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Author Topic: Could North Korea Annihilate Seoul With Artillery?
airforce
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North Korea has 12,000 artillery pieces, and another 2300 pieces of rocket launched artillery over 107-millimeters, so at first glance it would seem so. But they're forgetting about counter battery fire, and the need to blunt any counteroffensive.

quote:
...A 2011 study by the Nautilus Institute throws a considerable amount of cold water on this scenario. While the sheer number of artillery tubes could theoretically kill a large number of civilians, operational issues complicate matters and push the number of civilian casualties greatly downward. Despite the thousands of artillery pieces, only 700 heavier guns and rocket launchers, plus the newer 300-millimeter MRLs, have the range to strike Seoul. Only a third would normally be fired at once, and notional rates of fire would be slowed tremendously by the need to withdraw guns into their hardened artillery sites (HARTS) to shelter them from counter battery fire.

Other factors reduce the projected loss of life in the greater Seoul metropolitan area. The city has extensive air raid shelters for civilians that will quickly reduce the exposed population density. The North will struggle to keep these heavy artillery units supplied with shells, particularly with its aging supply system. Finally, U.S. and ROK forces will quickly begin hunting down units participating in the bombardment, causing their numbers to drop almost immediately.

Finally, the North would face a strategic dilemma. Artillery used to bomb Seoul could not be used to soften up border defenses for a general invasion, and in wartime it would be critical to capture the enemy capital quickly as possible. An all-out bombardment of the South Korean capital might very well leave Pyongyang without the ability to actually capture it, while at the same time ensuring a U.S./South Korean counteroffensive that would spell the end of the regime of Kim Jong-un. Even if a million civilians were killed in Seoul it would ensure Kim’s untimely demise, and from his perspective that is still almost certainly a very bad trade.

North Korean artillery will undoubtedly play a very large role in any future conflict. While the Korean People’s Army certainly has a large amount of cannon and rocket artillery, recent experience suggests that it falls short of its actual potential. Furthermore, while an artillery attack on Seoul would undoubtedly cause a great deal of civilian casualties, there are numerous factors involved that would give the North pause before unleashing such a scenario. This should not necessarily embolden hawks to use force against North Korea; the ideal future is still one in which the country’s plentiful artillery is not used at all.

Read the whole thing at the link.

Onward and upward,
airforce

[ 06-12-2017, 08:12 PM: Message edited by: airforce ]

Posts: 17543 | From: Tulsa | Registered: Jan 2002  | Report this post to a Moderator
airforce
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Korea just keeps getting more interesting. A third carrier group - the USS NImitz - is being deployed to the western Pacific. it will join the USS Carl Vinson and the USS Ronald Reagan.

quote:
The U.S. Navy has decided to deploy the USS Nimitz as a third carrier-led strike force to the western Pacific to increase pressure on North Korea to rein in its arms programs.

Nimitz, one of the world's largest warships, will join the USS Carl Vinson and USS Ronald Reagan there, sources close to the U.S. military said May 26.

It is rare for the U.S. Navy to deploy three aircraft carriers to the same region at the same time. This latest decision means that three of the U.S. Navy’s 11 aircraft carriers will be deployed in the western Pacific.

The Trump administration deployed the strike force to put pressure on Pyongyang to refrain from more nuclear and missile tests amid mounting concern that it will soon acquire the capability to launch intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs).

Vincent Stewart, director of the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency, has said that Pyongyang will ultimately succeed in acquiring the technology to equip its ICBMs with nuclear warheads and threaten the U.S. mainland.

According to the sources, the Nimitz strike group, which is part of the U.S. Third Fleet, was originally scheduled to be deployed to the Middle East region. It was initially to depart from its homeport, Naval Base Kitsap in Washington State, on June 1.

However, the U.S. Navy changed tactics and decided to deploy the nuclear-powered warship to the western Pacific for six months to deal with this latest crisis involving North Korea, the sources said.

The decision also sends a signal to China to continue cooperating with the United States on this issue. President Donald Trump has already said that the United States will independently take action against North Korea if China does not cooperate.

The Carl Vinson strike group, which is also part of the Third Fleet, has been deployed to the Sea of Japan since late April.

The Ronald Reagan strike group, which belongs to the Seventh Fleet that is based in Yokosuka, Kanagawa Prefecture, and is in charge of the western Pacific, left its homeport on April 16. It is scheduled to carry out a joint drill with the Carl Vinson strike group.

Whether the Nimitz strike group joins the drill or not has yet to be revealed.

Onward and upward,
airforce

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airforce
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The world is saved! Dennis Rodman is going back to North Korea. Well, he's a better diplomat than Hillary was.

quote:
...CNN spotted Rodman at Beijing International Airport, where he declined to answer questions. Rodman would be arriving in Pyongyang at a time of heightened tension between Washington and Pyongyang, which is currently detaining four Americans.

It's unclear what the purpose of Rodman's visit to the secretive country could be, but the eccentric former basketball player -- and a former contestant on Donald Trump's pre-presidency reality TV show "Celebrity Apprentice" -- is one of the only Americans to have met current North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un.

When asked by CNN journalists in Pyongyang, unnamed North Korean officials confirmed that Rodman is expected to arrive in Pyongyang Tuesday. They gave no further details.

Rodman has visited the country at least four times, with three of the visits taking place between 2013 and 2014. A senior US official said the State Department was aware Rodman was planning to travel to North Korea, but stressed he is not there in any official capacity.

His last visit came in January 2014, when Rodman and a group of other former NBA players took part in an exhibition basketball game. It was supposedly a birthday gift for Kim who's said to be a big basketball fan.

Rodman was filmed leading a sing-along of "Happy Birthday" to the North Korean leader, a man he calls a friend and a "very good guy," but is widely seen as a brutal dictator who once lauded the execution of his own uncle.

Rodman has described his series of trips to North Korea as a "basketball diplomacy" project and defended the trip for Kim's birthday in a CNN interview saying it was a "great idea for the world." (...)

Onward and upward,
airforce

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airforce
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Here's a hot new rumor: Dennis Rodman is a secret ambassador for Trump.

quote:
...Rodman’s trip has sparked speculation that he may be traveling to free some or all of the four American citizens currently being held by North Korea, perhaps as a first and important step toward lessening tensions between Washington and Pyongyang.

Trump, who had the basketballer on his “Celebrity Apprentice” show twice, has recently called Kim a “smart cookie” and has said he would be “honored” to meet him.

Multiple people involved in unofficial talks with North Korea say that the Trump administration has been making overtures toward the Kim regime, including trying to set up a secret back channel to the North Korean leader using “an associate of Trump’s” rather than the usual line-up of North Korea experts and former officials who talk to Pyongyang’s representatives....

The Washington Post seems to think it's possible. I don't, but I've been wrong before.

Onward and upward,
airforce

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airforce
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Dennis Rodman reportedly gave Kim Jong-Un a copy of "The Art of the Deal." Maybe there's some truth to that rumor after all. [Big Grin]

Onward and upward,
airforce

Posts: 17543 | From: Tulsa | Registered: Jan 2002  | Report this post to a Moderator
airforce
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These are the six options for dealing with North Korea. And none of them are pretty.

quote:
...1.) Yet another “do the right thing” bid to Beijing. China has vulnerabilities. China’s imperial territorial expansion in the South China Sea has produced adversarial reactions. China’s other borders are anything but problem-free, and Beijing’s bullying has intensified several disputes.

