Defense Secretary James Mattis : “Our Goal is Not War” with North Korea

Defense Secretary James Mattis : "Our Goal is Not War" with North Korea
Defense Secretary James Mattis : "Our Goal is Not War" with North Korea

U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis emphasized diplomatic efforts to resolve the current North Korean crisis. Mattis, while standing at the demilitarized zone (DMZ) between North and South Korea, said the United States’ “goal is not war.”

Although Mattis stated the United States’ goal was not war, he emphasized on North Korea’s provocations and how it was a threat to regional stability.

“North Korean provocations continue to threaten regional and global security despite unanimous condemnation by the United Nations Security Council,” he said.

Mattis also supported U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson by confirming their goal is a complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.

“As Secretary of State Tillerson has made clear, our goal is not war, but rather the complete, verifiable, and irreversible denuclearization of the Korean peninsula.”

Touring the DMZ with Mattis, South Korean Defense Minister Song Young-moo said: “We together will continue to defend peace through strong will and strong might.”

U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis and South Korean Defense Minister Song Young-Moo visits the DMZ
U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis and South Korean Defense Minister Song Young-Moo visits the DMZ

Although the priority is diplomacy, the United States have been working on military plans to respond if North Korea decides to launch a pre-emptive strike.

“Do we have military options in defense for attack, if our allies are attacked? Of course we do. But everyone is out for a peaceful resolution,” Mattis told reporters traveling with him this week.

The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Marine General Joseph Dunford, reiterated its warning of retaliation if North Korea keeps provoking the United States and its allies.

In a statement, General Dunford “reaffirmed that any attack by North Korea would be met with a response that will be overwhelming and effective, using the full range of U.S. military capabilities.”

Meanwhile, the United States keeps bolstering its forces on North Korea’s doorstep. United States Air Force strategic bombers keeps flying over waters east of North Korea, and the U.S. Navy will have three carrier strike group in the Pacific in the coming days.

North Korea has been particularly aggressive during the last few months. Pyongyang enhanced its missile test as well as toughening its position against a U.S. presence in the region. North Korea’s UN ambassador also warned the United Nations general assembly of a possible nuclear war.

About Jonathan Wade, CD 59 Articles
Jonathan is decorated former light infantryman who served more than 14 years in the Canadian Forces. Deployed to Afghanistan as part of an embedded mentoring team with the Afghan National Army, Jonathan acquired exceptional leadership skills, culture appreciation as well as a detailed comprehension of the situation on the ground. After his career as a soldier, Jonathan founded The Sentinel Analytical Group (2014-2017), and later renamed the blog to Conflict Observer. His goal is to offer an alternative to mainstream media news with detailed analysis as well as offering vital technical informations for a better comprehension of the situation. Jonathan is also the media analyst for the “Centre sur la sécurité internationale” at the Laval University, a military and strategic analyst for “La Commission Gendron” as well as a project coordinator with the NATO Association of Canada. He is now studying at the Laval University in Russian studies, Political Science, and Arab studies. Jonathan speaks French, English and Russian (elementary). He is also working on Modern Standard Arabic. You can follow Jonathan on Twitter : @JonathanWadeCD. E-mail : jonathan.wade@conflictobserver.com