by telephone with Deputy Ambassador Kim In Ryong on Tuesday, the North Korean mission to the United Nations said in a statement on Thursday. In other words: life goes on. This year, 17,500 members of the US military and almost 50,000 servicemembers from the South Korean military are taking part.
It also appears that South Korea and Japan share the common sentiment that the American nuclear commitment to their territorial security can no longer be taken for granted as Pyongyang has developed the capability of hitting American territories directly.
"As long as the US hostile policy and nuclear threat continue, the DPRK, no matter who may say what, will never place its self-defensive nuclear deterrence on the negotiation table or flinch an inch from the road chosen by itself, the road of bolstering up the state nuclear force", ambassador Kim said. And with hatred, misperception and cyber attacks on all sides, the potential for escalation to full-scale conflict seems clear.
Several U.S. officials told ABC News recently that the U.S. has not seen any activity in North Korea that would indicate an imminent missile launch.
Accepting a nuclear North Korea would deliver a blow to non-proliferation of nuclear weapons and would serve show other states that creating nuclear weapons is possible. Denuclearization should remain the long-term goal, but it can not be the immediate focus of USA policy.
While expressing a desire to reach out to the North, South Korea's liberal President Moon Jae-in has also ordered his military officials to schedule talks with the United States to increase the warhead limits on South Korean missiles, and his prime minister said recently that the country should also consider acquiring nuclear-powered submarines to better cope with North Korean threats.
Third, we need to get going on the negotiation track.
Colonel Rob Manning, a Pentagon spokesman, told the South China Morning Post earlier this week at a press briefing that deploying the US's Terminal High Altitude Area Defense, or THAAD anti-ballistic missile defence system on the Korean Peninsula, was "one of the options" being considered to shoot down a North Korean missile.