An act of war: North Korea

On America’s 230th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence, the Associated Press is reporting that North Korea is prepared to strike with an “annihilating” nuclear assault, if the United States pre-emptively attacks North Korea’s long-range Taepoding-2 missile, which, according to satellite images, is allegedly armed and primed for launch.

This sort of rhetoric cannot be tolerated.

The preceding threat elucidates blatant intimidation, divulging the precariousness and instability of a rogue nation dominated by the sinister red-fist of its volatile tyrant. North Korea presents an imminent danger, more so than ever before, to the security and welfare of the country.

With North Korea recently abandoning the six-party talk system, America must exhaust all diplomatic action swiftly and unapologetically, beginning with rigorous economic sanctions and fiscal-suffocation, aimed to coerce the oppressive absolutist into military and monetary submission. Secondly, considering the ambiguous agenda of the unstable country, the State Department must convene with surrounding nations, such as Japan and China, to discuss potential military options.

However, military ramifications should be scrupulously evaluated, as America’s ally, South Korea, a comparatively feeble border state, has a checkered past with North Korea. If military action was exploited, North Korea would undoubtedly retaliate by attacking South Korea, thus conceding substantial military leverage to a conniving dictator with nuclear capability.

Advocating a rigid posture, the State Department reassured the America people that “the U.S. would respond…by taking the necessary measures to protect ourselves,” according to the A.P—an encouraging first step on this seemingly disheartening journey.

Posted by Alex Fitzsimmons at July 4, 2006 2:52 PM
Comments
Comment #164766

Ok I agree. But why did yoiu repeat thwe first paragraph twice

Posted by: Jeff at July 4, 2006 3:04 PM
Comment #164767

Jeff:

I was having some formatting issues with Movable Type, but it should be ok now.

Posted by: Alex Fitzsimmons at July 4, 2006 3:11 PM
Comment #164770

The DPRK is always full of this hot air rhetoric. How do they think they can deliver a strike with an “annihilating” nuclear assault? Their Taepoding-2 is the only missile “capable of striking the US” and they have yet to test it.

Posted by: europheus at July 4, 2006 3:28 PM
Comment #164772

Yep. Only now that we’ve said so many treaties don’t apply to us why would N. Korea believe they apply to them?

Posted by: Max at July 4, 2006 3:32 PM
Comment #164773

Btw,

Is Osama still a threat or what?

http://edition.cnn.com/2006/US/07/04/cia.binladen.ap/

Posted by: Max at July 4, 2006 3:34 PM
Comment #164774
The DPRK is always full of this hot air rhetoric. How do they think they can deliver a strike with an “annihilating” nuclear assault? Their Taepoding-2 is the only missile “capable of striking the US” and they have yet to test it.

Europheus:

It’s been known for a while that N. Korea has nukes, they just haven’t been motivated to use them (probably b/c we could blow their little country to kathmandu).

N. Korea has the capability, they just don’t have the motivation right now…

Posted by: Alex Fitzsimmons at July 4, 2006 3:47 PM
Comment #164776

What does nukes mean? Does it mean long range intercontinental missiles armed with a nuclear war head? If that’s true then whoever’s on watch should be poised to ‘push the button’
Somehow there’s absent from the atmosphere a sense of urgency about this matter that contradicts the serious nature of this discussion. What’s really going on?

Posted by: john at July 4, 2006 4:02 PM
Comment #164779

I have no objections to us handling the situation, but the rhetoric is least of our concerns. If we hit them, it will not be be over poorly chosen words, it will be because they were stupid enough to pose a real threat to us. Anything else is a waste of our time and resources.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 4, 2006 4:31 PM
Comment #164782

John, NUKE: Nuclear Using Korean Empire Sociopaths.

Posted by: Dick at July 4, 2006 4:46 PM
Comment #164786

I dont get this North Korea is goingto test a missle, dont they have the right as sovergn nation to protect them selves or is just those with the weapons al ready who get to dictate what they can have. This adminstration left the bargaining tablr and left negotiona.tion to others. I want to know how many of you conservitive agree with Gw Bushs economical policys and that the invasion of Iraq was a fight on global terroist if you do I have some Arizona beach front to sell you. AT.R republican

Posted by: Erl a T.R.Republican at July 4, 2006 5:01 PM
Comment #164792

N. Korea has all the right in the world to test their missles. We test missles almost every day. The thing is where are they going to point that missle and what kind of warhead is on it. A dummy war head or Nuclear warhead. Are missles are tested and pointed at an uninhabited sand dunes in the middle of the ocean or just left to fall into the ocean with dummy warheads on them.

Posted by: RAK at July 4, 2006 5:37 PM
Comment #164801

Alex, whoa, there bud! Rhetoric never killed anyone. Bombs and bullets do that. N. Korea hasn’t launched any weapons at us. Let them rhetoric all they want. We can rhetoric right back with the best of them.

But, please don’t be so quick to forget the lesson of Viet Nam and Iraq. Take out Kim Jung Il, yes, if we can, covertly. But, don’t let him dictate our responses. That is playing right into his game by his rules. There is only so far he can go without assuring his own demise.

Think about it, before dancing to Kim’s tune.

Posted by: David R. Remer at July 4, 2006 6:23 PM
Comment #164802


It appears that their missile test was a failure.

Posted by: europheus at July 4, 2006 6:29 PM
Comment #164806

The long range missile failed in mid-flight. If they actually have nukes, how likely are the nukes to function without a test? The North Koreans can talk all they want. Rhetoric is not war, and the policy remains essentially the same as it was under Clinton; keep them in their bottle.

Posted by: phx8 at July 4, 2006 6:41 PM
Comment #164809

If North Korea can’t be successful testing these things, how can they be successful at a counter attack, who will they attack first? The Sea of Japan?

Posted by: George at July 4, 2006 7:07 PM
Comment #164812

David:

I’m not suggesting we send twenty legions of ships over to N Korea and blow their brians out…that would be irresponsible. However, you nor I actually know for sure what N Korea is capable of.

