U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis hinted on Monday about the existence of military options on North Korea that might spare Seoul from a brutal counterattack but declined to say what kind of options he was talking about or whether they involved the use of lethal force.
U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said on Sunday the U.N. Security Council had run out of options on containing North Korea’s nuclear program and that the United States might have to turn the matter over to the Pentagon.
Any conflict on the Korean peninsula could easily result in a degree of bloodshed unseen since the 1950-53 Korean War http://www.cheapsoccerjerse...tl-jersey/ , which claimed the lives of more than 50,000 Americans and millions of Koreans and ended in an armed truce, not a peace treaty.
Seoul is within artillery range of North Korea, which beyond nuclear and conventional weapons is also believed to have a sizable chemical and biological arsenal.
Asked whether there were any military options the United States could take with North Korea that would not put Seoul at grave risk, Mattis said: “Yes there are. But I will not go into details.”
Military options available to Trump range from non-lethal actions like a naval blockade aimed at enforcing sanctions to waging cyber attacks and positioning new U.S. weaponry in South Korea, where the United States has 28,500 troops.
South Korea has raised the possibility of reintroducing nuclear weapons to the peninsula. Mattis acknowledged discussing that with his South Korean counterpart but declined to say whether that option was under consideration.
“We have open dialogue with our allies on any issue that they want to bring up,” he said.
U.S. President Donald Trump has hinted that any use of lethal force against North Korea would be overwhelming, using phrases like “fire and fury” that evoke images of nuclear war.
The U.S. military said on Monday it had staged bombing drills with South Korea http://www.cheapsoccerjerse...en-jersey/ , flying a pair of B-1B bombers and F-35 fighter jets over the Korean peninsula, in a show of force against North Korea.
Still, despite heated rhetoric and posturing in the United States and North Korea, there has been no positioning of U.S. military assets to suggest a military conflict is imminent.
Trump has vowed that North Korea will never be allowed to threaten the United States with a nuclear-tipped missile.
Mattis told reporters that he believed diplomacy and sanctions were so far succeeding in putting more pressure on Pyongyang.
Even as tensions rise, the United States and its allies have stuck to a hands-off policy when North Korea test-fires its missiles. Mattis confirmed that policy on Monday, saying it would not shoot down a North Korean missile unless it poses a direct threat to the United States or its allies.
He said Pyongyang’s calculus appeared to be designed to race forward with its missile program, “without going over some kind of a line in their minds that would make them vulnerable.”
BERLIN http://www.cheapsoccerjerse...so-jersey/ , Sept. 14 (Xinhua) -- German politicians on Thursday expressed cautious support for Eurozone expansion and reform sketched by European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker during his state of the union address.
Speaking to public broadcaster ARD, Germany's influential Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble (CDU) said that he shared Juncker's ambition to introduce the European Single Currency, currently used by 19 states, throughout the entire European Union (EU) in principle.
Schaeuble noted, however http://www.cheapsoccerjerse...ke-jersey/ , that countries could only join the monetary union once they fulfilled the necessary economic criteria. He cited the case of Greece as a warning for what could happen when countries introduced a "hard" currency too early which they could then no longer devalue.
Addressing the European Parliament earlier on Wednesday, Juncker had mapped an ambitious future for the Euro which he said was "destined to become the common currency of Europe". He rejected notions of a "multi-speed" EU in which some parts of the bloc advanced faster and further on the path to integration than others.
The European Commission president asked EU members which were not in the Eurozone, such as Sweden, Poland and Bulgaria, to join the monetary union. He further called for establishing a single Euro area finance minister http://www.cheapsoccerjerse...an-jersey/ , but spoke out against a separate Eurozone budget.
"We do not need a separate Eurozone budget, we need a strong Eurozone line within the existing European budget," Juncker said.
In response to his speech, Schaeuble emphasized that Germany could only thrive as long as its fellow EU members were also doing well. Nevertheless, he reiterated his often-voiced rejection of mutualizing debt in the Eurozone http://www.cheapsoccerjerse...er-jersey/ , arguing that "those who decide must also bear the consequences of their decisions".
Pooling debt would be "poison for Europe", Schaeuble added.
The CDU-politician's general approval of Juncker's speech is perhaps unsurprising, given that it closely reflected Germany's own vision for the Eurozone. As Schaeuble pointed out, the position of the European Commission's president was "principally aligned with our European policy objectives."
In light of Emmanuel Macron's recent success in the French presidential race and the widely-anticipated re-election of German Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU), much has been made of the prospect of a "grand bargain" between Paris and Berlin to launch a new set of Eurozone reforms.