Chinese jockeying failed to shake the new government of South Korean President Moon Jae-in and force the withdrawal of a U.S. Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) anti-ballistic missile (ABM) battery deployed in South Korea.

China threatened South Korean companies. It curtailed travel and cultural contacts. It threatened Seoul with political reprisals.

The THAAD tantrum failed, and China is still processing that failure. Moon was pegged as a “peace candidate” of the timorous political stripe Beijing and Pyongyang might manipulate. He performed a brief “review” of the THAAD deployment (which he promised he would do during his campaign), but after his meeting with President Donald Trump, he declared “a unified front” against Pyongyang’s nuclear and missile programs.

South Korea knows THAAD provides protection. Japan also knows U.S. anti-ballistic missiles (ABM) provide protection.

Beijing has not yet adapted to South Korea’s and Japan’s new resolve. Moon is positioned to help Beijing adapt to 2017’s new reality and encourage China to finally squeeze the nukes out of the North.

Eighty-five percent of North Korea’s international trade is with China. North Korea’s miserable economy depends on China.

Some North Korean defectors argue tough sanctions—meaning an embargo and blockade with China participating—could cripple the Kim regime.

In April, Trump tweeted “a trade deal with the U.S. will be far better if they (China) solve the North Korean problem!” An economic payoff? Yes, but better than a shooting war.

2.) Coercive diplomacy directed at China. In March, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said “strategic patience” with North Korea was over and done.

Eventually strategic patience with Chinese posturing will also end.

China is attempting to portray itself as “the global adult” in the Trump Era and as the “go to nation” for the next Davos. However, backing North Korea utterly exposes this Chinese narrative as the sham it is. In February, Kim Jon Un’s assassins murdered his half-brother, Kim Jong Nam. The killers smeared him with a liquid nerve poison, persistent VX. In a missile warhead, VX is a weapon of mass destruction. Assassination as a geo-political advertisement that North Korea is an outlaw regime is an action no responsible nation would permit.

So coercive diplomacy starts with an information campaign challenging China’s pose.

It gets uglier. In the U.S.-China relationship, trade politics and geo-politics intersect. Business isn’t simply business when the promise of wealth keeps China’s Communist Party in power. The United States has the economic power to damage China. Trump knows it and so does Beijing. Trump has already talked trade barriers.

The U.S. is energy independent and China isn’t. The U.S. and its allies can restrict Chinese exports and access to raw materials.

Smaller but politically irritating sanctions like denying wealthy Chinese the ability to purchase real estate in the U.S. could have political effects among Chinese elites. In the upcoming party Congress scheduled for this fall, Chinese President Xi Jinping wants to solidify his control. However, he faces internal Communist Party opposition. The U.S. could exploit emerging factions in the party elite.

Coercive diplomacy stops when China forces North Korea to denuclearize.

Risky? Of course. It could spark a ruinous global trade war. But it is an option.

3.) The cynical trade and sell-out. The U.S., Japan and South Korea could acknowledge Chinese control of the South China Sea or they could give Taiwan to China in exchange for a denuclearized North Korea.

Outrageous? Yes. India would never accept it. Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam, Singapore and Australia would go tilt.

I don’t think the U.S. and Japan would ever seriously contemplate it.

But it’s an option and likely the “appeasement” deal Beijing wants to make.

4.) Return of serve. This is an operation that could support several diplomatic options. The U.S., South Korea and Japan could use their ABMs to intercept every North Korean test launch. They might also employ cyber warfare to disrupt tests (perhaps they have already done so). The objective of “Return of Serve” is to stymie the test program and embarrass Kim Jong Un.

5.) Decapitation. What does Pyongyang want? The murder of Kim Jong Nam suggests one key objective: to retain Kim Jong Un’s control. Encouraging a North Korean Army coup sounds great, and if you know the faction who would do it, contact CIA immediately. Targeting Kim with a missile or aircraft-delivered munitions is extremely difficult. Moreover, his death may not lead to denuclearization and attacking him would be an act of war.

6.) Delayed reprisal and the war to denuclearize. Is a pre-emptive strike reckless? This asks another question: Just how responsible is a post-emptive strike?

The Korean War isn’t over.

Donald Trump is already a Korean War president—but so was Barack Obama and every other American president since Harry Truman.

Over the years, North Korea has committed atrocities throughout Asia. The regime has murdered and kidnapped South Koreans, Japanese and U.S. personnel. North Korea’s embedded belligerency defies the laws of war. The War to Denuclearize would be less of a pre-emptive strike than a delayed reprisal.

The U.S. and South Korea have exercised what they call a 4D strategy to “detect, defend, disrupt and destroy” North Korea’s missiles.

Weapons systems involved include various U.S. aircraft and a South Korean submarine with cruise missiles.

This is a bare sketch of some of the systems that would be employed in a “simultaneous strategic bombing strike” to knock out North Korean missiles, missile launchers, storage sites, nuclear and chemical weapons sites, command and control centers, communications systems and air-space defenses.

The U.S. and its allies in east Asia have the aircraft and missiles (cruise and ballistic) to deliver at least 2,000 (likely more) precision blockbuster-sized conventional weapons within a two to 10 minute time frame on North Korea’s critical targets. The April U.S. Tomahawk cruise missile attack on a Syrian Shayrat airbase provides an example.

The missiles were fired at a distance, but since they can “loiter,” the 59 missiles arrived near simultaneously. U.S. Air Force heavy bombers can drop smart bombs so that munitions dropped from different aircraft arrive near simultaneously.

A simultaneous strategic bombing strike seeks to surprise the enemy, destroy his strategic weapons systems and suppress his key defenses throughout the battle area.

That is asking a lot—perhaps too much.

Success depends on many things, but the first D—detect—is vital. Conducting a successful simultaneous strategic bombing strike requires very accurate, real-time intelligence. Allied ABMs must be ready to intercept any North Korean missiles that survive the attack.

That’s a sketch of the first 10 minutes. Over the next month subsequent strikes would occur, to make certain North Korea’s long-range missiles, chemical munitions, nuclear weapons stockpiles, missile manufacturing capabilities and nuclear weapons manufacturing capabilities are eliminated.

The U.S. and it allies must protect Seoul. North Korean artillery can bombard the northern reaches of South Korea’s capital. Military analysts debate the severity of the threat posed to Seoul by North Korean artillery deployed along the Demilitarized Zone. Some call it overrated. Perhaps, but best to suppress and destroy the artillery. North Korea’s tube and rocket artillery systems—even the ones in caves and bunkers—are vulnerable to weapons like the Massive Ordnance Air Blast (MOAB) bomb.

Smart bombs can close tunnel entrances.

This is a major war, and the risks are great. But so is exposing Los Angeles to the violent whims of a nuclear-armed Kim Jong Un.

Onward and upward,
airforce

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airforce
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If I were Kim Jong-Un, this would make me a little nervous.

quote:
...“North Korea remains the most urgent threat to regional stability,” said Gen. Terrence J. O’Shaughnessy, Pacific Air Forces commander.

“Diplomacy remains the lead. However, we have a responsibility to our allies and our nation to showcase our unwavering commitment while planning for the worst-case scenario.”

Trump is said to have run out of patience with North Korea.

He added: " If called upon, we are ready to respond with rapid, lethal, and overwhelming force at a time and place of our choosing."

The United States often sends powerful warplanes in times of heightened animosities with North Korea.

