Grand Rapids man who visited North Korea weighs in on crisis

Grand Rapids man who visited North Korea offers insight

GRAND RAPIDS, MICH. - Tensions between the United States and North Korea are increasing. Many across the country have been watching the issue unfold, including a Grand Rapids man who visited the hermit kingdom.

Dick Gauthier went to North Korea seven years ago and still remembers the experience vividly. He says he always wanted to visit there because it's unique.

Gauthier says he has been keeping up with the ongoing tension between the two countries.

Most recently, President Trump cautioned North Korean officials to "get their act together" regarding its nuclear intentions. According to ABC news, North Korea's military officials said they were developing a plan to fire missiles at the U.S territory of Guam.

Gauthier says he doesn't believe his time there changes his perspective on the current situation, but adds it isn't surprising at all.

"Having seen the society up close, I don't think Kim Jing-un is irrational," Gauthier said. "I think don't think his father Kim Jong-il was irrational. I think they're both pugnacious and impetuous but not irrational and I can see that they have a well ordered way of thinking and they simply want respect." 

ABC reports, Trump refused to say whether he would consider a preemptive strike on North Korea. The U.S Defense Secretary says the Trump administration is working with its allies on a diplomatic solution.

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