Secretary Tillerson Quick Presser En Route to Guam…

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has been engaged with Southeast Asian nations for the past five days during his trip to the ASEAN conference.  The issues surrounding North Korea took up most of the dialogue.  En route to Guam Secretary T-Rex holds a brief press conference aboard Air Force 2:

[Transcript] QUESTION: Mr. Secretary, President Trump said that North Korea’s threats against the United States, if they continue, will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen before. Is this part of a diplomatic strategy or did you find those remarks to be unhelpful?

SECRETARY TILLERSON: Well, I think the U.S. and international community with respect to North Korea has actually had a pretty good week. We had a unanimous UN Security Council resolution strengthening sanctions against North Korea with China and Russia joining us in that vote, and then at ASEAN, a lot of strong statements coming out of ASEAN, and I think also reinforced with a global community that has expressed its view that North Korea really needs to stand down this program.

And so I think in response to that, North Korea’s rhetoric has just ratcheted up louder and louder and more threatening. So I think the President – what the President is doing is sending a strong message to North Korea in language that Kim Jong-un can understand, because he doesn’t seem to understand diplomatic language. I think the President just wanted to be clear to the North Korean regime on the U.S. unquestionable ability to defend itself, will defend itself and its allies, and I think it was important that he deliver that message to avoid any miscalculation on their part.

QUESTION: Well, one of their – one of North Korea’s responses was to say it’s going to direct missiles on Guam. That’s exactly where you are headed right now. Would you consider re-routing?

SECRETARY TILLERSON: Well, the North Korean missile capability can point in many directions, so Guam is not the only place that would be under threat. No, I never considered re-routing the trip back, and I do not believe that there is any imminent threat, in my own view.

QUESTION: Do you think there’s a longer-term threat, specifically about Guam, against the region in general?

SECRETARY TILLERSON: Well, I hope not. Again, what we’re hopeful is that this pressure campaign, which the entire world now has joined us in, and with the engagement of China and Russia, two of North Korea’s closest neighbors – that they can begin to persuade the regime that they needed to reconsider the current pathway they’re on and think about engaging in a dialogue about a different future.

QUESTION: Have China and Russia been helpful at all to you in the last 24 hours? Have you spoken with your counterparts and have they helped in any way?

SECRETARY TILLERSON: Well, I haven’t spoken to them since we left Manila, which was, I guess, about a day and a half ago. But we had direct discussions in Manila about the situation. I know that they were having talks as well with the representative from North Korea. I think that is evidence that they have very good, open channels of communication to be able to talk to the regime of North Korea, and we hope that they will be encouraging them to stand down their program and abide by the UN Security Council resolutions, which both China and Russia have voted for in the past. So I’m hopeful that they can use their influence – and I think they do have influence with the regime – to bring them to a point of dialogue, but with the right expectation of what that dialogue (inaudible).

QUESTION: Has anything happened in the last 24 hours to lead you to believe that we are moving towards a military option perhaps more quickly than anticipated?

SECRETARY TILLERSON: Nothing that I have seen and nothing that I know of would indicate that the situation has dramatically changed in the last 24 hours.

QUESTION: Do you have any immediate diplomatic plans to de-escalate the situation that could have an impact within days instead of months or years?

SECRETARY TILLERSON: Well, we have a very active, ongoing diplomatic effort, most of which is behind the scenes because that’s where diplomacy is most effective. We had very open conversations and our telephone lines remain open, certainly, to China and Russia as well as our allies, and I think publicly, we’ve been pretty clear in our statements directed at the North Koreans as to what we would like to see happen and make clear to them that we do not seek to be a threat to them, but we have to respond to the serious threats that they make towards us.

QUESTION: There have been calls for you to launch a new diplomatic effort. Do you feel that a new strategy may be warranted?

SECRETARY TILLERSON: I do not. I think the strategy we’re currently on is working. In fact, again, we have now garnered widespread international support, obviously, not just with the UN Security Council resolution, but globally, countries are speaking out and expressing the same view as to what North Korea should do, which is not be a threat to the stability of the region.

I think, in fact, the pressure is starting to show. I think that’s why the rhetoric coming out of Pyongyang is beginning to become louder and more threatening. Whether we’ve got them backed into a corner or not is difficult to say, but diplomatically, you never like to have someone in a corner without a way for them to get out.

QUESTION: And what is Pyongyang’s way out?

SECRETARY TILLERSON: Talks. Talks with the right expectation of what those talks will be – will be about.

