Senior U.S. national security officials said Sunday that a military confrontation with North Korea's is not imminent, but they cautioned that the possibility of war is greater than it was a decade ago.
That drew a sharp rebuttal from Pyongyang, which threatened to launch missiles toward Guam, a USA territory in the western Pacific where some 6,000 American troops are based.
But decades of efforts to stop North Korea's nuclear and missile program have failed, and there is no consensus about what could work now. When host Chris Wallace pressed him about how close North Korea is to being able to hit the US mainland, Pompeo said that it was alarming but hard to define. The CIA chief described Kim as "rational" and responsive to "adverse circumstances".
"We're all looking to get out of this situation without a war", Dunford said.
Pompeo said that Kim responds to "external stimulus", such as pressure from China and ultimatums from the White House.
There's no sign the U.S. military has that impression, however.
On Tuesday, Trump said North Korea "will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen" if it continues to threaten the U.S., after North Korea warned it will teach the United States a "severe lesson" with its nuclear weapons if Washington would dare to opt for military action against Pyongyang. The war of words between the two sides took a more serious turn on Tuesday, when Trump threatened to meet North Korea with "fire and fury" if it continues to make threats against the United States.
Zakharova said that the United States was not considering the full repercussions of an armed conflict in the region.
The comments came after British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said in a number of tweets that London was working with Washington and its allies to find a diplomatic solution to the standoff.
"Well, it depends on the nature of the threat, right?"
The Labour leader's warning comes after he called on Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un to hold direct talks "in the interest of sanity".