National Security

North Korea reacts to Trump threats

A top expert is hoping North Korea is more deterred by President Trump’s meeting with China’s president than the movement of a U.S. aircraft carrier strike group in the region.

The White House claimed last week that the Carl Vinson Strike Group was heading toward North Korea, but reports later made clear the carrier was not moving in that direction.


Asked if the carrier’s movements had a psychological effect on North Korea, Michael O’Hanlon of the Brookings Institution said he hoped Pyongyang was more moved by Trump’s meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping.

“We better hope that wasn’t the reason, because if North Korea chose not to test because they were worried about an aircraft carrier getting close, now that it is not close, are they going to test?” O’Hanlon told The Hill.

“Now that they have seen President Trump maybe bluff a little, are they going to take the next threat seriously?”

O’Hanlon said he hoped North Korea chose to test a smaller missile than expected last week because of “the Trump-Xi meeting,” calling U.S.-China relations “the single best point of leverage.”

Watch the video above to hear O’Hanlon in his own words.


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