- The Washington Times - Sunday, April 16, 2017

President Trump’s national security adviser on Sunday said North Korea’s consistently antagonistic behavior “is a situation that just can’t continue,” and he refused to take any options off the table in terms of how the U.S. will deal with the reclusive nation moving forward.

Speaking Sunday on ABC’s “This Week,” Army Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster blasted North Korea’s latest failed missile test on Saturday, calling it a “provocative and destabilizing” move.

The launch, which ended with the missile exploding almost immediately, came shortly before Vice President Mike Pence landed in South Korea for meetings with leaders there.

North Korea is sure to be at the top of the agenda in those meetings, just as it was when Mr. Trump met with his Chinese counterpart, President Xi Jinping, last weekend at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Florida.

Gen. McMaster made clear that U.S. defense and intelligence agencies are readying a host of options to be presented to the president if requested.

“This latest missile test, it just fits into a pattern of provocative and destabilizing and threatening behavior on the part of the North Korean regime. And I think there’s an international consensus now — including the Chinese and the Chinese leadership — that this is a situation that just can’t continue,” Gen. McMaster said. “And the president has made clear that he will not accept the United States and its allies and partners in the region being under threat from this hostile regime with nuclear weapons.”

In keeping with past practice, Gen. McMaster said the president will not announce plans in advance of potential military strikes. But he made clear such a course is a possibility.

“We’re working together with our allies and partners, and with the Chinese leadership, to develop a range of options,” he said.

Mr. Trump does “not want to telegraph in any way how we’ll respond to certain incidents, it’s clear that the president is determined not to allow this kind of capability to threaten the United States. And our president will take action that is in the best interest of the American people,” he continued.

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