If the United States is “forced to defend itself and its allies, we will have no choice but to totally destroy North Korea,” President Trump told the gathering.
In his address to the General Assembly on Tuesday morning, Mr. Trump denounced North Korea and its leader, Kim Jong-un, saying the nation “threatens the entire world with unthinkable loss of life” as a result of its nuclear weapons program.
“If the righteous many don’t confront the wicked few, then evil will triumph,” he said.
Mr. Trump emphasized that it was against the interest of the entire world for North Korea — which he called a “band of criminals” — to obtain nuclear weapons.
But he also said America would act alone if needed. He emphasized an “America first” agenda, and said that while the United States would “forever be a great friend to the world and especially to its allies,” his primary responsibility was to Americans.
“All responsible leaders have an obligation to serve their own citizens,” Mr. Trump said. “Our government’s first duty is to its people.”
“In foreign affairs we are renewing this founding principle of sovereignty,” he said. “As president, I will always put America first, just like you as the leaders of your countries will always — and should always — put your countries first.”