Tensions between the U.S. and North Korea have been rising at an alarming rate over the past few weeks.

Now, they appear to be boiling over.

The Charlotte Observer reported that on Monday, the U.S. and South Korea are scheduled to start joint military

exercises that are known to anger North Korea, sometimes triggering a show of force.

North Korea has warned of “catastrophe” if these military exercises were to take place again.

The U.S. and South Korean military has decided to ignore this warning and will simulate warfare with

North Korea from Aug. 21 to 31. North Korea spoke out on Thursday to warn that the military exercises will “further drive the situation on the Korean Peninsula into a catastrophe.”

Experts say it’s likely that North Korea could respond with another nuclear missile test during the military exercises.

“Over the course of the next two weeks I expect tensions to escalate,” said Scott A. Snyder, a Korea specialist with the

Council on Foreign Relations who previously was the Asia Foundation’s representative in Seoul.

“This is always a sensitive issue, but it is more hair-trigger as the North Koreans are very sensitive to the likely additional nuclear-capable aircraft flyovers.”

“There certainly will be some reaction,” added J.D. Williams, a retired Marine colonel and defense policy researcher at the RAND Corporation in California.

He went on to say that he would not be surprised if North Korea conducted some kind of missile launch, not a test but a defiant demonstration of might.

This comes a week after North Korea threatened to launch a nuclear attack on the U.S. territory of Guam in response to Trump’s threat to hit them with “fire and fury” if they attack us.


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