The Saker: Debunking the flagwaving myths about an attack on North Korea

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The Saker: Debunking the flagwaving myths about an attack on North Korea

Written by The Saker; Originally appeared at The Unz Review

First, the bragging dummies

Trump and Haley are still at it.  The want to force China to take action against the DPRK by threatening to take North Korea “into their hands” if China refuses to comply.  Haley said “But to be clear, China can do more, (…) and we’re putting as much pressure on them as we can. The last time they completely cut off the oil, North Korea came to the table. And so we’ve told China they’ve got to do more. If they don’t do more, we’re going to take it into our own hands and then we’ll start to deal with secondary sanctions.”

First, let’s reset this scene in a kindergarten and replay it.

Kid A has a fight with Kid B.  Kid A threatens to beat up Kid B.  Kid B then tells Kid A to go screw himself.  Kid A does nothing, but issues more threats.  Kid B keeps laughing.  And then Kid A comes up with a brilliant plan: he threatens Kid C (who is much much bigger than Kid B and much much stronger too!) by telling him “if you don’t make Kid B comply with my demands, I will take the issue in my own hands!“.  The entire schoolyard erupts in hysterical laughter.

Question: how would you the the intelligence of Kid A?

Anyway,

This would all be really funny if this was a comedy show.  But what this all is in reality is a slow but steady progression towards war.  What makes this even worse is the media’s obsession with the range of North Korean missiles and whether they can reach Guam or even the USA.  With all due respect for the imperial “only we matter” (and nevermind the gooks), there are ways “we”, i.e. the American people can suffer terrible consequences from a war in the Korean Peninsula which have nothing to do with missile strikes on Guam or the USA.

The lucrative target: Japan

This summer I mentioned one of the most overlooked potential consequences of a war with the DPRK and I want to revisit this issue again.  First, the relevant excerpt from the past article:

While I personally believe that Kim Jong-un is not insane and that the main objective of the North Korean leadership is to avoid a war at all costs, what if I am wrong?  What if those who say that the North Korean leaders are totally insane are right? Or, which I think is much more likely, what if Kim Jong-un and the North Korean leaders came to the conclusion that they have nothing to lose, that the Americans are going to kill them all, along with their families and friends?  What could they, in theory, do if truly desperate?  Well, let me tell you: forget about Guam; think Tokyo!  Indeed, while the DPRK could devastate Seoul with old fashioned artillery systems, DPRK missiles are probably capable of striking Tokyo or the Keihanshin regionencompassing Kyoto, Osaka and Kobe including the key industries of the Hanshin Industrial Region.  The Greater Tokyo area (Kanto region) and the Keihanshin region are very densely populated (37 and 20 million people respectively) and contain an immense number of industries, many of which would produce an ecological disaster of immense proportions if hit by missiles.  Not only that, but a strike on the key economic and financial nodes of Japan would probably result in a 9-11 kind of international economic collapse.  So if the North Koreans wanted to really, really hurt the Americans what they could do is strike Seoul, and key cities in Japan resulting in a huge political crisis for the entire planet.  During the Cold War we used to study the consequences of a Soviet strike against Japan and the conclusion was always the same: Japan cannot afford a war of any kind.  The Japanese landmass is too small, too densely populated, to rich in lucrative targets and a war would lay waste to the entire country. This is still true today, only more so.  And just imagine the reaction in South Korea and Japan if some crazy US strike on the DPRK results in Seoul and Tokyo being hit by missiles!  The South Koreans have already made their position unambiguously clear, by the way. As for the Japanese, they are officially placing their hopes in missiles (as if technology could mitigate the consequences of insanity!).  So yeah, the DPRK is plenty dangerous and pushing them into their last resort is totally irresponsible indeed, nukes or no nukes.

Yet, for some reason, the western media rarely mentions Japan or the possible global economic consequences on a strike against Japan.  Very few people know for sure whether the North Koreans truly have developed a usable nuclear weapon (warhead and missile) or whether the North Korean ballistic missile truly can reach Guam or the USA.  But I don’t think that there is any doubt whatsoever that North Korean missile can easily cover the roughly 1000km (600 miles) to reach the heart of Japan.  In fact, the DPRK has already lobbed missiles over Japan in the past.  Some red blooded US Americans will, no doubt, explain to use that the US THAAD system can, and will, protect South Korea and Japan from such missile strikes.  Others, however, will disagree.  We won’t know until we find out, but judging by the absolutely dismal performance of the vaunted US Patriot system in the Gulf War,  I sure would not place my trust in any US made ABM system.  Last, but not least, the North Koreans could place a nuclear device (not even a real nuclear warhead) on a regular commercial ship or even a submarine, bring it to the coast of Japan and detonate it.  The subsequent panic and chaos might end up costing even more lives and money than the explosion itself.

