At his inaugural speech to the international deliberative body, President Donald Trump warned the United Nations that the US would "totally destroy North Korea" if forced to defend itself or its allies. Speakiing to the United Nations, Trump said to the General Assembly on Tuesday, "The United States has great strength and patience, but if it is forced to defend itself or its allies, we will have no choice but to totally destroy North Korea." Trump said "It is time for North Korea to realize that its denuclearization is its only responsible future." Deriding the leader of North Korea, Trump said of Kim Jong Un: "Rocket Man is on a suicide mission for himself."
Trump warned that North Korea is a "country that imperils the world" and added that it is in no one's interest that the communist country should advance on its path of nuclear armament. He also warned countries that continue to trade and finance North Korea: "It is an outrage that some nations would not only trade with such a nation but would arm supply and financially support a country that imperils the world." One of those countries is Iran, which Barack Obama sought to assuage nearly two years ago with a deal that released millions of dollars in frozen bank accounts in exchange for Iran's vague promises of holding back on its own weaponization program.
Trump suggested that he may scrap the Iran nuclear deal, telling the UN assembly that entering the agreement was a mistake. "The Iran deal was one of the worst and most one-sided transactions," Trump said. "That deal is embarrassment to the US and I don't think you've heard the last of it, believe me," Trump said. The United States will face in October a deadline for the re-certification of Iran's compliance with the agreement.
Regarding the threat of terrorism, Trump warned that they are gaining strength globally. He asserted that peace still has a chance. "To put it simply, we meet at a time of both immense promise and great peril," Trump said. "Terrorists and extremists have gathered strength and spread to every region of the planet." Speaking bluntly, Trump said that there are parts of the world that are "going to hell," in what some understood as a suggestion that the UN may still have some power of revering the course of decline. "Major portions of the world are in conflict and some in fact are going to hell," Trump said. "The powerful people in this room, under the guidance and auspices of the United Nations can solve many of these vicious and complex problems," Trump said.
The United States, Trump said, remains prepared to address instability around the world through its military. "Our military will soon be the strongest it's ever been," he said. Distinguishing himself from predecessors who asserted visions of asserting American systems in foreign lands, Trump said, "In America, we do not seek to impose our way of life on anyone, but rather to let it shine as an example for everyone to watch." Instead, Trump asserted the value of not only American nationalism, but nationalism among other countries. While he proclaimed that his administration will place American interests ahead of the interests of others, he called on world leaders to do the same. "As President of the United States, I will always put America first," he said. "All responsible leaders have an obligation to serve their own nations."
At the beginning of his speech, Trump spoke to the improvements seen in the national economy since his election. "The United States has done very well since Election Day last November 8," Trump said. "The stock market is at an all-time high, a record. Unemployment is at its lowest level." Economic prosperity and disentangling America from "bad deals" such as the Paris environmental accord and the Trans-Pacific Trade agreement, were hallmarks of his campaign. Trump cited "regulatory and other reforms" for an economic boom in the US.
Repeating sentiments he has broadcast in the past, Trump said on Monday during a conference about reforming the United Nations, "In recent years, the United Nations has not reached its full potential because of bureaucracy and mismanagement." Trump said Monday when he first appeared at the United Nations building in New York, "We are not seeing the results in line with this investment."
The United States currently funds approximately 22 percent of the UH budget, including its various peacekeeping activisites. Altogether, the United States provides about $3.3 billion a year to finance UN. An executive order Trump signed earlier this year would cut US contributions by 40 percent.
Spero News writer Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. His first novel 'Shaken Earth', is available at Amazon.