Rep. Rogers: Kim Jong Un stability a worry

March 17, 2013 at 1:37 PM
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WASHINGTON, March 17 (UPI) -- U.S. Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Mich., said Sunday there's increased worry about North Korea's nuclear capabilities because of Kim Jong Un's questionable stability.

In an appearance on CNN's "Meet the Press," Rogers, a leader of the House Intelligence Committee, said there's a heightened level of worry because North Korea has openly threatened the United States with nuclear attacks and pushed forward with three nuclear tests despite warnings not to do so.

"So, you have a 28-year-old leader who is trying to prove himself to the military, and the military eager to have a saber rattling for their own self-interest, and the combination of that is proving to be very, very deadly," he said.

"So, the sheer threat that they would openly threaten a nuclear attack against the United States is problem enough, but their military movements along the DMZ, the demilitarized zone in North Korea, [is] a whole new set of problems for us. It's the largest military in the world still in uniform," he added.

Kim Jong Un took over as leader of North Korea when his father, Kim Jong Il died in December 2011. U.S. National Intelligence Director James R. Clapper Jr. called the 28-year-old leader "young" and "very belligerent" in a warning he issued Tuesday that North Korea could take "provocative action" against South Korea.

The threat against the United States "is something that we have to take seriously, and you can see that they're looking for some provocations, ..." Rogers said. "This is very, very concerning as we just don't know the stability of their leader, again, 28 years old. We're just not confident that we know he wouldn't take those steps," Rogers said Sunday.

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