President Donald Trump had nothing but stern words for reporters when asked about the escalating tensions between the US and North Korea. Trump was speaking at his gold club at Bedminster, New Jersey during his working vacation to reporters when he had these words to say about the string of provocations by the isolated North Korean regime.
Trump's comments came as North Korea were hit with a new round of sanctions approved by the United Nations Security Council and pledged to continue to press forward with development of nuclear weapons that could reach the US mainland.
The UN sanctions on North Korea could cut the reclusive country's $3 billion annual export revenue by over 33 percent. How much actual evidence is there that North Korea is capable of producing nuclear capable missiles? North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s ability to strike his adversaries with nuclear weapons remains shrouded in mystery.
“North Korea best not make any more threats to the United States. They will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen,” Trump said.
President Trump noted that North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un had been “very threatening” which was behavior beyond that of a normal nation.
“As I said they will be met with fire and fury and frankly power, the likes of which this world has never seen before,” he repeated.
The latest Defense Intelligence Agency assessment follows a separate US government report estimating that North Korea has in its possession up to 60 nuclear weapons. It’s uncertain whether the communist nation has actually tested miniaturized warheads successfully and it does not appear to have a reentry vessel to prevent a nuclear-armed missile from burning up upon its return from space.
Trump has tried urging China to do more to contain the threat posed by North Korea, but Chinese Xi Jinping has failed to deliver.
“So much for China working with us – but we had to give it a try!” Trump wrote on Twitter in July expressing his disappointment.
Trump’s national security adviser H.R. McMaster warned a week ago that the North Korea’s actions were “intolerable.”
“The president has been very clear about it: He said he’s not going to tolerate North Korea being able to threaten the United States,” McMaster said in an interview with Hugh Hewitt on MSNBC.
A North Korean Army spokesperson, in a statement carried by state-run news mouthpiece hours after Trump’s comments were reported, said a plan to attack Guam would be put into practice at any moment once leader Kim Jong-un made a decision.
In a separate statement citing another military spokesman, Pyongyang also accused the US of devising a “preventive war” and said any plans to carry this out this would be met with an “all-out war wiping out all the strongholds of enemies, including the US mainland”.
Personally, we've heard the baseless threats from this dictator for years now. It's getting old. He is at the 'big boys' table now and Trump is not going to let him keep pitching a fit and threatening the US.
Was Trump alluding to the US's nuclear options?
Donald Trump has long been intrigued by the threat of nuclear war. In 1990, he painted nuclear destruction in inevitable terms, calling it “the greatest of all stupidities” for people to believe it could be avoided.
During his presidential run, Trump supposedly asked a foreign policy expert why the US refrains from utilizing its nuclear capabilities.
Could this be what 'fire and fury' meant?
My answer would be an open 'maybe'. The US's response to threats that go above and beyond that of a rational leader's, be them preemptive or in response to actual attacks, would depend on the timing. If the threats remain just that, threats, if the powers that be choose to do so, the US probably will not be carrying the rhetoric game much longer. AS I see it, all roads at this point lead to military action by the US and most likely its regional allies. Will Trump preemptively nuke North Korea? I doubt it. If the US strikes first it would not likely be with nuclear force. It would only be prudent for the US to utilize its nuclear arsenal if it was either attacked or learned of an actual imminent nuclear attack aimed at the US.
Let's hope that a miracle happens and Kim Jong-un backs down, sits down and just shuts up. If he doesn't, then it won't be pretty for North Korea and that's a shame. There's probably tons of amazing people there just hoping to be relieved from their dictatorship.