USA remains poised to attack North Korea

Paterniano Del Favero
Agosto 19, 2017

Joseph Dunford in meetings Monday with senior South Korean military and political officials appeared to be an attempt to ease anxiety over tit-for-tat threats between President Donald Trump and North Korea while also showing a willingness to back up Trump's warnings if necessary. He will then travel to Japan and China.

"Moon has been telling Trump that a military option should never be considered, but there is not much we can do when two strong leaders (of North Korea and the United States) are clashing", said Lee Su-hoon, who headed a group of national security advisers for the president until July.

Yesterday James Mattis, the U.S. defence secretary, said it would be "game on" if North Korea fired a missile that hit American territory.

China and Russian Federation pushed Tuesday for talks to defuse the "confrontational spiral" between the U.S. and North Korea after Kim Jong-Un stepped back from a planned missile strike near Guam.

The latest U.S. and North Korean sabre-rattling has sparked concern that a miscalculation by either side could trigger a catastrophic conflict, although many analysts voice doubts over such a prospect.

North Korea's state news agency KCNA reported earlier in the day that leader Kim Jong Un had examined plans for a launch. In a weekend call with Mr Trump, Chinese President Xi Jinping called for all sides to maintain restraint and avoid inflammatory comments.

Former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, now a CNN contributor, said Sunday that he does not foresee a scenario where North Korea relinquishes its nuclear weapons.

North Korea also serves as a buffer for it against some 28,500 USA servicemembers stationed in the South. But Pompeo says on "Fox News Sunday" that North Korea's push to develop a nuclear-tipped ballistic missile capable of hitting the United States "is a very serious threat and the administration is going to treat it as such".

The latest bout of tension was sparked by the North's two intercontinental ballistic missile tests last month, which appeared to bring much of the United States within range.

"There must be no more war on the Korean peninsula".

Less than six years into his reign, Kim has tested more missiles than his father and grandfather combined, conducted three nuclear tests, and is racing to develop a nuclear-tipped missile that can hit the USA mainland. The liquid-fuel missile is created to be fired from road mobile launchers and has been previously described by North Korea as built for attacking Alaska and Hawaii.

North Korea continued its tough stance on Monday, saying the United States has mobilized a large number of weapons and troops for annual military drills with South Korea. But Washington is also ready to use the "full range" of its military capabilities in case of provocation, Dunford said.

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