Piles of comment and analysis of the North Korean sabre-rattling at the moment. Here, here and here for example.
It would be interesting to know the advice being given to our leaders, speaking of which, I wonder how much sniggering there is over Kim Jong Un’s military capabilities as compared to the rhetoric. Behind closed doors - quite a bit I suspect.
Maybe he is being led by the nose into a face-losing debacle because some of those around the throne don’t fancy another fifty years of him. Maybe the North Korean leadership is demanding to be taken seriously. Who knows?
Without an informer inside the Kim regime, we are in the dark as to motives and all we can do is set out possibilities. Somebody may well have that informer on the inside. China or South Korea seem to be the most likely possibilities here.
What are North Korea’s military options? I’m a military novice, but I don’t see how they can have any. Do they want their pathetic infrastructure and chunks of military capability to disappear overnight in a hail of cruise missiles?
I don’t think they do.
They don't care what their own people think at any level, but losing face is not an option. They may also be mad of course. That's always a worry.