News Trump boasts of U.S. nuclear power in warning to North Korea Dylan Stableford Senior Editor •Trump warns N. Korea of U.S.’ nuclear arsenal power Yahoo News VideoScroll back up to restore default view. A day after warning North Korea that any threat to the United States will be met by “fire and fury,” President Trump tweeted on Wednesday that the U.S. “nuclear arsenal” is “far stronger and more powerful” under his watch — but hopes “we will never have to use” it.“My first order as President was to renovate and modernize our nuclear arsenal,” Trump tweeted. “It is now far stronger and more powerful than ever before….”Seven minutes later, Trump finished his thought.“Hopefully we will never have to use this power,” the president wrote, “but there will never be a time that we are not the most powerful nation in the world!” FollowDonald J. Trump @realDonaldTrump My first order as President was to renovate and modernize our nuclear arsenal. It is now far stronger and more powerful than ever before….Trump’s statement was far less ominous than the one he issued on Tuesday afternoon, when the president threatened to meet Pyongyang’s nuclear provocations with “fire and fury.”“North Korea [had] best not make any more threats to the United States,” Trump told reporters at his golf resort in Bedminster, N.J. “They will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen.”Related: Trump warns North Korea it will face ‘fire and fury’North Korean leader Kim Jong Un “has been very threatening, beyond a normal statement,” Trump said, “and as I said, they will be met with fire, fury and, frankly, power the likes of which this world has never seen before.”Those words were criticized by lawmakers on both sides of the aisle.Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., deplored Trump’s tough talk.Sen Dianne Feinstein @SenFeinstein Isolating the North Koreans has not halted their pursuit of nuclear weapons. Diplomacy is the only path forward. https://www.feinstein.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=press-releases&id=19DEB70E-1D79-4518-999F-65B7885D1F90 …Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., did too.“I take exception to the president’s comments because you gotta be able to do what you say you’re gonna do,” McCain told reporters. “In other words, the old walk softly but carry a big stick, Teddy Roosevelt’s saying, which I think is something that should’ve applied because all it’s going to do is bring us closer to a serious confrontation. I think this is very, very, very serious.”“The great leaders I’ve seen don’t threaten unless they’re ready to act, and I’m not sure President Trump is ready to act,” McCain added. “It’s the classic Trump in that he overstates things.”North Korea responded by threatening a missile strike on the American island of Guam.Also read: Guam residents fear attack after North Korea statementsOn Wednesday afternoon, U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis released a longer statement calling on North Korea to deescalate tensions.The [Democratic People’s Republic of Korea] must choose to stop isolating itself and stand down its pursuit of nuclear weapons,” Mattis said. “The DPKR should cease any consideration of actions that would lead to the end of its regime and the destruction of its people.”View image on Twitter
FollowDan Lamothe @DanLamothe Full statement from Defense Secretary Jim Mattis just now on the situation with North Korea. A warning and a call for deescalation. · Virginia, USA Earlier Wednesday, , Secretary of State Rex Tillerson looked to tamp down the rhetoric.“I do not believe that there is any imminent threat,” Tillerson told reporters aboard a flight to Guam. “Americans should sleep well at night.”On “Fox & Friends,” Trump deputy assistant Sebastian Gorka said the president’s message to North Korea is simple: “Don’t test” America.“We are not just a superpower,” Gorka said. “We were a superpower. We are now a hyperpower.” FollowFox News @FoxNews ‘We’re Now a Hyperpower’: @SebGorka Says @realDonaldTrump‘s Message Is ‘Don’t Test This White House’ http://bit.ly/2vOWdy2 ‘We’re Now a Hyperpower’: Gorka Says Trump’s Message Is ‘Don’t Test This White House’Dr. Sebastian Gorka hit back at some of the critics of President Trump over the North Korean nuclear threat and defended the president’s stern message.While Trump may have vowed to modernize the U.S. nuclear arsenal, President Barack Obama’s 2010 arms-reduction pact with Russia included billions for upgrading America’s nuclear infrastructure. And Obama laid the groundwork for spending $1 trillion over three decades to modernize the country’s so-called “nuclear triad” — bombers, land-based missiles and submarines.— With Yahoo News chief Washington correspondent Olivier Knox contributing reporting
Russian military spy jet flies over D.C., New Jersey New York Daily News 4 hours ago A Russian military spy jet soared over President Trump’s current hometown of Washington, D.C. and New Jersey Wednesday afternoon, according to reports.The unarmed aircraft’s route included the U.S. Capitol, past Bedminster, N.J., where Trump is staying at his golf resort, as well as Ohio, Virginia and Pennsylvania, Politico reported.The Russian Air Force plane — a Tupolev Tu-154M — reportedly left Moscow early Wednesday morning before heading to Iceland and then the U.S., where it circled the D.C. area.The flight was conducted under the Treaty on Open Skies, which came into effect in 2002, between the U.S. Russia, and other countries to conduct surveillance flights on each other’s territories.Mueller has impaneled grand jury for Trump-Russia probeU.S. military personnel were allowed on the plane for observation and the plane has the capability of gathering intelligence, one person familiar with the flight told CNN.The flight marks the 10th such mission this year, according to the Nuclear Threat Initiative.The Russians gave at least 72 hours’ notice before the flight. The country usually provides a list of locations they want to fly over, a Pentagon official told Politico.“We put together the flight plan and with a few exceptions — safety-wise or weather-wise — they are allowed to fly over pretty much the entire territory.” the official said.President Trump blames Congress for ‘dangerous’ Russia relations
