Tags: Donald Trump | North Korea | Trump Administration | nicholas burns | nuclear | weapons | diplomacy

Ex-Amb. Burns: No Reason for Trump to Be 'Shrill' on NKorea

Image: Ex-Amb. Burns: No Reason for Trump to Be 'Shrill' on NKorea
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By    |   Thursday, 10 Aug 2017 12:43 PM

Language and demeanor are important for presidents, and there is no reason for President Donald Trump to match North Korean leader Kim Jong Un "in being shrill," former NATO Ambassador and State Department Spokesman Nicholas Burns said Thursday.

"All of our nuclear age presidents, going back to [President Dwight D.] Eisenhower, when they talk about nuclear weapons, they have been steely and precise," Burns commented during an MSNBC "Morning Joe" interview. "They have not been bombastic and shrill."

There was no reason for Trump, with his "fire and fury" response to Kim, to have matched the dictator's tone, said Burns, but that didn't mean he thinks there should not have been a tough official response to the Asian country's growing aggressions.

"You don't want the unintended consequence of Kim Jong Un to fly off the handle," said Burns, pointing out that Defense Secretary James Mattis put out a statement that was "extremely tough."

But in his statement, the retired general was "precise in linking our actions to their actions, and that's the way to go," said Burns.

Burns also said he thinks Trump, while giving his comments about North Korea, may have also trying to get the attention of China to let it know that the United States will have to take things in a different direction, unless the Chinese puts more leverage on Pyongyang.

The former ambassador said he also believes the United States should have an integrated diplomatic and military strategy moving forward.

"We've seen a lot of military and a lot of threats and we've seen less of the diplomacy," he said. "I would hope that President Trump would basically give the reins here to Secretary of State Rex Tillerson."

Tillerson's "measured, tough Constitution is better suited to the diplomacy of dealing with the Chinese and the North Koreans than President Trump's very open and quite shrill style," Burns said.

However, too many people from the Trump administration are speaking out, and it's making the situation more difficult, he continued.

"You have four or five different people at the high level speaking for the administration and their messages are colliding with each other," Burns said. "Can you imagine what it's like to sit in Beijing or Tokyo and make sense of what the United States is trying to say to them?

"They need more discipline. They need a senior career person, there are lots of people that could do it very well, but they don't seem to trust the State Department, and that's hurting them right now."

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Politics
Language and demeanor are important for presidents, and there is no reason for President Donald Trump to match North Korean leader Kim Jong Un "in being shrill," former NATO Ambassador and State Department Spokesman Nicholas Burns said Thursday.
nicholas burns, nuclear, weapons, diplomacy
420
2017-43-10
Thursday, 10 Aug 2017 12:43 PM
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