Don & Kim & Kim & Don

Discussion in 'Politics and the Topics of the day' started by MASTERBAKER, Mar 10, 2017.


    MASTERBAKER ヽ(͡° ͜ʖ Grown Folks Board/cooking Super Moderator

    Whoever Becomes South Korea's New Leader Has Three Options for Dealing With Kim Jong Un. None Are Great
    South Korea is preparing to elect a new leader just as Kim Jong Un, the North Korean dictator and the international community’s bête noire, is engaged in dangerously destabilizing behavior over the border. Over the past month, North Korea has fired a slew of rockets into waters to which Japan has commercial rights, and orchestrated the assassination of Kim Jong Nam using a deadly nerve agent.

    The assassination of Kim Jong Un's estranged half-brother was a shocking reminder of the brutality of a dynasty that has ruled North Korea since 1948. But for South Korea and the wider world, it is Pyongyang's escalating nuclear and missile tests that represent the gravest threat.

    On Friday, South Korea's Constitutional Court formally endorsed the impeachment of the country's first female President, the now deposed Park Geun-hye, following a massive corruption scandal. Elections must take place within 60 days, and there are calls for her successor to break with Park's tactic of isolating Kim Jong Un and to instead adopt a softer, more engaging approach to the regime.

    The stakes are high. Pyongyang has tested five nuclear weapons to date — the fifth coming despite unprecedented U.N. sanctions in response to the fourth test. Experts believe the regime is now just four or five years from an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) capable of hitting the U.S. mainland. Kim Jong Un isn’t coy about that being his ultimate goal, boasting last April that his nation “can tip new type intercontinental ballistic rockets with more powerful nuclear warheads and keep any cesspool of evils in the earth, including the U.S. mainland, within our striking range.”

    North KoreaU.S. Rejects China's Call for a Halt to Military Drills in Return for North Korea's Suspension of Nuclear Activity
    North Korean bad behavior is even alarming its historic, though increasingly reluctant, ally China. On Feb. 20, Beijing stopped imports of North Korean coal — the Kim regime's main hard-currency generator — for the rest of the year. On Wednesday, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi called for Pyongyang to stop nuclear and missile tests, and in return for Washington and Seoul to nix their joint military drills, which Pyongyang sees as rehearsals for an invasion.

    "This suspension-for-suspension can help us break out of the security dilemma and bring the parties back to the negotiating table," Wang told reporters. (In Washington, acting U.S. State Department spokesman Mark Toner rejecting the suggestion, saying: "At this point we don't see it as a viable deal.")

    China proposals are mainly prompted by the rollout of the U.S. THAAD antimissile system in South Korea. Seoul and Washington say the system is directly to guard against the North's provocations, but Beijing is affronted by the presence of such a sophisticated American missile system so close to its own territory.

    Whether to continue deploying THAAD and conducting joint military exercises — and how to deal with the Kim regime more generally — are decisions that will fall to the new South Korean President. There are essentially three strategies on the table:

    1. The military option

    A military response against North Korea is considered a last resort because of Pyongyang's ability to catastrophically retaliate against the South Korean capital and other urban centers. Bristling batteries of conventional artillery are trained on Seoul — which lies less than 60 km from the DMZ — and would cause considerable loss of life and damage. (The greater Seoul area is home to half of all South Korea’s 50 million people.)

    Technically, it would be simple to hit up to 90% of North Korea's missile and nuclear-testing grounds within 30 minutes, says Ryan Barenklau, the CEO of Washington, D.C.–based think-tank Strategic Sentinel. “Most of North Korea’s technology is old Soviet tech and more than half doesn’t even run effectively,” he says.

    But while the regime doesn’t yet have an ICBM, experts believe Kim Jong Un does have around 15 nuclear bombs and there are no guarantees that all of these could be struck preemptively. One or two would be all Pyongyang would need to unleash unthinkable destruction — attaching a nuclear warhead to the end of a conventional rocket and firing it at South Korea or Japan, or simply loading it onto a fishing boat and detonating it in the harbor at Incheon, South Korea's main port. With a bit of planning, a sea-based nuclear attack could even target the U.S. West Coast.

    “It’s almost guaranteed that North Korea would at least attempt to fire a nuclear weapon at South Korea or Japan in the event that they were attacked,” says Barenklau.

    China's fury is another deterrent. Beijing remains vehemently opposed to regime change in the buffer state of North Korea, fearful of both a flood of refugees across its border and a united, U.S.-allied Korean Peninsula ruled from Seoul. “Russia and China won't let the U.S. launch any strikes against North Korea sites,” says Cai Jian, an expert on North Korea at Shanghai's Fudan University. “And Washington values peace in the region.”

