ROK and DPRK – Final Showdown?

December 5, 2010 sexyknees
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I am a little late commenting on this issue but feel it important to state my views since the Korean peninsula is so very close to half of my genetic heritage – Japan.

On November 23rd around 2:30pm local time, North Korea launched an artillery strike on a small South Korean-controlled island called Yeonpyeongdo, just south of the disputed Northern Limit Line (NLL) in the Yellow Sea.  As many as 200 rounds were fired, damaging nearly 100 homes and killing two South Korean marines and two civilians.  South Korea responded by firing some 80 shells of their own towards North Korea as well as scrambling F-16 fighters to the area and raising the military alert to its highest level.

Though the attack is a suspected response to the annual Hoguk military exercises – a multi-branch South Korean military exercise set to last nine days – as well as a message to the US and ROK regarding discussions to redeploy tactical nuclear weapons to the peninsula, it has been questioned if it may in fact be nothing more than  a North Korean attempt to push the limits established by the US and ROK as acceptable behavior regarding conventional weapons engagements.  The DPRK has already forced the US to accept a redefined “red line” limit when it tested a nuclear device in October of 2006 despite Pyongyang’s agreement to refrain from such activities.  The line was pushed yet again in March of this year when the South Korean corvette ChonAn was sunk by what has been assumed to be a DPRK torpedo without any military response from the US.

Although the Korean peninsula is no stranger to limited military engagements, this one is exceptional in that it targeted a civilian area – the first since the end of the Korean war.  Are we to continue to allow North Korea to push hard limits established by the United States without a strong military response?  Is this the image we wish to project to those who look at our country as a target?  In proper Christian terms presenting the other cheek sounds wonderful, but in the real world where there are chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons which may not allow us the opportunity to present another cheek do exist we must consider dissuading our enemies from even trying to push limits with American lives and those of our allies.

Despite China’s disdain towards an American military presence in the Yellow Sea, the nuclear carrier USS George Washington is now on-station as a show of force to Pyongyang.  However, knowing that it can push limits fairly far without reprisal, North Korea may decide to engage the ROK again regardless of the American battle group parked off of its western coast.  That being said, with the swearing-in of the new South Korean Defense minister – Kim Kwan-jin – this Saturday, heated rhetoric may turn violent.  Kim announced immediate retaliatory air strikes against the north if it stages another attack.  We’ll see.

My basic thought is this:  while we are engaged in military actions elsewhere in the world we are basically ignoring the one spot where a real threat capable of targeting and striking the United States exists.  Through acts which I view as nothing more than diplomatic temper tantrums, North Korea pushes our limits without a response which Pyongyang can understand.  Sanctions do not seem to bother DPRK  leadership – only the people.  Bearing in mind that we have 28,500 military personnel deployed in harms way on South Korean soil, how much further do we have to let the DPRK push before we send them a message that enough is enough?  Then again, do I even know what I am talking about?

PS:  Buy my book!  It has nothing to do with geopolitical babble – just sex!!!

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4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Bill  |  December 5, 2010 at 11:52 pm

    Nikki,

    I think your arguement is both cogent and accurate. Sanctions honestly do have little effect upon their leadership, and really serve to punish the people of North Korea. We do not really have a fight with them.

    Their murderous masters, are quite another story.

    The Kim family of the North seems bent on extracting another round of greenmail, you pull them back to the bargaining table. We gave them food aid, and heating oil worth billions of dollars a decade ago. It seems to have done us little good.

    I think you do know what you are talking about. The Korean penisula and Iran are the two most troubling spots on the globe.

    I do not feel that the North can defeat the South militarily, but any war there would be a calamity.

    And given our current financial situation with China, it does not bring happy thoughts to mind.

    I am sure the Japanese government is also quite concerned. Ever since the missile tests of the 1990’s, they have been quite disturbed by the “Dear Leader”.

    I participated in military exercises in South Korea years ago. The ROK forces are very disciplined, and well-trained. They know what is at stake.

    I hope that their courage is not tested under fire any time soon.

    I am looking forward to reading your book even more now. For indeed, you are not just a beautiful lady, but an even more interesting mind. I really do appreciate your post. Thanks you for calling attention to this very real issue.

    Best regards,

    Bill

    • 2. sexyknees  |  December 10, 2010 at 3:06 pm

      Thank you so much for your thought-provoking comment, Bill! And thank you for the wonderful compliments!!! I wanted to write a more lengthy response but for the life of me I could not come up with anything substantial. I guess I need my coffee!

  • 3. Michael Wolf  |  January 6, 2011 at 8:08 am

    While I don’t doubt for a minute that the threats posed by North Korean actions are real, what I do think in the longrun is this: North Korea’s economy is in shambles. They’re a hungry country with little going well. Their people need food, better transportation, infrastructure and just basic amenities. It’s harder than hell to get armies to fight when the “fight” isn’t in them. Case in point: the demise of the Soviet military machine after the Cold War. Who do you think is supplying the world’s guerillas and terrorists with weapons they no longer need?

    If they get nuclear weapons, Iran’s mini dictator has vowed to “eliminate” Israel. Both India and Pakistan have nuclear weapons. Will they use them on each other? Or, China? China is now building a version of their own Stealth fighter. Who will stop their ascent onto the world’s military plane? Afterall, China is the US’s largest monetary lender. We’re their biggest commodity buyer. Without each other, neither will matter.

    Of course this could esculate at any time but my hope is that the world in GENERAL realizes that NO ONE will win a nuclear war. It’s not feasible, nor likely without more fallout than the initial strikes will yield. Better hope that I’m right.

    I despise McDonalds but you must admit, seeing them around the globe at least says that we’re becoming a global community of one. .of sorts. Young kids are the future and hopefully they will rebel against these foolish toy cannons.

    It’s a game of the biggest bully with the most toys. For humanity’s sake, let’s pray that rational leaders will see the light without firing the Big One.

    • 4. sexyknees  |  January 17, 2011 at 9:10 pm

      I agree with you completely, Michael. The only concern I have is the mental stability of the “Dear Leader.” Though I view him as nothing more than a petty man with a penchant for thuggery to bully money and supplies from the world in order to maintain his crumbling state, there is the question as to whether or not he will “go down shooting” when his regime finally collapses. With his delusions of movie stardom, why not re-enact the final scene of “Scarface” except with a nuclear shotgun?


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