NBC Nightly News reported that while Kim is said to be “reviewing plans for the missile strike to launch toward . . . Guam,” if North Korea “actually goes through with it, Defense Secretary Mattis promised swift military action.”
The Los Angeles Times reports North Korean looney leader Kim Jong-un has “decided not to launch missiles toward Guam. According to the Times, the North Korean announcement appeared in Pyongyang’s state media Tuesday shortly after U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis warned that an attack could quickly escalate to war:
Mattis said Monday that if North Korea follows through on its threats to fire a missile at the United States, “it’s game on.”
Speaking to reporters, Mattis added that the U.S. military would “take out” any North Korean missile it detects is heading for American soil, including Guam, a U.S. territory. Mattis said the U.S. would detect a missile of that nature heading toward Guam “within moments.”
Mattis added that if North Korea fires at the U.S., “it could escalate into war very quickly . . . yes, that’s called war, if they shoot at us.”
Asked how the U.S. would respond, Mattis initially declined to say. When pressed, he said that if U.S. radars and other detection and tracking systems determine that a missile was going to fall into the sea, short of Guam, then the matter would be taken to President Donald Trump for a decision on how to respond.
The Washington Examiner reports North Korea backed down on its threat to launch a missile attack on Guam after Trump threatened it last week with “fire and fury” on North Korea if it threatened the U.S. again.
North Korea’s decision to back down is a yuge victory for President Donald J. Trump and the United States. The North Koreans backed down after a sustained “Twitter war of words” with President Trump. Trump’s cabinet members deserve credit here as well. United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley got Russia and China to agree to harsh United Nations Security Council economic sanctions against North Korea. Sanctions China actually seems to be willing to implement. China even warned North Korea that it would be on its own if it launches missiles threatening the U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, CIA Director Mike Pompeo and National security adviser H.R. McMaster did a great job calming the waters, saying that an attack from North Korea is not imminent And Mattis made it clear the U.S. military was “ready to fight tonight.” NPR reports that Guam and the U.S. air and naval forces based there have been under alert since it was named by North Korea as a potential target
In addition, Sunday the Trump administration announced the end of Obama’s failed do nothing “Strategic Patience” so-called strategy for dealing with the rogue state. Under President Trump the U.S. will hold North Korea to account as we pursue a denuclearized Korean Peninsula.
Unfortunately the North Koreans could always change their minds about attacking the U.S. The Los Angeles Times reported the statement in the North Korean state media warned that Kim could change his mind “if the Yankees persist in their extremely dangerous reckless actions,” in which case the country’s artillerymen would “wring the windpipes of the Yankees and point daggers at their necks.”