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For US Commander for Korea Gen. Singlaub: Trump 'Brilliant' in Dealing With North Korea

For US Commander for Korea Gen. Singlaub: Trump 'Brilliant' in Dealing With North Korea
(AP)

By    |   Tuesday, 09 May 2017 12:37 PM

Gen. John K. Singlaub, who served as chief of staff to all U.S. and U.N. forces in South Korea in the 1970s, tells Newsmax TV's John Bachman that President Donald Trump has acted "brilliantly" in dealing with North Korean and its leader Kim Jong-un.

Singlaub, now 95, was removed for his position in South Korea in 1977 after publicly criticizing President Jimmy Carter's plan to remove troops from the Korean Peninsula.

Singlaub has remained keenly focused on developments in Korea since then.

The former Army General had a long and storied military career, beginning in 1944 when with the OSS he parachuted behind Nazi lines, working with French Resistance fighters.

After World War II, he led the CIA's work in Manchuria during the Chinese Communist revolution, and led troops in the Korean and Vietnam wars.

He was involved in national security under every president from Franklin Roosevelt to Richard Nixon. He was close friend and advisor to President Ronald Reagan in the 1980s.

The retired general said North Korea's Kim "appears to be psychopathic" in his threats against the United States and Asian neighbors since the United States could easily wipe out his entire military if his threats continue.

Kim has not carried out another nuclear test since President Donald Trump's meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping in April, but has test-fired ballistic missiles, most ending in failure.

"He is just constantly doing things to defy or embarrass our president," Singlaub said.

Kim's actions are likely attributable to former President Barack Obama's poor handling of North Korea, he said, but added he sees Trump's tougher stance as having the ability to change things.

Though Trump has been criticized for saying he would be "honored" to meet with Kim, Singlaub said that such as face-to-face meeting actually could be beneficial, helping Trump determine whether Kim truly is of sound mind.

Trump's beefing up of the U.S. military presence in the region is reminiscent of Gen. Richard G. Stilwell's handling of the 1976 ax murder incident when two U.S. officers were killed by North Koreans as they attempted to cut down a tree blocking the view in the Demilitarized Zone.

Stilwell raised the level of defense readiness, flew in a squadron of F-111's from the United States and brought in troops from Japan, Guam, Okinawa and the Philippines, Singlaub said.

Singlaub personally met with a North Korean counterpart and warned him that the United States was serious, leading to an apology from then-leader Kim Jong-il, the current leader's father.

"They had a clear idea in Pyongyang that we were serious," Singlaub said.

Trump, he said, "has demonstration since the election that he is capable of doing what is necessary to protect this country."

The retired general also shared his thoughts on Russian President Vladimir Putin, saying he believes Trump can convince him to work with the United States against mutual threats.

"If that happens, that completely weakens all of our enemies now that are supported by Russia, to include those in the Middle East and in the Far East," he said. That could even translate into talking him into pulling out of Ukraine.

"We could convince Putin that it's better for us to be working together when we have this common danger of major confrontation, a nuclear confrontation, in northeast Asia as well as ones that are ongoing in the Middle East right now," Singlaub said.

On Iran, Singlaub favors Trump's efforts to tear up the nuclear deal made by the Obama White House that lifts sanctions and allows for some production of nuclear fuel, presumably for energy production.

"I don't think we should allow them to get the nuclear weapons mounted in missiles," Singlaub said. "We've got to stop that. I just can't believe that our country got itself into this situation with Iran after we've had so many years to study Iran and what it's looking for and what they're striving to do.

"They want to run the Middle East. They want to have all the caliphates reporting to them. That's not a suitable partner for preventing war."

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Gen. John K. Singlaub, who served as chief of staff to all U.S. and U.N. forces in South Korea in the 1970s, tells Newsmax TV's John Bachman that President Donald Trump has acted "brilliantly" in dealing with North Korean and its leader Kim Jong-un.
north korea, trump, john singlaub
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2017-37-09
Tuesday, 09 May 2017 12:37 PM
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