One former CIA director, who arguably understands foreign policy better than most people, thinks there’s about a 25 percent chance that Trump could create a devastating conflict involving North Korea. Just to put that into perspective, that is a one in four chance of war.
John Brennan was speaking to the “Today Show” when he laid out what he sees in the Trump presidency. And he offered a grim prognosis for the future.
He says that Trump is merely “trying to demonstrate he’s tough” when he threatens and insults nations like North Korea. Brennan also pointed out that, as Commander-in-Chief, Trump has the authority to greenlight any military action.
Defense Secretary Mattis has the option to refuse Trump’s request, and Brennan believes this may be what saves us from all-out World War III. According to Brennan, Mattis is a “patriot” who can “understand the gravity of the situation” even when the president does not.
Through his remarks on Twitter and during speaking engagements Trump has “escalated tensions” around the world, particularly between the U.S. and North Korea. Brennan believes that Trump has about a 25 percent chance of making something terrible happen.
“I’m concerned there could be some kind of clash between North Korean and South Korean forces,” Brennan said.
And he’s probably not the only one who is frightened by this very real possibility. Tensions between North and South Korea have existed since the 1950s, a time which found the U.S. embroiled in the Korean War.
In many ways, that war is still not over for North Korea.
“We are a country of laws,” Brennan said. “And sometimes, I feel that Mr. Trump feels that it is Trump’s laws that trumps others.”
Trump’s rhetoric has grown more colorful and more extreme as tensions between the U.S. and North Korea escalate. He recently referred to Kim Jung-un, the self-styled Supreme Leader of North Korea, as “Little Rocket Man.”
Trump also threatened, while speaking to the U.N. General Assembly, to “rain down fire and fury the likes of which the world has never seen” on North Korea.
Kim Jung-un is known worldwide to be an egomaniac who constantly and unabashedly lies to his own people, and to the rest of the world, in order to maintain a rather godlike image.
And North Koreans do indeed treat him as though he is a god—and not at all a mortal man with the same functions as the rest of us. This is not the type of person that one wants to provoke while standing upon the world stage.
But no matter how many people seem to try to explain that to Donald Trump, from his current staff to former high-ranking officials, the president just cannot seem to grasp that diplomacy is sometimes the much wiser course of action. He’d rather just issue insane threats on Twitter.
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