Trump leaning toward use of force to solve NK nuclear issue: expert

US President Donald Trump is leaning toward the use of military to deal with the North Korean nuclear issue at the current stage, as Pyongyang's missile and nuclear programs intensify the regional tensions, according to a Chinese expert.

In a recent interview with the Sino-US.com, Zhou Qi, executive president of the Institute of National Strategic Studies at Tsinghua University, said that the possibility of military operations against North Korea is increasing after US Vice President Mike Pence said that "all options are on the table" to curb Pyongyang's nuclear ambition during his tour of South Korea in April.

The military operations may include a decapitation strike and attack on nuclear facilities, Zhou said. But she stressed that the military attack would not be launched soon because the US action against North Korea will depend on Pyongyang's attitude.

Zhou said that during a visit to the US State Department when Barack Obama was president, she was told by some US officials that pre-emptive measures would be taken if North Korea has nuclear strike capabilities.

Zhou analyzed that the US fears stem from North Korea's potential ability of producing long-range ballistic missiles equipped with nuclear warheads, which can reach American territory.

In terms of economic and trade issues, Zhou said that Trump is an anti-globalization president, whose trade policy lacks macroeconomic thinking. The expert pointed out that Trump's illiberal pursuit for exports reflects his idea that America's economic prosperity can persist without globalization. The idea will be rejected by companies in the US, as the world has benefited from globalization, Zhou said.

Zhou quoted a vice president of the Peterson Institute of International Economics as saying that Trump hated orthodox economists except Peter Navarro, Trump's trade adviser who accuses China of unfair trade practices.

On the military front, Trump will meet strong resistance in pushing forward with his policy of increasing the military expenditure by $50 billion per year, Zhou said. The increase in the military expenditure will lead to a decrease in spending on social security, scientific research and public education, according to Zhou.

However, Zhou said that Trump's 100-day policies had some positive results, such as the preferential tax policy, which prompted some big US companies to make investments domestically and helped create job opportunities.
 


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