North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un is holding a nuclear dagger over the world’s head.
He believes he can bully the world into accepting his tyrannical rule.
But Defense Secretary Mattis just said the six words that keep Kim Jong Un up at night.
The U.S. is scheduled to conduct joint military exercises with South Korea in February.
There has been speculation that the drills will be canceled because they coincide with South Korea hosting the Winter Olympics and no one will want to risk North Korea launching a provocative action when so many travelers, athletes and dignitaries from around the world are gathered on the Korean Peninsula.
North Korea views the exercises as a pretext for an invasion and theY usually ratchet up their missile tests as their form of saber rattling.
But Mattis said “I don’t anticipate that right now” when asked if the drills would be delayed.
“The U.S. doesn’t plan to pause military exercises near the Korean Peninsula during the Winter Olympics in South Korea, Defense Secretary James Mattis said Friday.
Pyeongchang will host the Olympics in February amid heightened tensions with North Korea, drawing international concern about safety at the games.
U.S. military exercises in the region often provoke North Korea, whose leaders see them as preparations for an invasion, despite the U.S. saying the regularly planned training exercises seek only to increase readiness. Earlier this month, North Korean state-run media said a joint exercise between the U.S. and South Korea was pushing the country “to the brink of nuclear war.”
South Korea is reportedly considering scrapping an exercise planned for the spring to lessen the chance of conflict at the Olympics. But Mattis said the U.S. will not change its exercise schedule because of diplomatic concerns, while leaving the door open to reschedule because of other concerns, like availability of ships or local holidays.
“The rescheduling of exercises will be, as always, subject to both countries,” Mattis told reporters. “If a pause is, I’m pausing them for a period of time because of a diplomatic issue or something, no, I don’t anticipate that right now.”
Mattis is not going to let North Korea dictate our military readiness.
His comments are a signal to Kim Jong Un that he can’t bully the U.S. into accepting North Korea as a nuclear power.
We will keep you updated on any new developments in this story.