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Defense experts say North Korea's claims are purely bombastic and delusional

Kim Jung-Un, supreme ruler of North Korea (NK) and son of late dictator Kim Jong-Il, loves Dennis Rodman and American culture, but he hates the American government after they cut off his imports of luxury items due to his insistence on nuclear weapons development.  Now the dictator's bipolar attitude towards the U.S. has seemingly taken, with Mr. Jung-Un scrapping a six decades old armistice with America and South Korea (SK).

I. Kim Jung-Un: "We Should Mercilessly Strike the U.S. Mainland"

In an appearance on the state-controlled Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), the young dictator is pictured leafing through documents surrounding by four military officials.  Behind him is a map of his plans to "attack" the U.S. with missile strikes.  The map indicates missile trajectories stretching from NK to the continental U.S.

The KCNA report describes recent stealth bomber tests over South Korea by the U.S. as "an ultimatum that they (the United States) will ignite a nuclear war at any cost on the Korean Peninsula."

attack plans

(closeup 1)
attack plans (2/3)

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attack plans (3/3)
[Image Source: KCNA/Reuters (Top), bottom images modified by James Pearson of NK News]

The report continues, "If [South Korea and the U.S.] make a reckless provocation with huge strategic forces, (we) should mercilessly strike the U.S. mainland, their stronghold, their military bases in the operational theaters in the Pacific, including Hawaii and Guam, and those in South Korea."

II. Tensions Escalate

The threat is the latest in a series of jabs between the U.S. and the defiant Asian military dictatorship.  Following its decision to scrap the armistice, the U.S. conducted war games in SK.  NK responded by cutting a key phone line used as one of the only diplomatic channels between the North and the South.

In an apparent response to the line cutting, the U.S. proceeded with a test of B-2 Spirit stealth bombers over North Korea, which according to U.S. Forces Korea "demonstrates the United States' ability to conduct long-range, precision strikes quickly and at will."

B-2 fly over
B-2 bombers fly over South Korea earlier this week. [Image Source: Sin Young-Keun/Yonhap]

Designed by Northrop Grumman Corp. (NOC), the B-2 is a fearsome weapon far beyond anything in North Korea's arsenal.  Its specialty is in standoff missiles (cruise or short-range ballistic) -- missiles that are launched at distance to avoid counterattacking fire.  The B-2 is the only known aircraft capable of engaging in standoff missile strikes while in stealth mode (most nations use ships for this purpose).  The bomber has a crew of two and carries up to eighty 500 lb (230 kg)-class JDAM GPS-guided bombs, or sixteen 2,400 lb (1,100 kg) B83 nuclear bombs.

Despite the back and forth Pentagon spokesman George Little called on NK to "dial the temperature down", accusing the nation of engaging in cycles of "provocative behavior".


He told CNN, "No one wants there to be war on the Korean Peninsula, let me make that very clear....  We have to deal with them. We have to be sober, calm, cool, collected about these periods. That's what we're doing right now.  And we are assuring our South Korean allies day to day that we stand with them in the face of these provocations."

China echoed the desire for peace, despite its growing frustration with its ally NK.  Foreign Ministry Spokesman Hong Lei told reporters that peace was a "joint responsibility, remarking, "We hope relevant parties can work together to turn around the tense situation in the region."

III. Despite Helping Hand From Iran, Danger Remains Low, Experts Say

After several failed tests, North Korea did succeed last year in launching a rudimentary ballistic missile into space.  The key appears to be support from Iran; sources say that shipments from Iran have been headed to NK and Reuters reported that Iranian observers were present at the December rocket launch.  Some reports indicate that North Korea may have paid Iran nearly $1.3B USD for its engineering expertise, allowing it to turn around its floundering missile program.

North Korea has also been successful in conducting small-scale nuclear bombs tests.  

According to the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, NK's February's nuclear test measured "approximately several kilotons" while the first nuclear test in 2006 was under 1 kiloton and the second in 2009 was about 2-7 kilotons.  Those bombs would likely be capable of causing significant damage if they reached a populated area, but are smaller than the 16- and 21-kiloton explosives that the U.S. dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki (respectively) at the close of WWII.

Hiroshima
North Korea's nuclear weapons are about 1/2 to 1/3 the size of the nuclear bomb the U.S. used on Hiroshima in WW II [pictured].

Since WWII, there has been no nuclear act of war.

