North Korea recently tested an extremely powerful nuclear weapon, raising questions about whether the U.S. intends to use military force against the rogue regime.
“Military action would certainly be an option. Is it inevitable? Nothing is inevitable,” President Donald Trump said Thursday afternoon at a joint press conference with the leader of Kuwait. “It would be great if something else could be worked out.” The president said, however, that if it comes to using force, the U.S. will ruin Kim Jong Un’s day.
President Trump on North Korea: “Military action would certainly be an option. Is it inevitable? Nothing is inevitable.” pic.twitter.com/b4HhMTCe9F
— ABC News (@ABC) September 7, 2017
North Korea conducted its sixth nuclear test Sunday, claiming to have successfully tested a staged thermonuclear weapon. Test data suggests that North Korea tested a device with an explosive yield of roughly 150 kilotons. The North intends to mount this weapon on the new Hwasong-14 intercontinental ballistic missile, which can strike parts, if not most, of the continental U.S. (RELATED: North Korea Tests H-Bomb For New ICBM)
North Korea is moving closer to achieving its nuclear goals, and time is running out for the U.S. and its allies, which are still striving for a denuclearized Korean Peninsula.
Trump explained that his administration would have to “look at all of the details, all of the facts” before pursuing the military option. The president warned last month that the military is “locked and loaded” to rain down “fire and fury” on North Korea if it forces America’s hand, but the administration remains committed to pursuing a diplomatic solution.
“We’ve had presidents for 25 years now,” Trump explained. “They’ve been talking talking talking, and then day after an agreement is reached, new work begins in North Korea, a continuation on nuclear [weapons].”
The president appears to have been referencing former President Bill Clinton’s approach to the problem — making a deal with North Korea, one which involved providing billions of dollars to Pyongyang in exchange for a nuclear freeze. The North negotiated in bad faith, began developing nuclear material, and tested a nuclear weapon roughly a decade later. (RELATED: FLASHBACK 1994: Clinton Says His Deal With North Korea Would Make The World Safer)
“I would prefer not going the route of the military, but it is something certainly that could happen,” Trump said, telling reporters about the power of the U.S. military. “Hopefully we aren’t going to have to use it on North Korea. If we do use it on North Korea, it will be a very sad day for North Korea.”
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