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Biden Mutes Trump Era North Korea Rhetoric After Missile Launch

  • A restrained response to first launch over Japan in five years
  • Unlike Trump, Biden stuck to customary foreign policy playbook
President Joe Biden

President Joe Biden

Photographer: Samuel Corum/Bloomberg
Updated on

President Joe Biden responded to North Korea’s most recent missile launch with a pledge to work closely with Japan and South Korea. In a sign of his pessimism about a bigger breakthrough, he held off promising much more.

The launch -- the first time North Korea has fired a missile over Japan in five years -- was a unwelcome development for a president whose hands are full with the Ukraine war, the November midterm elections and sky-high inflation. His understated response was in keeping with North Korea strategy throughout his presidency: The US is happy to talk but isn’t going to make North Korea a policy priority.