US Security Leaders Say North Korea War Not Imminent, But Danger Looms

Lester Mason
August 15, 2017

This means that rather than continuing to engage in a unsafe war of words with President Trump - who, thankfully, has yet to deliver on his promise to respond to any North Korean threat with "fire and fury" - Kim does not plan to provoke the firing missiles in Guam's general vicinity.

North Korea has said it plans to fire missiles around 40km away from Guam's shore, adding that it expects them to reach the island within 17 minutes of launch.

Pressed on his "nothing imminent" statement, Pompeo said: "What I'm talking about is, I've heard folks talking about that we have been on the cusp of a nuclear war".

Responding to reporters' questions about North Korea's assertion that it might soon fire four ballistic missiles into the waters off Guam, a USA territory in the Pacific, Mattis made clear he did not want to be seen as escalating the tensions.

The tweet came amid a sharp escalation in tensions between the US and the rogue state, with Pyongyang having earlier threatened to launch missiles at the Pacific island of Guam, where there is a USA military base. "Yes, we've come very close to a possible armed conflict", she said in an interview with the TV channel Russia-1.

Mr Trump and Kim's exchange this week is just the latest development in an ever-tightening spiral of threats and counter-threats from Washington and Pyongyang.

"It looks like a lovely place", he said, inviting Calvo to visit the White House the next time he is in the Lower 48.

The Associated Press reported Friday that the Trump administration had been involved for months in back channel diplomatic negotiations with North Korea, vital if Trump's rhetoric is not to lead to a military clash.

"I am certain the United States will respond to the current situation calmly and responsibly in a stance that is equal to ours", he said.

"We are with you 1000 percent", Trump said.

Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, frequently a critic of the president, said he supported his approach to North Korea so far.

Later he said, "If they shoot at the United States, I'm assuming they hit the United States". But it also reported that leader Kim Jong Un would watch USA conduct before giving his orders for the test. Trump is issuing a new warning over the North's development of nuclear weapons.

Savage said many on the left who are criticizing Trump for his tough rhetoric seem to be siding with Kim.

A White House statement said the United States and China agreed North Korea must stop "provocative and escalatory behaviour".

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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