    At the same time, new U.S. President Donald Trump has repeatedly said that his Administration would not let North Korea develop an ICBM. “If North Korea tries to test one, that might be a ‘red line’ [for Trump],” says Barenklau.

    2. The diplomatic option

    Dennis Rodman’s sojourns in North Korea with the basketball-loving Kim Jong Un sparked hope of “hoop diplomacy,” while on campaign trail Trump said he would meet Kim “for a hamburger” and vowed to cut a “good deal” with the 33-year-old. "I would speak to him," the then Republican candidate told Reuters.

    Many in South Korea feel the same. Engagement has been tried before, of course, most notably during the so-called Sunshine Policy of former South Korean President Kim Dae-jung, which ran between 1998 and 2008. Kim Dae-jung's policy led to a summit in 2000 with North Korea's then leader Kim Jong Il — father to both Kim Jong Un and Kim Jong Nam. It was the first such meeting, for which the South Korean leader won the Nobel Peace Prize. However, continued hostile behavior by the North, plus revelations that some $150 million of South Korean state funds were paid to Kim Jong Il to take part, have since clouded the Sunshine Policy’s legacy.

    Still, the Sunshine Policy did help start the six-party denuclearization talks — comprising North and South Korea, Japan, Russia, China and the U.S. — which ran from 2003 to 2009 before being nixed by Kim Jong Il. China has long advocated for the resumption of those talks, and Foreign Minister Wang’s proposal on Wednesday was an attempt to jump-start the process by proposing a mutually beneficial starting point for negotiations.

    A “double freeze” — of Pyongyang's tests, and of joint U.S.–South Korean war games — has significant benefits. John Delury, an East Asia expert at Yonsei University in Seoul, says it’s the best of a bad bunch of options.

    “It’s not a fabulous deal for the Americans, because you’re not getting full denuclearization, you’re just getting a freeze,” he says. “But that’s better than the status quo, which is them improving their capabilities.”

    At the same time, the war games do have a purpose, of course, and South Korea and the U.S. would be at a strategic military disadvantage if they are shelved. “It could be viewed as a dereliction of duty and actually make the situation more dangerous if they don’t exercise,” says Daniel Pinkston, an East Asia specialist at Seoul’s Troy University.

    Their suspension would also be a huge propaganda coup for Pyongyang.

    North KoreaMan Claiming to Be Kim Jong Nam's Son Posts Video Online
    The bigger question is whether any agreement would be honored by Pyongyang. Delury is optimistic: “Kim Jong Un inherited the nuclear program and he’s trying to bring it to a conclusion. But he’s got enough at this point to say, ‘We still have our nuclear deterrent intact.’ He’s said he really wants to bring economic development to North Korea. So the shift could make sense for Kim Jong Un specifically.”

    Given that China — North Korea’s only friend and responsible for 90% of its trade — would be delighted by a "double freeze," there would be significant material benefits for the regime. However, over the decades North Korea has proved a deft manipulator, eking out the maximum possible concessions by pivoting between engagement and antagonism. For Pinkston, there is little chance of any agreement holding.

    “It’s just dangerous,” he says. “They are not interested in suspending their tests and [any agreement] would be reversible at any moment. Their law, ideology, their assumptions are all viewed as morally superior. The rest of the world is decadent and inferior. Any kind of agreement with the Yankees and the imperialists — ‘bloodthirsty criminals’ — is not worth the paper it’s printed on.”

    Engagement would also require turning a blind eye to affronts like Kim Jong Nam's assassination, and may even be viewed as tacitly acknowledging the regime as a nuclear power. That would send a worrying message to other nuclear aspirants — chiefly Iran — about American attitudes to proliferation.

    “It would undermine a fundamental pillar in American foreign policy to admit to the North Koreans that ‘O.K., you can have nuclear weapons, we give up,’” says Ken Gause, a North Korea analyst for the Center for Naval Analyses think tank in Arlington, Va.

    3. The isolation option

    The alternative to the above is the status quo: keep squeezing the regime through sanctions and diplomatic pressure until it reforms. There is a moral urgency here. According to a 2014 U.N. report, North Korean's 25 million citizens suffer “extermination, murder, enslavement, torture, imprisonment, rape, forced abortions and other sexual violence, persecution on political, religious, racial and gender grounds, the forcible transfer of populations, the enforced disappearance of persons and the inhumane act of knowingly causing prolonged starvation” that amounts to “crimes against humanity.”