Russian airforce jet flies over Washington DC Jeremy B White,The Independent 5 hours ago An unarmed Russian air force jet flew over multiple sensitive Washington, DC area locations on Wednesday, according to a report by CNN.The reported flight was conducted in accordance with the Treaty on Open Skies, which allows participating members to conduct observational flights over other countries’ military facilities. A source told CNN that American military personnel were on board.The US Capitol, the Pentagon, Central Intelligence Agency and the presidential retreat at Camp David were among the sites that the aircraft reportedly flew over – in addition to the Trump National Golf Club in Arlington, Virginia. Sources told CNN the aircraft was also scheduled to visit the New Jersey town of Bedminster, where Donald Trump is currently on vacation.Environmental Activists Vandalized and Defaced Trump Golf Course Between the Treaty on Open Skies taking effect in 2002 and 2016, the United States flew more than twice as many flights over Russia than vice versa, according to a US State Department fact sheet.“The Treaty’s primary value is its role in building transparency and confidence, not intelligence gathering,” the fact sheet says,” allowing members to “avoid surprises in a cooperative way.”While America already has some imaging capacity, the fact sheet adds, “there are significant parts of Russia best imaged by Treaty aircraft. The Treaty provides valuable information, especially for our Allies and partners that do not have the same imaging capabilities as the US.”That aim of building ties stands in contrast to the fraying relationship between the United States and Russia, which has come under increasing strain over reports of Russian interference in the 2016 election.A consensus from intelligence agencies that Russia intentionally sought to tamper with the election led Congress to impose sanctions on Russia. Mr Trump signed the legislation despite expressing reservations about the “unintended consequences it may have for American businesses, our friends, or our allies.”Soon after Mr Trump signed the bill, Russia retaliated by announcing that it would be expelling more than 700 American diplomats from the country.
Politics A Russian military jet flew over the US Capitol and Pentagon at a low altitude
Daniel Brown,Business Insider 6 hours ago A Russian surveillance aircraft flew over multiple federal buildings in Washington DC at a low altitude on Wednesday afternoon, according to CNN. The Russian Air Force plane passed over the US Capitol, Pentagon, Joint Base Andrews, CIA, Camp David, and a secret government bunker called Mount Weather, CNN said. The flyby, however, was completely legal and in accordance with the 1992 Treaty on Open Skies, which lets countries that are part of the agreement to surveil the other member countries from the air, Politico reported, citing the State Department. In the last 15 years, the US and Russia have done this a combined 165 times, Politico said. „The missions happen on a semi-routine basis,” a Pentagon official told Politico. „They usually come in and they list out what locations they want to fly over … We put together the flight plan and with a few exceptions — safety-wise or weather-wise — they are allowed to fly over pretty much the entire territory.”The Russian plane, a Tupolev Tu-154M, which is akin to civilian airliner, flew at about 3,700 feet and has the ability to take aerial photographs, conduct thermal imaging, and can even gather intelligence signals, CNN said. The flyby happened as tensions between the US and Russia continue to deteriorate. The US recently approved another round of sanctions on Russia for its annexation of Crimea and meddling in the 2016 US presidential election. The Kremlin later responded to the sanctions by expelling 755 US diplomats, and even locking them out of one embassy building before they could get their stuff. The same plane is also scheduled to fly over where Trump is vacationing in Bedminster, NJ between 5 pm and 6 pm, CNN said.NOW WATCH: Watch the US THAAD missile defense system strike a ballistic missile in a target test
Trump hits back at McConnell for ‘excessive expectations’ complaint Liz Goodwin 11 hours ago President Donald Trump and Sen Mitch McConnell. (Photo illustration: Yahoo News; photos: AP, Getty Images )WASHINGTON — President Trump pushed back against Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s recent comments that he has “excessive expectations” for Congress, as tensions between the Republican president and the majority leader escalate over the long August recess.“Senator Mitch McConnell said I had ‘excessive expectations,’ but I don’t think so,” Trump tweeted Wednesday afternoon. “After 7 years of hearing Repeal & Replace, why not done?”McConnell said Monday Trump was creating a false impression that Senate Republicans are not effective because he’s a political novice. “Our new president, of course, has not been in this line of work before,” McConnell told a small group in Florence, Ky., this week. “And I think he had excessive expectations about how quickly things happen in the democratic process.”In his remarks, McConnell also lamented that “artificial deadlines” — presumably from the White House — are giving the impression that Senate Republicans are underperforming after the Senate failed to repeal and replace Obamacare in its first six months. McConnell reminded the crowd it took Obama a year to pass the Affordable Care Act.“More excuses,” tweeted White House social media director Dan Scavino on Wednesday morning. Scavino said McConnell “must have needed another 4 years” to repeal Obamacare.Trump’s tweet about McConnell was tame compared to his frequent caustic barbs against his declared foes. During the campaign, for example, Trump frequently ripped into House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., whom he referred to as a “very weak and ineffective leader.”Conservative commentators took a far sharper tone on McConnell than the president.Sean Hannity, a Fox News host who is friends with the president, tweeted Tuesday night that McConnell was a “WEAK, SPINELESS leader” who should retire.Lou Dobbs, a Fox Business host, dedicated a whole segment Wednesday to McConnell’s comments, blasting a graphic on the screen that read “Ditch Mitch” in giant letters.