President Donald Trump’s recent “fire and fury” and other forceful warnings to North Korea brought him a lot of criticism at the time, but they may have been “useful” to pull things back from the brink of a military confrontation, experts said.
“I think the rhetoric from the president does register in Pyongyang, and it has been noted in Beijing,” Rand senior political scientist Andrew Scobell said Wednesday in a conference call with reporters. “It doesn’t seem so inappropriate.”
Last Tuesday, North Korea threatened a strike on the U.S. Pacific territory of Guam with four of its Hwasong-12 intermediate-range ballistic missiles. The North’s threat came only hours after Trump told reporters: “North Korea best not make any more threats against the U.S. They will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen.”