Then there is Seoul, of course.  US analyst Anthony Cordesman put is very simply “A battle near the DMZ, directed at a target like Seoul, could rapidly escalate to the point at which it threatened the ROK’s entire economyeven if no major invasion took place“.

[Sidebar: Cordesman being Cordesman, he proceeds to hallucinate about the effects of a DPRK invasion of the ROK and comes up with sentences such as “Problems drive any assessment of the outcome of a major DPRK invasion of the ROK, even if one only focuses on DPRK- ROK forces. The DPRK has far larger ground forces, but the outcome of what would today be an air – land battle driven heavily by the overall mobility of DPRK land forces and their ability to concentrate along given lines of advance relative to the attrition technically superior ROK land and air forces could inflict is impossible to calculate with any confidence, as is the actual mix of forces both sides could deploy in a given area and scenario“.  Yup, the man is seriously discussing AirLand battle concepts in the context of a DPRK invasion of the South!  He might as well be discussing the use of Follow-on-Forces Attack concept in the context of a Martian invasion of earth (or an equally likely Russian invasion of the Baltic statelets!).  It is funny and pathetic how a country with a totally offensive national strategy, military doctrine and force posture still feels the need to hallucinate some defensive scenarios to deal with the cognitive dissonance resulting from clearly being the bad guy.]

Why does Cordesman say that?  Because according to a South Korean specialist “DPRK artillery pieces of calibers 170mm and 240mm “could fire 10,000 rounds per minute to Seoul and its environs.”   During the war in Bosnia the western press spoke of “massive Serbian artillery strikes on Sarajevo” when the actual rate of fire was about 1 artillery shell per minute.  It just makes me wonder what they would call 10’000 rounds per minutes.

The bottom line is this: you cannot expect your enemy to act in a way which suits you; in fact you should very much assume that he is going to do what you do not expect and what is the worst possible for you.  And, in this context, the DPRK has many more options than shooting an ICBM at Guam or the USA.  The nutcases in the Administration might not want to mention it, but an attack on the DPRK risks bringing down both the South Korean and the Japanese economies with immediate and global consequences: considering that rather shaky and vulnerable nature of the international financial and economic system, I very much doubt that a major crisis in Asia would not result in the collapse of the US economy (which is fragile anyway).

We should also consider the political consequences of a war on the Korean Peninsula, especially if, as is most likely, South Korea and Japan suffer catastrophic damage.  This situation could well result in such an explosion of anti-US feelings that the US would have to pack and leave from the region entirely.

How do you think the PRC feels about such a prospect?  Exactly.  And might this not explain why the Chinese are more than happy to let the USA deal with the North Korean problem knowing full well that one way or another the USA will lose without the Chinese having to fire a single shot?

The terrain

Next I want to re-visit a threat which is discussed much more often: North Korean artillery and special forces.  But first, I ask you to take a close look at the following three maps of North Korea:

The Saker: Debunking the flagwaving myths about an attack on North Korea The Saker: Debunking the flagwaving myths about an attack on North Korea The Saker: Debunking the flagwaving myths about an attack on North Korea

You can also download these full-size maps from here.

What I want you to see is that the terrain in North Korea is what the military call “mixed terrain”.  The topography of North Korea article in Wikipedia actually explains this very well:

The terrain consists mostly of hills and mountains separated by deep, narrow valleys. The coastal plains are wide in the west and discontinuous in the east.  Early European visitors to Korea remarked that the country resembled “a sea in a heavy gale” because of the many successive mountain ranges that crisscross the peninsula. Some 80 percent of North Korea’s land area is composed of mountains and uplands, with all of the peninsula’s mountains with elevations of 2,000 metres (6,600 ft) or more located in North Korea. The great majority of the population lives in the plains and lowlands.

Being from Switzerland I know this kind of terrain very well (it’s what you would see in the Alpine foothills called “Oberland” or “Préalpes”) and I want to add the following: dense vegetation, forests, rivers and creek with steep banks and rapid currents.  Small villages and *a lot* of deep, underground tunnels. There are also flat areas in North Korea, of course, but, unlike Switzerland, they are composed mostly of rice fields and marshes.  In military terms this all translates into one simple and absolutely terrifying word: infantry.

Why should the word infantry scare so much? Because infantry means on foot (or horses) with very little airpower (AA and MANPADS), satellites (can’t see much), armor (can’t move around), gunships, submarines or cruise missiles can do.  Because infantry means “no lucrative targets” but small, dispersed and very well hidden forces.  Company and even platoon-level warfare.  Because infantry in mixed terrains means the kind of warfare the US Americans fear most.

