- - Saturday, January 2, 2016

In only his fourth public speech since the death of his father, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un said Friday that he’s ready for war: “If invasive outsiders and provocateurs touch us even slightly, we will not be forgiving in the least and sternly answer with a merciless, holy war of justice.”

Mr. Kim also stated that he blames South Korea for the chill in relations between North and South Korea that has led to multiple deaths and injuries in military incidents over the last several years.

“South Korea has made a unilateral case for unification and increased mistrust and conflict between us,” he added. North Korea has sunk South Korean naval vessels and shelled border areas. South Korea has responded militarily to these attacks.

There have been recent attempts at formal talks between the two nations who are technically still at war since the Korean War in the 1950s. The talks have proved ineffective at reducing tensions. During the previous week, the top North Korean negotiating official was reported killed in a “road incident.” In previous comments, Mr. Kim, “We should cherish last year’s high-level talks and make continued efforts to seek dialogue and not take any further steps backwards.”

The pre-recorded North Korean Dear Leader’s speech was interspersed with added applause and pictures of factory and farm scenes of the communist paradise. Mr. Kim was shown standing in a wooden paneled room in front of a red flag showing the crest of the Worker’s Party.

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