ESCALATION

N. Korea on the 'Brink of War'

North Korea says the peninsula is “inching closer to the brink of war,” as the U.S. and South Korea prepare to conduct military exercises on Sunday in a joint show of force in response to the North’s artillery bombardment of a South Korean island Tuesday, which left two civilians and two soldiers dead. Pyongyang considers the drills to be a provocation—indeed, Tuesday’s attack came in response to South Korean military drills which Pyongyang warned Seoul to call off. Boasting that their attack was “precisely aimed and hit the enemy artillery base,” the North warned that if the joint exercises take place there will be another “shower of dreadful fire.”