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Trump says Obama was ‘ready to go to war’ with North Korea and he stopped it

President Donald Trump raised the stakes on his engagement with North Korea as he concluded a trip to New York to attend the United Nations General Assembly.

Trump claimed at a news conference that if it weren’t for him millions of people would be dead, because the United States and North Korea would be in a bloody conflict.

‘They said, “Oh, Trump is saying these horrible things. He’s going to get us into a war. You were going to have a war – if I wasn’t elected, you’d be in a war,’ he asserted. ‘And President Obama essentially said the same thing. He was ready to go to war. You would have had a war and you would have lost millions, not thousands.’

President Donald Trump raised the stakes on his engagement with North Korea as he concluded a trip to New York to attend the United Nations General Assembly

A nuclear conflict would wipe out the nearby populous of Seoul, which is just across the border from North Korea, he said. ‘You would have lost millions of people. Seoul has 30 million people, 40 miles and 30 miles from this very dangerous border. 

‘If I wasn’t elected, you would have had a war. President Obama thought you had to go to war,’ he said, digging in. ‘You know how close he was to pressing the trigger for war?’

Trump said he deserves more credit for suspending the North Korean nuclear threat than he typically gets. ‘Millions of people,’ he said, coming back to the hypothetical death toll. ‘With me, nobody is talking about that.’

Highlighting his overtures to Kim, who he has become pen pals with since their Singapore summit, Trump said, ‘He likes me, I like him. We get along. He wrote me two of the most beautiful letters.’

The U.S. leader said that Japanese prime minister could attest to the ‘groundbreaking’ nature of their correspondence. 

‘I showed one of the letters — just one — to Prime Minister Abe,’ he said. 

Gushing about the latest letter, Trump said, ‘It’s a beautiful piece of art. And I think we’re going to make a deal.’

‘In the meantime, and I have said it — I don’t want to bore you. No rockets, no missiles, no nuclear tests. You know, for over a year.’

HE ALMOST TOOK US TO WAR: Trump at a news conference claimed, 'You were going to have a war if I wasn’t elected, you would be in a war,' he asserted. 'And President Obama essentially said the same thing. He was ready to go to war. You would have had a war and you would have lost millions, not thousands.'

HE ALMOST TOOK US TO WAR: Trump at a news conference claimed, ‘You were going to have a war if I wasn’t elected, you would be in a war,’ he asserted. ‘And President Obama essentially said the same thing. He was ready to go to war. You would have had a war and you would have lost millions, not thousands.’

Trump has been boasting all week that thanks to him ‘missiles and rockets are no longer flying in every direction’ from North Korea and the remains of American soldiers have been returned. 

‘We have engaged with North Korea to replace the specter of conflict with a bold and new push for peace,’ he told attendees of his United Nations address on Tuesday. 

He said later, as he sat down with the newly-elected Colombia president that the good vibes with North Korea are ‘far greater than the media understands or knows’ because it’s all taking place through private communication.

‘Letters have been going back and forth, and conversations have been happening,’ he said.

Trump pointed out that ‘if you look at just last year, at this exact time, my words were slightly different having to do with the events taking place in North Korea’ in his remarks before the United Nations.

‘But there’s been a tremendous difference if you look at from one year to the next,’ he said.’A tremendous difference. And again, far greater than anybody really would understand, because we know what’s happening behind the scenes.’

President Trump said missiles are no longer flying from North Korea but economic sanctions will remain in place until denuclearization occurs 

President Trump said missiles are no longer flying from North Korea but economic sanctions will remain in place until denuclearization occurs 

Trump bragged about his accomplishments with North Korea in a speech to the United Nations General Assembly on Tuesday 

Trump bragged about his accomplishments with North Korea in a speech to the United Nations General Assembly on Tuesday 

‘The missiles and rockets are no longer flying in every direction,’ Trump bragged. 

He also outlined what else has happened since June: Nuclear testing has stopped, some military facilities are already being dismantled, U.S. hostages have been released, and the remains of American service members who died in the Korean War are being returned.