“He isn’t worth a doggone as I can see,” Dobbs said. “That’s what we got in the swamp, folks.”A McConnell spokesman declined to comment on the blowback.The Senate decamped from Washington on Thursday for a four-week August recess back in their home states after failing to deliver an Obamacare repeal-and-replace bill long promised by the GOP. Republican voters tend to blame Congress more than the president for legislative failures, something Trump seems to be aware of. “We’re not going to own it,” Trump told reporters the day after the Senate repeal effort failed. “I’m not going to own it.”The president has not publicly criticized McConnell over the Obamacare debacle, though he issued an angry statement about the Russian sanctions bill he signed into law last week, saying Congress was to blame for poor U.S.-Russia relations. The sanctions bill is one of the few pieces of major legislation the GOP-controlled Congress managed to send to Trump’s desk. (McConnell frequently touts the nomination of Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch as the GOP Senate’s major accomplishment so far.)“You can thank Congress, the same people that can’t even give us HCare!” Trump exclaimed on Twitter, referring to the stalled health care effort. Sean Hannity breaks 12-hour promise to stop ‘petty political disagreements’Fox News host Sean Hannity vowed not to engage in “petty political disagreements” for 12 hours, but that didn’t last very long. Just hours later, he called Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell “weak” and “spineless” and urged him to retire.Some lawmakers, however, believe the president could have helped the repeal effort by laying out a clear plan for Capitol Hill to work with. After Trump privately called the House-passed repeal bill “mean,” some Senate Republicans worried he would not provide them any political cover if they pushed through the unpopular legislation.“Here’s what I would tell any senator: If you’re counting on the president to have your back, you need to watch it,” Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., told reporters in June.If tensions continue, it could further complicate Congress’ crowded fall agenda, which includes raising the debt ceiling, funding the government, overhauling the tax system and perhaps another repeal-and-replace attempt before Christmas. The Senate also plans to have bipartisan hearings in September about how to stabilize the Obamacare individual markets, which Trump has threatened to sabotage by stopping payments to insurers.Several Republicans say they don’t think the White House should sabotage the individual markets as a way to get around the Senate.“I think they’ve seen that threats and things like that really don’t work with people here,” Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., said last week.The week before they left Washington, several lawmakers downplayed the White House-Senate tension.“I’m sure that a lot of people said bad things about me today and Congress today, and the president would be in that group, I guess,” Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., said of Trump’s angry tweet.He added that he didn’t think relations between Congress and the president were as bad as has been reported. “We’re hopeful about a new staff structure, and I think we’re going to see things begin to happen in different ways,” he said.
News Trump warns N. Korea it will face ‘fire and fury’ Olivier Knox Chief Washington Correspondent •President Trump says North Korea’s threats will be met with ‘fire and fury’ Yahoo News VideoScroll back up to restore default view. President Trump on Tuesday sternly warned North Korea that it would face “fire and fury like the world has never seen” if it continues to threaten the United States, as his administration grapples with unsettling news of a possible nuclear breakthrough by the Stalinist regime.“North Korea [had] best not make any more threats to the United States,” Trump told reporters at his golf resort in Bedminster, N.J. “They will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen.”North Korean leader Kim Jong Un “has been very threatening, beyond a normal statement,” Trump said, “and as I said, they will be met with fire, fury and, frankly, power the likes of which this world has never seen before.”The president’s comments came after multiple U.S. news reports and one Japanese government report suggested that North Korea may have developed a miniaturized nuclear warhead that can fit atop one of its intercontinental ballistic missiles. The U.S. reports, citing anonymous American officials, hinged on an undisclosed Defense Intelligence Agency analysis from last month. The Washington Post was the first to report on the development.It’s unclear whether North Korea has successfully tested such a miniaturized warhead, though it has boasted of doing so. And it also remains unclear whether the regime in Pyongyang has developed a reentry vehicle that would prevent its warheads from burning up upon entering the atmosphere. The DIA is just one of 17 intelligence agencies, and the reports did not spell out how confident officials are of their conclusion or whether it’s broadly shared across the U.S. government.Over the weekend, the Trump administration notched a diplomatic victory when the 15-member U.N. Security Council unanimously voted to impose a tough new regime of economic sanctions on North Korea. That vote came in response to the test of an ICBM thought to be able to reach U.S. soil.In a weekend interview with MSNBC, Trump national security adviser Gen. H.R. McMaster warned that letting North Korea develop nuclear weapons that can strike the United States “is intolerable from the president’s perspective.” McMaster said he was providing Trump with “all options” to respond to the situation, “and that includes a military option.”