President Trump convened his national security team after Kim Jong-un’s successful test of a hydrogen bomb that North Korea can supposedly attach to a long-range missile, The Washington Post reported.
Secretary of Defense James Mattis addressed reporters on the White House lawn after his meeting with the president, saying that he presented Trump the “many military options” at his disposal.
“We have many military options, and the president wanted to be briefed on each one of them,” Mattis said. “We made clear that we have the ability to defend ourselves and our allies — South Korea and Japan — from any attack and our commitments among the allies are ironclad.”
“Any threat to the United States or its territories, including Guam, or our allies will be met with a massive military response both effective and overwhelming,” he added. “Because we are not looking to the total annihilation of a country — namely North Korea. But as I said we have many options to do so.”
North Korea’s hydrogen bomb test early Sunday setoff off a manmade earthquake near the test site. Japanese and South Korean officials said the tremor was about 10 times more powerful than the one measured after the nation’s last nuclear test a year ago, Reuters reported.
Mattis’ warning comes after a series of empty threats from the president. Trump had promised to bring “fire and fury” if North Korea continued to test its nuclear program. But the North Korean apparently thought that the president’s threats were hallow.