Some national security expert on Andrea Mitchell just said the NK regime is convinced the only way to prevent an eventual war to bring about regime change in NK is to obtain nuclear weapons to deter the US.
That may be true, but it seems more likely they realize their determination to obtain nukes with which to hit the US very much increases the likelihood of a US led war of regime change against them.
And if that is so the point of getting nukes, for them, is not to stave off such a threat but perhaps to keep the US out of, or diminish its participation in, a new war of conquest by NK against SK.
Absolutely nobody, that I know of, has publicly made that point.
But it seems to me the pretense that it's all about self-defense is just a smokescreen of propaganda to hide aggressive intent.
Is it possible to stop the NK program without actual military action?
Is it possible to stop the NK program with military action short of a general war on the peninsula?
If not, then a military attempt to reunify the peninsula by NK is coming as soon as their nuclear attack capability is in place.
How should we respond to that?
Tell SK we are no longer interested in defending them and start to remove our forces from the peninsula?
Launch limited military strikes intended to harm the NK nuclear program and convince them we are serious (but before or after we first prepare for a general war on the peninsula?)?
Begin preparation now for a general war on the peninsula in hopes that will itself dissuade them, but ready to pull the trigger if it doesn't?
Do nothing, hoping NK won't, when their nuke force is ready, actually attack the South and force really hard choices on us all?