Brinkmanship is best avoided unless you are prepared to go all the way.
The thing about nature is that it displays all the warning signals to tell you to keep away as an energy conservation strategy, but will use the nuclear option of biting or stinging you if you ignore the signals. Human beings however play to different rules, often based on the idea of playing chicken, as in two cars speeding towards each other, who will chicken out and leave the road first?
I play a different game to humanity, I will play the way nature plays, I will bite or sting if the warning signals are ignored, it makes me a dangerous opponent to play chicken with. A council played chicken with a disabled person who it discriminated against a few years ago, they miscalculated thinking the disabled person had no funds to finance the court case, their brinkmanship backfired when I secretly underwrote the court case for the disabled person in which the council humiliatingly lost.
North Korea is in recent weeks playing chicken. For many North Korea is like the boy who cries wolf, many, especially in South Korea ignore the daily threats of North Korea with indifference, a boy who cried wolf too many times. I am unsure at this moment which direction the events in North Korea are turning. In political terms the ruler of North Korea is an impulsive boy who recently it is claimed survived an assassination attempt. South Korea makes it clear they will hit back if North Korea hits them. USA supports South Korea with a tough in your face display of political rhetoric and military power. China is now on high alert with their military massing on the Korean borders. North Korea have in two weeks played a fast and high stakes game that has caught the world’s attention. On the back of this North Korea is playing a high stakes game in a time critical window with planting season about to start when their soldiers need to return to the fields or risk starvation, with 30 days of fuel for a war, and a no-win situation in a might-is-right fight with USA and allies.
A hundred years ago a Serbian activist assassinated a nation’s leader, a supposedly small event that resulted in an equally insignificant invasion of Serbia. These small events triggered the First World War that killed millions and destroyed five empires. North Korea in world terms is insignificant, its posturings eccentric political tantrums, however lurking in the shadows is a larger potential to draw in USA and China into direct conflict with each other, which would have implications for everyone.