President Trump warned of “some pretty severe things” in response to North Korea’s test this week of a long-range missile, raising the rhetoric over Pyongyang’s launch of what it called an intercontinental ballistic missile.
“We’ll see what happens. I don’t like to talk about what we have planned, but I have some pretty severe things that we’re thinking about,” Trump said in Warsaw at a news conference with Andrzej Duda, the Polish president. “They are behaving in a very, very serious manner, and something will have to be done about it.”
Trump’s remarks come a day after Nikki Haley, his ambassador to the UN, warned that while the U.S. preferred a diplomatic approach to resolving the crisis over North Korea, the U.S. “is prepared to use the full range of our capabilities to defend ourselves and our allies.”
“One of our capabilities lies with our considerable military forces,” she said. “We will use them, if we must, but we prefer not to have to go in that direction.”
At issue is the launch this week by the Kim Jong Un regime of an ICBM that it said made it “a full-fledged nuclear power … capable of hitting any part of the world.” The Trump administration, in its public statements, appeared to confirm the missile tested Tuesday was, in fact, an ICBM, though other experts have been more skeptical. Still, it is believed the missile launched Tuesday—North Korea’s most-successful test ever—can strike Alaska. Pyongyang’s goal is to fit the ICBM with a nuclear warhead, a capability that would dramatically raise the threat it poses and provide the North with a deterrent against a possible U.S.-led attack.