Sure, we hear about the failed missiles today, but that’s just one try. They could have more missiles capable of going 50x the distance of those two failed missiles…or they could not…we just don’t know.

So, to be safe, I think we need to take a strong stance and let N Korea know that this kind of intimidation will not be tolerated.

Rhetoric may only be rhetoric, but rhetoric can all too easily evolve into action…and we can’t let that happen.

Posted by: Alex Fitzsimmons at July 4, 2006 7:29 PM
Comment #164815

Alex,

“So, to be safe, I think we need to take a strong stance and let N Korea know that this kind of intimidation will not be tolerated.

Rhetoric may only be rhetoric, but rhetoric can all too easily evolve into action…and we can’t let that happen.”

There are three different countries we support that can possibly bear the brunt of it if we make a mistake, and America isn’t one of them.
The dumbest thing to do would be to let this guy get under our collective skin.
Let our alphabet soup (CIA, NSA, et al.) guys do their thing, and above all let’s take our time on this one, and be sure we know what we are doing.

Isn’t that why they call it intelligence?

Posted by: Rocky at July 4, 2006 8:04 PM
Comment #164819

Yes, Alex, we can. Why? Because we are not the N. Koreans. Our morality, ethics, and philosophy are far better than that, provided we don’t let fearful men and women make our decisions for us.

Far more important than our knowing what they are capable of, is Kim Jung Il knowing what we are capable of. He may actually need to detonate a nuclear test weapon to fully comprehend what we are capable of, many times over.

Dictators don’t rise to power only to beg other nations to blow them away as a threat. Kim Jung Il is trying to secure his reign from overthrow by American invasion. He likely believes achieving nuclear missile capability will bring the peace of mutually assured destruction which allowed the U.S. and the USSR to survive each other’s boast and bluster. And he would not be illogical to think that.

War is the most inefficient and costly method of toppling regimes. As costly as the Cold War was, actually engaging the USSR in actual war would have been far, far costlier.

I agree that the sternest of warnings must be issued to Kim Jung Il, that developing nuclear weapons capable of reaching the U.S. will not be in his best interest, nor healthy for his regime. But before making such claims, we had bloody well better be able to back it up to the hilt. And to do that, we need to get out of Iraq.

That is the opportunity cost of Iraq. And Iraq is the reason Kim Jung Il, believes he is going to get away with this. Iraq was an enormous foreign policy blunder emboldening our enemies and weakening drastically our strategic options and capabilities toward those who actually can potentially harm our nation.

The greatest absence of logic came from Donald Rumsfeld, who simultaneously, designed a rapid strike and withdraw military design, and promoted a nation building objective in Iraq. The two are diametrically opposed. Pres. Bush, appears to not have recognized the absence of logic, and followed both plans. Now, we are ill equipped to back up threats toward Iran or N. Korea, which is why both those countries are having their way with us.

Posted by: David R. Remer at July 4, 2006 8:49 PM
Comment #164827

Agreed, keep them in a bottle, but don’t sell or give them technology like mr. Bill did. And for Gods sake, somebody put a leash on Jimmy Carter!

Posted by: scolex at July 4, 2006 9:48 PM
Comment #164838

If the North Koreans sold missile tech. to Iran, what will they do with a bunch of duds?

Posted by: George at July 4, 2006 11:11 PM
Comment #164844


nutty little nut nut: You left out Iran. Preemptive strikes on all of them at once is the best option. Only then can we make the world safe for the investor class and their lordship over the common man which, of course, is their God given right.

David Remer: Thanks for getting to the bottom of the issue. Kim is scared to death. I think his ability to survive would be better served by keeping his mouth shut. You shouldn’t make a sound when you are trying to sneak past a dragon.

Alex: You say we don’t have the intelligence data to know what North Korea does or does not have. I am sure that the vice president can help us out with that one. He did it for Iraq and he can do it for North Korea.

Posted by: jlw at July 4, 2006 11:25 PM
Comment #164856

North Korea is a threat to the US. As is any other country that would like to see us fall. But how of a threat is the question. Right now I wouldn’t say it’s enough to go to war with them.
If they send one of them missiles our direction then we need to take them out and fast. But them testing a missile isn’t an act of war. If testing missiles was an act of war then we should’ve been at war with Russia a long time ago. Because both them and us committed acts of war during the cold war.

Posted by: Ron Brown at July 5, 2006 12:22 AM
Comment #164859

Alex,

Good post, but a few issues. Number 1, I served in Korea last year and your analysis of them as a “feeble border state” are way off the mark. The South Korean Army is larger than the American Army and nearly as well trained and equipped. I wouldn’t want to fight them and I’m far better equipped and trained than some consrcript from North Korea.

A few other things. Even if North Korea has a nuke, they almost certainly don’t have the ability to make it small enough to fit on the Taipodong 2 missle like the one that failed yesterday. What the North does have is thousands of artillery pieces able to range Seoul, with a population of 10 million which is about 1/4 of the South’s total population. Any war fought in Korea will make what’s going on in Iraq look like a Boy Scout picnic.

North Korea cannot win against South Korea alone, let alone South Korea with the help of the US military. Furthermore, were we to launch a massive aerial attack first, we could probably cripple them with little in the way of losses. I doubt that South Korea will approve of this, not because of any love for North Korea, but because they know Kim’s reign is probably going to end soon. Crippling poverty, starvation, and massive energy sources are all conspiring to make each day of the North Korean governments existence look more and more like a miracle.

When the North falls, the South probably anticipates reunification under the Seoul governement. They would also convienently inherit any nukes of North Korea without having to go through the sanctions etc that make getting them such a pain. That’s probably why the South seems so reluctant to take decisive action against the North. Oh, that and its their country that’s going to get bombed and invaded if things do go wrong.

