President Donald Trump excoriated North Korea during his first address to the United Nations General Assembly in New York City on Tuesday and threatened to "totally destroy" the country's regime.
Trump addressed the nation's "depraved" regime, and highlighted several disturbing happenings that occurred because of North Korea, such as:
- The death of Otto Warmbier, who was imprisoned in North Korea and eventually sent back to America, where he inexplicably died
- The assassination of Kim Jong Un's half-brother, Kim Jong Nam, by a deadly chemical nerve agent
- The kidnapping of a 13-year-old Japanese girl, Megumi Yokota, who was imprisoned and forced to be a language tutor for North Korean spies
He used the above examples as a segue into his comments about the destruction of an entire country's population.
What did Trump say about North Korea?
Trump issued a stern warning about North Korea's missile development and nuclear weapons ambitions.
"It is an outrage that not only some nations would trade with such a regime, but would arm, supply, and financially support a country that imperils the world with nuclear conflict," Trump said.
"The United States has great strength and patience," Trump added, "but if it is forced to defend itself or its allies, we will have no choice but to totally destroy North Korea."
He concluded his speech on North Korea-world relations and about destruction, by saying, "The United States is ready, willing and able, but hopefully, this will not be necessary."
The Washington Post featured an op-ed by reporter Aaron Blake, who questioned the president's threats against North Korea and suggested that it was dangerous to ramp up any rhetoric at all when dealing with dictators like North Korean President Kim Jong Un.
"Trump's perhaps oddly chosen colloquialisms masked what was a pretty astounding escalation of his rhetoric when it comes to North Korea," Blake wrote. "Just to be clear: The president of the United States threatened to wipe a country of 25 million people off the map."