McMaster: ‘I don’t think we can tolerate’ a nuclear North Korea

National security adviser H.R. McMaster said in a Tuesday morning interview that he does not believe the world can allow North Korea to develop nuclear weapons.

“I don’t think we can tolerate that risk. The world can’t tolerate that risk,” McMaster told “CBS This Morning” when asked if the United States and a nuclear North Korea can “coexist.” 


“I mean, if North Korea has a nuclear weapon, I mean, who are you going to try to prevent from getting one?”

McMaster confirmed that President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump renews attacks against Tester over VA nominee on eve of Montana rally Trump submits 2017 federal income tax returns Corker: Trump administration 'clamped down' on Saudi intel, canceled briefing MORE has asked Russian President Vladimir Putin to “do more” to help place pressure on Pyongyang.

The national security adviser described North Korea as a “grave direct threat” to all countries, including Russia and China. 

“What if other nations in the region arm in this way?” McMaster asked on CBS. “And that’s going to be even more destabilizing.”

The United States has tried to enlist the help of China, which controls much of the energy imported into North Korea, in pressuring North Korea over its nuclear program. But Pyongyang has shown no signs of ending its nuclear testing.

Last month, Pyongyang launched an intercontinental ballistic missile that Defense Secretary James Mattis said “went higher, frankly, than any previous shot they've taken.”