B-1 bombers have been sent to South Korea for flyovers several times this year in response to North Korea's banned missile tests, and also following the death of a US college student after he was released by North Korean in a coma....

Lots of cool photos of B1-B's at the link.

Onward and upward,
airforce

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ConSigCor
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If I lived in SK or Japan I'd be worried right now. They will bare to brunt of Kim's assault.

If we go hot, they better get the job done this time.

--------------------
"The time for war has not yet come, but it will come and that soon, and when it does come, my advice is to draw the sword and throw away the scabbard." Gen. T.J. Jackson, March 1861

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airforce
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I hear underground bomb shelters are a pretty hot item in Japan right now.

Onward and upward,
airforce

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ConSigCor
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RED ALERT China reveals its terrifying military weapons with vast parade including stealth jets, nuclear missiles, attack helicopters and thousands of elite troops President Xi Jinping - wearing his military fatigues - inspected his troops personally By Danny Collins

--------------------
"The time for war has not yet come, but it will come and that soon, and when it does come, my advice is to draw the sword and throw away the scabbard." Gen. T.J. Jackson, March 1861

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ConSigCor
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The U.S. Is Inches From A War With North Korea In Which Millions Could Die

Events are moving us in the direction of such a war very rapidly now

Michael Snyder Economic Collapse - July 31, 2017

We are just inches away from the outbreak of World War III, and yet most Americans seem completely oblivious to what is happening.

On Friday, North Korea conducted a missile test which proved that it now has the capability of hitting major U.S. cities in the western half of the country. Every diplomatic effort to end North Korea’s nuclear program has completely failed, the Chinese have shown that they do not intend to do much of anything to intervene in this crisis, and the United Nations is a dead end. Given enough time, the North Koreans will build hundreds of ICBMs capable of delivering nukes to cities all over America, and the Trump administration has already indicated that they will never accept this. If no other way can be found to derail North Korea’s nuclear program, President Trump will almost certainly order a military strike, and that could set off a war in which millions could die.

Personally, I am stunned that North Korea’s missile test on Friday didn’t receive more attention from the mainstream media, because the truth is that this was the biggest step toward war on the Korean peninsula since 1953…

After North Korea’s missile launch on Friday, the US-based Union of Concerned Scientists shared its fears that the country’s latest weapon had the capacity to reach major US cities.

When it launched the missile on Friday, North Korea aimed it on a high trajectory which allowed the weapon to crash in to the Sea of Japan.

The ground range of the test was 6,500 miles, according to multiple agencies, and it had a flight time of around 47 minutes.

If the missile had been fired at a standard trajectory, it could have easily reached Los Angeles, Denver or Chicago.

In other words, more than half the continental United States is now within range of North Korean missiles…

Preliminary data from the launch reveals that half, if not most, of the continental U.S. would be in range of the missile tested Friday.

“Looks like it pretty much can get to New York, Boston and probably falls just short of Washington,” David Wright, co-director and senior scientist for the Global Security Program at the Union of Concerned Scientists, told CNBC.

This is supposed to be a red line for President Trump, and it will be extremely interesting to see how he responds in the days ahead.

On Twitter, Trump sounded like a man that is completely out of patience with North Korea…

“Our foolish past leaders have allowed them to make hundreds of billions of dollars a year in trade, yet they do NOTHING for us with North Korea, just talk. We will no longer allow this to continue. China could easily solve this problem!”

In addition to Trump, UN Ambassador Nikki Haley is also indicating that time for diplomatic maneuvering has run out…

“The time for talk is over. The danger the North Korean regime poses to international peace is now clear to all.”

The Trump administration has already made it very clear that they will not be going to the UN Security Council with this matter because they believe that would be a dead end.

At this point, the available options for dealing with North Korea are narrowing rapidly, and direct military action appears to be gaining favor. In fact, General Terrence J. O’Shaughnessy released a statement on Saturday night warning that the U.S. is ready to use “rapid, lethal and overwhelming force”…

The U.S. and its allies are prepared to use “rapid, lethal and overwhelming force,” if necessary, against North Korea, the commander of the U.S. Pacific Air Forces warned Saturday night.

The statement from Gen. Terrence J. O’Shaughnessy, U.S. Pacific Air Forces commander, came after the militaries of the U.S., South Korea and Japan spent 10 hours conducting bomber-jet drills over the Korean Peninsula.

Earlier this month, the Trump administration announced that American citizens are now banned from traveling to North Korea. That is the kind of action that you would take just prior to a war.

But an attack on North Korea would not be easy. We don’t even know exactly how many nuclear weapons they actually have, and they are promising to start launching nukes if we choose to strike them…

“If the Yankees . . . dare brandish the nuclear stick on this land again . . . the DPRK will clearly teach them manners with the nuclear strategic force,” the spokesman said.

North Korea is honeycombed with underground tunnels and bunkers. There is no possible way that we could hit all of their nukes on a first strike, and if the North Koreans even get off a single nuke in response it is going to be an unprecedented disaster.

Could you imagine what would happen if a North Korean nuke hit Tokyo or Seoul?

Even one nuke could kill millions in those densely populated cities, and financial markets all over the world would almost instantly implode.

And North Korea also has some of the largest chemical and biological weapons stockpiles on the entire planet. Within moments of an attack, thousands of North Korean artillery pieces and rockets would start raining fire on Seoul, and even just a few chemical or biological warheads would cause immense devastation in that city of about 10 million people.

In addition, North Korean forces are poised to invade South Korea at literally any moment, and the only way that South Korea could survive such an invasion would be direct intervention by U.S. forces.

On top of everything else, what if the North Koreans were able to successfully launch a nuke or two toward our major cities? Or what if they already have the technology to set off an EMP blast high in the atmosphere above the continental United States? Or what if their agents that are already embedded here start releasing biological agents in our major cities?

These are nightmare scenarios that most Americans never even consider, but they would be very real possibilities in the event that we go to war with North Korea.

I just don’t see how a direct military conflict with North Korea could possibly end well. For those that still doubt this, please consider the words of General Mark Milley…

“A war in the Korean Peninsula would be highly deadly. It would be horrific,” warned Gen. Milley. “The United States military along with the South Korean military would utterly destroy the North Korean military — but that would be done at high cost.”

“But we are at a point in time where tough choices will have to be made,” he continued. “We are going to have to make conscious decisions that are going to have significant consequences and I will just stop there. It’s not going to be a pretty picture — I can tell you that. It’s going to be very violent.“

A war with North Korea would be the most disastrous event for our planet since World War II, and it is something that we want to avoid at all costs.

Unfortunately, events are moving us in the direction of such a war very rapidly now, and it is very difficult to see how we are going to avoid such a scenario.

--------------------
"The time for war has not yet come, but it will come and that soon, and when it does come, my advice is to draw the sword and throw away the scabbard." Gen. T.J. Jackson, March 1861

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airforce
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[url=http://www.theblaze.com/news/2017/08/04/us-national-security-adviser-kim-jong-un-should-not-sleep-easy-at-night/]Kin Jong Un should not sleep easy at night[url], says the National Security Adviser.

quote:
U.S. national security adviser Gen. H. R. McMaster warned during an interview with MSNBC on Thursday that North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un should not sleep easy at night, following continued threats from North Korea.

The latest threat came on Thursday, when North Korean state-run media reported that government officials threatened that the U.S. is “on the knife’s edge of life and death.”

During an interview with radio host Hugh Hewitt on MSNBC, McMaster was asked if Kim should be sleeping easy at night.

