Kamala Harris Calls North Korea What?

Gage Skidmore from Peoria, AZ, United States of America, CC BY-SA 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

On Thursday (September 29), Vice President Kamala Harris made a shocking gaffe when speaking at the Korean Peninsula’s Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), saying the U.S. has a “strong alliance” with the “Republic of North Korea.”

Without correcting her previous remarks, Harris continued her speech, calling the alliance “strong and enduring.”

The Vice President intended to say the Republic of Korea, South Korea’s official name, during the speech, eventually using the correct name later when declaring the U.S.’s support for South Korea against North Korea’s increasingly aggressive government.

She continued, “I cannot state enough that the commitment of the United States to the defense of the Republic of Korea is iron-clad and that we will do everything in our power to ensure that it has meaning in every way that the words suggest.”

Harris’s visit to the fortified DMZ, a buffer zone separating North and South Korea, was her final stop on her diplomatic trip to Asia.

According to White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre, the purpose of the visit to the DMZ is to demonstrate the U.S. “rock-solid commitment” to regional security.

Harris’s visit to the DMZ began with a short stop at the Camp Bonifas Dining Facility, where she thanked American service members for their work. She then used binoculars to view the 160-mile long and 2.5-mile wide DMZ before heading to the Observation Post Ouellette to speak about America’s commitment to South Korea’s security.

Before she visited the DMZ, the Vice President met with the President of South Korea, Yoon Suk-yeol, praising the alliance between the U.S. and South Korea as the “linchpin of security and prosperity.”