Posted by: 1LT B at July 5, 2006 12:39 AM
Comment #164869

1 LT B makes some good and valid points, although he fails to mention that the North Korean conscript army he so quickly dismisses is about three times larger than their southern counterparts, fanatical to the point of suicide in their training and well equiped with functional weapons by China and France.
(God bless the frogs, ribbit!) They also have an insane leader who has a chosen successor who is just as nutty as he is. Don’t be so sure that the N. Koreans will just go away when as usaul, the main culprit behind the scenes is China, which desperately wants to be the next world superpower, but knows it can’t be until someone unseats the reigning champs (that us, kids). While american politicians sit back in the hope that the economic and social revolution taking place in china will eventually topple the communist government (sorry, democrats, no perfect models after that!) the militant communist leaders are looking for ways to make themselves more relevant in the 21st century.
In China, it has become a race against time and competing socio political forces. If the communists maintain their crumbling hold, we will eventually need to confront them directly instead of just stomping on their strawman puppets like N. Korea. And that is going to be bad for business, have you looked at the stuff at wal-mart!

Posted by: HardHatHarry at July 5, 2006 2:34 AM
Comment #164870

ALCON,

I made a little typo in my last post. North Korea has no “massive engergy sources.” It does have crippling energy shortages.

Gergle,

While the long range missle failed, the short range ones seem to have worked flawlessly. These missles that fell into the Sea of Japan can just as easily be targeted against Japan or South Korea. You should also remember that North Korea operates its military on the old Soviet model, which emphasized mass. They are also ridiculously heavy with field artillery, and trust me, as a former field artilleryman, the stuff they have can do incredible amounts of damage.

Lenin once said “Quantity has a quality all its own.” In the case of North Korea, he was right. The systems that the US and South Korea use are far more accurate on a piece by piece basis, but the North can mass multiple guns on one target and some of them are going to hit the target. Beyond this, recall that while the North probably doesn’t have a nuke that can fit on a rocket or artillery shell, they probably do have chemical and biological shells capable of reaching Seoul. Again, any attack made with these weapons would most likely result in millions of deaths.

David,

Its important to put the problem of Iraq in perspective. While the Army and Marines are fairly tied up, the Air Force and Navy are not. We could bomb the hell out of the North without much in the way of problems for the Air Force, and the Navy could park carriers to help out without much trouble either. Also, the South Korean Army is no paper tiger either. We would probably not need to invade the North as the South could do so for us.

Posted by: 1LT B at July 5, 2006 2:38 AM
Comment #164876

1LT B, you might be right. But, what if you are not? What if instead of the S. Korea invading N. Korea for us, it is the other way around? What if the S. Koreans are on the defensive? It could easily in a number of ways, go that way. Do we bomb S. Korea because N. Korean troops are there? Suddenly, the whole damn thing becomes potentially unmanageable by the Air Force and Navy alone.

Also, Johnson and Nixon exercised the Air Force and Naval option N. Viet Nam. It did not bring victory. The Air Force/Naval option is indiscriminate, and kills innocents and civilians right along with uniformed enemies. This fact always has a high cost and has protracted wars instead of bringing quick resolution.

It is a mistake for folks to think of war as little more than go kill them, and leave. War is never, ever, simple like that. How wars are conducted play huge roles in hardening the will of our enemies, and can vastly increase recruitment for our enemy’s cause making attrition moot. Wars always spill into other countries as well in many ways from financial and trade, to psychological and sociological impacts.

War, by moral, peace loving people, should ALWAYS be considered a very last resort. And war can NEVER be moral when implemented for reasons other than direct self-defense. That means overt aggressive military action must be taken against a people, before engaging in war can be considered even modestly morally justifiable. Christ’s teachings are very clear on this, as are Buddha’s.

All dictator’s and authoritarian regimes not run by schizophrenics, have their own survival as a fundamental aim and purpose. Kim Jong Il, is not schizophrenic by all accounts. Hence, it is reasonable and rational to presume his missile tests and nuclear development are defensive.

Where N. Korea and its leader runs the huge moral risk of justified invasion, is in its selling of war technologies to terrorists. If the factual and evidenciary case can be made that N. Korea intends to sell its intercontinental ballistic missile and nuclear technology to terrorist organizations, then the world has a duty and obligation to stop him, dead in his tracks, just as the world had a duty and obligation to stop Adolph Hitler dead in his tracks.

But, that evidenciary and factual case, to my knowledge has not yet been made. And if it is made, it needs to be made widely PUBLIC. None of this: “our intelligence tells us…, but, sorry, for national security reasons, we can’t share that intelligenc with the public” bull crap. That is precisely the kind of logic and rationale Kim Jong Il would use with his people.

Posted by: David R. Remer at July 5, 2006 4:33 AM
Comment #164880

HardHatHarry,

1 LT B makes some good and valid points, although he fails to mention that the North Korean conscript army he so quickly dismisses is about three times larger than their southern counterparts, fanatical to the point of suicide in their training and well equiped with functional weapons by China and France.

Uh? France sold arms to North Korea???
Any link to back such claim?

(God bless the frogs, ribbit!)

You’re welcome.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at July 5, 2006 6:37 AM
Comment #164883

David:

I don’t understand your stance. You said earlier in this thread that we should let North Korea “rhetoric all they want. We can rhetoric right back with the best of them.”

You followed that up by advocating that the US should “Take out Kim Jung Il, yes, if we can, covertly.”

Your latest post discusses the morality of war by concluding that “war can NEVER be moral when implemented for reasons other than direct self-defense.”

Wouldn’t the assassination ofthe leader of a sovereign country be an overt act of war?

You suggest that “it is reasonable and rational to presume his (Kim Jong-Il’s) missile tests and nuclear development are defensive.” If so, wouldn’t the assassination that you support be an immoral act? After all, as you say, the “evidenciary and factual case” that NK is selling or planning to sell ICBM and nukes to terrorists is not proven.

What then is your moral basis for killing Kim Jong-Il?

