President Trump’s tough talk regarding the North Korean nuclear threat in his U.N. speech – including referring to dictator Kim Jong Un as “rocket man” and threatening to “totally destroy” the communist nation – has rattled Trump’s critics in establishment media and the Democratic Party, but some in the international community appreciated his “blunt, honest approach,” according to U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley.
Further, along with Kim’s continued defiance – launching missiles over Japan and developing miniaturized hydrogen bombs – the criticism comes amid new reports of the dictator’s brutality, including his execution of opponents and of people who annoy him with anti-aircraft missiles, and his plucking of girls from school to use as sex slaves.
ABC “Good Morning America” host George Stephanopoulos asked Haley to respond to criticism of Trump’s speech Tuesday, specifying the “rocket man” reference.
“This is a way of like getting people to talk about [Kim],” Haley replied.
“It worked,” she laughed. “Every other international community is now referring to him as ‘rocket man.'”
Moving to the central issue, Haley said the U.S. has “exhausted every diplomatic means” it has to contain North Korea.
“And we are going to continue to do that. While he is being irresponsible, we’re going to be responsible,” Haley said.
“The international community actually very much appreciated the blunt, honest approach that the president took on North Korea,” she said.
Former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, in an appearance with Stephen Colbert on NBC’s “The Late Show” Tuesday night, called Trump’s U.N. speech “very dark, dangerous, not the kind of message that the leader of the greatest nation in the world should be delivering.”
Former Secretary of State John Kerry said Wednesday in an interview with MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” that the speech will make diplomacy with North Korea harder and put the U.S. in danger.
“You have to ask yourself: Is America safer because of ‘rocket man?” he said.
Living in fear
Meanwhile, a North Korean defector revealed Kim’s officials have pulled teenage girls from North Korean schools to serve as the leader’s sex slaves and carried out horrific public executions in school yards, bridges and sports stadiums, sometimes using anti-aircraft weapons.
Hee Yeon, who fled Pyongyang in 2015 and now lives in Seoul, told the Daily Mirror newspaper of London she lived in constant fear.
She recounted watching, with a crowd of 10,000 people, the execution of 11 musicians who allegedly made a pornographic video.
“What I saw that day made me sick in my stomach. They were lashed to the end of anti-aircraft guns,” she said. “A gun was fired, the noise was deafening, absolutely terrifying. And the guns were fired one after the other.”
The musicians, she said, “just disappeared each time the guns were fired into them.”
“Their bodies were blown to bits, totally destroyed, blood and bits flying everywhere … and then, after that, military tanks moved in and they ran over the bits on the ground where the remains lay.”
Hee Yeon, who said anyone could be executed if suspected of disloyalty, remembered seeing the remains “smashed … into the ground until there was nothing left.”
Her account was released in a report by the Transnational Justice Working Group in Seoul.
“I was brought up [and] told [Kim] was like a god – that he was as a young boy an expert sailor, marksman before the age of seven, god-like,” she said. “Then I met him at big events, I found him terrifying, really scary, nothing god-like about him.”
Hee Yeon said “the prettiest” schoolgirls were taken away to work in one of Kim’s “hundreds of homes around Pyongyang.”
“They learn to serve him food like caviar and extremely rare delicacies. They are also taught how to massage him and they become sex slaves,” she said. “Yes, they have to sleep with him, and they cannot make a mistake or object because they could very easily simply disappear.
“One of my friends went to work at one of his hundreds of homes in Pyongyang and she told me this was what he liked,” Hee Yeon told the London paper.
Under the dictatorial rule of the Kim dynasty – in which every aspect of life is regulated, from speech to food, employment and travel – millions of North Koreans have have died of starvation or in labor camps. Beginning in 2011, North Korea launched an assassination campaign against its critics abroad, using syringes disguised as pens and loaded with lethal neostigmine bromide. The murder earlier this year of Kim Jong Un’s half brother, Kim Jong Nam, in Malaysia by two women who smeared a banned VX nerve agent on his face at an airport bears the marks of a such a plot. The assassination is believed to have been ordered by the dictator himself.
Hee Yeon said the leader’s continued missile and nuclear tests and threats to strike U.S. territory and allies reflect his fear of losing power.
“Kim Jong Un threatens war because he feels cornered and has no escape,” she said.
Analysts, WND reported, have described Pyongyang’s chief tactic as “nuclear blackmail,” essentially issuing periodic threats to launch a nuclear missile at U.S. allies in Asia, or the U.S. itself, followed by negotiations, an easing of sanctions and aid.
Relations with Pyongyang over the past two decades shows “the appeasement of Pyongyang is a fool’s errand,’ says analyst Joshua Stanton.
He summarized North Korea’s recent history of broken agreements.
“North Korea has violated or summarily withdrawn from an armistice, the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, two IAEA safeguards agreements, an inter-Korean denuclearization agreement, two agreed frameworks, a joint denuclearization statement, the Leap Day agreement, and six U.N. Security Council resolutions,’ Stanton said.
Former U.N. Ambassador John Bolton, who applauded Trump’s speech to the global body Tuesday, insists the military option must remain on the table to ensure the security of the United States and its allies.
Earlier this month, as WND reported, he wrote that just as President Franklin Roosevelt authorized U.S. warships to fire first against Nazi naval vessels that entered protected waters prior to America’s entrance into World War II, the U.S. must take preemptive action to ensure North Korea does not have the ability to strike the U.S. with a nuclear weapon.
He cited the metaphor Roosevelt used in a Sept. 11, 1941, fireside chat, three months before Pearl Harbor: “When you see a rattlesnake poised to strike, you do not wait until he has struck before you crush him.”
Bolton said Tuesday in an appearance on the Fox News Channel that the U.N. speech, which included criticism of Iran and its nuclear ambitions, was “the best speech of the Trump presidency.”
“I think it’s safe to say, in the entire history of the United Nations, there has never been a more straightforward criticism of the behavior, the unacceptable behavior of other member states,” Bolton said.
Trump showed, Bolton said, the U.S. won’t put up with the kind of “half-measures and compromises” that allowed Iran and North Korea to develop their nuclear programs to the point of posing a serious threat to the West.
The former ambassador also mentioned Trump’s spotlighting of Venezuela as an example of the successful implementation of socialism.
“There are a lot of people in the U.N. who have never heard anything like that from an American president,” he said. “I think this was an outstanding speech, and I think it will serve the president very well.”