The secretary of defense, following in the footsteps of the president, issued a strong warning to North Korea Wednesday.
Secretary of Defense James Mattis instructed North Korea to stand down or face destruction. “The DPRK must choose to stop isolating itself and stand down its pursuit of nuclear weapons,” he explained in an official statement. “The DPRK should cease any consideration of actions that would lead to the end of its regime and the destruction of its people.”
North Korea has demonstrated the ability to threaten the U.S. and its allies with a growing arsenal of ballistic missiles and nuclear weapons. Since President Donald Trump entered office, Kim Jong-un has accelerated the country’s weapons development program, firing off short-, medium-, intermediate-, and long-range missiles, as well as surface-to-air and coastal defense cruise missiles.
Mattis assured observers in his statement that the U.S. is committed to protecting its allies, and that American and allied capabilities are superior to those of North Korea.
“The United States and our allies have the demonstrated capabilities and unquestionable commitment to defend ourselves from an attack,” Mattis said. “While our State Department is making every effort to resolve this global threat through diplomatic means, it must be noted that the combined allied militaries now possess the most precise, rehearsed and robust defensive and offensive capabilities on Earth.”