« on: March 15, 2013, 11:08:49 pm »
Well I've been here in Korea for nine years (whips out peen), so let me throw in my two cents...
I totally agree with M_tee that this is mostly a test on the new president to see how she will react to the mounting situation. North Korea almost always ramps up their tough talk and armament relocation when new people are put in office. It's just a friendly reminder to the South. These things are extremely common, and as pointed out previously, North Korea has "ripped up" the armistice a couple of times in recent memory, so that's really nothing new.
The big change this time is the situation the North has gotten itself into. You have a still "relatively" new dictator who wants/NEEDS to flex his muscles a little mostly to show his own military that he's a serious guy. There was an alleged attack on his life by his own military a little while ago, so he still needs to beef up his own image. You also have the very recent satellite launch, ballistics tests, and nuclear bomb test, which all pissed off people in South Korea and those in the UN. This has only increased pressure on North Korea; thus creating an environment for the country to act more erratic.
Another thing we're seeing this time around is heightened violent threats being made by their representative at the UN as well as through their media (which are controlled by the gov). Sure they've always made threats in the past, but they've been even more severe than I remember.
Finally, I predict that the North will probably attack the South in some way over the next year. No, not a land invasion, but a few shells will be shot over the border. This isn't unusual, though. See the YeonPeongDo shelling a few years back. Usually, the South restrains themselves from doing much retaliation (and are greatly held back by the US). However, this turning the other cheek has pissed off a TON of people in the government who now vow that if the North were to attack again, they would blast the hell out of the them.
If war were to break out, you can be sure than South Korea would win. The South has superior arms and allies to help them out. These days, we are seeing China (who needs to remain economically stable with its open markets) shunning the North and siding more with the South and US interests. North Korea wouldn't get much help if war broke out, so it's not really a viable plan.
Luckily for me, I don't live anywhere near the north of South Korea, so I'm pretty safe if anything were to happen, and I'd have plenty of time to head for the hills. I really don't see any chance of outright war, however. It would just spell the fall of North Korea.
Oh, and to reply to the other comment above... No, North Korea news outlets use Korean (at least all the ones I've seen). If you know Korean and ever see these broadcasts, you'll laugh because the way they speak is VERY different from the way people in the South speak.