The US Air Force has deployed six nuclear-capable B-52 Stratofortress bombers to Guam, according to US Pacific Air Forces, adding more firepower to the region just hours after North Korean state media mocked President Donald Trump‘s tweet referencing the size of his nuclear button as the “spasm of a lunatic.”
B-52 bombers provide additional nuclear and conventional mission capability to a subtly growing American military presence in the region amid ongoing talks between North and South Korea.
Officially, the deployment is part of the US military’s effort to maintain a “continuous bomber presence” in the Pacific but the timing coincides with ongoing talks between North and South Korea ahead of next month’s Winter Olympics.
The talks mark the most significant thaw in relations between the neighboring states in years and the US remains cautiously optimistic that the dialogue could eventually provide fertile ground for diplomacy.
Washington and Seoul opted to postpone its annual military exercises until after the Olympics, but the Air Force said it will maintain “routine” fire power in the region even as talks are ongoing.