“No, I think he should not be,” McMaster answered. “Because he has the whole world against him, right? He’s isolated. He’s isolated on this.”

North Korea and the U.S. have been engaging in a back and forth of displays of strength. The communist state has been overtly antagonistic, testing Hwasong-14 intercontinental ballistic missiles that Kim has called “gifts” for the “American bastards.” The first launch was on July 4 and was said to be able to reach Hawaii or Alaska. Last week, North Korea tested another ICBM, this time with the reported capability of hitting inner American cities, such as Denver or Chicago.

The second missile test put North Korea two years ahead in terms of what experts thought the country’s technological capability would be. But it is unknown if North Korea currently has the capability to successfully attach nuclear warheads to their ICBM’s.

Despite rising tensions, South Korea’s Unification Ministry and the U.S. have been attempting to attain peace between the allies and North Korea. This has been met with silence from North Korea, as well as criticisms from North Korea’s state-run media.

McMaster reminded Hewitt that the war with North Korea never officially ended.

“Since 1953, the Korean peninsula has been in a state of armistice,” he said. “The war never formally ended. There has been no aggression from the United States, South Korea, any of our allies.”

Hewitt asked McMaster if tensions would ease if Kim Jong Un was removed from power, which McMaster said he wasn’t sure about.

“I don’t think anybody has a very clear picture of the inner-workings of that regime,” McMaster said. “What is very clear is that it is an authoritarian dictatorship that has existed since the end of WWII. It is now in its third generation, and the difference in this third autocratic ruler is that he’s as brutal as the previous two have been but he’s doing some things differently. He’s killing members of his family.”

“The future of that regime, it’s almost impossible to predict,” he continued....

Onward and upward,
airforce

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airforce
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About all that's on the news right now is a Washington Post report that North Korea has a nuke that can fit inside a warhead. There's no confirmation of this, and North Korea has yet to develop a warhead that can survive reentry, but this is not good news.

Onward and upward,
airforce

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ConSigCor
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This situation is rapidly escalating and could easily spin out of control. Reminds me of the Cuban missile crisis.

--------------------
"The time for war has not yet come, but it will come and that soon, and when it does come, my advice is to draw the sword and throw away the scabbard." Gen. T.J. Jackson, March 1861

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ConSigCor
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North Korea Threatens More Ballistic Missile Tests Over Japan

Kim Jong Un calls Hwasong-12 launch the first step to fighting “an actual war” in the Pacific


Mikael Thalen | Infowars.com - August 29, 2017

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un threatened further missile tests overflying Japan Wednesday in a statement released by the state-run Korean Central News Agency.

Pyongyang test-launched Tuesday a Hwasong-12 intermediate-range ballistic missile, which traveled 2,700 kilometers at a maximum altitude of 550 kilometers, that overflew the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido.

North Korea’s statement indicated the drill was intended to both train military units for potential strikes against U.S. military bases on the island of Guam and to push back against the ongoing U.S. and South Korean joint military exercise Ulchi-Freedom Guardian.

“Involved in the drill were Hwasong artillery units of the KPA Strategic Force tasked with striking the bases of the U.S. imperialist aggressor forces located in the Pacific operational theater in contingency and intermediate-range strategic ballistic rocket Hwasong-12,” an English translation of the KCNA statement said.

“As known to the world, the intermediate-range strategic ballistic rocket launching drill of the KPA Strategic Force was conducted as a part of the muscle-flexing to counter the Ulji Freedom Guardian joint military drills the U.S. and the south Korean puppet forces finally kicked off in disregard of the DPRK’s meaningful and crucial warning.”

The test launch also aimed to “estimate and examine the posture” of North Korea’s military forces and to confirm the actual war operation capacity” of the Hwasong-12 – a missile designed to carry a nuclear warhead.

“The drill was carried out through the combination of sudden maneuvers and strike in order to estimate and examine the posture of the KPA Strategic Force for prompt counteraction in contingency on the Korean peninsula and to confirm the actual war operation capacity of the intermediate-range strategic ballistic rocket newly equipped with by it.”

Kim later applauded the launch as an opportunity for the Hwasong artillery units to gain “good experience in their rocket operation for an actual war.”

“Praising the Hwasong artillerymen of the Strategic Force for being well versed in the newly equipped ultra-modern rocket system and properly operating it, he said the drill would offer them an opportunity for gaining a good experience in their rocket operation for an actual war,” the KCNA statement added.

The North Korean leader, who called for further such drills overflying Japan, also characterized Tuesday’s launch as a “meaningful prelude to containing Guam.”

“Noting that the current ballistic rocket launching drill like a real war is the first step of the military operation of the KPA in the Pacific and a meaningful prelude to containing Guam, advanced base of invasion, he said that it is necessary to positively push forward the work for putting the strategic force on a modern basis by conducting more ballistic rocket launching drills with the Pacific as a target in the future,” KCNA said.

Kim warned any further launches from Pyongyang would depend on, among other things, whether the U.S. continues with its “bellicose war exercises for aggression.”

“Sternly saying that the U.S. answered the DPRK’s warning which it will closely watch the U.S. behavior with the bellicose war exercises for aggression, he added that the drill conducted by the Strategic Force is a curtain-raiser of its resolute countermeasures against the Ulji Freedom Guardian joint military exercises being conducted by the U.S. and its stooges,” the statement said.

“Noting that it is a lesson drew by the DPRK this time again that it should show action, not talk, to the U.S. imprudently denying the DPRK’s initiative measure for easing the extreme tension, he stressed that the DPRK will continue to watch the U.S. demeanors as already declared and decide its future action according to them.”

While provocative, experts believe Pyongyang’s statements signal an attempt to negotiate as tensions escalate in the Korean Peninsula.

On Wednesday, U.S. President Donald Trump responded to the missile launch by warning that “all options are on the table.”

“The world has received North Korea’s latest message loud and clear: This regime has signaled its contempt for its neighbors, for all members of the United Nations and for minimum standards of acceptable international behavior,” Trump said in a statement. “Threatening and destabilizing actions only increase the North Korean regime’s isolation in the region and among all nations of the world.”

The State Department also released Wednesday a rare readout of Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s phone call on North Korea with Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono and Republic of Korea Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha.

 -

Tuesday’s launch stirred fears among Hokkaido residents after messages from the Japanese government warned that the missile could potentially strike the island.

“I woke up with a Siren and an announcement that North Korea launched a missile that would possibly hit cities within Hokkaido,” a Twitter user said of the incident.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe spoke over the phone with Trump Tuesday and also vowed to “protect the public” during an early morning press conference.

The Hwasong-12 test follows the launch of three short-range ballistic missiles Saturday that traveled in a northeastern direction 250 kilometers from Pyongyang.

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"The time for war has not yet come, but it will come and that soon, and when it does come, my advice is to draw the sword and throw away the scabbard." Gen. T.J. Jackson, March 1861

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airforce
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What a war with North Korea will look like. In a word, ugly. Too long to post here, but here's a portion:

quote:
...Ground forces along the DMZ, largely South Korean, will be locked in a knife fight. The terrain is rugged, narrow and provides very little room to maneuver. The mobile battlefield we all witnessed in 1991 and 2003 in Iraq will not be possible amidst the rice paddies and mountains of Korea. Massive firepower would rein death on both sides. The confined nature of the terrain, and the North’s ability to infiltrate behind our lines, makes even hand-to-hand combat possible. If the ground fight had to roll north for a decisive resolution, we would need more soldiers — a lot more soldiers. We would be almost certainly be viewed as occupiers, not liberators, in the minds of the North Koreans. We would have to dig them out of their defenses and control their population, and that would take a lot more soldiers.

