Secretary of State Rex Tillerson stated what is obvious to most everyone.   If North Korea continues their weapons development program to the point that they become a real and present threat to the United States – pre-emptive military action might be required.  But, he’s hoping that more diplomatic solutions, including sanctions, will work to persuade North Korea that they need to back down.

The Washington Times reports – Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Friday it may be necessary to take pre-emptive military action against North Korea if the threat from their weapons program reaches a level “that we believe requires action.”

Tillerson outlined a tougher strategy to confront North Korea’s nuclear threat after visiting the world’s most heavily armed border near the tense buffer zone between rivals North and South Korea.

Asked about the possibility of using military force against the North, Tillerson told a news conference in the South Korean capital, “all of the options are on the table.”

He said the U.S. does not want a military conflict, “but obviously if North Korea takes actions that threatens South Korean forces or our own forces, that would be met with (an) appropriate response. If they elevate the threat of their weapons program to a level that we believe requires action that option is on the table.”

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