    The ongoing democratization of Myanmar — until recently somewhat comparable to North Korea in brutality — also provides a glimmer of hope. There is the possibility, however remote, of a popular revolt, or that the Kims will be toppled by an elite faction, or that the regime may simply slowly rot away
    The one thing that is certain is that any glasnost from Kim Jong Un is extremely unlikely. Meaningful political reform in Pyongyang would unleash pent-up desires for all kinds of freedoms from the North Korean people, leading to clamor for reunification with the infinitely richer South and naturally for the end of the Kim clan as a political force.

    “The international community needs to think about playing the long game,” says Pinkston. “There’s no need to panic. North Korea is at such a disadvantage; in terms of resources the gap is huge.”

    Says Christopher Green, a Korea expert at Leiden University in the Netherlands: “North Korea is a threat to South Korea in the long view, as its strategic goal is of course to reunify. But I suspect North Korea isn’t all that much of a threat to anyone else.”

    Still, the worry is whether full nuclear capability will make North Korea even more prone to aggression. That is the high-stakes bet that whoever replaces Park Geun-hye will have to make.

    With reporting by Yang Siqi / Beijing

    MASTERBAKER ヽ(͡° ͜ʖ Grown Folks Board/cooking Super Moderator

    Lil Kim you can run but you can't hide. MOAB got your A$$ on the crosshairs!

    North Korea Evacuates Pyongyang After US Threats
    April 13, 2017, Written by
    Tsarizm Staff

    Godofredo Macaranas
    Lil Kim you can run but you can't hide. MOAB got your A$$ on the crosshairs!
    Like · Reply · 1 · 13 mins
    Paul Dutkiewicz
    Till it happens on a major news thing i dont believr
    Like · Reply · 4 · 23 mins
    Gabriel Valenzuela
    North Korea evacuation: Watch moment alarms ring out in…
    Like · Reply · 17 mins
    Paul Dutkiewicz
    I dont think it will lead to war kim jon un always does this bluff
    Like · Reply · 16 mins
    Aviation Erik
    Not a major news thing ^
    Like · Reply · 1 · 16 mins
    Cody Dahlberg
    Its true. They started the evacuation yesterday sometime
    Like · Reply · 14 mins
    Paul Dutkiewicz
    It wont lead to war kim jon un is always posing threats
    Like · Reply · 13 mins

    MASTERBAKER ヽ(͡° ͜ʖ Grown Folks Board/cooking Super Moderator

  4. QueEx

    QueEx Well-Known Member Super Moderator

  5. QueEx

    QueEx Well-Known Member Super Moderator


    MASTERBAKER ヽ(͡° ͜ʖ Grown Folks Board/cooking Super Moderator

  7. QueEx

    QueEx Well-Known Member Super Moderator

    North Korea tensions: US ready to 'bring Kim Jong-un to his senses'

    North Korea released photos on Wednesday of live-fire exercises

    April 26, 2017

    The top US commander in the Pacific has said an advanced missile defence system in South Korea aims to bring the North Korean leader Kim Jong-un "to his senses, not to his knees".

    Adm Harry Harris said the US would be ready "with the best technology" to defeat any missile threat.

    The White House has taken the rare step of calling senators to a classified briefing on North Korea.

    Democrat Chris Coons said afterwards that it had been "sobering".

    While unusual, the step to hold the meeting does not necessarily mean a crisis is imminent.

    The US has deployed warships and a submarine to the Korean peninsula as well as its Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense (Thaad) missile defence system.

    China argues the deployment of Thaad will destabilise security and there have been protests in South Korea itself, where three people were injured in clashes with police as the system was being delivered to a former golf course on Wednesday.

    Copyright YONHAP - Locals protested as six trailers carrying Thaad missile equipment were transported to Seongju in South Korea

    Tensions have been rising amid fears North Korea could be planning further missile or nuclear tests.

    Speaking ahead of the classified briefing, Adm Harris said the advanced missile defence system would be ready within the coming days.

    He said he believed that North Korea would try to attack the US as soon as it had the military capabilities.

    "With every test Kim grows closer to his goal, which is using nuclear weapons on US cities," he told the House armed services committee in Washington DC.

    "As [US President Donald] Trump and [Defence Secretary James] Mattis have said, all options are on the table," he added.

    President Trump invited all 100 senators to the briefing, which took place in a building next to the White House.