The adversary

And with that in mind, let’s repeat that besides its huge regular armed forces (about a million soldiers plus another 5 million plus in paramilitary organizations) the DPRK also has 200’000 special forces.   Let’s assume that the Western propaganda is, for once, saying the truth and that the regular armed forces are poorly equipped, poorly trained, poorly commanded and even hungry and demotivated (I am not at all sure that this is a fair assumption, but bear with me).  But spreading that amount of soldiers all over the combat area would still represent a huge headache, even for “the best and most powerful armed forces in history” especially if you add 200’000 well-trained and highly motivated special forces to the mix (I hope that we can all agree that assuming that special forces are also demotivated would be rather irresponsible).  How would you go about finding out who is who and where the biggest threat comes from. And consider this: it would extremely naive to expect the North Korean special forces to show up in some clearly marked DPRK uniforms.  I bet you that a lot of them will show up in South Korean uniforms, and others in civilians clothes.  Can you imagine the chaos of trying to fight them?

You might say that the North Koreans have 1950s weapons.  So what?  That is exactly what you need to fight the kind of warfare we are talking about: infantry in mixed terrains.  Even WWII gear would do just fine.  Now is time to bring in the North Korean artillery.  We are talking about 8,600 artillery guns, and over 4,800 multiple rocket launchers (source).  Anthony Cordesman estimates that there are 20’000 pieces in the “surrounding areas” of Seoul.  That way is more than the US has wordwide (5,312 according to the 2017 “Military Balance”, including mortars).  And keep in mind that we are not talking about batteries nicely arranged in a flat desert, but thousands of simple but very effective artillery pieces spread all over the “mixed terrain” filled with millions of roaming men in arms, including 200’000 special forces.  And a lot of that artillery can reach Seoul, plenty enough to create a mass panic and exodus.

Think total, abject and bloody chaos

So when you think of a war against North Korea, don’t think “Hunt for Red October” or “Top Gun”.  Think total, abject and bloody chaos.  Think instant full-scale FUBAR.  And that is just for the first couple of days, then things will get worse, much worse.  Why?

Because by that time I expect the North Korean Navy and Air Force to have been completely wiped-off, waves after waves of cruise missiles will have hit an X number of facilities (with no way whatsoever to evaluate the impact of these strikes but nevermind that) and the US military commanders will be looking at the President with no follow-up plan to offer.  As for the North Koreans, by then they will just be settling in for some serious warfare, infantry-style.

There is a better than average that a good part of the DPRK elites will be dead.   What is sure is that the command and control of the General Staff Department over many of its forces will be if not lost, then severely compromised.  But everybody will know that they have been attacked and by whom.  You don’t need much command and control when you are in a defensive posture in the kind of terrain were movement is hard to begin with.  In fact, this is the kind of warfare where “high command” usually means a captain or a major, not some faraway general.

You might ask about logistics?  What logistics I ask you? The ammo is stored nearby in ammo dumps, food you can always get yourself and, besides, its your home turf, the civilians will help.

Again, no maneuver warfare, no advanced communications, no heavy logistical train – we are talking about a kind of war which is much closer to WWII or even WWI than Desert Storm.

[Sidebar: as somebody who did a lot of interesting stuff with the Swiss military, let me add this: this kind of terrain is a battlefield were a single company can stop and hold an entire regiment; this is the kind of terrain where trying to accurately triangulate the position of an enemy radio is extremely hard; this is the kind of terrain where only horses and donkeys can carry heavy gear over narrow, zig-zagging, steep paths;  entire hospitals can be hidden underground with their entrance hidden by a barn or a shed; artillery guns are dug in underground and fire when a think reinforced concrete hatch is moved to the side, then they hide; counter-battery radar hardly works due to bouncing signals; radio signals have a short range due to vegetation and terrain; weapon caches and even company size forces camps can only be detected by literally stepping on them; underground bunkers have numerous exits; air-assault operations are hindered by the very high risk of anti-aircraft gunfire or shoulder-fired missiles which can be hidden and come from any direction.  I could go on and on but I will just say this: if you want to defeat your adversary in such a terrain there is only one technique which works: you do what the Russians did in the mountains in southern Chechnia during the second Chechen war – you send in your special forces, small units on foot, and you fight the enemy on his own turf.  That is an extremely brutal, dangerous and difficult kind of warfare which I really don’t see the US Americans doing.  The South Koreans, yes, maybe. But here is where the number game also kicks in: in Chechnia the Russians Spetsnaz operated in a relatively small combat zone and they had the numbers.  Now look at a map of North Korea and the number of North Korean special forces and tell me – do the South Koreans have the manpower for that kind of offensive operations?  One more thing: the typical US American reaction to such arguments would be “so what, we will just nuke them!“.  Wrong.  Nuke them you can, but nukes are not very effective in that kind of terrain, finding a target is hard to begin with, enemy forces will be mostly hidden underground and, finally, you are going to use nukes to deal with company or platoon size units?!  Won’t work.]

