All papers reported extensively on what they described as an “escalating” exchange of threats between the U.S. and North Korea, saying that President Trump sent a warning to Pyongyang over its repeated provocations by saying that they “will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen.” North Korea responded to the President’s remarks three hours later by saying that it is considering launching a mid-range ballistic missile toward the vicinity of Guam.
Asahi wrote that there is some discrepancy within the USG because Secretary of State Tillerson has expressed the U.S.’s readiness to hold dialogue with the DPRK by saying: “We are not your enemy, we are not your threat.” The paper wrote that members of Congress reacted coolly to the statement by the President, with Senator McCain telling a radio station: “The great leaders I’ve seen don’t threaten unless they’re ready to act.”
Mainichi wrote that the GOJ is reacting calmly to the situation by closely watching developments and monitoring statements by such senior USG officials as Secretary of State Tillerson and Secretary of Defense Mattis. The paper quoted a senior MOFA official as speculating that Washington is taking a carrot-and-stick approach to Pyongyang, with President Trump using tough language and Secretary Tillerson hinting at the possibility of dialogue.
Yomiuri wrote that Japan and South Korea are concerned about the possibility of President Trump ordering a military action without prior consultations or a long-term policy in the event of further provocations by North Korea.