The inhabitants of Guam were shocked to wake up on Wednesday to the news that they are being targeted by North Korean ballistic missiles, although the local government has reassured local people that the Pacific island is “prepared for any eventuality”.
In a release just hours after US President Donald Trump threatened that any North Korean attack would be met with “fire and fury”, Pyongyang’s state media said its military was “carefully examining the operational plan for making an enveloping fire at the areas around Guam”.
The North’s threat is to use medium-to-long-range Hwasong-12 missiles and is the latest and most specific threat directed against the US.
Jackie Hanson, a US national living on Guam, told The Telegraph that the situation is “very unnerving”.
“This is a small island with limited resources and we rely on imports for pretty much everything”, she said. “If anything was to go wrong then it would upset the whole way of life for everyone living here for a long time”.
Ms Hanson said she had heard no discussions of people wanting to leave Guam in the face of North Korea’s threats, although she conceded that might change if tensions continue to rise.
“The sense right now is that there is concern and that we need to keep up to speed on what is happening, but right now there is no need to take a different course of action”, she added.
Eddie Baza Calvo, the governor of Guam, sought to reassure the island’s residents.
“I know we woke up to media reports of North Korea’s talk of revenge on the United States and this so-called new-found technology that allows them to target Guam”, Mr Calvo said.
“I want to reassure the people of Guam that currently there is no threat to our island or the Marianas.
“My Homeland Security advisor, who is in communications with Homeland Security and [the] Department of Defence notes that there is no change in threat level resulting from North Korea events”, he said, adding that “there are several levels of defence all strategically placed to protect our island and our nation.
“Additionally, I have reached out to the White House this morning”, Mr Calvo said. “An attack or threat to Guam is a threat or attack on the United States. They have said that America will be defended”.
Mr Calvo has nevertheless called an emergency meeting of military and political leaders to discuss the readiness of locally based forces and first responders and has…