QUESTION: Do you have any advice for Americans? Should they be worried?

SECRETARY TILLERSON: I think Americans should sleep well at night, have no concerns about this particular rhetoric of the last few days. I think that the President, again, as commander-in-chief, I think he felt it necessary to issue a very strong statement directly to North Korea. But I think what the President was just reaffirming is the United States has the capability to fully defend itself with any attack, will defend our allies, and we will do so. So the American people should sleep well at night.

QUESTION: All right. Thank you, sir.

SECRETARY TILLERSON: Thank you.

(LINK)

This entry was posted in ASEAN, China, Economy, media bias, N Korea, President Trump, Secretary Tillerson, Uncategorized, United Nations. Bookmark the permalink.

60 Responses to Secretary Tillerson Quick Presser En Route to Guam…

  1. Bouchart says:

    If anything happens to Guam, you can bet Hank Johnson is going to be livid.

    Liked by 12 people

  2. n1ghtcr4wler says:

    Look how they try to get Tillerson to say something that contradicts Trump.

    Liked by 13 people

    • MNGal says:

      Yes, very sickening. I am very proud of the entire Administration’s response to the North Korean crisis, and especially happy with Sec. Tillerson’s statements in support of President Trump’s response to NK recent threats. It was a great opportunity (which Sec. Tillerson seized) to remind the American public of the strategic efforts being undertaken to work on the NK problem with international support.

      Liked by 9 people

  3. Honest Abbey says:

    This press conference took place on board AF2 and this is the question asked by one of the reporters:

    QUESTION: Well, one of their – one of North Korea’s responses was to say it’s going to direct missiles on Guam. That’s exactly where you are headed right now. Would you consider re-routing?

    Shouldn’t that be: That’s exactly where WE are headed right now……..

    The FAKE NEWS just got REAL! Those reporters are scared to death!!

    Liked by 12 people

  4. Osugagal says:

    What great responses by T-Rex. It is so good to have such a competent and professional team carrying out the president’s directives. I love it and am so very very glad Trump is president. Think about what we would be giving away if Crooked Hillary was making the decisions. It is a scary thought

    Liked by 10 people

  5. Kjf says:

    I love how the 1st question is worded. Asking T Rex if Trump is helping, it seems like they think the State Department is actually in charge.

    Liked by 8 people

  6. 1hear2learn says:

    Too funny… after just receiving an incredibly rare 15-0 security council vote on sanctions this past week:
    “QUESTION: There have been calls for you to launch a new diplomatic effort. Do you feel that a new strategy may be warranted?”

    Yes why of course we should scrap the effort we’ve been working on for months now in which we just achieved a huge milestone with UN security council and start over because it’s already been almost a week and NK is still running their mouth making threats… I mean how stupid are these people??? I don’t know how Tillerson et al can listen to these inane questions w/o rolling their eyes and replying with such patience and respect. He, and our President deserve so much better… so glad they can soldier on continue to MAGA regardless of the hurdles thrown at them daily.

    Liked by 12 people

  7. Sayit2016 says:

    ” Is this part of a diplomatic strategy or did you find those remarks to be unhelpful” ?

    First off stop with the stupid questions that are tee’d up to make it look like President Trumps statement to NK was ” reckless” or ill-advised.

    No dummy– what is “unhelpful” is that this porn addicted, relation killing, little man child, that can not even feed his own people, delusional psychopath with a Napoleon Complex is flexing his muscles at the largest Super Power in the world that is not even counting our Allied partners. Japan once thought they could take America- that did not turn out so well for them…

    Kim has for a long long, time saber rattled only to have the US throw money at him to keep him at bay….This is a different world under President Trump….

    Welcome.

    Liked by 9 people

  8. Frank says:

    The DPRK is no serious threat to the US. Kim is a bristling little yappy dog sitting in Xi Jinping’s lap. By scolding the fat little mongrel right in front of Xi and the whole world, Trump is setting the stage for the next step, which is to yank US interests out of China, impose import tariffs and start the process of moving manufacturing back stateside where it should have always remained.

    That bastard Dubya was the one who started handing out tax incentives to companies who were willing to offshore production to China and elsewhere. Because of that, it’s very hard to make anything in the USA and remain competitive. Trump is starting to fix that ugly problem, and it requires imposing some pretty hefty tariffs on Chinese imports. That ought to even-out the foreign & domestic prices and generate some federal revenue at the same time. Skilled Americans get to return to work and be productive, and everybody in the US is happy.