Posted by: joebagodonuts at July 5, 2006 6:56 AM
Comment #164886

“Kim Jong Il, is not schizophrenic by all accounts. Hence, it is reasonable and rational to presume his missile tests and nuclear development are defensive.”

By “schizophrenic,” you mean “crazy” or “out of his mind,” right? If so, then I disagree with you wholeheartedly. Kim Jong Il is a LOON. N. Korea cannot even feed its own people! Relations between the West and N. Korea has always been tenuous, at best. How in the world will sabre-rattling with long-range ballistic missiles help the N. Korean people?

The best defense any nation can have is a self-sustaining economy. This isn’t about “defense”! Kim Jong Il may be so out of touch with reality that he thinks test-firing a few missiles will bring the Western world to its knees before him, but this demonstration has nothing to do with defense.

This is sabre-rattling, pure and simple. I would not go so far as to consider this an act of war, but it does lend support to Bush’s declaration that N. Korea is one nation in an “Axis of Evil.”

The real question is “What do we do about it?” The Libs have done such a good job polarizing the nation in their never-ending quest to “Get Bush” that I seriously doubt the general public would support a military strike, surgical or otherwise. So, I guess we’re in for months of talks involving the United Nations that will probably result in something resembling the Oil for Food program. And we all know what a great job the U.N. did monitoring the Oil for Food program, right?

Hmm. Maybe Kim Jong Il isn’t such a loon after all.

Posted by: crowan at July 5, 2006 7:20 AM
Comment #164890

The logical thing to do would be to post Patriot Missle batteries in Okinawa as they are presently planning to do, and not get over excited.

The Patriots will knock down anything, I am told.

The problem, of course, is if those Patriots do go to Okinawa, where does Murtha send the troops from Iraq? :)

Posted by: sicilianeagle at July 5, 2006 8:25 AM
Comment #164894

crowan,

The best defense any nation can have is a self-sustaining economy.

One may wonder then why the nation that have the best self-sustaining economy of the world is also the nation with the hugest defense budget!?

Doesn’t make any sense. Well, except if its self-sustaining economy is largely based on its defense industry…

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at July 5, 2006 9:30 AM
Comment #164896

SE,

The Patriots will knock down anything, I am told.

Why I’m not suprised you don’t side anymore with the One Percent Doctrine when it come to allied nations (South Korea, Japan) defense against North Korean visible threat(s), but you do when it comes to far less proven (and yet to be visible) threat(s) from Saddam Hussein’s Iraq toward US soil?

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at July 5, 2006 9:36 AM
Comment #164897
So, I guess we’re in for months of talks involving the United Nations that will probably result in something resembling the Oil for Food program. And we all know what a great job the U.N. did monitoring the Oil for Food program, right?

Yes, really, what a disaster our trade embargo was. It successfully kept Sadaam and Iraq from being a danger while giving them the choice to end it all by becoming democratic. It did all this without us having to go to war, have our soldiers die, and without our spending trillions of dollars bankrupting this country. Silly international cooperation and agreements. We’re in a much better place now. The world is sooo much safer and we are so much better able to deal with terrorism.

Posted by: Max at July 5, 2006 9:40 AM
Comment #164907
Yes, really, what a disaster our trade embargo was. It successfully kept Sadaam and Iraq from being a danger while giving them the choice to end it all by becoming democratic. It did all this without us having to go to war, have our soldiers die, and without our spending trillions of dollars bankrupting this country.

Yeah, oh hey and you forgot the millions of innocent Iraqi citizens that were killed, tortured, raped and starved to death during Saddam’s control of the country.

Too bad we couldn’t just ‘stay the course’ and save ourselves a few bucks while we allowed a murdering despot to continue his reign of terror.

Wait, which party were the selfish ones again? I keep getting the two parties confused, they seem so similar…

Posted by: Rhinehold at July 5, 2006 10:31 AM
Comment #164909

Oh, and as for Iraq not being a danger, let’s not forget all of the money going into Iraq that was suppose to be feeding the country during the food for oil program that was re-funneled to support international terrorists (including al Qaeda).

Too bad we only waited, what, 12 years for Saddam to ‘end it all by becoming democratic’, when was this suppose to happen again? In the next few months, about the time Blix was suppose to have been able to say whether or not Iraq had WMD even though he was still being denied access and cooperation right up to the day we invaded?

I love it!

Posted by: Rhinehold at July 5, 2006 10:35 AM
Comment #164913

Most of the posters who are cheering for the defeat of America are still trying to re-live the glory days of the sixties. If you all would recall that the Korean conflict was the kick off of the cold war. Even though most people think the cold war is over with the defeat of the USSR, the Korean problem is a left over from that time. That is why I think it is so funny when a poster here was making the argument that the Cold war was less expensive than actually conducting a war. The war in Korea, Vietnam, Afghanistan are all part of the Cold War where soldiers on both sides died and suffered. Those who think that Iraq is a Quagmire should read history and realize that there are still soldiers in Korea after nearly 50 years. If there is a battle over Korea, it will only be the last stage of the Cold War. What is less funny is the inevitable posting of sanctions on people who are already starving that some of the posters claim is the best solution because it will prevent deaths.
Here are some of the facts those of you on the left have to ignore in order to cheer for the defeat of America:
-Sadam did have weapons of mass destruction in violation of the cease fire aggreement
-Sadam had Terrorist Training Camps which in partnership with Al-queda planned attacks on the US and allied itself with the enemies of America
-The Congress of the US voted to give war powers to the President in order to pursue and eliminate the terrorist organizations that attacked and threathen the US
-The Congress of the US voted and aggreed to give the President the powers to overthrow the Government of the Iraq
-The Congress continues to vote on approve funds for the War in Iraq
-The War in Iraq is successful and will have an end (A lot sooner than the conflict in Korea) where there will be a major country in the middle-east who is friedly to the west. There has been elections to the government and a gradual reduction of US forces on-going.
I say Hurray for America

Posted by: Frankxcid at July 5, 2006 10:50 AM
Comment #164915

The first thing we need to do is take our 37,000 troops out of harms way.

