Trump Touts Nuclear Arsenal In Tweets After Warning On North Korea

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After President Donald Trump warned North Korea on Tuesday that the United States would meet any new North Korean nuclear capabilities with “fire and fury,” the President on Wednesday morning touted the United States’ nuclear arsenal in a series of tweets.

He did not mention North Korea in either tweet on U.S. nuclear capabilities, but Trump declared that the United States’ nuclear capabilities are “far stronger and more powerful than ever before” in an apparent threat to North Korea.

Trump’s tweets were not entirely accurate: An executive order to update the nuclear arsenal was not his first act as President.Trump’s first executive order was one on “minimizing the economic burden” of Obamacare. He did sign an executive order to jumpstart a review of the country’s nuclear weapons about a week later.

Defense Secretary James Mattis did not announce until April that he would start that review, which typically occurs every eight years. The review is due to Trump by the end of the year, so it’s unlikely that any major changes have occurred yet. As for modernization, President Barack Obama had ordered an overhaul of the nuclear arsenal in the 2016 budget, a process that takes years to complete.

On Tuesday, following reports that North Korea has produced a nuclear warhead small enough for an intercontinental ballistic missile, Trump issued a warning to North Korea.

“They will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen,” Trump said. “He has been very threatening, beyond a normal state, and as I said they will be met with fire and fury and, frankly, power the likes of which this world has never seen before.”

On Wednesday morning, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said that in the Tuesday comments, Trump was simply “sending a message in language Kim Jong-un can understand.”

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Caitlin MacNeal is a News Writer based in Washington, D.C. Before joining TPM, Caitlin interned and wrote for the Huffington Post, the Sunlight Foundation and Slate. She is a graduate of Georgetown University.
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