North Korea: We will launch ‘super-mighty preemptive strike’ on US forces, mainland – Business Insider


North Korean leader Kim Jong Un supervises a ballistic rocket launching drill of Hwasong artillery units of the Strategic Force of the KPA in an undated photo.    KCNA/via REUTERS
A
North Korean ballistic rocket launching.

Thomson Reuters

North Korean state media warned the United States of
a “super-mighty preemptive strike” after US Secretary of State
Rex Tillerson said the United States was looking at ways to bring
pressure to bear on North Korea over
its nuclear program.

US President Donald Trump has taken a hard line with
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, who
has rebuffed admonitions from its sole major ally, China, and
proceeded with nuclear and missile programs in defiance of UN
Security Council sanctions.

Rodong Sinmun, the official newspaper of the North‘s
ruling Workers’ Party, did not mince its words.

“In the case of our super-mighty preemptive strike being
launched, it will completely and immediately wipe out not only US
imperialists’ invasion forces in South Korea and its
surrounding areas but the US mainland and reduce them to ashes,”
it said. 

Reclusive North Korea regularly
threatens to destroy Japan, South Korea, and the
United States and has shown no letup in its belligerence after a
failed missile test on Sunday, a day after putting on a huge
display of missiles at a parade in Pyongyang.

Tillerson told reporters in Washington on Wednesday that the
United States was “reviewing all the status of North
Korea, both in terms of state sponsorship of
terrorism as well as the other ways in which we can bring
pressure on the regime in Pyongyang.”

US Vice President Mike Pence, on a tour of Asian allies, has
repeatedly said an “era of strategic patience” with
North Korea is over.


Mike Pence
US
Vice President Mike Pence.

AP
Photo/Lee Jin-man


House Speaker Paul Ryan said during a visit to London that the
military option must be part of the pressure.

“Allowing this dictator to have that kind of power is not
something that civilized nations can allow to happen,” he said,
alluding to Kim.

Ryan said he was encouraged by the results of efforts to work
with China to reduce tensions, but that it was
unacceptable that North Korea
might be able to strike allies with nuclear weapons.

North and South Korea are technically
still at war because their 1950-53 conflict ended in a truce, not
a peace treaty.

‘Max Thunder’


exercise max thunder south korea
US
Pacific Command


South Korea‘s acting president, Hwang Kyo-ahn, at a
meeting with top officials on Thursday repeatedly called for the
military and security ministries to maintain vigilance.

The defense ministry said US and South Korean air
forces were conducting an annual training exercise, codenamed Max
Thunder, until April 28. North Korea
routinely labels such exercises preparations for
an invasion.

“We are conducting a practical and more intensive exercise than
ever,” South Korean pilot Col. Lee Bum-chul told
reporters. “Through this exercise, I am sure we can deter war and
remove our enemy’s intention to provoke us.”

South Korean presidential candidates clashed on
Wednesday night in a debate over the planned deployment in South
Korea of a US-supplied Terminal High Altitude Area
Defense anti-missile system, which has angered China.

On Monday, Hwang and Pence reaffirmed their plans to go ahead
with the deployment, but the decision will be up to the next
South Korean president. China says the system’s
powerful radar is a threat to its security.

The North has said it has developed a missile that
can strike the mainland United States, but officials and experts
believe it is some time away from mastering the necessary
technology, including miniaturizing a nuclear warhead.

The United States and Russia clashed at the United Nations on
Wednesday over a US-drafted Security Council statement to condemn
North Korea‘s latest failed ballistic
missile test.

Diplomats said China had agreed to the statement. 

Such statements by the 15-member council have to be agreed on by
consensus.


FILE PHOTO - A Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) interceptor is launched during a successful intercept test, in this undated handout photo provided by the U.S. Department of Defense, Missile Defense Agency.  U.S. Department of Defense, Missile Defense Agency/Handout via Reuters/File Photo
A
THAAD interceptor launching during a successful intercept
test.

Thomson
Reuters


Previous statements denouncing missile launches said it “welcomed
efforts by council members, as well as other states, to
facilitate a peaceful and comprehensive solution through
dialogue.” The latest draft statement dropped “through dialogue,”
and Russia requested its inclusion.

“When we requested to restore the agreed language that was of
political importance and expressed commitment to continue to work
on the draft … the US delegation without providing any
explanations cancelled the work on the draft,” the Russian UN
mission said in a statement.


lu kang
Lu Kang, a spokesman for
the Chinese Foreign Ministry.


NBC,
YouTube



The United States cut the words because they “would overly narrow
the means by which the international community could arrive at a
peaceful and comprehensive solution to
the North Korean nuclear problem,”
it told council members, according to diplomats.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said China believed in
the Security Council maintaining unity.

“Speaking with one voice is extremely important to the Security
Council appropriately responding to the relevant issue on the
peninsula,” he told reporters.

There was confusion over the whereabouts of a US aircraft carrier
group after Trump said last week he sent an “armada” as a warning
to North Korea, even as the ships were
far from Korean waters.

The US military’s Pacific Command explained that the USS Carl
Vinson strike group first had to complete a shorter-than-planned
period of training with Australia. It is now heading for the
western Pacific as ordered, it said.

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