He did acknowledge ‘much work remains to be done’ as his administration works to set up another meeting with Kim.

And he added he would keep sanctions on Pyongyang.

‘The sanctions will stay in place until denuclearization occurs,’ he said.

Trump told reporters later in the afternoon he and Kim have an ‘extraordinary’ communication between them.

‘We’ve had communication that nobody will know about that is extraordinary. When you look at last year at this exact time, my words were slightly different having to do with the events taking place in North Korea – slightly different,’ he said ‘but there has been a tremendous difference from one more to the next and far greater than anyone would understand.’

The original Singapore agreement was criticized for its lack of specific, measurable outcomes for North Korea and for not having a timetable on when denuclearization would occur.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has been in negotiations with Pyongyang and plans to make another trip there before the end of the year, he told reporters in New York on Monday.      

Trump said on Monday his next summit with Kim Jong-un will be ‘most likely in a ‘different location’ than it was before, seemingly ruling out Singapore out as an option. 

Trump said his second summit with Kim will be similar to the format they had before at a ‘location to be determined’ that will be ‘announced within a fairly short period of time.’

‘We are in no rush. There’s no hurry. We got back three months ago or so,’ he said of their summit in June. ‘We’ve made more progress than anybody’s made in –  ever, – frankly, with regard to North Korea.’

Donald Trump says his next summit with Kim Jong-un will be 'most likely in a 'different location' than it was before, ruling out Singapore out as an option

Donald Trump says his next summit with Kim Jong-un will be ‘most likely in a ‘different location’ than it was before, ruling out Singapore out as an option

North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un and South Korean President Moon Jae-In walk at the Samjiyon Airport earlier this month

North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un and South Korean President Moon Jae-In walk at the Samjiyon Airport earlier this month

The U.S. president declared that ‘in some ways’ he has an ‘extraordinary’ relationship with Kim.

‘I really believe North Korea has tremendous economic potential, and I believe that Chairman Kim and the people of North Korea want to see that potential arrived at, and we’ll help them to that end,’ he said as he met with the South Korean president. ‘The relationship is very good. in fact in some ways it’s extraordinary. we’ll see what happens. But we will be having a second summit in the not too distant future.’

Trump on Monday boasted that his administration has made ‘tremendous progress’ in the dispute with North Korea in the year since he called Kim Jong-un ‘Rocket Man’ and placed heavy sanctions on the isolated regime for its illicit nuclear activities.

He said on his way into the United Nations that talks were ‘moving very well’ with the hermit nation and ‘the relationships are very good.’

‘We have many things in store, looks like we will have a second summit quite soon,’ he said. ‘As you know, Kim Jong-un wrote a letter – beautiful letter – and asking for a second meeting, and we will be doing that.’

Trump also boasted Monday that his administration has made 'tremendous progress' in the dispute with North Korea in the year since he called Kim Jong-un 'Rocket Man' and placed heavy sanctions on the isolated regime for its illicit nuclear activities

Trump also boasted Monday that his administration has made ‘tremendous progress’ in the dispute with North Korea in the year since he called Kim Jong-un ‘Rocket Man’ and placed heavy sanctions on the isolated regime for its illicit nuclear activities

MAN OF THE HOUR: President Trump is seen here departing a counter-narcotics event at the United Nations General Assembly on Monday 

MAN OF THE HOUR: President Trump is seen here departing a counter-narcotics event at the United Nations General Assembly on Monday 

Trump talked briefly about the 'critical steps to combat the global drug problem' that the U.S. and its allies are taking at the televised session

Trump talked briefly about the ‘critical steps to combat the global drug problem’ that the U.S. and its allies are taking at the televised session

President Trump confers with U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley during the 'Global Call to Action on the World Drug Problem' event at the United Nations this morning. He has an open afternoon before he meets with South Korean President Moon Jae-in

President Trump confers with U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley during the ‘Global Call to Action on the World Drug Problem’ event at the United Nations this morning. He has an open afternoon before he meets with South Korean President Moon Jae-in