    US Senators John Thune (second from right) and Ted Cruz (right) are seen here going to the briefing

    North Korea released a photo of Mr. Kim saluting troops - AHP

    Adm Harris said that the relationship between Mr Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping remained "positive and encouraging".

    "It is purely a defensive system. It is aimed north, not west," he said, adding: "It poses no threat to China."

    Admiral Harris told the committee that the US was ready to respond to any threat
    from North Korea

    Admiral Harris' comments come after China launched its second aircraft carrier in the latest sign of its growing military strength.

    The as-yet unnamed ship was transferred into the water in the north-eastern port of Dalian, state media said. It will reportedly be operational by 2020.

    The heated rhetoric between the US and North Korea has intensified in recent weeks.

    China's Foreign Minister, Wang Yi, has called for an end to US-South Korea war games and also a halt to North Korea's nuclear development in order to reduce tensions in the region.

    Foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang spoke out against the Thaad deployment. He told reporters: "It helps in no way to achieve the denuclearisation of the peninsula and regional peace and stability."

    The Trump administration has been urging China to rein in its ally, North Korea.

    The Thaad system is designed to intercept and destroy short and medium-range ballistic missiles during their final phase of flight.

    "South Korea and the United States have been working to secure an early operational capability of the Thaad system in response to North Korea's advancing nuclear and missile threat," South Korea's defence ministry earlier said in a statement.



  8. QueEx

    QueEx Well-Known Member Super Moderator


    US, South Korea hold Live Fire Exercise
    drills as tensions rise with N. Korea


  9. QueEx

    QueEx Well-Known Member Super Moderator

    Military Power Comparison 2017

    USA & Japan & South Korea


    Russia & China & North Korea


    MASTERBAKER ヽ(͡° ͜ʖ Grown Folks Board/cooking Super Moderator

    RODMAN BACK TO NORTH KOREA: The Former NBA Star Will Visit North Korea Again This Week, Trump Admin Says
    The former NBA star is headed back to the country as a private citizen, according to Fox News
    by Melissa Leon · June 12, 2017


    Shares 3K
    NBA Hall of Famer Dennis Rodman is headed for a return visit to North Korea, this time as a “private citizen.”


    This is how people are making big money off of Trump's stock market.

    Visit for Breaking North Korea Related Incidents and Stories
    The Trump Administration confirmed Monday to Fox News that Rodman was heading back for his first visit there in more than three years.

    Aside from his basketball fame, Rodman was also a contestant on the reality TV show Celebrity Apprentice, which President Donald Trump made infamous; Trump was not President at the time his show was running on television.

    Rodman was a contestant on season eight of The Apprentice, which aired in 2009.

    Rodman’s visit to the communist country under the leadership of Kim Jong Un comes during a time when tensions among North Korea and the United States run high; North Korea recently fired four surface-to-ship test missiles last week and has threatened that “bigger gifts” are coming to the U.S.

    Currently, North Korea is also detaining four Americans for alleged crimes.


    Rodman, now 56, visited North Korea and Kim Jong Un in January 2014.

    During that trip, Rodman notoriously sang “Happy Birthday” to the dictator and referred to him as his “best friend.”

    Rodman also embarked on what he referred to as “basketball diplomacy,” playing pick-up games there with other NBA stars.

    Kim Jong Un is reportedly an NBA fan, specifically of the Chicago Bulls. Rodman famously played for the Bulls in the late 1990s.

    MASTERBAKER ヽ(͡° ͜ʖ Grown Folks Board/cooking Super Moderator


    MASTERBAKER ヽ(͡° ͜ʖ Grown Folks Board/cooking Super Moderator

    We'd say LOL if it weren't so terrifying. Trevor Noah just said what we all need to hear (though we don't exactly want to) about Trump's foreign relations policies...

    MASTERBAKER ヽ(͡° ͜ʖ Grown Folks Board/cooking Super Moderator

    LMAO...the fate of the world (or really of North Korea) rests in the hands of Dennis Rodman.[​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    By Ryan Gaydos Published September 07, 2017
    Fox News
    Now Playing
    Rodman and North Korea: Exploring a 'special relationship'

    NBA Hall-of-Famer Dennis Rodman said Wednesday he would like to “straighten things out” between North Korean Dictator Kim Jong-Un and the United States amid nuclear tensions.

    Rodman, who has made trips to the isolation nation in the past, told a British television show that he has a history with Kim. He said they skied together and sang karaoke.

