Speaking at a national security and defense forum in Washington, D.C., former Secretary of Defense William Perry, who served under President Bill Clinton, said he does not like the idea of redeploying U.S. nuclear weapons in South Korea and Japan. Instead, he said he would prefer to see both countries develop their own nuclear weapons arsenals.
"I do not think it's necessary or desirable to deploy nuclear weapons again in South Korea and Japan," he said. "But I do think it's preferable for those countries to get an independent nuclear force."
Perry added the Trump administration should give both allies “solid reassurance” that U.S. nuclear deterrence is extended to cover them, as well. Then, the U.S. should allow both countries to arm themselves according to the threats they now face.
"If we can do that, then over time we will work with North Korea to stop them from getting a nuclear arsenal. I don't see that happening today," Perry went on to say. "I think we have to stabilize the situation with our allies first."
He also does not believe Kim Jong-un will readily give up his nuclear arsenal, but could perhaps be convinced to do so over time. He said current diplomatic efforts should be aimed at avoiding an “accidental” war.