Secretary of State John Kerry recently issued a tough statement relative to North Korea's most recent round of bombastic saber rattling.
Kerry, who only recently took over for Hillary Clinton at state, said in no uncertain terms that the U.S. will do whatever it takes to safeguard its interests and allies, including South Korea.
While we give Kerry points for kicking up a bit of dust, we have to believe the statement was met with little more than yawns in Pyongyang, where the military dictatorship sits on a massive conventional arsenal that now is augmented by nuclear weapons.
Kim Jong-Un, like his father and grandfather, has heard it all before. At the end of the day, the U.S., indeed the entire world, will almost certainly do nothing in the face of rank aggression.
But here's the real risk in all of this. A miscalculation by an increasingly brazen Kim will start an ugly shooting war in the Korean peninsula that no one wants.
The discussion should center on how to rein Kim in short of that.