South Korea has been bowing to the North for years, feeding their pitiful population and providing other exonomic aid. Let them cover their own defense. All the while the North has diverted billions into missle and nuclear arms development.

Total cutoff of all aid is next.

Wesley Clark was on Fox this morning saying that we should put a package of “incentives” together to give to the North. Pay the bully and maybe he won’t steal what’s left of your lunch money. What insanity. Give them more money for their military?

Wesley Clark, the new Neville Chamberlain(sp).

Posted by: The Chief at July 5, 2006 10:57 AM
Comment #164919

The best thing to do with Korea is keep and eye on ‘em , but ignore them otherwise, and stop giving them aid of any kind.
Their population is the most brainwashed on the face of the planet.
N.Korea tells their people they are starving because the U.S. sinks their rice ships.

Posted by: d.a.n at July 5, 2006 11:19 AM
Comment #164921

d.a.n.

Their population is the most brainwashed on the face of the planet.

Seems like Frankxcid is challenging such claim…

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at July 5, 2006 11:29 AM
Comment #164924
Even if North Korea has a nuke, they almost certainly don’t have the ability to make it small enough to fit on the Taipodong 2 missle like the one that failed yesterday.

1LTB:

You make some valid points, but I think you assume a little too much. I won’t doubt your credibility about the S Korean army, but I will say that none of us actually know the true capabilities or intentions of N Korea. Sure, we have some intelligence, but a lot of programs are secret and hid from the public eye.

We can discuss rational possibilities till our faces turn blue, but the simple fact that Kim is notorious for being a volatile, unpredictable leader makes almost everything written on this thread pure speculation.

And I’m not willing to take any chances with this guy…which is why I am calling for strict action now, and that doesn’t mean war, as my post indicated, but we cannot allow N Korea to continue down this path…we just don’t know how far it will go.

Posted by: Alex Fitzsimmons at July 5, 2006 11:52 AM
Comment #164925

HardHatHarry-
As far as the North Korean Army goes, I recall General Patton’s line about the purpose of war not being dying for your country, but making the other poor bastard die for his.

Having a totalitarian loon for a leader is a liability for any army hoping to win. They micromanage, they demand total obedience, and either get it (making their armies inflexible and top-down managed) or they don’t (making their forces undisciplined and disrespectful of the leadership. Either way, it benefits us.

On the question of China, they likely have no desire to go to war on their best customer and main source of capital. Letting us take care of them might just relieve them of ar headache. Of course things may go South with them, if we attack the North, but that’s the consequence you get for letting Walmart get such a market share.

crowan-
If Bush had shown greater competence in fighting wars, maybe people would let him make more military strikes. As for Diplomacy, he’s had his chance.

SE-
Ballistic missile behavior makes Patriots a problematic solution to the problem. Think of it this way: A missile fires up in boost phase, accelerating into the top part of it’s trajectory. Once it’s there, it shuts off its engine, and coasts on the momentum it’s built from that time forward.

Okay, so that missile is coming down. Let’s say you hit the propellent. You still have debris falling down at high speed, where it will hit hard enough to inflict damage by its kinetic force alone.

The time to hit them is in boost phase. Think of it like a suicide bomber climbing up onto a diving board You don’t shoot him after he’s begun his descent. You shoot him on the ladder. One advantage of this approach is that you have a nice infrared signature to hit.

As for the Marines, they have an established base there, and I’m sure there will be no need to withdraw them to bring the marines or anybody back there.

Rhinehold-
Regime Change did not become policy until the late 90’s, after the last inspection were frustrated. There are plenty of evil dictators in the world. How many have reprieves now to do greater evil because of Bush’s military policy?

Frankxcid-
There are still soldiers in Korea, but they are seeing a heck of a lot less action than their buddies in Iraq. Iraq is an entirely different kind of entanglement than Korea.

As for your points? Santorum basically shot his mouth off and managed to hit himself in the foot. The Weapons he spoke of were disregard as useful weapons and debunked as being weapons of the post Gulf War period, where there existence would have spelled such a violation. David Kay, no fan of Saddam’s regime, remarked that we would likely be finding weapons like those for some time to come. He also called Santorum’s conclusions wrong on both the facts and the interpretation.

Congress did give Bush the authorization to use force, and placed no limits on it concerning regime change. It does continue to fund the War in Iraq.

But this is not a successful war until its finished and we have the desired outcome. If the place becomes a haven for terrorists, a failed state, torn by civil war and other forms of strife, then this will not have been a successful war.

That’s been what we’ve been trying to avoid for some time now. Unfortunately, the Bush adminsitration has made it more difficult to win by not planning ahead of time for the occupation of the country, or for a counterinsurgency- things that would have been logical to prepare for. The reason given? It would be a defeatist thing to do, they say.

This is the problem: defeatism for many on the right has become related to their policies on the war, not the war overall. Because of this, they have forgone options which on the whole could have saved us a lot of grief, simply because it would have meant considering the possibility of their own failure.

The Chief-
This isn’t a bully. This is a little Juvenile delinguent that you help out of pity. It’s a shame the right has us scared of a great military power which can’t even fire its missiles right.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 5, 2006 11:57 AM
Comment #164931

Stephen,

We’ve been over it before, but which dictator was worse than Saddam in all of the areas he was that we should have focused on instead?

I agree that our failed handling of post-war is causing us not to be able to take care of some of them, but as of yet I have not heard anyone make the case that we missed the proper butal dictator.

I would welcome such debate, honestly. My mind is open, if there is someone that was worse at that time I agree we should have waited and went after them instead, but you can’t say that we missed out by going after saddam and not give a name up as an example…

Posted by: Rhinehold at July 5, 2006 12:09 PM
Comment #164932

Do what Israel did against Syria.Buzz Pyongyang with fighter aircraft.Launch cruise missiles across N Korea.Shoot smoke bombs at them.Make them understand they are well within reach of the US military.
Perhaps the biggest mistake the US made was hesistating in showing them that we are willing to act decisively.An attempt should have been made to destroy the missiles.Whether the attempt worked or not it would have sent the right message to their president.Or just destroy their launch pads after the firings.
BTW I hope somebody on our side is trying to recover the missiles that went down in the Sea of Japan.
Bottomline N Korea 1 Rest of the World 0.

