Attack from North Korea not imminent

MILITARY confrontation with North Korea's is not imminent, senior U.S. national security officials said yesterday, but the possibility was greater than it was a decade ago.

North Korea's "grave threat" demands a "concerted effort" from the USA and its worldwide allies, a top American security official said today as he warned that the two countries were closer to war than they were a decade ago.

McMaster, appearing on ABC's This Week, said "we're not closer to war than a week ago, but we are closer to war than we were a decade ago".

The top U.S. intelligence official said on Sunday he would not be surprised if North Korea tested another missile, given that it had two tests in July, amid rising tensions between the United States and North Korea.

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■ BRITAIN should advise its nationals to leave the Korean peninsula if tensions continue to ratchet up, Lord West, the former head of the Royal Navy warned. "There's no intelligence indicating we're on the cusp of a nuclear war".

"He was communicating to many audiences, certainly the rogue leader in North Korea, communicating to him that the strategic patience of the past decades is no longer - we're just too close to him having this capacity to hold America at risk", he said.

U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Joseph Dunford told South Korea's Moon in a meeting on Monday that U.S. military options being prepared against North Korea would be for when diplomatic and economic sanctions failed, according to Moon's office.

Suh again highlighted doubts about North Korea's claims about its military capability. "Military advisers who don't believe in a pre-emptive strike know they will have to keep the president convinced that the United States would be unwise to take that approach". Moreover, he has the backing of powerful sections of the American ruling elite that regard the removal of the Pyongyang regime as a necessary part of a broader strategy of undermining and subordinating China.

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The North has accused the United States of mobilising a huge number of weapons and troops for annual military drills with South Korea that begin later this month.

Retired Adm.Mike Mullen, who served as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under Democrat and Republican presidents, said on NBC's Meet the Press that Trump's rhetoric "eliminates maneuver space" in how the USA might respond to North Korea.

The Defence Secretary Mr Mattis and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson have also penned an opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal. And so, America needs to take this very seriously.

Even if a means is found to pull back from the brink of war, Trump's incendiary threats have fundamentally altered the calculus of geopolitics, not only in North East Asia but internationally. Every other power will now be forced to rethink its own military strategy, greatly heightening the danger of a catastrophic world war.

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