    “For me to go over there and see (Kim) as much as I have, I basically hang out with him all the time. We laugh, we sing karaoke, we do a lot of cool things together. We ride horses, we hang out, we go skiing, we hardly ever talk politics and that’s the good thing,” Rodman said, according to Reuters.

    [​IMG] Expand / Collapse
    In this June 15, 2017, file photo, former NBA basketball star Dennis Rodman presents a book titled "Trump The Art of the Deal" to North Korea's Sports Minister Kim Il Guk Thursday, June 15, 2017, in Pyongyang, North Korea. (AP Photo/Kim Kwang Hyon, File)

    The legendary rebounder said he was not trying to defend Kim’s provocations and was “just an ambassador for sports.”

    “I don’t love (Kim). I just want to try to straighten things out for everyone to get along together,” he said.

    Rodman visited North Korea in June and was seen giving President Trump’s book “The Art of the Deal” to North Korean Sports Minister Kim Il Guk. He said at the time he was “just trying to open a door” through his trip. He also made a trip to North Korea in 2014.

    His statements come after North Korea tested a hydrogen bomb last weekend, stoking the tensions between Pyongyang and the international community.

  14. PAYNE

    PAYNE no donaré FD

    Allow me to read the future for you DR -- A level playing field dialog with that shit trump administration and NK is not gonna happen!
    MASTERBAKER likes this.

    MASTERBAKER ヽ(͡° ͜ʖ Grown Folks Board/cooking Super Moderator

    BREAKING: Kim Jong Un just threatened Donald Trump and called him 'mentally deranged'

    MASTERBAKER ヽ(͡° ͜ʖ Grown Folks Board/cooking Super Moderator

  17. kl33mann

    kl33mann Active Member BGOL Investor


    MASTERBAKER ヽ(͡° ͜ʖ Grown Folks Board/cooking Super Moderator

    If you have not heard Kim Jong-un sing yet then you are missing out on quite possibly the greatest song bird of our generation

    MASTERBAKER ヽ(͡° ͜ʖ Grown Folks Board/cooking Super Moderator

    What does China's communist elite think of Kim Jong-un?


    MASTERBAKER ヽ(͡° ͜ʖ Grown Folks Board/cooking Super Moderator

    Richard Bekoalok Richard Bekoalok This is what happens when two narcissistic, egotistical men with tiny hands gets into a pissing match, no one is the winner if we go to war. We will lose on just the fact of military lives lost. Not to mention the collateral damage. They are ones that will pay for these two child in chief actions. The right needs to reign in this man running our country. When GOP a senator was asked who stands up to the president when confronted about calling out the president lies. He replied that your job! It's congress that needs to do that! Not the press, it's called checks and balances for a reason!, no one is the winner if we go to war. We will lose on just the fact of military lives lost. Not to mention the collateral damage. They are ones that will pay for these two child in chief actions. The right needs to reign in this man running our country. When GOP a senator was asked who stands up to the president when confronted about calling out the president lies. He replied that your job! It's congress that needs to do that! Not the press, it's called checks and balances for a reason!

    QueEx likes this.
  21. QueEx

    QueEx Well-Known Member Super Moderator


    MASTERBAKER ヽ(͡° ͜ʖ Grown Folks Board/cooking Super Moderator

    Americans in South Korea increasingly worried about tensions between U.S. and North Korea: "The anxiety level is starting to become palpable."
  23. QueEx

    QueEx Well-Known Member Super Moderator

    North Korea: Trump is a 'destroyer' who 'begged for nuclear war' in Asia

    North Korea on Saturday issued a characteristically dramatic denunciation of President Trump's first tour of Asia since taking office. The journey has "laid bare [Trump's] true nature as destroyer of world peace and stability,"

    Pyongyang declared, adding that Trump has "begged for a nuclear war." This trip "is a warmonger's visit for confrontation to rid the DPRK of its self-defensive nuclear deterrence," said the remarks published in North Korean state media.

    This comes after Trump called on world leaders to "isolate the brutal regime of North Korea" in a speech before the South Korean National Assembly and discussed North Korea with leaders of Japan, South Korea, and China over the course of the week.

    Source: CNN, North Korea

    MASTERBAKER ヽ(͡° ͜ʖ Grown Folks Board/cooking Super Moderator

    What Would Happen in the Minutes and Hours After North Korea Nuked the United States?
    Not that they would, but it's good to game these things out.
    • [​IMG]
      Mike Pearl

      Dec 20 2016, 2:15pm
      Foto via Wikimedia Commons-brugeren mroach

      If you weren't paying attention to North Korea throughout 2016—a year when major nuclear powers like Russia, the US, the UK, and China were all competing for the geopolitical spotlight by doing crazy shit—it was easy to forget that the hermit kingdom keeps on threatening to nuke its enemies.

