US military strategists at the Pentagon have a military solution in place to address the growing threat emanating from North Korea, but they are holding their fire in favor of ongoing diplomatic efforts by Washington and its allies, Defense Secretary James Mattis said Thursday.
Tillerson says Trump wanted to make clear to North Korea that the USA has the "unquestionable ability to defend itself" and will protect itself and its allies.
"I think that the President, again, as commander-in-chief, I think he felt it necessary to issue a very strong statement directly to North Korea", Tillerson said.
And he points to another sign that the U.S.is not moving toward war with North Korea: There have been no efforts to evacuate the at least 150,000 USA citizens living in South Korea.
US President Donald Trump's "fire and fury" warning to North Korea rattled US allies and adversaries alike and prompted senior American officials to send mixed signals on Pyongyang، a sign of ongoing deep divisions in the Trump administration، according to the PressTV.
In a lengthy exchange with reporters at his Bedminster golf resort, he said past administrations had not done enough to take on North Korea and that it was time a president "stuck up for the country".
"What they've been doing and what they've been getting away with is a tragedy and it can't be allowed", Trump said. The U.N. Security Council unanimously imposed new sanctions on North Korea on Saturday.
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who was in Guam on a previously scheduled visit, played down the rhetoric, saying he did not believe there was an imminent threat from North Korea and "Americans should sleep well at night". This continues a series of toughly worded messages from the president urging North Korea's leader not to test the US resolve.
Trump said North Korean leader Kim Jong Un was not going to get away with his "horrific" comments and disrespecting America.
He says Trump want to "avoid any miscalculation" by Pyongyang. President Trump has made revamping USA missile defense systems a top objective for the Pentagon since taking office. "We never do. I don't talk about it", Trump told reporters when asked about a preemptive strike.
The two discussed responses to North Korean provocations and the security situation on the Korean peninsula, he said.
"Defusing the North Korea threat will take smart, steady leadership and stronger diplomatic ties with our key allies", Reed said. "Our policy across the administration is the same", she said.
North Korea has said it may attack Guam in retaliation.
China has urged the United States and North Korea on Friday to be "cautious" with their words and actions after the two sides stepped up their bellicose rhetoric over Pyongyang's weapons programme.
In a statement accompanying the release of the letter, Conyers said that as a Korean War veteran, he was "ashamed" of Trump.