Despite his tough words, Kim Jong-un’s stance seems to be softening. If the US responds, the Seoul Winter Olympics could see a breakthroughAnything said by the cartoonish North Korean leader Kim Jong-un tends to be seen in the most threatening light, especially outside Asia. And no wonder. But the assumption that belligerence – of which there has been much in recent months – is to be taken at face value, while anything short of that is a malign stratagem designed only to trick and gain advantage, holds its own dangers. Even if recent experience has provided ample grounds for such negativity, the risk is that genuine efforts by Pyongyang to change the tone, if not yet the substance, of its international stance, go undetected.
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