November 30, 2017
If anyone backs down in this deadly showdown between the White House and North Korea's Kim Jung Un, it won't be President Trump. The U.S. leader is digging in on his pledge to make the dictator pay for launching another test missile Wednesday, which experts claim can reach America's East Coast.
Tweeting that he'd spoken to China's president about the latest "provocation," Trump promised that more sanctions would be imposed on North Korea. "This situation will be handled," he vowed. And based on my conversation with Senator Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) on "Washington Watch" last evening, it may be sooner rather than later.
"President Trump told me yesterday... we're not going to live our lives as Americans under a threat of attack from a crazy man in North Korea. That he's not going to allow Kim Jung Un to get a nuclear-tip missile that can hit America. They're not there yet. They've got a missile that's got the range, but they haven't perfected reentry and delivering the missile and payload in an accurate fashion. Although it's just a matter of time." Like FRC's Lt. General Boykin, Graham agrees that China holds the keys to a solution short of war.
"[W]hat can China do? They provide North Korea's economy almost all their oil. They can cut off the oil and bring them to their knees. The president talked to the president of China this morning... and President Trump was very firm with the president of China. 'I am not going to allow this threat to mature any further -- and if I have to use military force, I will." But then, Graham went on to break some significant news.
"I want your listeners to know -- by the end of this week, there are going to be some strong signals to China and North Korea that the military option is very viable. Now, nobody wants a war with North Korea. Thousands, possibly millions, could get hurt or killed, but the president has to pick between our homeland security and regional stability. And he's told me and he's told the Chinese that he's not going to live under a nuclear threat, and if he has to use military force, he will. And if there's going to be a war, it's going to be in China's backyard."
Although the missile launch is stoking plenty of fears in places like Hawaii, which is reviving its nuclear drills for the first time in decades, General Boykin is quick to remind Americans that the U.S. intelligence community is laser-focused on the North Korea nuclear program and is watching for any indicators of a nuclear launch. "Every launch has a pre-launch signature that tells the intelligence analyst what is coming. As a result, the US and its allies will get indications and warnings of an imminent launch. The key is that the U.S. is positioned to react preemptively to destroy the threat before a launch."
For the latest on North Korea, check out General Boykin's interview from this afternoon's Neil Cavuto show on Fox News.
Tony Perkins' Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.