In early October, the commander of the U.S. Navy’s 7th Fleet said the rare deployment of an aircraft carrier to South Korea “probably precipitated” part of a “tantrum” from Kim Jong Un.Another major drill began on Monday with hundreds of South Korean and U.S. warplanes, including a rare deployment of American F-35B fighters.The drills, a centrepiece of the allied response, have been met with new rounds of missile tests or military exercises by North Korea.
Patel has called suggestions that the drills are exacerbating tensions "baloney." Duyeon Kim, with the U.S.-based Center for a New American Security, noted that rising tensions are not always correlated with drills."Normalizing combined drills strengthens readiness and publicizing them again is intended to deter North Korea and reassure the South Korean people," Kim said.
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