President Donald Trump on Wednesday in a bilateral news conference with the Prime Minister of Norway present, also provided a readout of his conversation on the same day with his South Korean counterpart, Moon Jae-in. The chat had "good energy," Trump said.
Recently, South and North Korea had talks for the first time in two years. In addition, Vice President Mike Pence will lead the U.S. delegation to the Winter Olympics in South Korea next month.
"We have certainly problems with North Korea, but a lot of good talks are going on right now. A lot of good energy, I see a lot of good energy — I like it very much, what I'm seeing" President Trump said. "I just spoke this morning, as you know, with the president, President Moon of South Korea. He had some really great meetings, his representatives had a great, great meeting. And I had some very good feedback from that, so hopefully a lot of good things are going to work out."
At the press conference, Trump was asked by a Norwegian reporter, "Recently an American General Robert Neller told his Marines based in Norway there's a war coming, a big-ass fight. Mr. President, how imminent is that big war and where will it take place?
Trump responded, "When you say the 'big war' you're saying what?" When the reporter reiterated the question, Trump said, "Well, maybe he knows something that I don't know. I would say this: we have a very, very powerful military, we're getting more powerful by the month, by the day... We are building up our military to a point that we've never been before. We were very much weakened over the last period of time, but not with me."
Trump went on to say, "But, no I don't expect [a war]. I think we're going to have...peace through strength." Trump admitted that the United States currently has "problems" with North Korea, but applauded South Korean efforts to ease tensions with North Korea. Alluding to American military might, the president said, "No, I think we will have peace through strength. Our military will be stronger than it ever was in a very short period of time. That's my opinion. That's not the general's opinion, but I think my opinion counts more right now."
Marine General Robert Neller told fellow Marines in Norway at Christmas that they should be prepared for a "big-ass fight." Neller told the approximately 300 leathernecks, "I hope I’m wrong, but there’s a war coming. You’re in a fight here, an informational fight, a political fight, by your presence."