President Donald Trump taunted Kim Jong-un on Tuesday in response to the North Korean dictator’s speech on New Year’s Day, in which he had warned, “The entire mainland of the U.S. is within the range of our nuclear weapons, and the nuclear button is always on the desk of my office.”
Trump replied that his own nuclear button was “much bigger,” more powerful, and fully functional:
Trump’s tweet is just the latest salvo in the colorful war of words between the two leaders. Last year, President Trump called Kim Jong-un “Little Rocket Man.” In November, Trump went further, calling him “short and fat.”
North Korea has reciprocated with insults — which have also been humorous, albeit unintentionally so. The regime referred to Trump as a “dotard” several times last year, reviving an obscure and somewhat archaic English term for an old person.
Trump’s left-wing critics pounced on his tweet. Ben Rhodes, a former national security aide in the Obama administration, tweeted: “There is no way to rationalize this profoundly juvenile and dangerous behavior.”