'We have many things in store, looks like we will have a second summit quite soon,' Trump said on his way into the UN. 'As you know, Kim Jong-un wrote a letter - beautiful letter - and asking for a second meeting, and we will be doing that'

‘We have many things in store, looks like we will have a second summit quite soon,’ Trump said on his way into the UN. ‘As you know, Kim Jong-un wrote a letter – beautiful letter – and asking for a second meeting, and we will be doing that’

Pompeo said later, at a White House briefing, that he expects to make his next visit to Pyongyang before the end of the year and a meeting with Trump is likely to follow. 'Lord willing, I’ll be traveling before the end of the year,' he told reporters

Pompeo said later, at a White House briefing, that he expects to make his next visit to Pyongyang before the end of the year and a meeting with Trump is likely to follow. ‘Lord willing, I’ll be traveling before the end of the year,’ he told reporters

Trump said that U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will ‘work that out in the immediate future.’

He added: ‘Looks like its moving very, very well, tremendous progress on North Korea.’

‘Since we got here, it was a different world. That was a very dangerous time. This is one year later, a much different time,’ Trump said.

The president briefly spoke to press about North Korea on his way into the United Nations on Monday for his first meeting of the day, a U.S.-led forum on counter-narcotics efforts around the globe. 

He commented on his way out about his under-fire Supreme Court nominee who was hit with two new sex assault allegations on Sunday night.

‘We should look into the lawyers doing the representation. Judge Kavanaugh is an outstanding person and I am with him all the way,’ he told press. ‘And for people to come out of the woodwork from 36 years ago and 30 years ago and never mentioned it. All of a sudden it happens. In my opinion, it’s totally political. It’s totally political.’

Pompeo said later, at a White House briefing, that he expects to make his next visit to Pyongyang before the end of the year and a meeting with Trump is likely to follow.

‘Lord willing, I’ll be traveling before the end of the year,’ he told reporters.

He declined to detail ‘reciprocal action’ to DailyMail.com that the U.S. would be willing to take to secure a nuclear deal during the briefing while asserting that sanctions will stay on Pyongyang until it completely and verifiably ends its nuclear program. 

‘We’re not going to talk about the state of the negotiation — it would be inappropriate for us to do that or our North Korean counterparts to talk about particular deal points, things we’re working on,’ he stated.

‘But the fundamental principles remain the same. We expect the full, complete, verified denuclearization of North Korea,’ Pompeo added. ‘And until such time as that occurs, the economic sanctions — the sanctions that have been put in place by the United Nations Security Council — will remain in place.’ 

Trump said that U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (pictured, center right) will work out a time for him to meet with Kim Jong-un again soon

Trump said that U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (pictured, center right) will work out a time for him to meet with Kim Jong-un again soon

Trump is meeting later on Monday with South Korean President Moon Jae-in to get a readout of his meeting last week with Kim

Trump is meeting later on Monday with South Korean President Moon Jae-in to get a readout of his meeting last week with Kim

TALK TO THE HAND: President Trump refused to answer questions about Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh on the way into the United Nations. He commented on the sexual assault allegations against on the way out

TALK TO THE HAND: President Trump refused to answer questions about Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh on the way into the United Nations. He commented on the sexual assault allegations against on the way out

Trump is meeting this afternoon with the South Korean president. In addition to North Korea, the two leaders will discuss trade. 

The U.S. president had a working dinner with the Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe as soon as he arrived in New York on Sunday evening in the building that was once his office and residence. 

The meal was closed to press from both sides, but pictures distributed by the U.S. and Japanese governments later showed Abe and Trump shaking hands in the president’s lavish penthouse.

Trump said in a tweet on Sunday night, before the meeting, that they’d be talking about the military and trade, in a nod to Japan’s long sought after agreement for a formal economic relationship with the U.S.

‘We have done much to help Japan, would like to see more of a reciprocal relationship. It will all work out!’ Trump said. 

