South Korea have a 'secret' plan for assassinating Kim Jong-un
As we teeter ever closer to existential disaster on the Korean peninsula, the events of recent days make for grim reading.
This year has been characterised thus far by the fraught relations between the United States and North Korea - if one can even describe near constant barbs of bombastic rhetoric, militaristic posturing and enmity as "relations" at this point.
North Korea, defiant and unwilling to acquiesce to the wants of the Trump administration, has continued a missile testing programme despite sanctions and widespread condemnation from countries and international bodies, purportedly with the intention of developing warheads with the capability of reaching the United States of America.
Kim Jong-un has reacted with fury to President Trump's attempts to temper his military ambitions, while the latter has been left largely frustrated by what he perceives as inaction on the part of China. Sanctions placed on the North appear to have had little practical effect, and a solution to the intensifying tension on the Korean peninsula appears, regrettably, as far away as ever.
Then, in the wake of US/South Korean military exercises that are said to have infuriated Pyongyang, North Korea launched a missile, thought to be a test, that flew over Japan, sparking outrage from the international community at large.
In response, mere hours later, South Korea dropped eight MK-84 bombs close to the country's border with North Korea in a show of military strength. The Independent says that President Moon Jae-In "ordered the strike, by four F-15K fighter-bombers, at a firing range in the country's east to 'display a strong capability to punish' North Korea if it were to attack."
Yesterday, news emanating from North Korean state media suggested that the missile test was "the first step of the military operation of the (North Korean military) in the Pacific and a meaningful prelude to containing Guam", and it is believed that Kim Jong-un has ordered further missile tests in the region.
Meanwhile, reports have emerged suggesting that South Korea has plans in place ahead of any major military conflict that include sending a special forces unit into North Korea to target Kim Jong-un, according to the Metro.
South Korean President Moon Jae-in described the necessity of his country being able to "quickly switch to an offensive posture in case North Korea stages a provocation that crosses the line or attacks the capital region", writes the Chosun Ilbo newspaper.
Those hoping for a peaceful resolution to the current strife on the Korean peninsula will have been dismayed to read this tweet from President Trump yesterday;
"The U.S. has been talking to North Korea, and paying them extortion money, for 25 years. Talking is not the answer!"
World leaders and onlookers will still be hoping that a diplomatic solution can be established, and quickly, before the current situation spirals out of all control. South Korea, it seems, is taking no chances in the case of military action.