Tags: Donald Trump | North Korea | Trump Administration | nuclear | missiles | weapons | michael hayden

Mike Hayden: Trump Has 'Coherent' Plan for NKorea

Image: Mike Hayden: Trump Has 'Coherent' Plan for NKorea
Former CIA Director Michael Hayden (AP Photo)

By    |   Wednesday, 09 Aug 2017 05:46 PM

Former CIA Director Michael Hayden said Wednesday that President Donald Trump has "a coherent strategy" — though "inartfully executed" with Tuesday's rhetoric — on stopping North Korea's nuclear ambitions.

"With the Obama administration, you had strategic patience," Hayden, a retired four-star Air Force general who also directed the NSA, told Jake Tapper on CNN.

"They made the judgment that anything we could do to really stop the North Koreans would be too dangerous.

"We slow the program down and then robust up our defenses and deterrence in the region.

"The Trump administration decided that that is not their course of action," he continued. "They don't want the North Koreans to have this capacity.

"They recognize the leverage point is through the Chinese.

But, "the Chinese won't act," Hayden said, likening Pyongyang to "a bad tooth" for Beijing.

"They'd rather suffer through the day than go in for the root canal.

"I actually think it is conscious American policy to make the Chinese tooth hurt more.

"And, so, you're seeing the language probably — again, probably overdone," Hayden said. "You're seeing U.S. forces in the region — the Navy deployment, the B-1 bombers that flew over South Korea."

The steps, he said, are "all designed to make the current circumstances more uncomfortable for the Chinese and make them more likely to really lean on the North Koreans."

President Trump on Wednesday stepped up his rhetoric against Pyongyang by touting on Twitter the nation's nuclear arsenal was being fortified under his leadership.

His new posts came after North Korea said earlier Wednesday it was "carefully examining" a strike on the U.S. Pacific territory of Guam, which is 2,131 miles southeast.

Hayden told Tapper he feared Trump might have boxed himself in with his initial "fire and fury" threat Tuesday, though "I hope that he hasn't.

"The president has been inconsistent with his language in the past," he said. "This is a time where, I hope, he views some flexibility going forward.

"So, we'll just have to see."

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Former CIA Director Michael Hayden said Wednesday that President Donald Trump has "a coherent strategy," though "in-artfully executed" with Tuesday's rhetoric, on stopping North Korea's nuclear ambitions.
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2017-46-09
Wednesday, 09 Aug 2017 05:46 PM
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