Kim Jong-un warned U.S. president Donald Trump that the US would “pay dearly” for his address to the United Nations General Assembly earlier this week.
“I will surely and definitely tame the mentally deranged U.S. dotard with fire,” Kim said of Trump. “Action is the best option in treating the dotard* who, hard of hearing, is uttering only what he wanted to say,” he continued, according to a translation of his statement.
Hours later, North Korea’s foreign minister threatened to drop a hydrogen bomb somewhere in the Pacific.
President Donald Trump then responded by calling North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un a “madman” who would be “tested like never before”.
The threat marks the latest attack in an escalating verbal war between the two leaders.
Days before at the UN, Trump had called the North Korean leader a “rocket man … on a suicide mission,” and warned that he would “totally destroy” North Korea if Kim’s regime did not tamp down its nuclear development, later announcing new U.S.-imposed sanctions against North Korea on Thursday, which would force countries to choose between doing business with the U.S., an economic juggernaut, or isolated North Korea.
Kellyanne Conway, counselor to the president, said Trump is “very serious” about holding other countries ― especially China ― accountable over their relationship with North Korea.
But experts have warned against U.S. leadership using bombastic language. “Describing North Korea as irrational and crazy [in the U.S.] might demonize the existence of the Kim Jong Un regime, or provide the rationale to criticize or kind of act more coercively towards North Korea,” Kuyoun Chung, a research fellow at the Korea Institute for National Unification, a think tank funded by the South Korean government, told HuffPost in August. “But that does not really help the security of the United States and the security of northeast Asia.”
Note: "Dotard", while not widely used today, is an insult centuries
old. Merriam-Webster defines the term as referring to "a state or
period of senile decay marked by decline of mental poise."