If you think that I am trying to scare you, you are absolutely correct. I am.  You ought to be scared.  And notice that I did not even mention nukes.  No, not nuclear warheads in missiles.  Basic nuclear devices driven around in common army trucks.  Driven down near the DMZ in peacetime amongst thousands of other army trucks and then buried somewhere, ready to explode at the right time.  Can you imagine what the effect of a “no-warning” “where did it come from?” nuke might be on advancing US or South Korean forces?  Can you imagine how urgent the question “are there any more?” will become?  And, again, for that the North Koreans don’t even need a real nuclear weapon.  A primitive nuclear device will be plenty.

I can already hear the die-hard “rah-rah-rah we are number 1!!” flag-wavers dismissing it all saying “ha! and you don’t think that the CIA already knows all that?”.  Maybe they do and maybe they don’t – but the problem is that the CIA, and the rest of the US intelligence community, has been so hopelessly politicized that it can do nothing against perceived political imperatives.  And, frankly, when I see that the US is trying to scare the North Koreans with B-1B and F-22s I wonder if anybody at the Pentagon, or at Langely, is still in touch with reality.  Besides, there is intelligence and then there is actionable intelligence. And in this case knowing what the Koreans could do does not at all mean know what to do about it.

Speaking of chaos – do you know what the Chinese specifically said about it?

Can you guess?

That they will “not allow chaos and war on the peninsula“.

Enter the Chinese

Let’s talk about the Chinese now.  They made their position very clear: “If North Korea launches an attack that threatens the United States then China should stay neutral, but if the United States attacks first and tries to overthrow North Korea’s government China will stop them“.  Since there is no chance at all of a unprovoked North Korean attack on the South or the USA, especially with this threat by the Chinese to remain neutral if the DPRK attacks first, let’s focus on the 2nd part of the warning.

The Saker: Debunking the flagwaving myths about an attack on North Korea

What could the Chinese do if the US decides to attack North Korea?  There basic options depend on the nature of the attack:

  1. If the US limits itself to a combination of missile and airstrikes and the DPRK retaliates (or not), then the Chinese can simply provide technical, economic and humanitarian aid to the DPRK and denounce the US on a political level.
  2. If the USA follow up with a land invasion of some kind or if the DPRK decides to retaliate in a manner which would force the USA into a land invasion of some kind, then the Chinese could not only offer directly military aid, including military personnel, but they could also wait for the chaos to get total in Korea before opening a 2nd front against US forces (including, possibly, Taiwan).

That second scenario would create a dangerous situation for China, of course, but it would be even far more dangerous for US forces in Asia who would find themselves stretched very thin over a very large area with no good means to force either adversary to yield or stop.  Finally, just as China cannot allow the USA to crush North Korea, Russia cannot allow the USA to crush China.  Does that dynamic sound familiar?  It should as it is similar to what we have been observing in the Middle-East recently:

  1. Russia->Iran->Hezbollah->Syria
  2. Russia->China->DPRK

This is a very flexible and effective force posture where the smallest element is at the forefront of the line-up and the most powerful one most removed and at the back because it forces the other side to primarily focus on that frontline adversary while maximizing the risks of any possibly success because that success is likely to draw in the next, bigger and more powerful adversary.