North Korea may have the ability, theoretically to strike at the U.S. mainland, at least before you consider interceptor capabilities.  However, defense experts say a successful strike on the U.S. by the hostile Asian nation is unlikely.  

J
ames Hardy, Asia-Pacific editor of IHS Jane's Defense Weekly told CNN in an interview, "Unless there has been a miraculous turnaround among North Korea's strategic forces, there is little to no chance that it could successfully land a missile on Guam, Hawaii or anywhere else outside the Korean Peninsula that U.S. forces may be stationed."

Accuracy would be a likely issue, should North Korea attempt such an act of war.

Thus far the hostilities have not resulted in any direct violence.  However, digitally the nations are already at war in cyberspace. North Korea has been engaged in a war of cyber-attacks in recent weeks with the U.S. and its ally South Korea.

Sources: KCNA, CNN



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RE: Seriously?
By ianweck on 3/29/2013 7:38:46 PM , Rating: 2
How have you not heard about this, by now?


RE: Seriously?
By Reclaimer77 on 3/29/2013 8:03:49 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
How have you not heard about this, by now?


Because aside from Fox News and some Internet sources, we pretty much have a Leftist State-ran media empire in America that absolutely refuses to call out Obama or even educate the public about what's going on.


RE: Seriously?
By Lord 666 on 3/29/2013 11:09:41 PM , Rating: 1
https://www.fbo.gov/utils/view?id=09c3d5e933bc2441...

dhs rfp for 7000 units of select fire 5.56. They also picked up some colt 901 in 2010; a piece that can be switched between 5.56 and 7.62 with an upper change.


RE: Seriously?
By delphinus100 on 3/29/2013 11:37:44 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
"Because aside from Fox News and some Internet sources..."


And they, of course, are truly 'fair and balanced.'

Almost everyone's got an agenda. The enemy of your enemy is not necessarily your friend.


RE: Seriously?
By Reclaimer77 on 3/30/2013 7:55:35 AM , Rating: 2
Sometimes we don't need "fair and balanced". Sometimes the people of this country needs to be told "look this guy is doing some fucked up shit, let me break it down for you."

I think the people of this country should know our Government under Obama is engaging in the largest domestic buildup of the police state ever. Now they've made, in total secret, domestic drone strikes of US citizens legal. And you can call it whatever you want, but the simple fact is this would NEVER be brought up at MSNBC or the others.

So you would choose total ignorance over awareness, even if it might be presented with a slant? Do you not believe people are basically intelligent enough to form their own opinions if you've given them the basic information?


RE: Seriously?
By Reclaimer77 on 3/30/2013 8:05:16 AM , Rating: 2
You know it's funny but when Bush, or any Republican, is in office the man can't sneeze without it causing a major media controversy. Now that we have Obama, nope, nothing to see here folks move along!

And you want to talk about "fair and balanced"?


RE: Seriously?
By Lord 666 on 3/30/2013 9:21:43 AM , Rating: 1
The constant reporting on the DOMA case, social media campaigns to change pictures, and "skim milk marriages" are an intentional distraction for the masses as well.

This in addition to the timing of the sudden release of new Newtown and Loughner information, coincidentally after major legislation failed to pass. Its laughable that Mark "Michael Moore" Kelly staged purchasing purchasing an AR and then complain about how easy it was. Mark Kelly has compartmentalized clearance and no background check red flags!



RE: Seriously?
By Reclaimer77 on 3/30/2013 9:51:29 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Its laughable that Mark "Michael Moore" Kelly staged purchasing purchasing an AR and then complain about how easy it was. Mark Kelly has compartmentalized clearance and no background check red flags!


And this is the biggest tool of the Leftist Liberal media, the half-truth. If you never mention this little tidbit, it changes the entire narrative of the story doesn't it?

Obama shamelessly exploiting the victims of Newtown on stage time and time again is sickening at this point. Background checks? Waiting periods? The Newtown shooter murdered his mother and used HER guns. None of those ideas would have helped. Hey Obama, explain to me how a Federal background check scheme would have prevented that shooting again.


RE: Seriously?
By Pavelyoung on 3/30/2013 5:53:35 PM , Rating: 2
Good luck getting a real response to that one


RE: Seriously?
By ianweck on 4/2/2013 1:44:38 PM , Rating: 2
I see a lot more balance on Fox than CNN, if you're talking about news casting. And yes I switch between liberal and conservative sources constantly.


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