John Kirby Shows Disturbing Weakness in the Face of North Korean Nuke Threats

AP Photo/Evan Vucci

North Korea fired a missile over Japan last week that set off an alarm for people in Hokkaido.


It didn’t hit Hokkaido, it went over Japan and fell into the ocean a short time later.

They also fired off two more ballistic missiles on Sunday, making the people in the region very nervous, with Japan saying this can’t be tolerated.

So, what is Joe Biden doing about this escalation? He set off a lot of concern when he claimed that we were closer to nuclear Armageddon than ever, because of Vladimir Putin. But then, the White House had to walk what he said back, saying there was no new intelligence to suggest that Putin was any closer to using nuclear weapons. When reporters tried to ask Biden about it, he ran away to his helicopter.

But while the White House is so focused on Russia and pouring all of our money into Ukraine, are they even looking at things heating up in North Korea? When we have weak leaders, it makes bad actors bold–and that may be what’s going on with North Korea.

On “This Week” Sunday, ABC News’ Martha Raddatz interviewed the White House’s Coordinator for Strategic Communications at the National Security Council, John Kirby. Kirby’s response was typically weak. He said that they had communicated to the North Koreans that “we are willing to sit down with them without preconditions.”


He says that Kim Jong Un “has decided not to take us up on that offer.” So, Kim is simply blowing them off at this point. Kirby talks about readiness in the region and upping U.S. intelligence. But, you can see even in this interview, it looks like Kirby is pleading with North Korea to talk. That’s losing face, particularly after North Korea escalated by firing the missile over Japan. Raddatz asks Kirby some good questions — like what was he doing that was different that was going to change the equation. But Kirby’s response is lacking.

This isn’t the first time that Kirby has shown weakness. When asked recently about the Chinese government buying up land in the United States around military installations, he essentially said he didn’t understand what the issue was, and that his concern wasn’t real estate.

Unfortunately, it’s not just him, it’s the whole Administration.

Raddatz also spoke to Admiral Mike Mullin, former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Mullin said that we were in a more dangerous position than we were five years ago, when it came to Kim possibly firing off a nuclear weapon.


I’m old enough to remember when the Democrats attacked President Donald Trump for meeting with Kim Jong Un. Now, the Biden Administration appears to be begging for a meeting, and Kim isn’t even giving them the time of day. What does that say? Trump appeared to put Kim’s ambitions back on his heels, at least for a time. But the ramped-up missiles now suggest that Kim thinks he can test Biden. We saw the same reaction from Putin. Strength leads to peace, and weakness leads to big problems. With Biden in “charge,” unfortunately we can expect a lot more actions like this.


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