The “horror” would set in as thousands were killed or wounded. In some estimates, North Korea would inflict 20,000 casualties a day just in Seoul during for the first few days. The herculean effort to limit collateral damage witnessed in our Middle Eastern wars will be impossible to repeat. We will operate within the laws of armed conflict, but significant loss of innocent life would be unavoidable due to the locations North Korea chooses to base or hide its weapons.

We will use cluster weapons that spread bomblets over areas the size of football fields. We will return artillery fire wherever enemy batteries are firing. When optimum for military conditions, we will hit targets in the middle of urban areas; it would be impossible to prevent civilian casualties. To fight effectively, we will have to bomb command facilities in the heart of neighborhoods. We will destroy missiles on mobile launchers even if they are placed in sensitive areas. Our ground forces will pour fire into the enemy without an excessive regard for damage. And, yes, we will bomb targets more widely than in recent decades....

More, including photos, at the link.

Onward and upward,
airforce

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Breaking: North Korea Fires Ballistic Missile Over Japan

Japanese residents ordered to take cover following launch of unidentified projectile

Mikael Thalen | Infowars.com - September 14, 2017

North Korea launched an intermediate range ballistic missile (IRBM) over Japan early Friday into the Pacific Ocean, U.S. Pacific Command said Thursday.

“U.S. Pacific Command detected and tracked what we assess was a single North Korean ballistic missile launch at 11:57 a.m. (Hawaii time) Sept. 14,” a USPACOM statement stated. “Initial assessment indicated the launch of an intermediate range ballistic missile (IRBM).”

Japanese residents began receiving text message notifications shortly after the launch urging them to take cover. Warning sirens were also heard throughout the country.

#northkorea launched another #missile. Hearing the sirens out here in #niigata #japan. Thanks for the heads up, J-alert pic.twitter.com/Yd459DPfw8

— Michael Bosack (@MikeBosack) September 14, 2017

The South Korean military stated that the projectile was fired from a site in the Sunan district near the North Korean capital. Pyongyang’s previous launch of a missile over Japan last month came from the same site.

Japanese media outlet NHK reported that the missile overflew the northern island of Hokkaido, splashing down 2,000km east. Japanese officials also told NHK that no attempts were made to shoot down the IRBM.

The missile, which was launched at 6:59 a.m. local time, came down into waters 17 minutes later. The projectile reached an altitude of 770km and had a total range of 3,700km.

Given the range, the missile would easily reach beyond the U.S. territory of Guam if fired in its direction – though experts are skeptical of the IRBM’s accuracy.

Performance indicates that the missile is likely North Korea’s Hwasong-12 – a nuclear capable ballistic missile.

The launch comes amid growing tensions in the Korean Peninsula following increased U.N. sanctions on Pyongyang for the country’s test of a purported hydrogen bomb.

This story is developing and will be updated as more information becomes available.

--------------------
"The time for war has not yet come, but it will come and that soon, and when it does come, my advice is to draw the sword and throw away the scabbard." Gen. T.J. Jackson, March 1861

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airforce
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Here's something you don't see very often:

 -

Three F/A-18E Super Hornets, assigned to the Eagles of Strike Fighter Attack Squadron 115, fly in formation over the aircraft carriers USS Ronald Reagan, USS Theodore Roosevelt, USS Nimitz and their strike groups along with ships from the South Korean Navy as they transit the Western Pacific, Nov. 12, 2017. The strike groups are underway and conducting operations in international waters as part of a three-carrier strike force exercise.

Onward and upward,
airforce

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It looks like Kim Jong-Un is playing musical chairs with his top military leaders again. But it's rather curious that he's doing it now.

quote:
Two key figures in the North Korean military have been punished for "impure behavior," according to a South Korean lawmaker, a move analysts say is likely intended to help leader Kim Jong Un tighten his grip on power.

A closed-door briefing by South Korea's National Intelligence Service (NIS) identified the two officials as Hwang Pyong So, the director of North Korea's General Political Bureau (GPB), and his deputy Kim Won Hong, said South Korean Rep. Kim Byung-kee after the meeting.

The General Political Bureau, which is also referred to as the General Political Department (GPD), is being audited for the first time in 20 years, Rep. Kim added, citing the NIS.

It's unclear how exactly how Hwang and his deputy were disciplined, but one analyst told CNN they could have been required to undergo re-education, which is likely to include a period of re-indoctrination of North Korean ideology.

"He's playing musical chairs with key positions," said Andrei Lankov, a professor at Kookmin University in Seoul and the director of NKNews.org. "Kim Jong Un doesn't want anybody in the military to stay in charge for too long ... He's brilliant, cynical, brutal and efficient."

Before his punishment, Hwang was one of three officials below Kim Jong Un in charge of the armed forces. The other two are the defense minister and the chief of the general staff, according to Lankov.

"Their duties are sort of delineated, but they have a great deal of overlap. Altogether, they control the military," Lankov told CNN.
The General Political Bureau is in charge of making sure the armed forces were properly indoctrinated and educated in communist teachings, North Korea's state ideology of Juche, and the life and teachings of the Kim family, among other things.

Political commissars are assigned to various branches of the military to ensure it is ideologically sound. GPB members can overrule higher-ranked military officials and its most senior members are granted body guards and special privileges, according to Michael Madden, an analyst who runs the North Korea Leadership Watch project.

"It's one of the most powerful entities in North Korea," Madden told CNN....

Onward and upward,
airforce

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South Korea has a secret weapon if North Korea starts a war. An Inchon II landing? How do you say "semper fi" in Korean?

quote:
In modern Korea’s relatively short history, amphibious warfare has played a key and pivotal role. The United Nations essentially liberated South Korea from invasion with a single amphibious stroke, and the country has maintained a large and powerful Marine Corps ever since. Now, a new generation of South Korean amphibious naval forces means the country can ponder taking the offensive during wartime, not only blunting an invasion but upending the Kim family’s dynastic hold on North Korea.

Korea’s peninsular nature means that the ocean is never far away from residents of both countries. It also means that armies fighting on the peninsula, friendly or not, run lines of communication and supply that are constantly in danger of being severed from the sea. Gen. Douglas MacArthur, well aware that the invading Korean People’s Army was reliant on increasingly tenuous supply lines as it inched south, planned and oversaw a successful amphibious assault at the port of Inchon. The result was an abrupt reversal of fortune for a KPA on the brink of victory, with the shattered remnants of Kim Il-sung’s army racing north to avoid entrapment and annihilation.

Korea, just 160 miles wide and mountainous, doesn’t leave much room for maneuver—that is, unless you count the coastline: the North and South have more than three thousand miles of coastline combined. In any future Korean war, amphibious operations will help avoid costly wars of attrition, avoiding force-on-force fights to instead focus force on an enemy’s center of gravity—like Seoul or Pyongyang.

Under the mentorship of the U.S. Marine Corps, South Korea has maintained one of the largest marine forces in the world. As one USMC colonel put it during the Vietnam War, which saw a brigade’s worth of South Korean marines (and their U.S.-trained officers) sent to Southeast Asia, “We taught them everything we know, and now they know it better than us.” Today, the Republic of Korea Marine Corps (ROKMC) consists of twenty-nine thousand marines organized into two divisions and a brigade.

