North Korea will not get rid of its nuclear weapons

Steven Mnuchin confirmation  C-SPAN  MGN

In its report Saturday, KCNA said North Korea had taken steps for "bolstering the capabilities for self-defence and pre-emptive attacks with nuclear force" in the face of a continued "nuclear threat and blackmail and war drills" by the United States and its "vassal forces".

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, during his national New Year's address, told his citizens that "the USA can not wage a war" against his country at all.

During an interview Sunday Mullen said the regime's nuclear weapons program will endanger the world.

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"The entire mainland of the U.S. is within the range of our nuclear weapons, and the nuclear button is always on the desk of my office".

During the speech, Kim also called for better relations with South Korea - a suggestion he has made more often than he has acted on, the news wire noted.

While Graham, an Air Force veteran who serves on the Senate Armed Services Committee, is widely considered a Republican foreign policy hawk, he repeatedly said in the interview with The Atlantic that he hopes military options are never employed and advocated meeting with the North Koreans in pursuit of a peaceful resolution to tensions between the two nations.

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"North Korea's participation in the Winter Games will be a good opportunity to show unity of the people and we wish the Games will be a success".

But in a rare move the dictator tempered his bellicose rhetoric with the suggestion he may send a North Korean delegation to the Winter Olympics when they are held in South Korea.

The New Year's address is an annual event in the North and is watched closely for indications of the direction and priorities Kim may adopt in the year ahead.

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Kim also stressed North Korea's economic achievements during the speech, and noted the importance of improving the nation's standard of living.

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