Conclusion: preparing for genocide

The US has exactly a zero chance of disarming or, even less so, regime changing the DPRK by only missile and airstrikes.  To seriously and meaningfully take the DPRK “in their hands” the US leaders need to approve of a land invasion.  However, even if that is not the plan, if the DPRK decides to use its immense, if relatively antiquated, firepower to strike at Seoul, the US will have no choice to move in ground forces across the DMZ.  If that happens about 500’000 ROK troops backed by 30’000 US military personnel will face about 1 million North Korea soldiers backed by 5 million paramilitaries and 200’000 special forces on a mix terrain battlefield which will require an infantry-heavy almost WWII kind of military operations.  By definition, if the USA attacks the DPRK do try to destroy its nuclear program such an attack will begin by missile and air strikes on DPRK facilities meaning that the USA will immediately strike at the most valuable targets (from the point of view of the North Koreans of course).  This means that following such an attack the US will have little or no dissuasive capabilities left and that means that following such an attack the DPRK will have no intensive left to show any kind of restraint.  In sharp contrast, even if the DPRK decides to begin with an artillery barrage across the DMZ, including the Seoul metropolitan area, the will still have the ability to further escalate by either attacking Japan or by setting off a nuclear device.  Should that happen there is an extremely high probability that the USA will either have to “declare victory and leave” (a time-honored US military tradition) or begin using numerous tactical nuclear strikes.  Tactical nuclear strikes, by the way, have a very limited effectiveness on prepared defensive position in mixed terrain, especially narrow valleys.  Besides, targets for such strikes are hard to find.  At the end of the day, the last and only option left to the USA is what they always eventually resort to would be to directly and deliberately engage in the mass murder of civilians to “break the enemy’s will to fight” and destroy the “regime support infrastructure” of the enemy’s forces (another time-honored US military tradition stretching back to the Indian wars and which was used during the Korean war and, more recently, in Yugoslavia).  Here I want to quote an article by Darien Cavanaugh in War is Boring:

On a per-capita basis, the Korean War was one of the deadliest wars in modern history, especially for the civilian population of North Korea. The scale of the devastation shocked and disgusted the American military personnel who witnessed it, including some who had fought in the most horrific battles of World War II (…).  These are staggering numbers, and the death rate during the Korean War was comparable to what occurred in the hardest hit countries of World War II. (…)  In fact, by the end of the war, the United States and its allies had dropped more bombs on the Korean Peninsula, the overwhelming majority of them on North Korea, than they had in the entire Pacific Theater of World War II.

“The physical destruction and loss of life on both sides was almost beyond comprehension, but the North suffered the greater damage, due to American saturation bombing and the scorched-earth policy of the retreating U.N. forces,” historian Charles K. Armstrong wrote in an essay for the Asia-Pacific Journal.  “The U.S. Air Force estimated that North Korea’s destruction was proportionately greater than that of Japan in the Second World War, where the U.S. had turned 64 major cities to rubble and used the atomic bomb to destroy two others. American planes dropped 635,000 tons of bombs on Korea—that is, essentially on North Korea—including 32,557 tons of napalm, compared to 503,000 tons of bombs dropped in the entire Pacific theatre of World War II.”  As Armstrong explains, this resulted in almost unparalleled devastation.  “The number of Korean dead, injured or missing by war’s end approached three million, ten percent of the overall population. The majority of those killed were in the North, which had half of the population of the South; although the DPRK does not have official figures, possibly twelve to fifteen percent of the population was killed in the war, a figure close to or surpassing the proportion of Soviet citizens killed in World War II.”

Twelve to fifteen percent of the entire population was murdered by US forces in Korea during the last war(compare these figures to the so-called ‘genocide’ of Srebrenica!).  That is what Nikki Haley and the psychopaths in Washington DC are really threatening to do when they speak of taking the situation “in their own hands” or, even better, when Trump threatens to “totally destroy” North Korea.  What Trump and his generals forget is that we are not in 1950 but in 2017 and that while the Korean War and a negligible economic impact on the rest of the planet, a war the middle of Far East Asia today would have huge economic consequences.  Furthermore, in the 1950 the total US control over the mass media, at least in the so-called “free world” made it relatively easy to hide out the murderous rampage by US-lead forces, something completely impossible nowadays.  The modern reality is that irrespective of the actual military outcome on the ground, any US attack on the DPRK would result is such a massive loss of face for the USA that it would probably mark the end of the US presence in Asia and a massive international financial shock probably resulting in a crash of the currently already fragile US economy.  In contrast, China would come out as the big winner and the uncontested Asian superpower.

All the threats coming out of US politicians are nothing more than delusional hot air.  A country which has not won a single meaningful war since the war in the Pacific and whose Army is gradually being filled with semi-literate, gender-fluid and often conviction or unemployment avoiding soldiers is in no condition whatsoever to threaten a country with the wide choice of retaliatory options North Korea has.  The current barrage of US threats to engage in yet another genocidal war are both illegal under international law and politically counter-productive.  The fact is that the USA is unlikely to be able to politically survive a war against the DPRK and that it now has no other option than to either sit down and seriously negotiate with the North Koreans or accept that the DPRK has become an official nuclear power.

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  • Trump’s bellicose speech at UN on Sep 19 followed by Abe’s against North on 20 actually triggered to boost Nikkei(above) and Dow(below). Japanese market is easy to manipulate because the market share of Bank of Japan and Pension fund combined represents 7 to 8%. Wall Street, I am sure, made a lot of money out of this tension and both Japan and Korea purchased the US made weapons a lot. The US military-industry-financial complex must be very happy.
    Since both China and Russia have geared up for a war, the US can’t do anything but show off.