In past years, the ROKMC has operated as a theater reserve, capable of rapidly reinforcing areas where invading North Korean forces might stage a breakthrough. This could be accomplished by moving troops over land, but it could also be done by sea: in 1975, the ROK Navy had twenty landing ships, including eight tank landing ships, and sixty other amphibious craft. If necessary, the ROKMC could stage its own, smaller-scale version of Inchon, though staging an attack into North Korea was not yet feasible.

After the end of the Cold War and the abandonment of North Korea by its Soviet ally, contingency plans involving the ROKMC began taking a more audacious tone. OPLAN 5027-94, one of the Pentagon’s contingency plans for the Korean Peninsula, envisioned a U.S. and South Korean amphibious landing at Wonsan to make an end-run on Pyongyang. The ROKMC would be used not just to defend South Korea, but to destroy the North Korean government.

North Korea’s development of nuclear weapons has changed the rules of war. No longer can U.S. and South Korean forces wear down their KPA counterparts with firepower, waiting for the ill-supplied, ill-fed and ill-equipped army to disintegrate under the hammer blows of U.S. air power. Now forces must stay mobile, to avoid tactical nuclear strikes, and seek a rapid capitulation of the North Korean government before it can authorize the use of nuclear weapons. A future war on the Korean Peninsula will be a race against time.

This new strategy requires even more of the ROKMC. The new plan is to ROK marine and naval forces to directly invade Pyongyang from the sea, killing or capturing the regime’s leadership before it can use nukes. Towards this end, the Marine Corps has established a new brigade-sized unit code-named “Spartan 3000,” whose mission is the destruction of “key military facilities in the North’s rear during contingencies.” This almost certainly sounds like operations in and around Pyongyang. The brigade will be able to deploy on just a day’s notice from its base at Pohang, far from the demilitarized zone.

Onward and upward,
airforce

[ 11-24-2017, 08:26 PM: Message edited by: airforce ]

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Huskerpatriot
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I know this one USMC retired man who spent quite a few years in South Korea. In his opinion, their ROK counterparts a very "bad ass" and he would never doubt their abilities to carry out any task they were given.

--------------------
"Government at its best is a necessary evil, and at it’s worst, an intolerable one."
 Thomas Paine (from "Common Sense" 1776)

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airforce
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Their Army is no slouch either. I've had several folks tell me the average ROK soldier is at least as well trained as ours.

Link fixed.

Onward and upward,
airforce

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They have been upgrading their equipment for decades, with an eye towards domestic production, to not only keep their defenses dollars circulating in country, but to create more high tech and heavy industry jobs. Much of their equipment is based on our stuff, and in some cases improvements on it.

--------------------
"Government at its best is a necessary evil, and at it’s worst, an intolerable one."
 Thomas Paine (from "Common Sense" 1776)

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airforce
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North Korea has just launched an apparent ICBM, that flew to an altitude of 2800 miles. I'm not sure what that means in terms of ballistics, but it appears to be pretty close to hitting the U.S. mainland.

Onward and upward,
airforce

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ConSigCor
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How A North Korean Electromagnetic Pulse Attack Could Kill Millions And Turn America Into A Post-Apocalyptic Wasteland

North Korea can now reach New York and Washington DC

Michael Snyder | Economic Collapse - November 29, 2017

This is why North Korea’s test of an intercontinental ballistic missile is so important.

North Korea had test fired a total of 22 missiles so far this year, but this latest one showed that nobody on the globe is out of their reach. In fact, General Mattis is now admitting that “North Korea can basically threaten everywhere in the world”, and that includes the entire continental United States. In addition to hitting individual cities with nukes, there is also the possibility that someday North Korea could try to take down the entire country with an EMP attack. If the North Koreans detonated a single nuclear warhead several hundred miles above the center of the country, it would destroy the power grid and fry electronics from coast to coast.

I would like you to think about what that would mean for a few moments. Suddenly there would be no power at home, at work or at school. Since nearly all of our vehicles rely on computerized systems, you wouldn’t be able to go anywhere and nobody would be able to get to you. And you wouldn’t be able to contact anyone because all phones would be dead. Basically, pretty much everything electronic would be dead. I am talking about computers, televisions, GPS devices, ATMs, heating and cooling systems, refrigerators, credit card readers, gas pumps, cash registers, hospital equipment, traffic lights, etc.

For the first couple of days life would continue somewhat normally, but then people would soon start to realize that the power isn’t coming back on and panic would begin to erupt.

The intercontinental ballistic missile that North Korea just launched traveled almost 1,000 kilometers and reached a maximum altitude of 4,500 kilometers. We have been told for decades that this would never be allowed to happen, but now it has happened…

This is concerning for one big reason: according to General Mattis, the North Korean ICBM “went higher, frankly, than any previous” and “North Korea can basically threaten everywhere in the world.” This was confirmed by North Korea missile analyst, Shea Cotton, who cited Allthingsnuclear author David Wright, and who told the BBC that the initial estimates of the ICBM test mean that North Korea can now reach New York and Washington DC.

If we had been working hard to develop our anti-missile technology all these years, this wouldn’t be a problem.

But at this point we are way behind the Russians in this regard, and there is a very real possibility that a missile launched by the North Koreans could make it through the very limited anti-missile defenses that we do have.

Once upon a time, discussions about a North Korean EMP threat were mostly hypothetical, but now that has completely changed. North Korea has clearly demonstrated that they are able to deliver such an attack, and last September Kim Jong Un publicly admitted that North Korea intended to develop this capability…

But most reporters missed a key threat that appeared at the bottom of Kim’s public statement, when he bragged that North Korea had harnessed “a multi-functional thermonuclear nuke with great destructive power which can be detonated at high altitudes for super-powerful EMP (electromagnetic pulse) attack according to strategic goals.”

So now we know. Launching an electromagnetic pulse attacks against its enemies is one of North Korea’s strategic goals. And for North Korea, the United States is the top enemy.

And like I said earlier, all it would take would be a single well placed nuclear detonation to fry electronics from coast to coast. The following comes from the Daily Mail…

Theoretically, a sufficiently powerful bomb detonated at an altitude of 249 miles would wipe out all electronics in the US, save the southernmost top of Florida and the easternmost states – as well as affecting Canada and Mexico.

Without power, nothing would get distributed. That means that very rapidly there would be no food, no water and no medicine available in your community. An article posted by Fox News this week used the term “post-apocalyptic” to describe what we would be facing…

It all starts to sound very post-apocalyptic when you realize this means no lights or other electric-powered devices in homes and businesses, no water filtration, no regional food hubs, no transportation grid – none of the things we take for granted in modern civilization.

Like I stated earlier, things would be relatively fine for a few days, but then once everyone realizes that the power isn’t coming back on there would be chaos on a scale unlike anything we have ever seen before. The following comes from an article by Mac Slavo…

The first 24 – 48 hours after such an occurrence will lead to confusion among the general population as traditional news acquisition sources like television, radio and cell phone networks will be non-functional.

Within a matter of days, once people realize the power might not be coming back on and grocery store shelves start emptying, the entire system will begin to delve into chaos.

Within 30 days a mass die off will have begun as food supplies dwindle, looters and gangs turn to violent extremes, medicine can’t be restocked and water pump stations fail.

So what kind of a “mass die off” would we be talking about?

