WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump said there was no reason to spend a lot of money on military war games with South Korea, but he warned he could "restart" the exercises immediately and they were "far greater than ever
Trump said Wednesday in a series of tweets targeting China in particular and blaming him for the lack of progress in ending the nuclear program in North Korea
But there was also a loaded message for Kim : to mix an expression of goodwill with the North Korean Autocrat with an implicit military threat that will add speculation about the direction of Trump's overtures to a long-time adversary.
The President believes his relationship with Kim Jong Un is very good and warm, and there is currently no reason to spend large sums on joint war games in the US and South Korea, "Trump said, presenting as a White House statement In addition, the president can immediately resume joint exercises with South Korea and Japan, if he wants. If he does that, they will be much bigger than ever. "
Trump surprised the military leaders in June by surprise, announcing the suspension with the South," unless and until we see that the future negotiations are not so Run as it should. "He described the exercises as costly and provocative.
The refusal was an olive branch to Pyongyang, which has long complained that the exercises were invasion preparations, and often the North has the exercises with their own demonstrations military power responded, including launching a new medium-range missile over Japan last year as a countermeasure to the drills.
There was some hope that the gesture of governing the case would promote goodwill and help to the north in the denuclearization talks But apart from the possible remnants of about 55 US soldiers who were missing in the Korean War, and se There was little movement from the north in continued exposure to missile and nuclear tests.
As a result, the US was shelved last week by Foreign Minister Mike Pompeo's planned trip to Pyongyang, pointing to a lack of progress on denuclearization, but remains open for future talks.
With Washington and beyond questioning Kim's willingness to give up his nuclear weapons, Trump has blamed China, which is North Korea's traditional ally and main trading partner. On Wednesday, President Beijing accused Beijing of putting pressure on the North due to the current tensions in US-China trade relations, as well as providing North Korea with money, fuel, fertilizer and other goods, which it did not find helpful.
China cooperates with the US The US imposed harsh international sanctions on North Korea last year and continues to uphold the restrictions imposed by the UN Security Council.
Trump also signaled in his tweets that the US has its own military means to put pressure on Pyongyang. His comments have been condensed over the last two days into confusing Pentagon news that has revived the speculation about the exercises.
Defense Minister Jim Mattis told reporters Tuesday that the US could conduct exercises with South Korea next spring after having canceled a major exercise this summer. He said that no decision had yet been made as to when military exercises should resume, but his statements indicated that the recent cancellation may not be repeated.
Several US officials confirmed Wednesday that the spring exercises are planned.
"Routine planning for major US ROK exercises on the peninsula will continue according to the normal exercise programming cycle," said Air Force Col. Patrick Ryder, spokesman for the Joint Chiefs of Staff, on the acronym for South's Official Name , Republic of Korea
Other US officials also said that the preparatory work on the exercises had begun, noting that it was much easier to stop an exercise rather than hit it fast. The officials spoke under the condition of anonymity to discuss internal discussions.
David Maxwell, a senior executive at the Washington-based Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, said the first planning for the exercises could begin one year in advance, including funding, planning, and movement of forces and units to attend , Over time, the planners would record the war game scenario and other details.
"We continue to plan for exercises, but we can stop them on a penny," said Maxwell, a retired army colonel who made five tours in Korea. "We can not restart her with a dime."
He said the risk of a prolonged halt to the major exercises would diminish the skills and institutional memory between the South Korean forces and the more than 28,000 US troops deployed there. "The longer we go without exercises, the greater the risk that we will face significant challenges in the event of war," said Maxwell
U. S.. Officials said that Gen. Vincent Brooks, commander of the US armed forces in Korea, has taken steps to reduce the loss of training by planning smaller exercises and personnel exercises.
A key challenge in Korea is that the majority of US forces are currently facing a year, so they rely on the summer exercise to familiarize themselves with the South Korean military and how Allied forces coordinate and operate with them. The Spring Foal Eagle Drill is more extensive and includes fighter jets, maritime maneuvers, amphibious assault tactics and computer simulations.