Tillerson who in a bid to douse tension arising from President Trump's threat which said North Korea would face "fire and fury like the world has never seen" if it continues to threaten the United States had earlier on Wednesday en route to Guam, the US territory in the Pacific that North Korea threatened this week to destroy with an "enveloping fire", assured Americans to sleep with all eyes closed as there is no danger of imminent attack.
"I think that the President, again, as commander-in-chief, I think he felt it necessary to issue a very strong statement directly to North Korea", Tillerson said. Condemned by North Korea, China and Russia, THAAD is being deployed by Washington in South Korea as a defense against possible missile launches by Pyongyang.
The White House said in a statement that Trump and Xi "agreed North Korea must stop its provocative and escalatory behavior". The influence of China in Pyongyang seems to be greatly reduced since Kim Jong Un became the North Korean leader in December 2011. "I think the problem is a lunatic in North Korea with nuclear weapons".
While Washington's next steps are not clear, it looks increasingly likely that the two-decade U.S. policy of "strategic patience" towards Pyongyang may now be over.
Gorka appears to have just put the ball back in North Korea's court, and that ball may just be a ball of fire if this kind of rhetoric continues. That means you don't understand what the words secretaries of state means. DPRK stands for North Korea's official name, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea. The regime added to the tensions with its threat Wednesday to launch a missile strike on the USA territory of Guam in the Pacific.
But back home, there is great concern over the tough talk from Trump.
"I should think so", Nauert said.
Also on Thursday afternoon, Trump answered reporters' questions at his New Jersey golf resort, where he is spending a 17-day "working vacation".
Far from reassuring everyone the world isn't hurtling towards nuclear destruction, the interview with President Trump's Deputy Assistant instead instilled a foreboding sense of doom amongst listeners.
In fact, Tillerson had been asked on Wednesday about the diplomatic implications of Trump's threats to unleash "fire and fury" on North Korea, not about any military aspect of that foreign policy challenge. It also said it was readying a plan to "box in" Guam with launches of four ballistic missiles; Guam is a key American military base with submarines, warships, aircraft, and thousands of troops.
Early on, Trump announced that he had undertaken "a military operation" to get "really bad dudes out of this country, and at a rate that nobody's ever seen before".