Posted by: john doe at July 5, 2006 12:09 PM
Comment #164936


Kim is a despot of the first degree. He will kill as many of his citizens as necessary to maintain his control over his little fiefdom. Kim is not insane. I believe that if he were, he would see South Korea as a grave threat to his existance and he would have already commanded his military to destroy them. Perhaps I am wrong, but it seems to me that if you were insane you would not spend time wondering about the consequences of your actions.

Posted by: jlw at July 5, 2006 12:30 PM
Comment #164937

David
True Johnson and Nixon used air power extensively in Vietnam. And to our advantage.
The problem is that all the air power in the world ain’t gonna do any good if you don’t have the troops on the ground doing their job. And that’s taking and holding real estate. Something our ground forces weren’t allowed to do. They took it but weren’t allowed to hold it.
We can use the Navy and Air Force against North Korea with success, but it will be limited success. Air power can take out targets like their missiles. But it can’t take and hold real estate.
The whole military machine is built around one person. The grunt on the ground. Without him your screwed.

Posted by: Ron Brown at July 5, 2006 12:41 PM
Comment #164940

Are you Generals done telling our country how to deal with these issues? Most of you sound like the former (Clinton) administration officials, who were responsible for N. Korea having nukes in the first place, to (now) say we need to take them out. Oh really, they’re certainly tough now that they’re out of office. Nice!

JD,
“Do what Israel did against Syria.Buzz Pyongyang with fighter aircraft.”


Exactly! Those Jews know exactly how to rattle the muslanimals’ cages!!!

Posted by: rahdigly at July 5, 2006 12:49 PM
Comment #164960

Philippe -

“One may wonder then why the nation that have the best self-sustaining economy of the world is also the nation with the hugest defense budget!?”

I assume that you’re referring to the United States. Uhm, the reason why we spend a lot of money on defense is because we CAN, Philippe. And while we spend billions on defense, we simultaneously manage to be the most generous nation in the history of nations. Every year, we contribute hundreds of millions of dollars to needy people the world over IN SPITE of Libs like yourself who have little or nothing good to say about America. No matter how much we give, it’s never enough, is it Philippe?

Besides, what’s it to you what we do with our money? Didn’t you mention in an earlier post that you were European? I don’t presume to tell Europeans what to do with their money, other than buy more American-made products.

Come to think of it, why am I even responding to you? You don’t vote in American elections, do you?

Posted by: crowan at July 5, 2006 2:31 PM
Comment #164965

It Still amazes me and make me laugh that finding weapons in Iraq are explained away because they may be from a certain time period and are hoped to be non-functional. This is still an attempt to ignore the facts because they get in the way of a good story. The weapons were found, they should not be there, they have been used to kill people.
Being a soldier in Iraq is dangerous. More dangerous than being in Korea, Less dangerous than the Argenne Forest during the Battle of the Bulge. So what! Tomorrow being a soldier in Korea could be more dangerous. The point that is still being ignored is that American soldiers are in Iraq and Korea for a reason. The plan for Iraq has been followed and every major milestone has been reached as planned. I expect the same with the problem with Korea. There has been a plan for dealing with them since before most of the posters here have been born. As a Marine Corp veteran I have witnesses war games with the expressed raison-d’etre of stopping North Korean aggression and as a show of force. It is no secret that war ships are doing war games in the area currently.
In summary, it is the same celebration for America’s enemies and how the rhetoric of how bad Bush is for the country.
One thing that must not be forgotten is that China is communist. Their very philosophy is anti-west and democracy. Like North Korea and all other liberal lands, places no value on human life or human suffering. China is not America’s friend. North Korean has more in common with China than the west. I am completely certain who China will support.

Posted by: frankxcid at July 5, 2006 2:43 PM
Comment #164967

The test failed but I’m sure they learned from them. Isn’t that what tests are all about? I suspect that N. Korea will use their nukes as a way of shaking down the west for a fortune in aid and as Chief noted earlier dems such as Wesley Clark will be ready to hand it out. Of coarse they will call it a “diplomatic solution” but as with most blackmail schemes the blackmailer never goes away his price just keeps going up. So what is the answer? Ideally it would be for us to take out N. Koreas nuclear program but I don’t know if that is practical militarily (without an actual invasion)or politically due to their ties with China. A response such as a trade embargo will result in more starving N. Koreans that will result in UN intervention against the embargo. At this point I believe our best bet is to ramp up our missle defense program. Its not the perfect answer but I don’t think there is a perfect answer. and yes Kim is nuts and I do not think we can count on him to act rationally.

Posted by: Carnak at July 5, 2006 2:46 PM
Comment #164968

Stephen -

“If Bush had shown greater competence in fighting wars, maybe people would let him make more military strikes. As for Diplomacy, he’s had his chance.”

Once again, a Lib characterizes the war in which we are ALL involved as “Bush’s War.” Every perceived failure, however inconsequential, is Bush’s fault. Bush is the problem, not the Sunni jihadist headcutters.

I think this attitude of yours is very telling, Stephen. The tendency to micromanage projects large and small is the modus operandi of Libs the world over.

Bush has stated repeatedly that he has defers to the military for overall tectical authority and control. The military has been left to run operations as they see fit. Do you really think Bush is phoning in air strikes from the West Wing? If you think that we are losing the Iraq War, then you should blame our military leaders. But that would make you very unpopular, wouldn’t it? No one wants to be thought of as “anti-military” during a shooting war.

