Tillerson's comments seemed to calm things down, at least for the time being, but then White House Aide, Sebastian Gorka entered the picture.
Gorka's comments about Tillerson raised eyebrows in part because of the dissonant messaging on North Korea, which continued Thursday.
"This is being put together incrementally and of all the countries and all the issues you deal with، North Korea is not the one to be kludging together statements by the president and cabinet secretaries because the risk of miscalculation is so high،" Medeiros said by telephone from Tokyo، Japan.
Tillerson has said negotiations with the North Korean government could happen as long as Pyongyang temporarily stops its missile tests.
During the radio interview, Gorka also pushed back on more levelheaded comments by Secretary of State Rex Tillerson that Americans should "sleep well at night" and "have no concerns" over the the threat of attacks from North Korea.
"It is the job of Secretary Mattis, the Secretary of Defense, to talk about the military options".
"I think that the President, again, as commander-in-chief, I think he felt it necessary to issue a very strong statement directly to North Korea", Tillerson said. What do you say to your critics who say that your rhetoric is actually raising the tension? I have the audio as well, thank you.
"We never do. I don't talk about it", Trump told reporters when asked about a preemptive strike.
"I was admonishing the journalist or the fake news complex that are forcing our chief diplomat into a position where they're demanding he makes the military case for action when that is not the mandate of the secretary of state", Gorka added. He is the secretary of state, that means you don't understand what the words secretaries of state means. "It's fake news. Classic example".
GORKA: Absolutely, absolutely but there's a secretary of defense and there's a secretary of state.
State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert condemned the rogue state's "provocative" missile tests during a press briefing.