After decades of favouring diplomacy over confrontation the US government has made it clear that it will pursue a more hardline stance with North Korea. The Washington Post states that current relations are the most tense in over a decade. The North Korean embassy in China has responded by blaming any potential nuclear conflict on the US. This does not look good for peace in the region as the growingly isolated communist regime becomes more belligerent. War seems less inevitable as Trump embraces calling North Korea's bluffs, which are hopefully just that.
Relations with North Korea have been tense since the country's inception. Jay Stooksberry implies that China has the biggest say in how relations go since it provides a significant chunk of North Korea's budget. China has no desire whatsoever for a conflict on its border. It would cause a flood of refugees and might result in a united Korea, a stronger US ally right on its border, not to mention risking a direct conflict with the US itself. Beijing puts up with Kim Jong Un's posturing as long as it remains just that.