White House Still Battles Questions On North Korea


By Dolores M. Bernal, NEWS JUNKIE POST

“The North Koreans continue to make statements, bellicose statements, threatening different actions,” said White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs at this morning’s press briefing when he was asked by a reporter how worried people in Hawaii should be at the possibility of North Korea launching a missile in near the island.

“I’m not sure that we’re a whole lot different than we were in the past few days or past few weeks,” Gibbs said referring to questions about any new threats or developments that the North Koreans could have made.

Many Hawaiians, however, doubt that North Korea would actually launch a missile. An article on the Wall Street Journal read today stated that, “…they [Hawaiians] think the country lacks the technological know-how to send a missile across half the Pacific Ocean, given previous missile-test failures. North Korean long-range missiles have failed three tests in the past 11 years.”

The government has been keeping a close eye at the potential missile attack expected sometime around the 4th of July. The White House continues to assure Americans that the Defense Department is doing what’s necessary to protect the region. “…The government is taking every precaution necessary to deal with threats throughout the world or threats that might be coming from the North Koreans. That’s — obviously the President’s first task is to keep the American people safe, and I can assure you that steps have been and are being taken to make sure that’s the case.”

The Terrorist List

Earlier this month US Senator Jim DeMint (R-North Carolina) along with seven other Republicans wrote a letter to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton asking her to place North Korea again in the list of countries that sponsor terrorism. In his letter, DeMint cited several recent instances where North Korea acted in a hostile, threatening manner including the missile test launch it conducted in February and the detonation of an atomic bomb in May. But the amendment that would have been included in the Tobacco Control Act that Obama signed today was never included.

The State Department has, however, expressed that they’re considering adding North Korea back on the list. Clinton made this clear during a TV interview in Egypt, earlier this month. “Obviously we would want to see recent evidence of their support for international terrorism,” she said. She added that there is a process to taking such an action.