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19 April 2017

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iowa steve

Yes, I agree that there should be a reassessment of our current posture towards North Korea. That posture is of course indicative of the manner that the US has acted towards our "enemies" since at least the invasion of Iraq in 2002. Regardless of the nature of those adversaries what we've been doing hasn't worked in the sense of making us safer.

Imho, the US and North Korea should engage in negotiations leading to mutual security agreements with the immediate goal of denuclearization of the peninsula. The long term goal of the proper relationship between the two Koreas is left up to those nations, as it should be, with the further goal of removal of all US forces.

Would these negotiations require bribes or aid to North Korea? Probably, but bribes are imho less immoral than war and far cheaper. If Trump is the great dealmaker he professes to be let him have at it, though I'm not optimistic.

charly

They make their own silkworms etc. so the carrier groups are not treated by NK if they stay far enough which makes them a bit useless.

turcopolier

charly

if you knew anything military about ranges you would be dangerous. pl

wisedupearly

The traditional analysis sets NK as a strategic barrier and border protector to China. Hence, the thought that "NK has immense strategic importance to PRC."
This may have been true 20 years ago but things have moved on. China has moved up and in the eyes of China we are looking rather inept. The thought of John McCain with Sarah Palin as POTUS and FLOTUS must have made them smile.
True that China wants a unified Korea but a Korea grateful to China and resentful of the US must be of immense value.
The assumption is that China would never accept a border with an American ally. I now feel that the Chinese are now confident enough to live with it if that is the end result in Korea. The key to my argument is that NK is no longer useful to China and indeed is becoming a negative.

kooshy

Yes, that's the gravy, containing Russia and China on North Pacific

VietnamVet

Colonel,

A war with North Korea is just as stupid as one with Iran. A war with either will play havoc with the world economy. The USA does not have the manpower, tanks or the will to seize Tehran or Pyongyang. If artillery barrages destroy Seoul or intermediate range missiles hit Japan’s cities, millions will die. Ignoring the risk of starting a Korean war by a preemptive strike if North Korea is about to follow through with a nuclear weapons test is insanity. The "multiple senior U.S. intelligence officers" who told this to NBC News are flat-ass crazy plus incompetent.

The problem with “mad man” diplomacy is if the principles are not sane then war is inevitable. Human beings in the Southern Hemisphere may shrug off a nuclear war with North Korea but no one will survive if China and/or Russia are drawn into the conflict, intentionally or by mistake.

Babak Makkinejad

It is too late; US is now pinned down in Northeast Asia; North Korea having taken Seoul and Tokyo Bay area hostage.

North Korea is not going to denuclearize, just as Israel will not.

Babak Makkinejad

It was not Bush II who bore responsibility for the failure of the Agreed Framework; it was Clinton who wished for a cost-free solution; patiently waiting for the North Korean state collapse so he would not have to pay the costs of the AF; diplomatic, financial, political etc.

You cannot blame Bush II for that one.

Babak Makkinejad

Too late for what you suggest.

Matt

John Kerry, as SOS, negotiated a cease-fire in Syria with the Russians that the Pentagon promptly blew up with their "mistaken" attack on known Syrian Army positions (strangely aiding ISIS). Not so sure about the "advise" role of the Pentagon anymore.

https://mobile.nytimes.com/2016/09/18/world/middleeast/us-airstrike-syrian-troops-isis-russia.html

kooshy

I also believe geostrategically speaking, Mr. Trump is a buffoon, I wonder even if he knows why US is there to begin with. But there are geostrategist with good understanding in the system, especially among the neocons, who have often made overstating analysis of US capabilities and have cost US dearly. IMO, US' political and military strategists do not understand the value of asymmetrical and proxy wars in someone else's land, they usually get themselves cut in this kind of wars at a loss.

ISL

Dear Colonel,

To add a different dimension to the discussion, I see a Korean war as very very much not in China's long-term financial interests, and China has the ability to really make the US currency and financial system hurt bad... against the (I presume crony) interests of the billionaires in the Trump cabinet. I would expect to see some financial warning shots across Goldman Sachs bow if rhetoric shifts towards actions.

Just watched Trading Places, and there is one thing rich people fear more than anything and that is being poor. I dont see Trumps billionaire coterie taking that risk especially since the global financial system is weaker than it was in 2008.

egl

There are other delivery vehicles for a nuclear strike against the US mainland besides LRBM: shipping containers, for instance.

