White House aide insists he was criticizing 'fake news' journalists, not Tillerson

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"Today he said woe betide anyone who militarily challenges the United States, and that is his portfolio, that is his mandate", Gorka said.

"It is the job of Secretary Mattis, the Secretary of Defense, to talk about the military options".

When confronted with these comments hours later on Fox News, Gorka denied having ever described Tillerson's comments as "nonsensical", claiming he "never said that" and attacked the media for reporting his direct quote, calling it "fake news 101".

Sebastian Gorka, deputy-assistant to President Donald Trump (2nd L), participates in a discussion during the Conservative Political Action Conference at the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in National Harbor, Maryland, on February 24.

Tillerson's call for talks with North Korea is "strongly" supported by the 62 lawmakers and should be followed by an effort to minimize the preconditions, they said.

Gorka made his initial remarks in an interview with BBC radio as he was asked about what would constitute a red line that might lead to USA military action against North Korea.

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According to Gorka, Tillerson had no right to say such a thing and instead refused to rule out full-blown war.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, en route to Guam Wednesday morning said the president "was sending a strong message to North Korea in language that Kim Jong Un would understand because he doesn't seem to understand diplomatic language". "North Korea best not make any more threats to the United States", Trump said.

"Sebastian, you know this is going to be all over the papers", Claman said after playing a clip of the press briefing where Nauert was asked about the comment. If America initiated a first strike, North Korea could still retaliate by destroying a USA city. Mattis urged the regime of Kim Jong-un to "cease any consideration of actions that would lead to the end of its regime and destruction of its people".

Gorka said that Tillerson had "done an wonderful job" to help guide new sanctions against North Korea through the United Nations Security Council, but "when reporters try to force him to make statements regarding military options, they have no idea what they're talking about, and if they think that's a story, they're not journalists". "That's why we have a Department of Defense", Gorka said.

Obviously, the Secretary's comment didn't go down well with Gorka who insisted it was beyond Tillerson's jurisdiction.

"Tillerson is the chief diplomat of the United State, and it is his portfolio to handle those issues", he said, underscoring that military decisions should be left to Trump's defense secretary and the president.

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