Tump met Japanese prime minister, Shinzo Abe, and had a working dinner at Trump Tower on Sunday night. The dinner, at which North Korea was a likely topic, was closed to press. Abe shared a picture of the pair on Facebook

Tump met Japanese prime minister, Shinzo Abe, and had a working dinner at Trump Tower on Sunday night. The dinner, at which North Korea was a likely topic, was closed to press. Abe shared a picture of the pair on Facebook

Donald Trump arrived on Marine One in Downtown Manhattan Sunday with a luxury motor waiting for him

Donald Trump arrived on Marine One in Downtown Manhattan Sunday with a luxury motor waiting for him

The American leader returned to New York Sunday to attend the United Nations General Assembly

The American leader returned to New York Sunday to attend the United Nations General Assembly

The billionaire president was spending his first night in New York since September of 2017. He also slept in his apartment in August of 2017 during a working vacation, making this week just his third visit to his Manhattan apartment since the beginning of his term.

Heavy security and traffic closures were expected across New York City all week to accommodate Trump and other visiting leaders. 

Trump is making his second appearance at the United Nations this year, where he will deliver a speech and preside over a Security Council meeting in addition to one-on-one sessions with world leaders. 

Trump's grand arrival in New York was the beginning of several days of important meetings

Trump’s grand arrival in New York was the beginning of several days of important meetings

His vehicle at Downtown Manhattan Heliport was decorated with flags and was parked beside a Fire Department New York truck

His vehicle at Downtown Manhattan Heliport was decorated with flags and was parked beside a Fire Department New York truck

The motorcade carrying US President Donald Trump could be seen moving along the FDR Drive on Sunday ahead of the United Nations General Assembly in Manhattan on Tuesday

The motorcade carrying US President Donald Trump could be seen moving along the FDR Drive on Sunday ahead of the United Nations General Assembly in Manhattan on Tuesday

The president is staying at Trump Tower, which was his home before he moved into the White House for four days until Thursday when he goes to DC

The president is staying at Trump Tower, which was his home before he moved into the White House for four days until Thursday when he goes to DC

Police stood guard Sunday night and dump trucks were parked in front of Trump Tower as a security measure against protesters during the 73rd session of the UN General Assembly

Police stood guard Sunday night and dump trucks were parked in front of Trump Tower as a security measure against protesters during the 73rd session of the UN General Assembly

TRUMP’S WEEK IN NY

September 24:

President Trump will make a ‘Global Call to Action on the World Drug Problem’ at a counter-narcotics event that he’s co-hosting with United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.

Later he will host a reception for heads of state visiting his home city for UNGA.

September 25:

The U.S. president will deliver remarks at the 73rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly.

He will also have a ‘pull-aside’ with Guterres before attending a luncheon hosted by UN Secretary General.

President Trump will have another pull-aide that afternoon with this year’s UNGA President Maria Fernanda Espinosa before he attends U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley’s Security Council Presidency Reception.

September 26:

The president will chair a United Nations Security Council briefing, where members will discuss their counter-proliferation efforts.

 

Shinzo Abe holds a special place on the list of leaders that Trump will meet with, having been the first head of government to fly to New York to meet him at Trump Tower after the real estate tycoon’s 2016 election .

Japan is also a key partner for the United States in the Asia Pacific, where the United States is engaged in an escalating trade dispute with China while navigating a tricky disarmament agreement with North Korea.

Abe was just reelected himself in the past week – a feat that Trump congratulated him for on Twitter. 

But Trump also signaled that he wouldn’t let their friendship or security relationship get in the way of trade rules he believes are fair to the United States. He has taken the same approach to his talks with with Xi Jinping of China.

Trump and Abe have much to discuss since their last meeting at the G7 summit in Canada in June. Trump traveled straight to Singapore to meet with North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Un. 

A year ago at the general assembly gathering, Trump derogatorily referred to Kim as ‘Rocket Man’ in comments that critics of the new president’s in-your-face style worried would start a nuclear war. He introduced tough new sanctions on North Korea at the conference, as well, and vowed to keep maximum pressure on Kim’s government until it stopped building nukes.

