North Korea negotiations: US military force should be last option, Sen. Graham says

Sen. Lindsey Graham said on Sunday that military force should be the “last resort” to ending the nuclear threat in North Korea, if diplomatic measures fail to make progress.

“North Korea’s not going to change the way they do business unless they believe that the military option’s on the table,” Graham, R-S.C., said on “Sunday Morning Futures.”

In a letter on Monday, Senate Democrats outlined how they believe Trump should handle negotiations with Pyongyang, saying any deal should require that North Korea give up its nuclear and ballistic weapons programs. The president is set to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on June 12 in Singapore.

“The worry we have is the president will be so eager for quote ‘an agreement’ that it won't protect the security, first and foremost, of the United States,” Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., told NPR on Tuesday.

Graham said he will embrace the letter and any effort to reach a good deal will need the support of lawmakers from both sides of the aisle, adding that he’s willing to sign a peace treaty to end the Korean War and guarantee the security of Kim’s regime. However, the South Carolina Republican noted that he is “not here to spread democracy” or to unite the North with South Korea.

“I’m asking every Democrat who wrote that letter and all my Republican colleagues to tell North Korea and China that if diplomacy fails, we will have the president’s back, we’ll authorize the use of military force as a last resort to stop the nuclear threat in North Korea to the American homeland and the world at-large. And if we’re not willing to do that, we’re not going to get a good deal,” Graham said, complementing the international community – including China and Russia – for standing behind Trump in regards to sanctions on North Korea.