North Korea has been fueling fears of attacks that could trigger World War 3 with Pyongyang’s refusal to shut down its nuclear development programme.
Former Green Beret commander Michael Waltz warned the US defence capabilities are not fully functional, putting the country at risk of a missile attack from North Korea.
He said: “The point I can’t emphasise enough is that our ground base missile defences – the ones that are in California and Alaska – that shoot these things down from space is only about 50 percent effective.
“In test shots trying to shoot down intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBM) in space, it’s only 50 percent effective.”
Lt. Col. Waltz’s warning comes less than 24 hours after Hawaii spiralled into a state of panic because of a false ballistic missile alert telling people to take shelter due to an incoming missile.
Sirens sounded as residents scrambled to find cover, while TV stations issued a chilling message calling on residents to stay in their homes.
Lt. Col. Waltz said the false alarm only further highlighted the need to put an end to North Korean leader Kim Jong-un’s regime of fear.
Speaking to Fox News, he continued: “I’m not willing to roll the dice on an American city or the state of Hawaii: this president isn’t either.
“President Trump is not a warmonger. But we have to stop this programme, either by diplomatic means, economic means and if we have to by military means before it gets off the launchpad.”
North Korea has been fanning World War 3 concern by continuing to refuse to heed calls to denuclearise despite heavy economic sanctions taking a toll on the livelihoods of North Koreans.
In August last year the US conducted its own missile test just hours after North Korea launched a ballistic missile that flew over Japan before crashing into the sea.
A medium-range missile was launched from the Pacific Missile Range Facility on Kauai, Hawaii, during a flight test on August 29.
The target was successfully blasted out of the sky by SM-6 missiles, which were fired from the USS John Paul Jones, one of the US Navy’s top destroyers.
Earlier this week US President Donald Trump deployed nuclear supercarrier USS Carl Vinson and three-nuclear capable B-2 bombers to Korean peninsula sea and Guam to monitor North Korea during the Winter Olympics taking place in Pyeongchang in February.
Kim Jong-un has previously said he would order a strike against the US territory of Guam, which is well within the range of its current ballistic missiles.
And Hawaii, sitting a little over half way between the hermit kingdom and mainland US, would also likely be in the range of the dictator’s long-range weapons.