Who will avert war: Kim Jong Un or Donald Trump?

Ballistic missiles on parade in Pyongyang Saturday

Two interesting things happened in North Korea this weekend. First, third-generation dictator Kim Jong Un presided over a parade to honor his grandfather Kim Il Sung. There were lots of missiles, including the ostensibly intercontinental Pukguksong pictured above. The next morning, apparently as a show of defiance as American ships approached the Korean Peninsula, the North tested another ballistic missile that failed within seconds of liftoff. Let that be a lesson to you, Kombat! Kids. When you become dictator of a secretive rogue state and want to show off your military might, schedule the parade after the missile test. Otherwise, you risk embarrassing yourself. On a completely unrelated note, here’s US President Donald Trump on his revised opinion of China’s relationship with North Korea, which President Xi Jinping explained to him over the weekend:

After listening for 10 minutes, I realized it’s not so easy. It’s not what you would think.

Ah, yes—our new president, who insisted throughout his 18-month campaign that China had absolute control of North Korea and its belligerent foreign policies, changed his opinion after considering the subject for 10 minutes. This news raises a fun question: Which of these egomaniacal stewards of his family empire will keep us out of war?

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Daines on North Korea bomb test: Obama is weak

Senator Steve Daines (R-MT, second right) milks a rainbow with the Congressional Goblin Caucus.

Senator Steve Daines (R-MT, second right) harvests a rainbow with the Goblin Caucus.

Yesterday, North Korea may or may not have successfully tested a nuclear bomb. Pyongyang’s official news agency announced that its test of a miniature hydrogen bomb had been a “perfect success” that took the country’s “nuclear might to the next level,” but the same agency also maintains that Kim Il Sung once rode a unicorn. North Korea has been locked in a truth-telling contest with the rest of the world for several decades now. Still, the 5.1-Richter earthquake near a suspected nuclear test site suggests that the secretive dictatorship exploded something yesterday, and that’s unsettling. Whatever North Korea is up to, it seems to have taken another step toward ranged nuclear weapons. Speaking to CNN this morning, Senator Steve Daines (R-MT) put the blame for this development squarely where it belongs: President Obama. Video after the jump.

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N. Korea announces “gust of hatred and rage” over James Franco movie

Kim Jong Un visits the dolphinarium at the Rungna People's Pleasure Ground. Nothing in this caption is made up.

Kim Jong Un visits the dolphinarium at the Rungna People’s Pleasure Ground. Seriously.

The good news, if you are an asshole, is that James Franco and Seth Rogen are making another high-concept buddy movie. The bad news, if you are an even bigger asshole, is that the comic premise is Kim Jong Un. In The Interview, Franco and Rogen play journalists whom the CIA recruits to assassinate the North Korean dictator. Normally Kim has a great sense of humor about himself, but this time Hollywood has pushed it too far. According to a spokesman for North Korea’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs:

If the United States administration tacitly approves or supports the release of this film, we will take a decisive and merciless countermeasure…[The film] is the most blatant act of terrorism and an act of war that we will never tolerate.

Somewhere in the State Department, a whole office is dedicated to interacting with these people.

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Steve King compares Obama to Kim Jong Un after Redskins lose trademark

"You're telling me there's been a New Mexico in the United States this whole time?"

“You’re telling me there’s been a New Mexico in the United States this whole time?”

Yesterday, the US Patent Office canceled the trademark of the Washington Redskins, ruling that the name disparages American Indians. Obviously, this is a case of political correctness run amok. The Redskins name celebrates first Americans in much the same way that the n-word only refers to certain African-Americans, which is to say according to white people. Consider the response of noted white person Rep. Steve King (R–IA):

Screen Shot 2014-06-19 at 9.54.39 AM

Props to Fletch-Dogg for the tip. In related news, the offices of the Department of Hyperbole will be closed this weekend while a tightly coordinated squadron of illegal immigrants invades and sterilizes them.

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Close Readings: North Korea’s declaration of war or something

 

This is sarcastic clapping. I will turn your production of Our Town into a sea of fire.

This is sarcastic clapping. I will turn your production of Our Town into a sea of fire.

On Friday, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea ruined imperialist weekends by declaring war on South Korea and the United States, sort of. The official declaration is hard to interpret. On one hand, you’ve got sentences like “It is the resolute answer of the DPRK and its steadfast stand to counter the nuclear blackmail of the U.S. imperialists with merciless nuclear attack and their war of aggression with just all-out war.” It sounds like they’re standing in steadfast resolve to attack us mercilessly/nuclearly, right there, but then you also get sentences like this: “The state of neither peace nor war has ended on the Korean Peninsula.” So maybe Kim Jong Un is threatening nuclear peace. Also we’re pretty sure he does not have nuclear capabilities, and the whole baffling plate is slathered over in a runny translation that makes this state declaration sound like it was edited down to 500 words from 1000, then stretched out again to 750. In short, it’s a prime candidate for Close Reading.

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