Trump Seeks Billions of Dollars to Counter North Korean Missiles

John Kerry has warned US President Donald Trump that ranting about North Korea on Twitter could fuel the regime's nuclear ambitions. Gary Cameron Reuters

"Multiple carrier strike force operations are very complex, and this exercise in the Western Pacific is a strong testament to the U.S. Pacific Fleet's unique ability and ironclad commitment to the continued security and stability of the region".

The last time three USA carrier strike groups exercised together was in 2007, when the Nimitz, along with the John C. Stennis and Kitty Hawk carrier strike groups participated in drills near Guam.

The exercise will involve three of the Navy's 11 carriers, and concentrate more aircraft carriers the combined fleets of China and Russian Federation.

"It is a rare opportunity to train with two aircraft carriers together, and even rarer to be able to train with three", said U.S. Pacific Fleet Commander, Admiral Scott Swift, in the statement.

The U.S. Navy announced Wednesday that it will commence rare three-carrier strike force exercises in the Western Pacific starting this weekend and coinciding with the final leg of President Donald Trump's Asia tour.

Three U.S. nuclear-powered aircraft carrier strike groups will conduct joint drills in the Pacific for the first time in a decade.

"We're going to be increasing our budget by many billions of dollars because of North Korea and other reasons having to do with the anti-missile [aspect]", Trump told reporters at his golf club in Bedminster, N.J.

The U.S. has sent a number of its so-called strategic assets to the area - including carriers, heavy bombers and high-tech submarines - as part of a concerted push to heap pressure on North Korea to rein in its nuclear and missile programs.

Such a move is widely interpreted as a show of force against North Korea's nuclear threats and China's assertiveness in the South China Sea.

Such large-scale drills serve as a potent reminder of the U.S. ability to rapidly mobilize military force, a capability the Trump administration has been keen to emphasize as Pyongyang races ahead with tests to build a nuclear-tipped missile capable of striking the United States.

He said of the North Korean threats to strike the US and its allies, "That would be a fatal miscalculation".

The CIA has said North Korea could be only months away from developing the ability to hit the United States with nuclear weapons, a scenario Trump has vowed to prevent. That includes current and projected threats to the USA homeland, Guam, South Korea and Japan.

"While in a war against China, US carriers might be vulnerable, they wouldn't be in any conflict against North Korea.and three US carriers can deliver a tremendous amount of airpower".

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