Donald Trump asked options for eliminating North Korea nuclear threat

Vastavam Web: As a US strike group led by an aircraft carrier steamed toward the Korean peninsula today, a senior official said President Donald Trump has asked to be provided with a range of options for eliminating the North Korean nuclear threat.The US naval move will certainly raise tensions in the region and comes hard on the heels of a US cruise missile strike on Syria that was widely interpreted as putting Pyongyang on warning over its refusal to abandon its nuclear ambitions.North Korea denounced Thursday’s attack as an act of “intolerable aggression” and one that justified “a million times over” the North’s push toward a credible nuclear deterrent.

He said the United States expects China, the main ally of North Korea, to do more to rein in the regime in Pyongyang.”They have indicated that they will and I think we need to allow them time to take actions,” Tillerson said.US National Security Adviser HR McMaster insisted, however, that in the meantime it is “prudent” to send the strike group to the Korean peninsula, criticizing North Korea as a rogue, nuclear-armed nation engaged in provocative behavior.”The president has asked them to be prepared to give us a full range of options to remove that threat,” he added, apparently referring to Trump’s advisers.

Pyongyang is on a quest to develop a long-range missile capable of hitting the US mainland with a nuclear warhead, and has so far staged five nuclear tests, two of them last year.Expert satellite imagery analysis suggests it could well be preparing for a sixth, with US intelligence officials warning that Pyongyang could be less than two years away from developing the means to deliver a nuclear warhead to the continental United States.In February, the North simultaneously fired four ballistic missiles off its east coast, three of which fell provocatively close to Japan, in what it said was a drill for an attack on US bases in the neighboring Asian country.

Last August, Pyongyang also successfully test-fired a submarine-launched ballistic missile 500 kilometers (300 miles) towards Japan, far exceeding any previous sub-launched tests, in what Kim hailed as the “greatest success.” A nuclear-capable SLBM system would take the North’s threat to a new level, allowing deployment far beyond the Korean peninsula and a “second-strike” capability in the event of an attack on its army bases.On Thursday and Friday, Trump hosted his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping for talks during which he pressed Pyongyang’s key ally to help curb the North’s nuclear weapons program.