Trump presented with plan to place nukes in South Korea: report

Trump presented with plan to place nukes in South Korea: report
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The National Security Council has presented President Trump with options in response to North Korea's nuclear program that include placing American nuclear weapons in South Korea, NBC News reported on Friday.

Multiple top-ranking military and intelligence officials told the news source that another option presented to Trump by the National Security Council is an operation to kill the North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.

According to NBC News, both scenarios were part of a review of North Korea policy prepared ahead of Trump's meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping this week.

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Placing nuclear weapons in South Korea will be the first nuclear deployment overseas since the end of the Cold War, NBC noted. Washington withdrew all of its nuclear assets from South Korea 25 years ago.

A senior intelligence official told the network that he doubted U.S. and China could find a diplomatic solution to the crisis.

"We have 20 years of diplomacy and sanctions under our belt that has failed to stop the North Korean program," said the official involved in the review.

"I'm not advocating pre-emptive war, nor do I think that the deployment of nuclear weapons buys more for us than it costs," the official added.

Gen. John Hyten, the commander of U.S. Strategic Command, maintained on Wednesday that "any solution to the North Korea problem has to involve China."

“I’m a military officer, not a State Department official or any economic expert. But I just look at the world, and it’s hard for me to see a solution without China," Hyten told the Senate Armed Services Committee.

The rapid advancement of the North Korean nuclear program has put the U.S. under increasing pressure in recent months.
 
In order to cope with the rising nuclear threat, Washington authorized a deployment of Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) missile defense system in South Korea, which it began to deploy last month.
 
The maneuver, however, created new geopolitical obstacles for Trump, with Russia and China strongly opposing the measure out of fear that THAAD will infringe upon their strategic capabilities.