Well, some of the top experts in the field believe that “up to 90 percent of all Americans” could end up dead if the power outage lasted long enough…

William Graham, chairman of the former EMP commission and its former chief of staff, Peter Vincent Pry, warned the hearing that such an attack could “shut down the US electric power grid for an indefinite period, leading to the death within a year of up to 90 percent of all Americans.“

Others believe that the figure would be lower, but pretty much everyone agrees that the death toll would be in the millions.

This is one of our greatest strategic vulnerabilities, and our power grid could be hardened against an EMP attack for just a few billion dollars. This is something that I am pushing very hard for, but right now it is just not a priority for our leaders in Washington.

In fact, they have actually pulled funding from the commission that was looking into the EMP threat…

On Sept. 30, the Congressional Commission to Assess the Threat of Electromagnetic Pulse to the United States of America shut its doors after a failure to secure funding from Congress.

Sometimes I find it difficult to come up with the words to describe how incredibly foolish Congress is being.

An EMP attack is a greater threat than ever before, and yet Congress didn’t even want to come up with a little bit of funding for the commission that was working on a plan to protect us.

This is yet another example that shows that we need new leadership on Capitol Hill, because right now the people that we have “representing” us in Washington seem to be completely and utterly clueless about almost everything.

--------------------
"The time for war has not yet come, but it will come and that soon, and when it does come, my advice is to draw the sword and throw away the scabbard." Gen. T.J. Jackson, March 1861

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N.Korea says "breakthrough" puts U.S. mainland within range of nuclear weapons

Nov 29,2017

* Kim Jong Un declares North Korea a nuclear power
* New Hwasong-15 missile can reach all U.S. - N.Korea
* Missile lands in Japan exclusive economic zone
* Russia and China both express concern
For multimedia coverage of North Korea https://www.reuters.com/north-korea/

By Christine Kim and Phil Stewart

Source: Thomson Reuters Foundation News

SEOUL/WASHINGTON, Nov 29 (Reuters) - North Korea said it successfully tested a new intercontinental ballistic missile on Wednesday in a "breakthrough" that puts the U.S. mainland within range of its nuclear weapons whose warheads could withstand re-entry to the Earth's atmosphere.

North Korea's first missile test since mid-September came a week after U.S. President Donald Trump put North Korea back on a U.S. list of countries it says support terrorism, allowing it to impose more sanctions.

North Korea, which also conducted its sixth and largest nuclear test in September, has tested dozens of ballistic missiles under its leader, Kim Jong Un, in defiance of international sanctions. The latest was the highest and longest any North Korean missile had flown, landing in the sea near Japan.

North Korea said the new missile reached an altitude of about 4,475 km (2,780 miles) - more than 10 times the height of the International Space Station - and flew 950 km (590 miles) during its 53-minute flight.

"After watching the successful launch of the new type ICBM Hwasong-15, Kim Jong Un declared with pride that now we have finally realized the great historic cause of completing the state nuclear force, the cause of building a rocket power," according to a statement read by a television presenter.

State media said the missile was launched from a newly developed vehicle and that the warhead could withstand the pressure of re-entering the atmosphere.

Kim personally guided the missile test and said the new launcher was "impeccable", state media said. He described the new vehicle as a "breakthrough".

North Korea also described itself as a "responsible nuclear power", saying its strategic weapons were developed to defend itself from "the U.S. imperialists' nuclear blackmail policy and nuclear threat".

The U.N. Security Council was scheduled to meet on Wednesday to discuss the launch.

Many nuclear experts say the North has yet to prove it has mastered all technical hurdles, including the ability to deliver a heavy nuclear warhead reliably atop an ICBM, but it was likely that it soon would.

"We don't have to like it, but we're going to have to learn to live with North Korea's ability to target the United States with nuclear weapons," said Jeffrey Lewis, head of the East Asia Nonproliferation Program at the Middlebury Institute of Strategic Studies.

'THREATEN EVERYWHERE'

U.S., Japanese and South Korean officials all agreed the missile, which landed within Japan's exclusive economic zone, was likely an ICBM. The test did not pose a threat to the United States, its territories or allies, the Pentagon said.

"It went higher, frankly, than any previous shot they've taken, a research and development effort on their part to continue building ballistic missiles that can threaten everywhere in the world, basically," U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis told reporters at the White House.

Trump spoke by phone with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and South Korean President Moon Jae-In, with all three reaffirming their commitment to combat the North Korean threat.

"It is a situation that we will handle," Trump told reporters.

Trump, who was briefed on the missile while it was in flight, said it did not change his administration's approach to North Korea, which has included new curbs to hurt trade between China and North Korea.

Abe and Moon, in a separate telephone call, said they would "no longer tolerate" North Korea's increasing threats and would tighten sanctions, the South's presidential office said.

ALL OPTIONS

Washington has said repeatedly that all options, including military ones, are on the table in dealing with North Korea while stressing its desire for a peaceful solution.

"Diplomatic options remain viable and open, for now," U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said.

Other than enforcing existing U.N. sanctions, "the international community must take additional measures to enhance maritime security, including the right to interdict maritime traffic" travelling to North Korea, Tillerson said in a statement.

U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres strongly condemned the launch.

"This is a clear violation of Security Council resolutions and shows complete disregard for the united view of the international community," his spokesman said in a statement.

China, North Korea's lone major ally, expressed "grave concern" at the test, while calling for all sides to act cautiously.

In Moscow, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov also urged all sides to stay calm, saying this was necessary to avoid a worst-case scenario on the Korean peninsula.

U.S. EAST COAST IN RANGE?

The new Hwasong-15, named after the planet Mars, was a more advanced version of an ICBM tested twice in July, North Korea said. It was designed to carry a "super-large heavy warhead".

Based on its trajectory and distance, the missile would have a range of more than 13,000 km (8,100 miles) - more than enough to reach Washington D.C. and the rest of the United States, the U.S.-based Union of Concerned Scientists said.

However, it was unclear how heavy a payload the missile was carrying, and it was uncertain if it could carry a large nuclear warhead that far, the nonprofit science advocacy group added.

Minutes after the North fired the missile, South Korea's military said it conducted a missile-firing test in response.

Moon said the launch had been anticipated. There was no choice but for countries to keep applying pressure, he added.

"The situation could get out of control if North Korea perfects its ICBM technology," Moon said after a national security council meeting.

"North Korea shouldn't miscalculate the situation and threaten South Korea with a nuclear weapon, which could elicit a possible pre-emptive strike by the United States."

The test comes less than three months before South Korea hosts the Winter Olympics at a resort just 80 km (50 miles) from the heavily fortified border with the North.

North Korea has said its weapons programmes are a necessary defence against U.S. plans to invade. The United States, which has 28,500 troops in South Korea as a legacy of the 1950-53 Korean war, denies any such intention.

Last week, North Korea denounced Trump's decision to relist it as a state sponsor of terrorism, calling it a "serious provocation and violent infringement".

Trump has traded insults and threats with Kim and warned in September that the United States would have no choice but to "totally destroy" North Korea if forced to defend itself or its allies.

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"The time for war has not yet come, but it will come and that soon, and when it does come, my advice is to draw the sword and throw away the scabbard." Gen. T.J. Jackson, March 1861

Posts: 15546 | From: A 059 Btn 16 FF MSC | Registered: Oct 2001  | Report this post to a Moderator
ConSigCor
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‘Time to Start Moving’ U.S. Military Families Out of South Korea

Republican senator says U.S. “getting close to military conflict” with North Korea

Mikael Thalen | Infowars.com - December 4, 2017

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) on Sunday argued that it’s time to begin moving the families of U.S. military personnel out of South Korea as tensions over North Korea continue to escalate.

