US fighter jets escorted B-1B bombers that flew near the eastern coast of North Korea. According to the Pentagon, the mission was a “clear message that the President has many options to defeat any threat.” The planes apparently reached the northernmost point beyond the demilitarized zone that any US Air Force flight had reached in the 21st century.
Watch: US fighter jets escort B-1b bombers over North Korean coast
In the midst of the exchange of threats between US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, US Air Force bombers flew near the coast of North Korea on Saturday night. According to Reuters, the B-1B bombers were escorted by fighter jets and flew in international airspace over North Korea’s eastern coast. Dana White, spokesperson for the Pentagon, said that the mission was a “demonstration of US resolve and a clear message that the President has many options to defeat any threat.”
“This is the farthest north of the Demilitarized Zone any U.S. fighter or bomber aircraft have flown off North Korea’s coast in the 21st century, underscoring the seriousness with which we take [North Korea’s] reckless behavior,” White said.
Today’s display of air power comes a day after Trump spoke at a rally in Arizona, where he promised to deal with “Little Rocket Man,” referring to Kim. “We can’t have madmen out there shooting rockets all over the place. And by the way, Rocket Man should have been handled a long time ago,” Trump said, pointing the finger at Barack Obama and his predecessors.
“He should have been handled eight years ago, and four years ago, and honestly — and 15 years ago, and 20 years ago and 25 years ago,” Trump said. “This shouldn’t be handled now but I’m going to handle it because we have to handle it.”