North Korean soldiers salute at Mansudae hill in Pyongyang. Kyodo/via Reuters

Chinese state-run media outlet Global Times weighed in on the rising tensions on the Korean peninsula, following yet another missile test on Friday, lambasting the US and South Korea for ratcheting up military pressure.

Continued insistence on the part of the United States that military options for stalling North Korea’s nuclear program remain on the table, along with similar statements coming from Seoul, are steps backward in the global effort to reign in Pyongyang, the editorial says.

An isolated North Korea would act more rational if the international community treats the country in a rational way:

The US and South Korea should change their previous strategies of threats of force to reduce tensions on the Korean Peninsula. Even though sanctions might have an effect in the long run, increasing military pressure on North Korea will only do the opposite. This morning, South Korea launched two missiles in immediate response. This will only encourage the North. Does Seoul truly believe its missiles will scare Pyongyang?

One thing is for sure, there is no military option on the table for stopping North Korea’s nuclear program, despite baseless insistence to the contrary. As such, threats of this nature are patently not rational. Does that mean there is a path to getting Pyongyang to stop? No, but  any success Kim Jong-un has in dividing the international community through his provocations would only play into his hands.

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