This week we have a special episode of Intelligence Matters with Michael Morell, in which, The Cipher Brief expert Ambassador Joseph DeTrani weighs in on mounting tensions between the United States and North Korea. The exchange of fiery rhetoric between U.S. President Donald Trump and members of the North Korean regime raises the question, is this war of words a precursor to armed conflict, escalating the crisis to a tipping point. Trump has publicly rebuked his predecessors for leaving him what he described “a mess,” and intensified warnings to North Korea making clear that a military option would be “devastating” to them. Kim Jong-Un’s regime have said that Trump’s continued statements amount to a “declaration of war” and threaten to shoot down U.S. warplanes in international airspace. Ambassador DeTrani, who is one of our nation’s leading experts on issues related to North Korea, China and nuclear nonproliferation talks to former Acting Director of the CIA Michael Morell about what drove North Korea to develop a nuclear program, how we got to where we are today, the alarming advancements the North Korean regime has made in creating miniaturized nuclear warheads and offers thoughts on what the best path forward is for the United States. Ambassador DeTrani was President of the Intelligence and National Security Alliance, a professional Think Tank. Previously, he was the Special envoy for Six Party Talks with North Korea and the U.S. Representative to the Korea Energy Development Organization (KEDO). He was an Associate Director of National Intelligence and Mission Manager for North Korea and the Director of National Counter Proliferation Center, while serving as a Special Adviser to the Director of National Intelligence. He served over two decades with the Central Intelligence Agency as a member of the Senior Intelligence Service. He is currently on the Board of Managers at Sandia National Laboratories.