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Trump on US Nuclear Arsenal

12 August 2017

The now deceased lawyer, who advised both the U.S. and Iranian governments during the 1981 hostage crisis, wrote of the nuclear codes: "My suggestion was quite simple: Put that needed code number in a little capsule, and then implant that capsule right next to the heart of a volunteer". I totally disagree. I say that, it's a simple one, nuclear is our greatest threat worldwide.

"The U.S. has strengthened missile defenses against North Korea during [Trump's] watch notably by deploying a group of interceptors in South Korea, but that plan was set in motion by Obama", said Bruce Blair, a nuclear security expert at Princeton University. "This is not a president who seems to be singularly focused on what is a genuinely a global security threat in North Korea".

Omarosa Manigault, a former contestant on NBC's "The Apprentice", Trump's reality show, told PBS in 2016 that she thought at that time that Obama was "starting something that I don't know if he'll be able to finish" by publicly slamming Trump during that event. The question President Trump raised on Wednesday is how it compares today to what the Air Force and Navy have deployed in the past. "My first order as President was to renovate and modernize our nuclear arsenal".

Trump signed an executive order in January directing the Pentagon to do a new nuclear posture review - a standard move for incoming administrations.

While Obama pledged billions of dollars to modernizing the arsenal, the program is in its early stages. "That's always important. As you ratchet up your rhetoric, there's always the possibility that your adversary will call your bluff", says PJ Crowley, former assistant secretary of state and author of Red Line, a look at U.S. foreign policy in the context of failing states.

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South Korea and the U.S. remain technically still at war with North Korea after the 1950-53 Korean conflict ended with a truce, not a peace treaty.

The new YouGov poll suggests that 68% of Americans see North Korea as an enemy.

So it's - North Koreans, they do speak a different language than what we're - and Kim Jong Un does speak a different language than what we're used to here in the United States. He insisted he doesn't make such statements. (Remember, too, that several government positions that might help mitigate these conflagurations remain vacant.) A country that fears an existential threat can't afford to brush off statements from the source of that perceived threat.

"I think he has got to be shaking his head", Chollet said of the former president.

Fisher, who specialised in negotiation and conflict management, had a pretty grotesque idea about what the procedure for launching a nuclear attack should look like - but one that's chiming with people online.

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ZELDIN: Well, it's important that the North Koreans know - and this is where it would help, is where the North Koreans know that military action against the United States would result in severe consequences and essentially would result in fire and fury. "That's the last thing we want".

MARTIN: Any more effort created to put more pressure on China - targeting specific banks, targeting businesses that do business with North Korea? Rather than building on that hard work, though, inexact speech and prevarications threaten Trump's credibility, and by extension the credibility of the US.

Obama has always been a foil for Trump, who seems to rotate through perceived enemies every few weeks.

"That's the big concern here", says Gartner.

And it's really only - it's been less than a week since the U.N. Security Council took their actions where - these were massive sanctions.

The Latest North Korean Sanctions Show
Before Tillerson's trip, the USA had said he had no plans to interact with North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho. They also promised to strengthen their communications to better respond to the North's nuclear threats.

Trump on US Nuclear Arsenal