White House officials want the Pentagon to come up with more options for a military strike against North Korea, The New York Times is reporting.
The officials have grown frustrated by what they believe is a reluctance by the military to provide President Donald Trump with the options, the newspaper said.
However, Pentagon officials are said to be worried that too many options would convince the White House to move too quickly and spark military action that could escalate catastrophically, the Times said.
But the newspaper said national security adviser H.R. McMaster is convinced the U.S. must have well-developed military plans to backup Trump's warnings to North Korea.
The disagreement between the two sides shows the deepening split in the administration over how to confront North Korea and its nuclear threat, the Times said. The frustration is confined to senior officials, rather than Trump, according to the paper.
Meanwhile, the newspaper pointed out McMaster is in favor a diplomatic resolution. However, he has noted past efforts to negotiate with North Korea forced the U.S. to make too many concessions.
Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis strongly backs a diplomatic effort to resolve tensions, the Times said.
But Pentagon press secretary Dana White said Mattis "regularly provides the president with a deep arsenal of military options" and that reports of a delay were "false."
Victor Cha, a Georgetown University professor, who had been Trump's top choice to be ambassador to South Korea, disagrees with the administration over a possible "bloody nose" strike against North Korea. Cha spelled out his concerns in a column in The Washington Post.
"Force will be necessary to deal with North Korea if it attacks first, but not through a preventive strike that could start a nuclear war," he said.
© 2021 Newsmax. All rights reserved.