Katie Couric's Notebook: North Korea

(CBS/AP)
North and South Korea declared a ceasefire back in 1953, but relations have been anything but peaceful during the past 56 years.

Today, the rhetoric is heating up as North Korea threatens to attack South Korean ships if they get too close.

Needless to say, it's been a bad week for the Korean peninsula.

Kim Jong Il's regime flaunted a test fire of a supposed nuclear bomb on Monday, and has tested several missiles since. It's a pyrotechnic display that no one finds entertaining.

But the question is: How will the U.S. and the U.N. punish North Korea? More sanctions? More invitations to six-party talks? We've all seen that movie before.

The Obama administration and its international partners face a daunting challenge. They have to make it clear that this behavior will not be tolerated while trying to cool the red-hot tempers in the Yellow Sea before a test fire escalates into the real thing.

That's a page from my notebook.