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/f775b50356859116c185dc9ed0550d531c0a56b7fdccb7ae657beb59d7f55c53.jpg

    • as

      For the MIC yes war is a rackets. But i don’t think this tensions is good for their military planners especially when there’s no clear strategy that can guarantee them a win or to contains their losses. Well assuming they’re not geopolitically blind.

    • i m going to check out okinawa right after i compare notes with the japanese right wingers(to show my solidarity with nanking massacre being a fabrication) during the new year’s eve.

  • as

    Suppose that the US leveled the NORK with hundreds of thousands dead in Seoul or Japan mainland would the world really cheered them on for being brave and freedom fighting democracy protecting deeds ?

  • Rex drabble

    The yanks arent going to do fuck all.The odds are against them,China and Russia will sort this out.

  • alejoeisabel

    As usual a great analysis. The solution is to end the armistice and sign a peace treated with full diplomatic relations, and the US must pay war reparation. Second, there must be a peace treaty with South Korea, and ROK must also pay for war reparations.

    • Graeme Rymill

      Pay North Korea reparations?The Korean War was a war of aggression initiated by North Korea. The chances of the United States and South Korea paying reparations are zero.

      • Stephen Lambert

        Go check your facts again.

        • Graeme Rymill

          Thanks for the advice Stephen! I rechecked my sources and sure enough…. the North Koreans initiated a massive general offensive with the backing of the Soviets. Yes there had been minor clashes across the 38th parallel some initiated by South Korea. The fact remains it was the North Koreans who embarked on a massive multi-division assault across the 38th parallel with the intention of conquering all of South Korea.

          • Stephen Lambert

            That’s not what I was referring to at all. Do you think the a country’s only begins when the US becomes involved in the internal affairs of that country?

            Who created the “38th parallel” and who gave them that right and why did they do it?

            What was Korea like before 1910? Not saying it was the US that wrecked that country at that stage but having fought the Japanese for liberation the US divided the country in the US’s war for capitalism.

          • Graeme Rymill

            We can argue this back and forth all day. Neither of us will change our opinion. However alejoeisabel’s “solution” involving the US and South Korea paying war reparations is still a fantasy.

          • Stephen Lambert

            Graeme, I wasn’t arguing with you. No sane person would want this to go the way the respective leaders appear to be pushing it.

            The point I was making was simply with a little piece of understanding where the other party is coming from, whether you agree with them or not, it could reshape the available options.

  • Joe

    There will be no war

    • There is a problem – – – America needs a war. One she can call a “real war.”
      She needs it so she can change the rules of the financial game ….. and do things like put moratoria on debt repayments. If she can’t provoke the other side (Iran, DPRK or Venezuela seem the likely options) then she’ll have to stomp in moralising – like she did with Iraq’s WMD.

      No war offers her only definite inexorable (financial) ‘defeat.’ War offers the (however remote) possibility of some sort of victory even if it’s king of a broken world. Which way do you think she’s likely to go?

      And …. when does that petroyuan convertible to solid gold come into play? Soon if not already.

  • Ivan Freely

    There will be no war because it’s not in Israel’s best interest. Iran have always been the target. If the US launches a ground war against North Korea, it would be a huge mistake because there wouldn’t be enough troops / equipment for a war against Iran. It’s either North Korea or Iran but not both. However, regardless of who will be attacked, another major ground war (i.e. Iraq) would be the end of the US. So, if the Neocons were to launch one last war, sacrificing the US, then Iran would be the target.

    • Nexusfast123

      They have not got enough storm troopers to invade Iran. Iran’s terrain is even more challenging. They would be faced with a similar scenario with Russia and China sitting behind Iran and economic chaos. An asymmetrical strategy defines how the Iranians will fight – bloody and creating high cost for the attacker.

      • You can call me Al

        I agree, but if that economic chaos is exactly what they want; then what.

        economic chaos = a Global reset = 1 World government and currency.

    • You can call me Al

      I would have gone on Iran as well, but whilst we try and guess the thoughts and plans of Satan, he is conquering Africa with little, or no media coverage of it.

      Unfortunately 1 day, I do happen to think that Iran and NK will be attacked due to the NWO plans for a New World Currency – https://missiongalacticfreedom.wordpress.com/2017/07/07/there-are-only-3-countries-in-the-world-without-a-rothschild-owned-central-bank/

  • hvaiallverden

    Yup, some sane assessments and not some drooling wankees moronic drivel.

