Nightly News   |  March 30, 2013

White House takes North Korea threats seriously

NBC’s Kristen Welker has more on Washington’s reaction to North Korea’s threats.

Share This:

This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>> the white house said again today it's taking the threats of north korea seriously. nbc's christian walker is at the white house with more on that. good evening, kristen.

>> lester, good evening. white house officials are, of course, concerned, and they have the added challenge of reassuring south korea and other allies in the region that the united states will defend them if they are attacked. now, the white house described the latest pronouncement from north korea as an unconstructive statement, and tried to further downplay the situation by citing north korea 's long history of rhetoric. still, this is a tense moment. a chief concern, the leader of north korea is young and he's unpredictable. one senior administration official told me his father moved from the shadows with occasional rhetorical statements. one foreign policy expert outside the white house said the problem is, his father knew where the line was, but it's not clear that kim jong -un does. the problem with all of this is that kim could lead to a miscalculation, which could ultimately provoke south korea to respond. white house officials watching this very closely tonight. lester?

>> kristen walker at the white