Posted by: crowan at July 5, 2006 2:50 PM
Comment #164973

Great Point Carnak, I think that anything that renders this type of weapon delivery obsolete would be ideal with acceptable risk. Lets not forget why this is a big deal in North Korea: their obsolete air force.
Another Triumph for Bush, he has ignored Kim, Kim is mad, there’s nothing Kim can do about it. How many of these missiles will Iran buy now after this successful test

Posted by: frankxcid at July 5, 2006 3:06 PM
Comment #165078

Let us start a somewhere near the beginning.

MacArthur destroys the North Korean army right up to the Yalu River. Chinese Communist keep comming across. MacArthur sends his battle plans for approval to the UN. Two weeks later he gets the go ahead. Everything on schedule.
MacArthur sees what is going on. The two week delay is for the Chinese to get the plans before they can be carried out. Again right on schedule. MacArthur sends his battle plans to UN for approval then carries out the plan instead of waiting for approval. Surprise!
We are back on the offensive. Oops. Truman is furious. He fires MacArthur. A division in Korea in put into force. And today we still operate under a cease fire in Korea.
Now if our government would not have been complacent, there would be one Korea, not a split Korea.

Now after all these years and back slapping to the North Koread regimes, here is where we are.

Krazy Kim has a missle that can reach American soil. He can’t put much of a payload into it, or it would not make it here. His test lasts about 40 seconds. The other missles do about the same. Who knows which one they get lucky with. Krazy Kim is trying to get us involved once again in a military confrontation in Korea. He has a million ground troops, mostly at the demilitarized zone.

I say let him keep trying to launch those missles that don’t work. When he gets lucky, we do have the capacity and capability to drop it out of the sky.

A ground war in Korea is not an option. Just ask any Korean War vet.

Posted by: tomh at July 5, 2006 9:12 PM
Comment #165096

Frankxcid, first off, thanks for your service, brutter. You made a good point about N. Korea; keep this in mind though, the reason N. Korea and China have so much in common is b/c they’re both communists. We shouldn’t trust either one of them.


And, as far as the anti-Bushies out there, they will always be blinded b/c of their hatred; Bush cited N. Korea as one of the three “axis of evil”, yet they’ll keep carrying on about Iraq. The more things change… you know the rest…

Posted by: rahdigly at July 5, 2006 10:34 PM
Comment #165097

Only one solution for that chubby warmonger.
TLAM-N X AS MANY AS WE CAN SPARE!

Posted by: Madness!! at July 5, 2006 10:34 PM
Comment #165149

rahdigly,

Exactly! Those Jews know exactly how to rattle the muslanimals’ cages!!!

Yeah, being at conflict for 50+ is a great military and strategical accomplishement, no doubt.

I guess peace is definitivly as-been these days.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at July 6, 2006 5:04 AM
Comment #165150

crowan,

One may wonder then why the nation that have the best self-sustaining economy of the world is also the nation with the hugest defense budget!?

I assume that you’re referring to the United States. Uhm, the reason why we spend a lot of money on defense is because we CAN, Philippe.

Oh, so your nation have the best defense because she have the best self-sustaining economy *and* because she spent it on defense???
So US have the “best best” defense, I guess.

Sadly, your nation still see threats everywhere she want to look at. What’s the point in having the “best best” defense in the world and living in the fear of attacks???

Every year, we contribute hundreds of millions of dollars to needy people the world over IN SPITE of Libs like yourself who have little or nothing good to say about America. No matter how much we give, it’s never enough, is it Philippe?

I failed to see how it prove that the best defense is a self-sustaining economy, as you claim it is. Do you?

Besides, what’s it to you what we do with our money?

I’m french, so I have no money. France is a third world nation, wake up. ;-)

Didn’t you mention in an earlier post that you were European? I don’t presume to tell Europeans what to do with their money, other than buy more American-made products.

We’re trying as much as we could but, you should know, these days pretty much every goods, american or not, have “Made In China” written on it.

Come to think of it, why am I even responding to you? You don’t vote in American elections, do you?

Dunno, maybe debating with your kids, if you have some, even if they can’t vote in American elections, is valuable enough? And what about confronting our respectives opinons?
Anyway, feel free to just ignore me.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at July 6, 2006 5:25 AM
Comment #165157

Alex and tomh,

I’ve seen alot of the information about North Korea, especially on the artillery side. I was a liaison officer for 6 months and did a lot of work with the South Korean army as well. The North does have a large army, but it can’t train often or do proper maintanence due to lack of budget even though the North spends something like 25% of its GDP on its defense industry.

As far as thier army, they do have a substantial force on the border, but they also remember our Inchon landing. A significant number would be held up along the coast as well as around the capital in case we decided to go airborne on thier asses. If we would launch a massive aerial strike first, they would probably be done in a few days as a threat, though actually invading would be incredibly costly. If they attack first, they can’t win. We would bomb them out of existence, and the ROK Army knows how to fight and has been planning to do just that for decades. They have a lot of things in place already that I can’t discuss, but trust me, the North won’t get very far. Beyond this, the South has a far larger economy and almost twice the population of the north.

Phillipe,

You said that the best defense is a self-sustaining economy. You’re absolutely right. In absolute terms, the US spends more annually on defense than the next 11 largest spenders combined. The increase in the military budget made after 9/11 was larger than the entire Chinese military budget. Despite this, the US spends less as a percentage of its GDP than does France on defense. The reason? A 12 trillion (yes trillion with a T) GDP. The federal govermnent collected over 2 trillion dollars in revenues last year, which puts it at around 4th or 5th on the list of world economies.

Posted by: 1LT B at July 6, 2006 7:06 AM
Comment #165180

Molly Ivins had a great piece on this.

Posted by: gergle at July 6, 2006 9:56 AM
Comment #165210

Philippe,
“Yeah, being at conflict for 50+ is a great military and strategical accomplishement, no doubt. I guess peace is definitivly as-been these days.”


Yeah, try telling that to the “muslanimals”; they never come to the table with peace. They just continue to attack civilians and hide in civilian crowds when they fight Israel. Yet, those Jews don’t (freakin) play; they kick the muslanimals’ a$$es every time. So, when the palestinians show some peace effort, then come talk to us about 50 years, pal.