AEL

The DPRK have already demonstrated the *ability* to put a missile on target in Japan. They regularly drop multiple missiles into the sea at the *exact* range to major American bases in Japan.

Bill Herschel

You're Donald Trump. You just scored the biggest upset victory in the history of US Presidential politics. Since then things have not been going well. You give a call to cousin George and he says, "Remember the trifecta, Donald..."

Think how incredibly good Donald feels when he has people guessing what he'll do next. And how rotten he felt when people were wondering whether he could tie his shoes.

Wars for Donald and George (and for Ronald) are purely for domestic consumption. Real wars? Never.

The interesting part is that sometime he's going to asked the question, "Gee, Donald, looks like pretty soon North Korea is going to be able to put a MIRV onto the Apple campus. Do we have a policy for that?" That's when all the propaganda folks who have been spinning the story that Kim-un is mental are going to have to explain to their families why the end of the world isn't so bad after all.

And please, please don't forget that the Korean war was a slam dunk for the U.S. until... let me look at my notes... until the Chinese came over the border. That war is still going on. There is no treaty. We didn't fight the North. We fought China and didn't win.

BraveNewWorld

Good stuff but I will go one further than Pat Buchanan. Almost every where that the US has pledged to protect a country that country has used that protection as a green light to act like out of control a__ h_les, making the original problem far worse. The South Koreans actually being an exception to the rule.

Brunswick

There's also 28,500 US Servicemen, women and their families in South Korea .

Will.2718

Duh- how do you attach a rocket to a shell without it exploding in the breech? A shell is not a multistage device. It gets its impetus at one time, whereas a rocket continues to accelerate. Since all I got was a conclusory answer, then I'll have to google it.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M549

"The North Korean M-1978 / M1989 (KOKSAN) 170mm self-propelled gun can use rocket assisted projectiles to achieve a range of around 60 kilometres (37 mi); at one time this was the world's longest range artillery piece."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rocket-assisted_projectile

So, it appears you can incorporate a rocket motor into an otherwise ballistic shell.

optimax

This sentence from The Atlantic article shows Cumings a fool for covering up N Korea's totalitarianism. " At one point in North Korea: Another Country (2004) we are even informed that the regime's gulags aren't as bad as they're made out to be, because Kim Jong Il is thoughtful enough to lock up whole families at a time."

It's an excellent article that makes me wish our Dear Leader could read.

trinlae

" Of course a couple of million Asian people should be more than willing to give their lives for American domestic politics."

I think you put your finger on it right there. This whole fiasco would backfire, in that much of Asia such as in SK, Japan, PRC, ROC, Phillipines, Vietnam(s), and so forth who have remained neutral over the past decades to allow thr USA to keep its status quo face would turn against the US, at least in private.

The oligarchs lost the TPP at the ballot box, despite harnessing the whole MsM to ram it through. Now if they think they can force it on the world through these intl aggressive tantrums, they are sadly mistaken, imo. Asia doesn't need TPP, it already has the decades of authentic relationship building that is the foundation of business. USA should get off of its high horse learn how it is done.

trinlae

This is false, with all due respect. The true left, small as it is, refused to follow Bernie Sanders pandering to the DNC and just booed DnC in Maine as Sanders is further used by DnC t

trinlae

Probably a fair reading of how the situation is viewed in Beijing and Moscow!

Phil Cattar

Actually Seamus they did attack Us Forces 54 years ago.I was stationed on the 38th parallel from 4/63 to 4/64.In the summer of 1964 "Joe jumped" and crossed the MDL early in the morning.They ambushed a jeep full of US soldiers of the First Cavalry on their way to one of our outposts.I know they killed a few and got away.We were on high alert for days.

trinlae

"unless they got something at least as valuable in return--specifically, a friendly (or at least a friendly neutral) government in Seoul. "

Taking care not to confuse superficial power with actual power, or, in other words, looking at the economic culture, Beijing has plenty of friends in Seoul as in Taipei and Hsinchu.

Nxp (KKR) has been bought by Qualcomm. We all know who is at KKR now.

Poul

If these events from the Korean War is still part of the knowledge that the fat kid base his decisions on I would also think a war is less likely to be started. But that is a big "if".

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-us-war-crime-north-korea-wont-forget/2015/03/20/fb525694-ce80-11e4-8c54-ffb5ba6f2f69_story.html

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