    NK looks like Norway, the sole reason for never be afraid of the Russians is that like the Wankees in Afghanistan, the may hold the urban areas and some bunkers here and there but thats all, as soon the go outside, their safe zones hey are easy targets, thats why they do this idiotic war fare in Afghanistan, witch is why they never will win, victory is simply out of the question.

    Looking at the map, hehe, you have to be an total idiot to go to an ground offensive in NK, forget that, nuks, well, again, dont matter how big the stick is, 100 MT, dont matter, the effect, will never be larger than where it hits, an valley, fry some square miles up and down the valley, but the next valley is and will not even be affected, so you have to systematically nuke every valley in the country, and that, is the dooms day scenario I can see, if it is to be done, that massive amounts of Nuks will decimate the entire region, the fall out will not affect the NKs as much it will in fact affect the entire regin incl Japan, China, Russia and finally SK, witch will be non-inhabitable for some thousands of years, maybe a million if weapon grade nuks are used. and thats what I define as short time effect, the long time effect will be global in scale and wipe out life the Pacific ocean, etc, etc.

    And then the CM, yeah, if I was the NKs, I would go fishing, somewhere and let them emptily their stocks, wave after wave, and then what, killed millions of civilian, witch is the Wankees specialty, apart from that, what, I guess they will do little or have an limited effect on the over all NKs military arsenal if any.
    Etc. etc.
    I agree fully with this assessment in everything else, coming from the Saker, and above all, NK have all the rights to do what They want, all the rights to never trust the Wankees, witch we all know is deprived from any level of sanity, and what bugs me, is again the sheer stupidity of the SK whom I guess actually think this war against NK is something eh…… Good.
    You gotta be kidding.

    I dont want to go into more details since I respect the NKs positions, but again, a war is simply the single most bonkers narrative I can imagine, NKs topography is, their best weapon, never forget that.

    peace

  • Barba_Papa

    >>Yet, for some reason, the western media rarely mentions Japan or the possible global economic consequences on a strike against Japan.<<

    For the same reason why to journalists every APC or tracked piece of artillery is a tank. These guys have zero military knowledge. These guys studied anything but actual military studies. Not surprising as even in history studies at university actual military history, or old school political history is frowned upon. You have to look really hard for courses in those subjects. At least I had too. When you majored in gender studies, or something else that's totally useless, why you ended up in journalism in the first place, it's no wonder you're clueless regarding major military and strategic issues.

    As for North Korea, I've said it before and I'll say it again, how come the media, which I don't think are all puppets controlled by some puppet master, or politicians as well, including those who are critical to America, have not addressed the huge white elephant in the room? A nuclear power is threatening to attack another nuclear power and why are we not screaming bloody murder about this insanity? It's like we have this massive cognitive dissonance where we know that nukes exist, but somehow, for some magical reason, nobody seems to think they will get used.

  • Bilaal Abdullah

    While the US has the means to destroy to the North Korean state structure and end millions of North Korean lives, on the other hand, a war with North Korea would end American dominance in North Asia and be an “Empire Collapsing” event. See a short fictional piece on a US/North Korea conflict that was written before the recent successful Hwaesong 15 rocket launches… https://dissidentvoice.org/2017/07/the-yasukuni-gambit/

  • Rodger

    How many special forces would you need to occupy Seoul? 20.000? Those can come across the border in an hour, need 2 hours to get all the civilian cars they need for transportation from a single village or small town between the border and Seoul and be in strategic positions in the city in another hour. They can get all the supplies they need from the South Korean army and police stations. The North Korean army doesn’t need transportation columns because South Korea has more than enough civilian cars and stockpiles.

    • FlorianGeyer

      ” get all the civilian cars they need for transportation ”

      Indeed and since the Ukraine attacks on the Donbass in 2014 we have witnessed the unrivalled use of civilian vehicles, many of which are 4×4’s , pressed into service with the military forces of the Donbass and Syria. The civilian vehicles are often superior mechanically to the military transport . There was a smaller use of Parisian Taxi’s to transport troops to the front in 1914 for a short time, but it was literally a ‘Taxi service’.

    • Cheryl Brandon

      Where are the Special Forces to save the Palestine from Ethnic CLEANSING in Israhell, which begun since 1947???

  • FlorianGeyer

    A serious ant excellent appraisal by The Saker as always. I would also add the following :)

  • christianblood

    China should make it VERY clear to the thugs in Washington that if U$ attacks DPRK China will enter the war and defend the DPRK.

  • Starlight

    So many words saying NOTHING of value. But then again his blog rose to prominence with articles DEMANDING that Putin remian weak and supine and NEVER invade Ukraine to seek its peaceful partition. The ‘genius’ Saker told his readers that sanctions would be over in “no time”- then when of course sanctions escalated against Russia, told his readers that sanctions didn’t m,atter anyway. So much for his ‘analysis’- but his agenda- thatt’s something everyone here should be very concerned about- where is he based again? Oh, that’s right, Florida USA.

