Strategic Patience With North Korea is Over

Apr 18, 2017

Vice President Mike Pence put North Korea on notice during his recent trip to Asia.

In a joint appearance, Vice President Pence and South Korean acting president Hwang Kyo-ahn said they would strengthen South Korea's defenses by moving ahead with the early deployment of the THAAD missile-defense system.

"Just in the past two weeks," said Vice President Pence, "the world witnessed the strength and resolve of our new president in actions taken in Syria and Afghanistan."

"North Korea," he said, "would do well not to test [President Trump's] resolve or the strength of the armed forces of the United States in this region."

The U.S. Navy this month struck a Syrian airfield with 59 Tomahawk missiles after a chemical weapons attack by the Assad regime. Several days later, the U.S. military dropped "the mother of all bombs", the largest non-nuclear device it has ever unleashed in combat, on a network of caves and tunnels used by ISIS in Afghanistan.

During a visit to the border between North and South Korea, Vice President Pence, whose father served in the 1950-53 Korean War, said the United States would stand by its "iron-clad alliance" with South Korea.

"All options are on the table to achieve the objectives and ensure the stability of the people of this country," Mr. Pence told reporters at the demilitarized zone, which separates the North from the South.

"We're going to abandon the failed policy of strategic patience," said Vice President Pence. "But we're going to redouble our efforts to bring diplomatic and economic pressure to bear on North Korea. Our hope is that we can resolve this issue peaceably."