Gergle, the “ditzy” Chics are a bunch of toolbags; they have no love for the country music fans b/c they disagree with their viewpoints. Boo hoo, Natalie, that’s America for you; you can say whatever you want, yet you’re “responsible” for what you say. Americans held them accountable. BTW, how’s their concert tour going?! Ha! Ha!

Posted by: rahdigly at July 6, 2006 12:03 PM
Comment #165362

Ron Brown-
The trouble, which was highlighted in David Halberstam’s The Best and the Brightest, is that we could escalate the air war all we wanted to, but North Vietnam wasn’t modern enough to be crippled by that, and it could escalate the ground war with troops far easier than we could.

It’s important to have enough men, but it’s also important to have a plan that uses their strength to good effect. The plan is what sucked from the beginning. We backed the wrong leaders, we failed to make the communications between home and the field honest, meaningful, and relevant, and we failed to get the people in the villages invested in keeping the Viet Cong out and invested in seeing South Vietnam remain sovereign and capable of defending itself.

frankxcid-
We fought a pre-emptive war to disarm Saddam and end his conspiracy with the terrorists. Trouble is, we didn’t find the weapons production facilities we were supposed to find, or the signs of active collaboration with al-Qaeda.

The weapons that Santorum and Hoekstra were boasting about might sound like the answer to the question “Where are the WMDs?”, but they aren’t, not if you realize that the question really is a shortened version of the real question.

“Where was the threat, the Chemical, biological and Nuclear programs producing these weapons of mass death?” people asked. Time wore the edges off the question, making it “Where are the WMDs?”

There’s a difference. Kay and Duelfer established that these weapons had no military value, didn’t function at all. It matters whether Iraq was an overhyped threat, because we sacrificed a great deal to get there and stay there, just as it matters whether North Korea’s weapons are advancing, or continuing to be duds. While these rogue nations continue to be of concern, Iran seems to the be only country worth a damn out of them all.

As far as calling China and North Korea liberal lands, I could could get awhole argument about how these places are really therefore Right-Wing, but really American labels don’t fit these guys. They’re Stalinists. Given all the fuss we make about our civil liberties, do you really think we’re all that inclined to live under such a government.

Carnak-
So Glasnost and Perestroika didn’t work? With countries like North Korea, a lack of access is not an advantage. DPRK is a house of cards built on the abyssmal ignorance of the people of better things.

Speaking of that, SDI is a waste of money. So far, our defense is a match for their offense: Both show no capability of hitting the target. We have to rig the tests to hit something. So far, our defensive capabilities involve being able to take a potshot at their potshot.

Additionally, you forget something: North Korea is a UN operation, always has been. We fought the Korean War as part of the UN Forces.

crowan-
My attitude is, you do what it takes to win and win well. If it takes a moderate dose of hands on management, fine. If it takes backing off and taking a chill-pill, fine.

Bush’s problem is that he put a control freak like Rumsfeld in place and just let him loose. You state outright that our M.O. is micromanagment. Yet here you have Rumsfeld, in Bob Woodward’s Plan of Attack bargaining Tommy Franks down from the Hundreds of thousands he thought was necessary to invade. Here’s this civilian, never been in combat, forcing a general to lowball troops. If you think you can argue that they were doing things right, stop for a moment and reason out exactly why a sufficient army like that would need stop-loss retention policies, multiple tours of duty, and National Guard and Reserve callups.

All this Because Rumsfeld had to have his way. This is one of many interventions by the Secretary.

All in all, it is this lack of real, pragmatic leadership at the top that has us in this mess. You have no idea how bad things are. If you weren’t so busy defending the president, you might find out what’s driven the hostility against him.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 7, 2006 1:50 AM
Comment #165371

rahdigly,

Yeah, try telling that to the “muslanimals”; they never come to the table with peace. They just continue to attack civilians and hide in civilian crowds when they fight Israel. Yet, those Jews don’t (freakin) play; they kick the muslanimals’ a$$es every time. So, when the palestinians show some peace effort, then come talk to us about 50 years, pal.

Is this your argument about a strong military stance being the best solution to win? Kicking asses for 50 years? Are you saying Israel is *winning* since 50 years?

I think nobody is winning in Israel-Palestine conflict and, alas, everybody lost. And by everybody I mean way more than the two obvious sides.

PS: To paraphrase you, I could point that your argument is all in favor for a Christianimals vs Muslanimals War On Terror 50+ years long.

PS2: Every human *is* an animal. Calling people animal is as stupid as calling an eagle a bird.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at July 7, 2006 4:10 AM
Comment #165384

HardHatHarry, are you still reading this thread?
I hope you do.

For your information, I’m still interested in any link you could provide to back your claim that France sold arms to North Korea…

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at July 7, 2006 9:04 AM
Comment #165450

My argument is that the palestinians (muslanimals) don’t do a f*@$ing when it comes to peace; yet, “we all lose” b/c the two sides can’t work it out?! Whatever! That’s bull!! All that does is take the onus off of the muslanimals. Don’t think that went unnoticed, by the way.


PS3, the sandpigs own the muslanimal line; that’s a fact! When they can right their wrongs, like the Christians and Jews have done, then the animal line can be removed.

Posted by: rahdigly at July 7, 2006 1:27 PM
Comment #165530

rahdigly,

Thanks to your last post, I’ll now resist replying to any of your future posts.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at July 7, 2006 5:46 PM
Comment #165538

Is that all it took?! Heck, I would’ve have made that comment earlier. He! He!


The fact still stands that the muslanimals don’t “reach out” for peace and they (probably) never will. Yet, there will be people out there that will dodge that fact and say things like “we’re all animals” or “what about Judiaism and Christianity and their faults”; all without condemning the muslanimals. Believe that!

Posted by: rahdigly at July 7, 2006 6:02 PM
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