      And maybe you've been hearing that threat for so long that it sounds like empty bluster, but North Korea has also been working hard in 2016 to manufacture and test the related technologies that prove that its threats are credible, especially the very impressive Kwangmyongsong intercontinental ballistic missile. A missile that, in February, we found out is capable of hitting Los Angeles.

      Recent analysis suggests that in 2020, North Korea will have a "reliable" nuclear armed missile that could hit US soil. But according to Rodger Baker, lead North Korea analyst at the Austin, Texas-based military intelligence firm Stratfor, it's not a question of when their missiles become reliable. "They're probably now capable of striking the United States," he said, and added that analysts within the US military are now "operating under the assumption that North Korea has the capability, even if it's not fully demonstrated."

      In other words, North Korea is ready for all-out nuclear war in the same way your friend who keeps trying to get you to listen to his mixtape is ready to perform at the VMAs: We all feel pretty sure it wouldn't go very well for him, but actually who knows?

      Earlier this year, Baker's team at Stratfor wrote a detailed analysis of how the US might attempt to wipe out North Korea's arsenal, and what Pyongyang's retaliation strategy would be. "These are important scenarios to play with," Baker told me.

      To that end, Baker helped me game out what would happen the day of a first strike from North Korea—from the immediate lead-up, to the outbreak of war. Some parts of his forecast surprised me. For one thing, Baker said if you think the US would just push all the big red buttons at its disposal, and turn North Korea into a crater, you're probably not a very good military strategist.

      Step 1: The US probably notices well before the launch
      Given what technology we know North Korea currently has, it's safe to say a nuclear-armed missile wouldn't just suddenly erupt from an underground silo. North Korea has a few potential launch methods, but the most trustworthy would be an old fashioned—and very obvious—stationary launch tower. But Baker told me that option is actually the worst because intelligence officials in enemy countries would have time to catch on. "Those are the ones that take several days to several weeks to set up and prepare the missile," he said.

      North Korea has successfully tested submarine-launched missiles as recently as December, but submarine-launched missiles only allow North Korea to attack from a few hundred miles off the coast, and North Korea's janky submarines would have a tough time making it that far.

      A better option would be a launch from a transporter erector launcher, or TEL. "You see them in the movies and TV shows, basically a big truck with a trailer on it," he told me. "That's an hour timeline, to move the missile out of the tunnel, set it up, and fire." And for the record, North Korea does look like it owns some TELs, since it bought some from China in 2012, and parades missiles around Pyongyang in them.

      But Baker seemed positive that even a one-hour setup is enough time for the world to notice that a North Korean missile is about to be launched, citing intense scrutiny on the region from an international network of radar scans, imaging satellites and heat signature-tracking equipment. "Very quickly after the North Koreans carry out a test, there are statements from the US and Japan about whether the test was successful or not, and that's because they've been monitoring the entire thing, even when the North Koreans do a surprise test with the mobile systems," Baker explained to me.

      In short, he says there wouldn't really be a surprise attack. "First, all the missile defense systems are put on heightened alert," Baker told me. After that, he explained that Japanese missile defense ships would be maneuvered into place.

      Game on for missile defense.

      Step 2: The US and Japan weigh a possible pre-emptive strike
      But of course, the best defense is a good offense. According to foreign policy analysts at George Washington University Law School, if spies were sure North Korea was arming a missile with a nuclear warhead and aiming it at the US, the US could launch a preemptive strike, and be confident that it could justify the strike later to the UN as a response to an "imminent armed attack."

      That decision might not even involve a phone call from President Trump, according to Baker.

      "I think it's going to come down to a decision by the military," he told me. He also explained that the military likes preemptive action. Waiting for an attack, and hoping it gets deflected is risky. On the other hand, if you strike preemptively, "you have a 100 percent chance of destroying it, and that's going to be the preference."

      But justifying pre-emptive airstrikes would be a sticky wicket, and the strikes themselves could trigger a potentially indignant response from China, Russia, and even South Korea. "From a political perspective," Baker said, "it would probably be better to allow the North to launch, and then shoot it, than it would to strike it while it's still on the platform."

      So it's not out of the question—but it appears unlikely—that the US would knowingly let a North Korean missile leave the ground.

