Kim Jong Un, the dictator of the North Korean communist regime, backed down from his threat to launch a nuclear attack on Guam. The development is a win for President Donald Trump, who was widely criticized by critics for his refusal to give into Kim’s threats.
North Korea’s state-run news outlet, KCNA, reported on Aug. 15 that Kim decided to not fire missiles at Guam after he visited a military command post a day prior. The article, written with over-the-top praise for Kim, says that after he reviewed the plans to strike Guam, he would “watch a little longer” before taking any action.
Kim added, however, that he would still consider the attack on Guam if “the Yankees persist in their extremely dangerous actions around the Korean peninsula …” Of course, rhetoric such as this is common for the North Korean regime, which controls its people heavily through propaganda about foreign threats.
It states that Kim was then given a performance by an “art squad,” and then “gave precious teachings for the art squad’s performance activities.”
In January, North Korea claimed it was in the final stages of developing a nuclear weapon capable of reaching the United States. Trump responded on Jan. 2 with a tweet stating that the claim “won’t happen!”
North Korea responded soon after with a threat to launch nuclear strikes on New York City—a feat they’re currently technologically incapable of. This later degraded into Kim’s Aug. 8 threat of a preemptive missile strike on Guam.
Trump refused to back down from North Korea’s missile threats, however, and instead answered Kim’s threat with a stronger statement.
Trump said on Aug. 9, “North Korea best not make any more threats to the United States. They will be met with fire and fury, like the world has never seen. He has been very threatening, beyond a normal statement. And as I said, they will be met with fire, fury—and frankly, power—the likes of which this world has never seen before.”
Democrat leaders were quick to use Trump’s statement in attempts to damage Trump’s credibility. Susan Rice, the former national security adviser under Obama published an Aug. 10 op-ed in The New York Times.
Rice accused Trump of his strong stance on North Korea, saying it was “unprecedented,” and said “we can, if we must, tolerate nuclear weapons in North Korea…”
Yet, Trump’s “unprecedented” stance appears to have worked.
China has also switched its stance on North Korea—another first, as China was previously the primary defender of North Korea. Its Global Times newspaper reported that China would not come to North Korea’s aid if the United States retaliated from an attack, and China voted for approved sanctions on North Korea at the United Nations.
On Aug. 14, China announced it will begin supporting UN sanctions on North Korea, barring imports from North Korea of iron, lead, and coal, beginning on Aug. 15. Kim’s announcement about no longer threatening Guam came a few hours later.
Amid the threats, the governor of Guam, Eddie Baza Calvo, posted a video of him taking a call from Trump on Aug. 11, and said, “I have never felt more safe or so confident, with you at the helm. So, with all the criticism going on over there, from a guy that’s being targeted, we need a president like you.”
Defense Secretary Jim Mattis warned on Aug. 14, according to Fox News, that if North Korea follows through on its threats to fire missiles at the United States that “it’s game on.”
Mattis said , if North Korea launches missiles at the United States, the U.S. military will “take out” the missiles. He added, “it could escalate into war very quickly… yes, that’s called war, if they shoot at us.”