Chinese officials expressed concern over increasingly hostile relations between the United States and North Korea on Friday afternoon, telling China's state news agency that a full-scale war is closer than you might imagine.
Wang Yi, China's foreign minister and a key figure in diplomacy, acknowledged escalating tensions between the U.S., North Korea, and South Korea as each country's foreign policy tactics shift.
"The United States and South Korea and North Korea are engaging in tit for tat, with swords drawn and bows bent, and there have been storm clouds gathering," said Mr. Wang. "No matter who it is, if they let war break out on the peninsula, they must shoulder that historical culpability and pay the corresponding price."
Wang's statement comes in the midst of a tumultuous week for relations in the Pacific. The U.S. Navy has reportedly conducted exercises with Japan's navy as a showcase of strength outside the North Korean peninsula. Senior intelligence officials have also spoken to reporters and revealed the U.S. is allegedly prepared to launch a preemptive strike against North Korea if America feels the Communist state is on the verge of conducting a nuclear weapons test.
President Trump has spoken out publicly against North Korea in recent months, and claims the United States will step in if China is unable to deal with North Korea themselves:
In response to Trump's tough talk and the show of force from the U.S. military, a North Korean spokesman warned the President about the consequences of the military's actions. "Nothing will be more foolish," said the spokesman, "if the United States thinks it can deal with us the way it treated Iraq and Libya, miserable victims of its aggression, and Syria, which did not respond immediately even after it was attacked."
North Korea's vice minister, Han Song-ryol, added, "We will go to war if they choose.”