During an interview on CBS’s “Face the Nation,” the Republican senator stated he would urge the Pentagon to stop sending military spouses and children to the region.

“South Korea should be an unaccompanied tour. It’s crazy to send spouses and children to South Korea, given the provocation of North Korea,” Graham said. “So I want them to stop sending dependents. And I think it’s now time to start moving American dependents out of South Korea.”

Graham warned the U.S. was “getting close to a military conflict” following Pyongyang’s test Wednesday of a new intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).

Dubbed the Hwasong-15, the new nuclear-capable ICBM reached an altitude of roughly 4,475 km (2,780 miles) and traveled 950 km (590 miles) during its 53-minute flight – North Korea’s most successful missile test to date.

“We’re getting close to a military conflict because North Korea’s marching toward marrying up the technology of an ICBM with a nuclear weapon on top that cannot only get to America but deliver the weapon. We’re running out of time,” Graham said Sunday.

Although the senator claimed the Trump administration’s policy is “to deny North Korea the capability” to strike the U.S. with a nuclear-tipped missile, experts say the communist regime has almost certainly passed that threshold.

According to Michael Elleman, an IISS Senior Fellow for Missile Defence, analysis of photos and videos of the Hwasong-15 suggests Pyongyang can strike any location on the U.S. mainland with a nuclear payload.

“[I]t now appears that the Hwasong-15 can deliver a 1,000-kg payload to any point on the US mainland,” Elleman writes at 38 North. “North Korea has almost certainly developed a nuclear warhead that weighs less than 700 kg, if not one considerably lighter.”

Graham also threatened a “serious response” to any new underground nuclear tests and claimed preemptive war was fast becoming a potential reality.

“It now means preemptive war as a last resort,” the senator said. That is, preemption is becoming more likely as their technology matures.”

“Every missile test, every underground test of a nuclear weapon means the marriage [of ICBMs with nuclear warheads] is more likely. I think we’re really running out of time. The Chinese are trying, but ineffectively.”

U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis warned earlier this year that a preemptive war would likely result in “the worst kind of fighting in most people’s lifetimes.”

On Monday the U.S. and South Korea conducted large-scale air force drills with 230 aircraft simulating strikes on North Korean nuclear and missile testing sites.

Pyongyang responded by saying the war games were bringing the Korean Peninsula “to the brink of nuclear war” before threatening to “seriously consider” countermeasures against the exercise.

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"The time for war has not yet come, but it will come and that soon, and when it does come, my advice is to draw the sword and throw away the scabbard." Gen. T.J. Jackson, March 1861

Posts: 15546 | From: A 059 Btn 16 FF MSC | Registered: Oct 2001  | Report this post to a Moderator
airforce
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I agree that South Korea should be an unaccompanied tour - and back in my day it was. But when Lindsey Graham's mouth is moving, I tend not to pay too much attention.

Onward and upward,
airforce

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ConSigCor
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Ninety-nine percent of the time Graham is a blithering idiot. But, in this case I agree. If I was stationed over there I wouldn't want any of my family near that place.

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"The time for war has not yet come, but it will come and that soon, and when it does come, my advice is to draw the sword and throw away the scabbard." Gen. T.J. Jackson, March 1861

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Huskerpatriot
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They say a stopped watch is right twice a day...

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"Government at its best is a necessary evil, and at it’s worst, an intolerable one."
 Thomas Paine (from "Common Sense" 1776)

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airforce
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I guess the question to ask is, how do we evacuate all those noncombatants without throwing all of South Korea into a panic, thinking that war is imminent?

Onward and upward,
airforce

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Hawk45
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quote:
Originally posted by airforce:
I guess the question to ask is, how do we evacuate all those noncombatants without throwing all of South Korea into a panic, thinking that war is imminent?

Onward and upward,
airforce

You fly them out of the Air Force bases after shutting them totally off from ANY civilians. They understand 'alerts'. Main thing is keeping it from the N. Koreans as they have LOTS of spies in the south already. Also the US press will put it out on MSNBC, CNN and the rest of the Communists news agencies in the US just as soon as the airlines start moving the dependents if they don't use the C-5a'a and C-17's out of Hawaii.

The Dependents used to have drills to prepare for things like this. I remember when Mom and I kept our little bug out bag ready at all times. It was basically two days of clothes and money for both of us in one LITTLE bag.

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airforce
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How long do you think it would take to figure it out? The schools are suddenly empty, there's no one in the commissary anymore, the American neighbors all moved out, and the economy around military bases suddenly takes a nosedive. Trust me, people will figure it out in about five minutes.

Yeah, I remember those noncombatant evacuation drills too. It seems to me they were all based on two weeks advance notice of a Soviet invasion into Western Europe. They certainly tried their best to make them realistic, but...

Onward and upward,
airforce

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ConSigCor
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Remember that last ditch evac from Nam?

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"The time for war has not yet come, but it will come and that soon, and when it does come, my advice is to draw the sword and throw away the scabbard." Gen. T.J. Jackson, March 1861

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airforce
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Who can forget. Anyone else remember how Operation Babylift ended?

Onward and upward,
airforce

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The Answer
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The hard bet is that 1) while evil, Kim is not irrational, 2) Kim likes his waterslides and harems, and 3) Kim will not commit suicide.

If Kim strikes SK or Japan or US, it will be the last thing he did. Sure, tons of innocents dead. But Kim and his fiefdom dies too.

I think Kim is bluffing. Worst case scenario IMO is not a direct strike nuke icbm but a detonation in the magnetosphere to EMP North America. Would do more lasting damage. Still suicide.

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Semper Vigilantes, Numquam Exspectantes

Always Watching, Never Waiting

Posts: 606 | From: Somewhere in these blue ridged mountains | Registered: Apr 2009  | Report this post to a Moderator
airforce
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I think Kim fears losing power more than he fears death. A rational man doesn't execute people by aintiarcraft artillery. But a person who will do anything to maintain power, he might.

His people are starving, and he spends his country's limited resources on his military. I think, if he had a choice between losing his power or starting a war, he'll choose war - even one he can't win.

And who knows, maybe he thinks he really can win. I don't think too many of his advisors are brave enough to tell him otherwise.

Onward and upward,
airforce

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The Answer
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With respect to antiaircraft execution, I believe it is a message. To the outside: "we are dangerous". So too the tests.

How can one maintain power if dead?

I do not think Kim believes he can survive the true anger of the US.

I think Kim can only win the peace, and he knows this.

Otherwise, what is he waiting for?

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Semper Vigilantes, Numquam Exspectantes

Always Watching, Never Waiting

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ConSigCor
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Remember Adolf's attitude.

"If I'm going down, I'm taking Duetchland with me."

Kim appears to be of a similar mindset. Plus both think they have a wunderwaffen that will give them the ultimate victory.

An emp strike is definitely a possibility as is a bio weapon. NK is pretty far along in that area.

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"The time for war has not yet come, but it will come and that soon, and when it does come, my advice is to draw the sword and throw away the scabbard." Gen. T.J. Jackson, March 1861

Posts: 15546 | From: A 059 Btn 16 FF MSC | Registered: Oct 2001  | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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