Donald Trump boasted he'd ordered an 'armada' as a warning to deter North Korea, however military officials say at that moment the USS Carl Vinson aircraft carrier strike group was heading in the opposite direction. Ryan Brooks reports.
Call it a Team Trump mix-up, miscommunication or simply crossed wires. But as the U.S. President boasted he sent an "armada" as a warning to North Korea last week, the USS Carl Vinson and its strike group were actually speeding in the opposite direction. On Tuesday (April 18) the military clarified that the the fleet was actually way off in the Indian Ocean over the weekend, taking part in joint exercises with Australia. Officials say a series of errors kept the false story afloat. First the Navy said the warships were headed to an unnamed location in the Western Pacific. Reuters and other media reported that would take at least a week, lining up with North Korea's 'Day of the Sun' celebrations and expectations of a possible weapons test, which ended up going ahead. As per protocol, the navy didn't give an exact destination, or that they needed to stop off near Australia first. Next Defense chief Jim Mattis claimed the exercise with the Australians had been canceled, but he'd actually confused two events: a canceled port call and the actual, scheduled exercises. After a week of war drums and a dud missile test from North Korea, on Monday the Navy posted a photo of the Carl Vinson as it passed Indonesia. While the Pentagon's since corrected the record, Korea experts say they wonder whether the mix-ups could chip away at Team Trump's credibility, at a time when America's trying to bare its teeth in the face of a belligerent and unpredictable Pyongyang.