Leon Panetta to Trump: 'You Can't Out-Bully a Bully'

Bruno Cirelli
Agosto 13, 2017

Former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said Sunday that if North Korea takes a wrong step, the US has the capability to wipe the regime "off the face of the Earth".

"One thing we have learned in over 60 years in dealing with various North Korean dictators is that you can't out-bully a bully", Panetta, who served in the Obama White House, told Wolf Blitzer on CNN.

"The reality is, what speaks the loudest for the United States of America is the fact that we're the most powerful country on the face of the Earth and we have the military capability to wipe that regime off the face of the Earth".

"When this kind of loose talk takes place, the rest of the world is listening and trying to figure out what is going on".

But Panetta, who also directed the Central Intelligence Agency, said that "it's a time, frankly, where we need a president to speak in a steady and calm and stable and responsible way".

The US is now pursuing talks through diplomatic backchannels, however Panetta said he's is concerned about the possibility of a "miscalculation". On Friday, President Donald Trump sent a clear message to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, stating that he "will truly regret it and he will regret it fast", if he carries out an attack on Guam or a USA ally. "I really do think that what is required now is a lessening of this rhetoric and allow our actions to speak for the United States, not our words".

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