Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was asked three times by media if he really called President Donald trump a moron out of frustration, but he refused to deny the NBC News report. He instead said he would not deal with “that kind of petty stuff.”

The secretary said he will not dignify the report and insisted that he still calls Trump Mr. President, The New York Post reported. Tillerson’s dignified response is in sharp contrast to Trump’s reaction of insisting on the two of them taking an IQ exam and saying he would have a higher score than Tillerson.

Ten-fold increase in nuclear arsenal

Tillerson was reported to have called Trump a moron after a July 20 meeting at the Pentagon when Trump sought a ten-fold increase in the country’s nuclear arsenal. Rather than agree with the comment of Republican Sen. Bob Corker that Trump castrated the secretary, Tillerson insisted that the president did not have him neutered.

He told CNN that since he last checked his manhood, it is still intact in response to the president’s public criticism of Tillerson’s diplomatic efforts to stop Pyongyang’s nuclear missiles. Trump said that Tillerson is only wasting his time.

With Trump's tweet about the secretary of state's action, Corker said it is inviting binary situations wherein the US has to choose between war and North Korea or Iran becoming capable of threatening Washington with nuclear weapons, The Washington Post reported.

Raising tension in the region

Corker pointed out that Trump’s neutering Tillerson through his tweet raises tension in the region which is a very irresponsible act. The senator, however, said that it is the secretary's castration that he is “most exercised about.” Although Tillerson was given the thumbs down in Washington for his cooperation with the president’s attempt to strip the US diplomacy of authority, public profile, and resources, nevertheless, the secretary opened a road away from a confrontation with North Korea through quiet diplomacy with China, the senator said.

What is ironic is that despite the public defense of people like Corker of Tillerson, the secretary of state downplayed the president’s tweets against him. The chief diplomat said that Trump’s tweets are designed to tell Pyongyang that Washington has military options available to deal with the threats issued by North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.

He even said that Trump told him privately to continue discussions with China and for him to seek a diplomatic solution to stop North Korea. Tillerson said that the diplomatic efforts will be ongoing until the drop of the first bomb.