NKorea: Trump's policy more vicious than Obama's

The visit comes after a huge military parade during which North Korea showcased apparent intercontinental ballistic missiles, and as a United States carrier group converges on the Korean peninsula, ratcheting up tensions to their highest point in years.

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence arrived in South Korea on Sunday to begin a 10-day trip to Asia that comes amid turmoil on the Korean Peninsula over North Korea's threats to advance its nuclear and defense capabilities, and just after a failed missile launch by the North.

The vice president is on trip to South Korea, the first stop on his Asia visit. "And our president will take action that is in the best interest of the American people", he said.

While the front looks like the KN-08, it is shorter than North Korea's ICBM, possibly making it a longer modification of the Musudan or a shorter modification of the KN-08, or possibly something else entirely.

The US Navy this month struck a Syrian airfield with 59 Tomahawk missiles.

McMaster would not provide specifics as to what actions the Trump administration will make towards the North Korean state.

North Korea watchers remained on high alert, as leader Kim Jong-un was reportedly poised to conduct a sixth nuclear test. At the same time, Vice President Mike Pence warned at the Korean Demilitarized Zone that America's "era of strategic patience is over". He will also aim to reassure allies in South Korea and Japan that the US will take appropriate steps to defend them against North Korean aggression.

'All options are on the table to achieve the objectives and ensure the stability of the people of this country, ' he told reporters as tinny propaganda music floated across from the North Korean side of the so-called demilitarized zone (DMZ).

North Korea expert Andrei Lankov said this was unsurprising, saying that "the farther one is from Korea, the more one experts there to be war".

Noting Trump's recent military actions in Syria and Afghanistan, Pence said, "North Korea would do well not to test his resolve" or the US armed forces in the region.

Some 28,500 USA troops are stationed in the South. Japan's Defense Ministry will work closely with the USA and South Korea to gather and analyze information on North Korea, it said on its website.


China says the system's powerful radar is a threat to its security.

In response to an earlier missile, fired on April 5, the Pentagon sent nuclear aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson and its attack group to the Korean Peninsula.

The official said that had it been a nuclear test "other actions would have been taken by the US".

McMaster said various United States military and intelligence agencies are working on providing options to "have them ready" for Trump "if this pattern of destabilizing behavior continues".

Mr Trump has backed away from a campaign promise to label China a currency manipulator, remarking on Sunday the softer line he had taken was linked to Beijing's help on the North Korea issue.

Trump turned to Twitter to underscore the importance of cooperation with China on North Korea.

But now Moon faces a strong challenge from a more centrist candidate, Ahn Cheol-soo, who has said that he will respect the Park administration's agreement with the United States.

"I'm not sure why failed missile tests, which are still banned by the U.N. Security Council, are considered less provocative", said Kent Boydston, a North Korea-focused research analyst at the Peterson Institute for International Economics.

Chief among the devastating arsenal on show during the parade was a KN-08 rocket, thought to be capable of flying more than 7,000miles - within range of Los Angeles, New York and Washington DC.

China's foreign ministry on Monday called on North Korea and other neighbors to refrain from inflammatory behaviors following Pyongyang's failed missile test-launch over the weekend. China has backed North Korea since the peninsula was last at war in the 1950s, in part to prevent having an American ally on its border.

"The key, I think, to this situation - and I think President Trump understands this - is dealing with China", Sanders said.

  • Rogelio Becker