In a major turnaround, Kim and Trump signed an informal pact for North Korea to completely and verifiably end its nuclear program in Singapore. 

‘Prior to my coming into office, a lot of people thought we were going — it was inevitable — we were going to war in North Korea. And now we’re — the relationships, I have to tell you, at least on a personal basis, they’re very good. It’s very much calmed down,’ Trump asserted last week at the White House. 

So far, the tete-a-tete has not produced significant results on the nuclear front, although North Korea has not conducted missile or nuclear tests since and followed through on a pledge to return the remains of American soldiers.

Talks reached a total standstill in late August as North Korea failed to make good on its promises to Trump at the nuclear summit. They were considered back on track by the administration this month after North Korea opted not to use its founder’s day parade to show off its arsenal as it had done in year’s past.

‘The fact that the two leaders in Korea both shook hands and said they want to denuclearize and they want peace, that’s no small thing. I think the fact that their parade, they didn’t show off nuclear weapons for the first time is a major accomplishment,’ U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley told CNN on Sunday.  

Trump announced that he would be having a working dinner with Japanese Prime Minister Abe on Sunday night in Trump Tower

Trump announced that he would be having a working dinner with Japanese Prime Minister Abe on Sunday night in Trump Tower

Japan is also a key ally for the United States in the Asia Pacific, where the United States is engaged in an escalating trade dispute with China 

Japan is also a key ally for the United States in the Asia Pacific, where the United States is engaged in an escalating trade dispute with China 

Abe was just reelected himself in the past week – a feat that Trump congratulated him for on Twitter last week

Trump otherwise received a letter from Kim that he says revealed the ‘tremendous progress’ the nations have made in the past year.

His senior aides like Haley and Pompeo are optimistic yet cautious of the overtures from Kim.

‘Look, we are far from reaching the end of this,’ Haley said Sunday. ‘We have to both make sure that North Korea knows what we mean by denuclearization. We have got to make sure we enforce sanctions, because that’s what brought them to the table in the first place.’

Her comments echoed State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert’s proclamation on Thursday that ‘in order to get to the denuclearization of North Korea, sanctions must be enforced. We cannot let our foot off the gas.’

Pompeo was expected to meet with his North Korean counterpart, Ri Yong-ho, this week in New York. A second summit between Trump and Kim, he says, is soon to follow.

‘It’s in the works. We’re hoping everything falls together and it makes good sense here before too terribly long,’ he told the BBC in an interview on Friday.

Trump will in the meantime meet with South Korean President Moon Jae-in, who is fresh off his own summit with Kim.

The leaders of the two Koreas clasped hands victoriously, shared hugs and announced a joint bid for the 2032 Olympics at the conclusion of a meeting last week in Pyongyang.

Kim credited Trump for generating regional stability at the finale of his three-day summit with Moon, their third set of talks since South Korea hosted the Winter Olympics in February. The countries’ athletes entered the arena under one flag at the Opening Ceremony.

Moon and Kim agreed at the summit to new steps that the North would take to denuclearize, specifically the closure of the Tongchang-ri facility, which the U.S. says would be independently supervised. Kim said he would be willing to close a second site, at Yongbyon, if Trump takes ‘reciprocal steps’ that were left unspecified but are assumed to be referring to sanctions.

Moon reported after the summit that Kim is eager to meet with Trump again. 

He’ll reveal more of his conversation with Kim during his meeting with Trump on the sidelines of the United Nations.

Trump will also hold private talks with French President Emmanuel Macron, British Prime Minister Theresa May, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi while he is town. 

The president is meanwhile avoiding sit downs while he’s in New York with U.S. allies from around the globe such as Germany, which he knocked over the summer at the North Atlantic Treaty Organization summit for a Russian pipeline deal, as Angela Merkel skips the conference.

He’s bypassing Canada, another country which the U.S is currently engaged in a messy trade negotiation, as well, even though the neighboring nation’s prime minister will be in New York. 

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk