President Trump said Friday “I think you know the answer to that” when a reporter asked him in Bedminster, New Jersey whether the U.S. is going to war with North Korea.
“When you say ‘bad solution’ are you talking about war? Is the U.S. going to go to war?” the reporter asked Mr. Trump, after the president floated the possibility of a “bad solution” in North Korea.
Mr. Trump, flanked by Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and U.S. ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley, said his Cabinet is “very much in agreement” on the North Korea crisis, although his Cabinet members have toned down his rhetoric. Earlier in the week, Tillerson said Americans should be able to rest easy, and Defense Secretary.
“We’re very much in agreement,” Mr. Trump said. “I think we’re very unified and we have been right from the very beginning. This is something that has to stop. We all feel that very strongly.”
Tillerson also said handling North Korea requires a “combined” message, and the president has “made it clear” he prefers a “diplomatic solution.”
But that might be difficult to tell from the president’s recent comments. After Mr. Trump was criticized for his saying North Korea would be met with” unlike the world had ever seen, he later doubled down on his remarks a day later, saying perhaps they weren’t tough enough. Mr. Trump on Friday promised “big, big trouble” if North Korea targets the U.S. territory of Guam, and said North Korean leader Kim Jong Un will “regret it fast” if that happens.
Earlier Friday, Mr. Trump dismissed critics who wonder if he is escalating tensions with North Korea.
“Well you know my critics are only saying that because it’s me,” Mr. Trump told reporters. “If somebody else uttered the exact same words that I uttered, they’d say ‘what a great statement, what a wonderful statement.’ They’re only doing it but I will tell you, we have tens of millions of people in this country that are so happy with what I’m saying because they’re saying finally we have a president that’s sticking up for our nation and frankly sticking up for friends and our allies.”
Earlier this week, North Korea announced it isthat would fly over the islands of Japan and into the ocean, and could land 18 to 25 miles away from the U.S. airbase on Guam. North Korean state television said the launch would be a warning to the U.S.