Trump aide says Tillerson's role is diplomatic, not military

Trump aide says Tillerson's role is diplomatic, not military

It certainly seems like a stretch, if not an outright lie, to conclude that in just 7 months the Pentagon was able to "modernize and renovate" the American nuclear arsenal to the extent that it is now "far stronger and more powerful than ever before".

This morning, North Korea said it was "carefully examining" a plan to strike the USA territory of Guam with ballistic missiles. "We never do. I don't talk about it", Trump told reporters when asked about a preemptive strike.

President Donald Trump says the United States' nuclear arsenal is "far stronger and more powerful than ever before".

"What he has done is set the Department of Defense some homework that hasn't been turned in yet", Berger said.

The Minister for Justice has hit out at the language used by the leaders of North Korea and the United States as tensions continue to rise. "We don't have a bigger or more powerful nuclear arsenal today", Harrison said.

Trump's heated rhetoric comes as his secretary of state seeks to downplay the words.




Jim Carafano, a Heritage Foundation scholar who advised Trump's transition team on foreign policy, said the messages conveyed to North Korea were aimed at different audiences: Trump to the American people, Tillerson to the diplomatic community and Mattis to the military establishment.

Trump wrote in an early morning tweet: "My first order as President was to renovate and modernize our nuclear arsenal. It's just not possible", he said. Three U.S. officials, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said the United States had not moved additional assets into the region after North Korea's threats against Guam.

Todd Harrison, Director of the Aerospace Security Project and Defense Budget Analysis at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), told BuzzFeed News that under the Trump administration the nuclear arsenal has "basically remained the same" and in some cases, the number has reduced to comply with the New START treaty - a 2011 agreement between the U.S. and Russian Federation to reduce and limit the number of nuclear weapons.

The tweet came as Trump traded escalating threats with North Korea.

White House deputy adviser Sebastian Gorka dismissed Secretary of State Rex Tillerson's reassurances that "Americans should sleep well at night" in response to escalating tensions between the US and North Korea.

The major US averages ended down about 0.2 percent overnight, with the Dow snapping a 10-day winning streak, as Trump's remarks added to concerns about rising tensions between the USA and North Korea.

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