Tensions in North Korea worry San Diego families of sailors on USS Carl Vinson

Threat of attack makes for stressful deployment
Posted at 7:27 AM, May 01, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-01 10:27:11-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - As the USS Carl Vinson sails around the Korean Peninsula, the families of its San Diego-based sailors are worried, especially when they hear about increased tension between the U.S. and North Korea.

"I'm not even watching the news or checking Facebook," said Kelsey Beltran, whose husband Xavier is on the ship.

Beltran said it's too stressful to think about and it's even difficult to talk to her family about it.

It's a fear many family members had when the strike group deployed in January. They worried that President Trump's new policies on North Korea could lead to danger.

This past week, as the USS Carl Vinson headed across the Pacific Ocean, North Korean President Kim Jung-Un warned that he would launch a preemptive strike against the U.S. West Coast, heightening fears.

University of San Diego lecturer Ron Bee said that's all rhetoric.

"They don't have the capability to reach us," he said.

A ballistic missile test Friday in North Korea failed, according to South Korean media. Bee said that's more proof that their threats are empty.

"We don't think they have a missile that can reach us. We don't think they have a nuclear bomb they can marry to that missile. Until both of those things happen, that's when the red line will occur," Bee said.

Meanwhile, Adm. Harry Harris, the commander of the U.S. Pacific Command, said the USS Carl Vinson is safe. Speaking to Congress last week, he told them that anything North Korea launched against the ship or its fleet would be "easily defended by the capabilities resident in that strike group. If it flies, it will die."

That's reassuring to the families of sailors in San Diego, who just want their loved ones to come home safely.