      Step 3: A missile gets launched
      Even if the launch goes well, it's by no means certain that a North Korean missile would get anywhere near US soil. Intercontinental ballistic missiles are essentially suicidal spaceships that start their trip by leaving Earth's atmosphere. "The North Koreans have now demonstrated that they were able, at least in one test, to drop the front of a missile that looks like it went exoatmospheric, and then fell back in," Baker told me. But just falling back in isn't enough if the bomb on board the missile gets damaged in the process. "They've done some ground tests that show that their warheads are potentially capable of surviving re-entry," he said.

      Then of course, there's the open question of where this hypothetical missile would be headed. Baker told me there's no real certainty about just where in the US North Korea would want to strike, and that reachable locales like Hawaii and Los Angeles aren't the only areas Kim Jong-un has threatened. "We remember the map they published in pictures a few years back where there were little lines that may or may not have been [going] straight to Austin," he said.

      Step 4: The US and Japan try to shoot down the missile before it hits
      "There are land-based radar systems that are watching, as well as satellite systems that are constantly on the lookout for even the heat signature of a launch," Baker said. Inside of South Korea, the US has been planning for some time now to install a missile defense system called THAAD, but given the political instability of the last few weeks in South Korea, it's by no means certain that the THAAD system will be put in place.

      If THAAD exists at the time of launch and the missile is able to make it past it, it may not make it past Japan. Japanese Aegis navy ships would be floating around, completely ready to shoot defensive missiles of their own.

      If the missile successfully crosses the Pacific Ocean, responsibility for knocking them out falls to the US missile defense system in Alaska. Though that system does have holes. "It's not perfect, and it's never going to be perfect," Baker said.

      So if North Korea were extremely lucky, there might be a mushroom cloud over a US city.

      Still, in Baker's professional opinion, "it's highly likely that if the North Koreans are able to only pop off one or two missiles, those would never ultimately reach their target."

      But in all likelihood, North Korea will have better capabilities soon.

      Baker pointed to multiple-warhead missiles—some of which are terrifying super-weapons of almost unfathomable sophistication—as a potential dodge of the US missile defense system. "You can have multiple warheads potentially on the same missile that go in different directions, and you can aim them as they come down, and you can have dummies in there," Baker said. When North Korea gets its hands on that technology—and it's only a matter of time—they'll have a credible claim that they can nuke the US.

      Step 5: China responds
      Here's a good reason why President Trump might want to take it easy on China: according to Baker, it's very possible that if North Korea staged an unprovoked attack, China might move to prevent a second Korean War.

      "China has intimated that if the North Koreans trigger a military conflict, that China may in fact intervene in Pyongyang, and hold the Northern component of North Korea, and not give additional military support to the North Korean regime," Baker said. "I do not think the Chinese has any expectation that they're on par with the United States if there were this type of confrontation."

      But not all analysts feel like China would turn against its ally, North Korea. Joel S. Wit of the U.S.-Korea Institute at Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies wrote in The New York Times, that while China has pressured North Korea to denuclearize, it's overall attitude hasn't really changed. "A united Korea allied with Washington on China's border would be bad news for Beijing given its continuing rivalry with the United States in Asia," he wrote.

      Step 6: The US retaliates, but probably doesn't nuke North Korea
      Trump has signaled that he could be willing to use nuclear weapons against ISIS, so it stands to reason that he might well nuke North Korea in retaliation, right? Baker thinks not.

      "I think that's highly unlikely because the number of weapons the North Koreans have is extremely limited, and the size of the Korean Peninsula is extremely tiny, and the implications of dropping nuclear weapons on the Korean Peninsula are fairly large for the long-term reconstruction effort at bare minimum, but also for South Korea."

      Instead, Baker anticipates "a major cruise missile, followed up by an air campaign against all of the frontline North Korean artillery." The idea, he said, would be to disable North Korea's artillery along its front line, along with its mobile missile systems. It would be doing this all while "moving additional assets into the region," he said.

      Step 7: A war that North Korea probably doesn't win
      Now that both sides have used weapons, it matters much less who started it, and it's here that Stratfor's earlier report on the outbreak of a conflict between North Korea, and the US-South Korea team, becomes especially informative. Basically, "the first few hours of the conflict are essentially the time in which North Korea has to utilize every possible tool that it has," Baker told me. He thinks the North Koreans would fall back on its "traditional tools," which may include biological or chemical weapons—"more likely chemical than biological"—in an effort to slow any ground action by the United States, and put some serious hurt on northern South Korea for a while.

      After that, it's war, and Baker doesn't give North Korea very good odds.

