The United States isn’t any stranger to international conflict. In fact, we’ve got a pretty good record for being on the winning side of large scale wars, thanks to a patented blend of diplomacy, an incredible elite fighting force, and a population that unites in times of turmoil and crisis. This information seems to be lost on the North Korean dictator however, as Kim Jong-un hands out threats to the United States and every country that might rally against him.
It should be noted that the threats and talks of war from North Korea against the United States have been unprovoked and seem to stem from an inner need to gain power by their petulant leader. Kim Jong-un comes from a ruling family that has a long-standing beef with their neighbors, South Korea. It has always been their fondest wish to reunite the two countries, under the Jong-un family reign of course.
Because of that well-known wish, America isn’t the only one bracing for war with the tiny dictatorship. South Korea is getting armed and ready, and they’ve got a specific mission; they want to cut the head off the beast, literally. The Independent reports about South Korea’s elite force, trained to deal with Kim Jong-un, should the opportunity arise:
“The last time South Korea is known to have plotted to assassinate the North Korean leadership, nothing went as planned.
Now, as Kim’s grandson, Kim Jong-un, accelerates his nuclear missile programme, South Korea is again targeting the North’s leadership. A day after North Korea conducted its sixth — and by far most powerful — nuclear test this month, the South Korean defence minister, Song Young-moo, told lawmakers in Seoul that a special forces brigade defence officials described as a “decapitation unit” would be established by the end of the year.
The unit has not been assigned to literally decapitate North Korean leaders. But that is clearly the menacing message South Korea is trying to send.
Defence officials said the unit could conduct cross-border raids with retooled helicopters and transport planes that could penetrate North Korea at night.”
This might be a relatively new threat for the United States to deal with, but South Korea has had the North Koreans in their face and making threats for quite some time. While it’s unfortunate for us that we’re being drawn into the issue, it’s probably seen as a great thing to the South Koreans that some attention is finally on the bullies that lie just to the north of them.
While it is unconventional for South Korea to be telegraphing their intentions, even that is a strategic move on the part of the threatened country:
Rarely does a government announce a strategy to assassinate a head of state, but South Korea wants to keep the North on edge and nervous about the consequences of further developing its nuclear arsenal. At the same time, the South’s increasingly aggressive posture is meant to help push North Korea into accepting President Moon Jae-in’s offer of talks.
While Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has said the United States does not seek leadership change in North Korea, and the South Koreans say the new military tactics are meant to offset the North Korean threat, the capabilities they are building could be used pre-emptively.
The U.S. was pulled into this looming conflict because of the nuclear development and growing pointed threats from Jong-un. That being said, if this were to bloom into a full on world war, our involvement would be inevitable. The more likely end to this, considering the dire straits that the North Koreans are in, is that they’ll make one flailing effort to attack one of the allied countries, and be literally shot down on the spot.
It’s sad that it might have to come to that, but if they want to start a war, we are bound to have to finish it for them. The silver lining in all of that being that their people might finally be free if Kim Jong-un is successfully taken out of the picture.
More from our source about South Korea’s growing military efforts in the face of the North Korean threat:
Moon has vowed to expand the defence budget to 2.9 percent of South Korea’s gross domestic product during his term, from 2.4 percent, or $35.4 billion, as of this year. For next year, his government has proposed a budget of $38.1 billion, nearly $12 billion of it for weapons to defend against North Korea.
In a Twitter post last Tuesday, Trump said, “I am allowing Japan & South Korea to buy a substantially increased amount of highly sophisticated military equipment from the United States.”
South Korea has now introduced three arms-buildup programmes — Kill Chain; the Korea Air and Missile Defence programme; and the Korea Massive Punishment and Retaliation initiative, which includes the decapitation unit.
Under the Kill Chain programme, South Korea aims to detect impending missile attacks from North Korea and launch pre-emptive strikes.
North Korea hides missiles in its many underground tunnels. Switching to solid fuel has made some of its missiles easier to transport and faster to launch. In recent years, North Korea also has flight-tested missiles from submarines, which are tougher to detect.
And the potential consequences of accurate detection are huge.
Miscalculation could prompt an unwarranted pre-emptive strike, which could start a regional nuclear war. Speaking to a US congressional hearing in June, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Joseph F. Dunford Jr, said, “We will see casualties, unlike anything we’ve seen in 60 or 70 years.”
Intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities are crucial, said Daniel A. Pinkston, a defence expert at the Seoul campus of Troy University. Without those capabilities, “they would be ‘shooting blind’ because the missile units could not identify the targets,” he added.
[H/T: The Independent]
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