North Korea’s launch of an intercontinental ballistic missile does not bring the United States closer to war with the rogue regime, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said Thursday.
Trump administration efforts to hold the North accountable and halt its efforts to develop a nuclear-tipped ICBM capable of hitting the U.S. mainland, he added, are “purely diplomatically led.”
Earlier in the day in Poland, President Trump said he was considering “pretty severe” responses to the ICBM launch. A day earlier, Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley called the long-range missile test a “clear and sharp military escalation” during an emergency Security Council meeting, and warned that the window for diplomatic action against North Korea was closing.
Mattis appeared to soften the rhetoric in an impromptu visit with reporters at the Pentagon on Thursday.
Originally published by the Washington Examiner.