      Barring some kind of sudden political shift in which South Koreans suddenly love Kim Jong-un, Baker told me, "it's still safe to say that in a conflict that's going to involve the United States—and maybe even a conflict that's only between the two Koreas—it's very hard for the North Koreans to end up on top."

      Follow Mike Pearl on Twitter.

  25. Camille

    Camille Kitchen Wench #TeamTots #TeamQuaid Super Moderator

    He's coke tweeting tonight...

  26. QueEx

    QueEx Well-Known Member Super Moderator

    North Korea says the US is 'begging for nuclear war' as stealth fighters begin training on the peninsula

    [​IMG]AP Photo/Andreea Alexandru

    • North Korea's Foreign Ministry said the US has "nuclear war mania," in a statement read on state TV on the weekend.
    • The statement came as US stealth fighters moved onto the Korean Peninsula for a US-South Korea aerial drill, the largest in history.
    • The air exercise, dubbed "Vigilant Ace" began on Monday.

    Tensions escalated along the Korean Peninsula over the weekend as US stealth fighters prepared for a joint military drill with South Korea, and North Korea criticized the US for its "nuclear war mania."

    North Korea made several statements about actions taken by the US over the weekend.

    North Korea's Foreign Ministry said in a statement read on state TV that President Donald Trump and his administration are "begging for nuclear war" by engaging in what the statement referred to as an "extremely dangerous nuclear gamble," reported CNN.

    The statement also said that if the Korean peninsula and the world were to be pushed to nuclear war, the US would be "fully responsible" because of its "reckless nuclear war mania."

    Then on Sunday, commentary run by state TV called this week's US-South Korea joint air exercises are a "dangerous provocation" pushing the region "to the brink of a nuclear war," according to CNN. North Korean media regularly threatens the US and its allies and blames the US for tensions on the peninsula.

    The US and its ally South Korea began their largest cooperative air exercise in history, dubbed "Vigilant Ace," on Monday

    The US Air Force said in a statement that F-22 and F-35 stealth jets had moved into South Korea over the weekend in preparation for the joint drill. Around 230 aircraft and 12,000 US personnel are be participating in the week-long exercise which will include more stealth jets than ever before.

    According to the US Air Force, the move is designed to boost the "combat effectiveness" of the alliance.

    White House national security adviser HR McMaster said on Saturday that the chances for nuclear war on the peninsula are continuing to grow, CNN reported.

    "I think it's increasing every day, which means that we are in a race, really, we are in a race to be able to solve this problem," McMaster said in a conference in California, when asked whether North Korea's intercontinental ballistic missile launch last week had increased the chance of war.

    McMaster also said that North Korea represents the "the greatest immediate threat to the United States."

    SEE ALSO: North Korea says the US is its only nuclear target


    MASTERBAKER ヽ(͡° ͜ʖ Grown Folks Board/cooking Super Moderator

    The 'Rocket Man' has landed in Seoul.

    I repeat: The 'Rocket Man' has landed in Seoul [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]


    MASTERBAKER ヽ(͡° ͜ʖ Grown Folks Board/cooking Super Moderator

    Trump just taunted Kim Jung Un on Twitter, saying, “I too have a Nuclear Button, but it is a much bigger & more powerful one than his, and my Button works!” These two childish buffoons must be stopped before they kill us all.
    VAiz4hustlaz likes this.

    MASTERBAKER ヽ(͡° ͜ʖ Grown Folks Board/cooking Super Moderator

    She TRIED to warn us...[​IMG]
    VAiz4hustlaz, QueEx and easy_b like this.
  30. easy_b

    easy_b Well-Known Member BGOL Investor


    MASTERBAKER ヽ(͡° ͜ʖ Grown Folks Board/cooking Super Moderator

  32. QueEx

    QueEx Well-Known Member Super Moderator

    I guess she was right about something!

  33. QueEx

    QueEx Well-Known Member Super Moderator

    At some point, you have to start asking yourself, are we witnessing the beginning of the end of Trump’s presidency???

    - He could still have a lot of “bounce back” left, but shit is beginning to mount; and he has demonstrated a great lack of discipline and ability to take and heed good advice for very long (the handlers can write good script, but he is about as good as guaranteed to ad lib off message).
  34. QueEx

    QueEx Well-Known Member Super Moderator

    Christopher Weyant Copyright

    Joe Heller Copyright 2018 Hellertoo

    MASTERBAKER ヽ(͡° ͜ʖ Grown Folks Board/cooking Super Moderator

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