State Dept. Responds to Criticism of Trump Admin's Rhetoric on N. Korea

US Senator Dan Sullivan Republican of Alaska

US Senator Dan Sullivan Republican of Alaska

The tone of Trump's comments Tuesday - promising "fire and fury" if North Korea keeps threatening the USA - appeared to come right out of Kim Jong Un's playbook for over-the-top taunts.

Donald Trump's warning that North Korea would "face fire and fury like the world has never seen" if it continues to threaten the USA has been criticised by members of Congress from both political parties.

Yet the shift in tone from Trump won some global support, with Matthew Rycroft, the U.K.'s ambassador to the United Nations, saying it was just one component of a broader effort to pressure the North Korean regime. "We call on the Pyongyang regime to listen to that clarity, to act on that clarity and halt its nuclear program, halt its intercontinental ballistic missile program". "It is ratcheting up the pressure on North Korea", she said.

"Well, I think the United States, and some of you may disagree with this, but the United States is on the same page", Nauert said.

She dismissed a suggestion that others in the White House weren't fully behind President Trump's vow to meet threats from President Kim Jong Un's regime with "fire and fury" after Secretary of State Rex Tillerson assured Americans they should have "no concerns" and said there was no "imminent threat". The council unanimously adopted the sanctions resolution on Saturday.

Republican Senator John McCain, chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, told a radio station in Phoenix, Arizona that great leaders he has seen "don't threaten unless they're ready to act".

"President Trump has basically drawn a red line".

The harsh rhetoric between the two nations have many in fear of potential conflict.

The key to success against North Korea is to urge China to take action, Kinzinger said, although he added, "We sound like we're beating a dead horse".

Mr Sullivan said if North Korea were to attack the USA first, Trump would have more authority to respond. Because of that, "I don't think the rhetoric is a huge deal".

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