Ex-Ambassador To South Korea: Trump ‘Trying To Out-North Korean The North Koreans’

Ex-Ambassador To South Korea: Trump ‘Trying To Out-North Korean The North Koreans’

With tensions between the United States and North Korea at their highest levels in years — if perhaps ever — one veteran diplomat noted that President Donald Trump’s bluster towards the reclusive country may backfire, specifically if the North Koreans feel he’s bluffing.

Appearing on ABC’s This Week, former Ambassador to South Korea Christopher Hill told guest host Martha Raddatz that it was an encouraging thing that Trump has been in “close contact” with the Chinese government over the North Korean threat. At the same time, he explained that South Korea is not only worried about China going over its head and not engaging them, but also the immediate danger it faces if the US and others decided to engage in a preemptive strike with its aggressive neighbors.

As far as the president’s recent provocative language towards the North Koreans, Hill stated that it feels as if Trump is “trying to out-North Korean the North Koreans.”

“Great powers can’t really bluff,” he added. “When you talk in those terms, you’ve gotta be prepared to back it up.”

Over the past couple of days, North Korea appears to be pushing the envelope more and more, begging for engagement. The NK government held a huge military parade over the weekend in Pyongyang, showing off all minds of hardware and missiles. They also attempted a missile launch, though it was reported the projectile immediately exploded after liftoff.

Meanwhile, the US Navy has sent a carrier strike group towards the Korean peninsula.

Justin Baragona

Justin Baragona is the founder/publisher of Contemptor and a contributor to The Daily Beast. He was previously the Cable News Correspondent for Mediaite and prior to starting Contemptor, he worked on the editorial staff of PoliticusUSA. During that time, he had his work quoted by USA Today and BBC News, among others. Justin began his published career as a political writer for 411Mania. He resides in St. Louis, MO with his wife and pets.