    But it all starts with making a show of hostility with the Norks.

    Liked by 3 people

    • I blame every administration in the last 50 years for this. They all had a chance to fix this mess and all gave it a pass. Some as you pointed out actually went so far as to deliberately make the situation worse in the hopes that it would become impossible to fix.

      Liked by 3 people

    • SpanglishKC says:

      How right you are!!! From an old LA TImes piece:

      “Bush might be leaving office with record-high disapproval ratings in the U.S. and elsewhere in the world, but he has many fans in China…
      Bush made some mistakes in foreign policy, especially with Iraq, but for the Chinese, he had been a true friend,” said Mao Baoshu, a retired nuclear specialist who was attending the exhibit Tuesday.
      Many Chinese credit the Bush administration’s free-trade policies with helping the Chinese economy blossom over the last eight years. They appreciate its efforts to rein in the fiery anti-Beijing rhetoric of former Taiwanese President Chen Shui-bian…”

      WE WERE TOLD in order to change China we must be a friend to China… apparently in Nixon / Bush H and Bush W friendship means bending over… Sorry THOSE KINDS of friends I don’t need or want

      Liked by 2 people

      • Folk Light says:

        It’s what Globalists Do! Every Prez since Reagan [until Trump] Have been Globalists! It’s no wonder we have the issues we do today, {Cloward-Piven} Pray for this administration!

        Like

    • Folk Light says:

      It’s what Globalist/Progs do, Every Prez since Reagan {cept Trump} have been Progs!
      Is it any wonder we have the issues facing us today[?!] Pray for this Administration!

      Like

  9. solomonpal says:

    Be interested in the plan to neutralize the NORK artillery on the DMZ.

    Liked by 3 people

  10. Sunshine says:

    There’s talk about U.S.A. helping out in the Philippines against ISIL and rebel groups by supporting their military through air strikes. A great idea.

    Liked by 5 people

    • stillers213 says:

      It is my understanding this effort is already underway.

      Liked by 5 people

    • carrierh says:

      Sunshine, I like Deterte, who like Trump, gets the right things done and our military helping to remove ISIS there should and will be great. Since we travel to Asian, I have not wanted to even think of visiting the Philippines because of the druggers/muslims/etc. Now I look forward to going there because they have great food and great seamstists (so I will take my designs and fabric so I can get a new wardrobe in just a few days with great work and at a very reasonable price.

      Like

    • carrierh says:

      Sunshine, I like Deterte, who like Trump, gets the right things done and our military helping to remove ISIS there should and will be great. Since we travel to Asia, I have not wanted to even think of visiting the Philippines because of the druggers/muslims/etc. Now I look forward to going there because they have great food and great seamstists (so I will take my designs and fabric so I can get a new wardrobe in just a few days with great work and at a very reasonable price.

      Like

    • SpanglishKC says:

      Are you trying to TRIGGER me with the use of ISIL???

      Like

  11. Sylvia Avery says:

    I find TRex to be a very calming, reassuring presence. He always makes me feel comforted just listening to him, sort of like if my dad were still here and in charge.

    These are anxious times, but right this moment I am overwhelmed with gratitude to God for giving us President Trump and this team of “killers” to look after the interests of the American people. They are going to thread this needle somehow, and to God be the glory.

    Liked by 7 people

  12. All I have to say is THIS paragraph nails it:
    “And so I think in response to that, North Korea’s rhetoric has just ratcheted up louder and louder and more threatening. So I think the President – what the President is doing is sending a strong message to North Korea in language that Kim Jong-un can understand, because he doesn’t seem to understand diplomatic language. I think the President just wanted to be clear to the North Korean regime on the U.S. unquestionable ability to defend itself, will defend itself and its allies, and I think it was important that he deliver that message to avoid any miscalculation on their part.” – Tillerson

    Since Li’l Kim can’t seen to get it through his thick skull, Trump had to slap him up along side of his head verbally. WAKE UP PUTZ!

    Liked by 5 people

  13. Ziiggii says:

    Seriously… Who gets on a plane headed to a tiny island in the middle of the Pacific the day after the Little Fatboy wanna-be-dictator threatens to blow it up?

    AN EFF’n ALPHA Wolverine that’s who!
    talk about thumbing ones nose at the enemy; holy smokes, I might be getting an actual man crush here….

    Liked by 2 people

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