UPDATE: Trump Today: President says North Korea faces 'fire and fury' if it doesn't halt threats

08/08/17 04:20 PM EDT

By Steve Goldstein, MarketWatch

President laments decline in drug prosecutions

As the North Korean crisis escalates while on his Bedminster, N.J., vacation, President Donald Trump on Tuesday said he would respond with "fire and fury like the world has never seen" if the Asian country doesn't halt its threats.

NORTH KOREA REACTION

Trump's comments came as the Washington Post reported that North Korea has successfully produced a miniaturized nuclear warhead (https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/north-korea-now-making-missile-ready-nuclear-weapons-us-analysts-say/2017/08/08/e14b882a-7b6b-11e7-9d08-b79f191668ed_story.html?utm_term=.0938becb046e) that it can fit inside its missiles. "He has been very threatening," Trump said of North Korean Leader Kim Jong-un as Trump then repeated the "fire and fury" language. The remarks were made ahead of a discussion on opioid abuse. U.S. stocks declined after the president's remarks, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average ended lower after a 10-session winning run.

North Korea on Monday said it was ready to "teach the U.S. a severe lesson with its nuclear strategic force" if the U.S. takes military action against it.

Read:North Korea vows 'thousands-fold' revenge on U.S. for tougher U.N. sanctions (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/north-korea-vows-thousands-fold-revenge-on-us-for-tougher-un-sanctions-2017-08-07)

As for opioids, Trump called for tougher sentencing. "Opioid overdose deaths have nearly quadrupled since 1999. It's a problem, the likes of which we have never seen. Meanwhile the overall drug prosecutions have gone down in recent years," Trump said.

TWITTER TARGETS: NEWSPAPERS, POLLS

The president used his favorite social-media service to retweet a number of stories reported by Fox News -- on North Korea, Obamacare and job creation -- as well as to take potshots at the news media.

(https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/894981661926068228)

(https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/894984126582972416)

Also read:Trump reportedly gets updated twice a day on what an amazing job he's doing (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/donald-trump-gets-updated-twice-daily-on-what-an-amazing-job-hes-doing-2017-08-08)

Trump was reacting to news reports, citing a freedom of information request of reporter emails to the Justice Department, showing limited interest in covering the tarmac meeting (http://freebeacon.com/politics/emails-show-wapo-nyt-reporters-didnt-want-cover-clinton-lynch-tarmac-meeting/)between former President Bill Clinton and Attorney General Loretta Lynch. Both newspapers had extensive coverage of the Clinton-Lynch meetings.

Meanwhile, the rolling average of polls compiled by FiveThirtyEight (https://projects.fivethirtyeight.com/trump-approval-ratings/?ex_cid=story-twitter) shows Trump with just a 38% approval rating.

-Steve Goldstein; 415-439-6400; AskNewswires@dowjones.com

(http://projects.marketwatch.com/2017/trump-today-signup/)

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

08-08-17 1620ET

Copyright (c) 2017 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.