Air Force General John Hyten, the commander of the United States nuclear arsenal, said on Saturday that he would not without consideration follow an order from President Donald Trump to launch a nuclear missile.
Officially the commander of the US Strategic Command, or STRATCOM, Mr Hyten told the Halifax International Security Forum that he has thought about a situation where the nuclear order was given, an action he considers illegal.
“If you execute an unlawful order you will go to jail, you could go to jail for the rest of your life,” he told a panel at the forum.
“The way the process works is simple,” explained Hyten, saying that he would give advice to the president and the commander-in-chief of the armed forces would tell Hyten what to do.
Hyten said he would tell the president a nuclear order was illegal, followed by the leader of the United States asking “what would be legal?”
At that point, the general says he would “come up with options, a mix of capabilities to respond to whatever the situation is.”
Nuclear worries stem from apparently personal insults thrown between both Mr Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jung Un.
More details to follow. Image 1 of General John Hyten from Vimeo.