Twitter diplomacy does not work. Social media is a useful way of communicating with the electorate on basic issues, and it’s certainly an invaluable campaigning tool, but when it comes to the delicate dance of negotiating and building complex relationships with foreign countries, it’s woefully inefficient.

Oblivious to this basic fact, or perhaps uncaring of it, Trump on Saturday launched one of his signature Twitter attacks on China, lambasting them for failing to adequately deal with the increasingly dangerous situation in North Korea.

Today, China officially responded to the outburst. Speaking to Reuters, their Foreign Ministry said that China is not responsible for the rise of nuclear North Korea and that it is up to everyone to come together to solve the issue.

Trump’s bumbling intimidation attempt came in the wake of another missile test by North Korea. The rogue nation has been ramping up military displays, particularly its missile programs, in the months since Trump entered the White House. His continued failures to engage with the problem in a meaningful diplomatic way is putting the entire world at risk.

Some on the right have begun to push more for a military response, which – if okayed by Trump – would have disastrous results. If the situation devolves into a hot conflict, Seoul, the capital of South Korea and seat of the eleventh largest economy in the world would be at risk of immediate annihilation at the hands of North Korean artillery and missile batteries. Japan is also at risk for mass collateral damage. The situation is perilous and requires the touch of a deft diplomat to navigate. So far, Trump has proved stunningly incapable of rising to the challenge.

 

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