    If Putin had invaded Ukraine, ended the civil war there, and helped the PEACEFUL division into two new nations, Clinton would have failed to win the Democrat primary, and we’d have neither Trump nor Clinton as president. NATO would be cowed, and not bellicose right on Russia’s borders. The Deep State projects for greater wars would be on ice. But Team Saker had their way with Putin, so the world sits right on the precipce of WW3.

    However, N Korea. All you need to know is this…

    After WW2, the allies (Deep State) chose to keep Japan as the regional superpower, and exterminated all fledgling socialist movements in post war Japan. So Japan never changed. And Japan kept its attitude to its SLAVE COLONY of Korea. Japan worked with the USA to EXTERIMINATE all civilain infrastructure across the entire nation of Korea in the so-called Korean war- a war none of Korea properly recovered from unti the 1980s.

    But DIVIDING Korea was the ultimate way to ensure Korea was kept down for all time, Japan knew that one day China would rise- China’s size (like the size of Russia) made this inevitable. So Japan’s plan was to slip no lower than no.2 regional power. And this means no unified Korea.

    N Korea is FORCED to be bellicose, just as E Germany was bellicose during the cold war. This makes it seem as if a re-unification is impossible. But what happened to Germany the moment Russia withdrew from E Germany? The reunification the jewish controlled media had stated would take DECADES happened virtually overnight- and today German’s main leaders- including Merkel, come from the East.

    The situation in the far east after WW2 is FROZEN by design- outstanding animosities kept below the surface by an explosion of trade. But one day the thaw will happen, and the far east will see great wars. However, wars in that region do NOT serve the Deep State so the freeze is maintained, and lies are told- especially by people like Saker.

    America has ZERO intention of going to war with N Korea. N Korea has ZERO intention of attcaking anyone. It’s all for show- with the lies of the show disseminated by the usual suspects and fools. But if America withdrew its forces from the south, Korea would reunify just as fast as Germany did- and its future leaders would come from the north. But before Korea could do this, Japan would attack- for Japan today is the same Japan of the 1920s and 1930s- the Japan of atrocities in Korea and China. Japan today is an insanely racist, xenophobic society with a supremacy complex. But Japan is also a ‘soft’ nuclear power- in other words Japan has missile tech and nuclear warhead fuel, and can build nukes at the drop of a hat.

    The Far East is the very definition of STATUS QUO. And the 99.99% percentile of the Human Race hasn’t the first clue about the real facts of the current Far East geo-political situation, Few people even know anything about recent history, or the background behind the form of current nations.

    Now if the FICTION sold by the Saker were true, America would attack N Korea tomorrow- for the practice. Taking down a ‘rogue’ power with limited nukes would be something the US armed services would be gagging to do- a chance to try out their new toys and strategies. No nation on Earth can project its military power like the USA- Russia isn’t even the same universe in this regard. Russia is tops when it comes to full on nuclear war. Russia would be better than NATO at ground war. But when it comes to projecting full spectrum military power anywhere on the Earth, America stands alone.

    The reason people like Saker focus on N Korea is MISDIRECTION- to make you look away from the real target- IRAN. Iran isn’t as ‘fun’ as N Korea as a target for the Yank war machine, but Iran is the real political target- a FACT team saker hopes you will overlook. And the ONLY reason the USA hasn’t hit Iran yet is political- the fact Iran will do major damage to KSA and Israel, which many current leading Israelis and Saudis don’t want.

    • as

      Political yes since all of their nuclear options (economic sanctions, arms embargo, fostering armed opposition, massive propaganda and fake news as well as various low key political harassment move through UN and region) and still failed to set the precondition for the US to start bombing them which is that Iran isolated and it wouldn’t get them clashes with major superpowers rival the Russians.
      Moreover their failed design in Syria put a good stop to their invincibility myth that their proxy relied upon.

  • goingbrokes

    Air bases on the South side of Korean peninsula are not beyond missile range, neither would be aircraft carriers. How’s the air-war going to work out? Not well, I suppose. Long range bombers from Guam of course, but that is not going to be enough, or efficient enough.

  • Tommy Jensen

    If China wins in any case, thats maybe the reason why the Jew controlled USA will bomb NK, as Goldmann Sachs and Co already made all China´s economic strategies.
    “Nothing in politics happens by accident, everything is detailed planned”.

    • dontknow trump might disagree.

  • Tommy Jensen

    USA dont need to use their own troops.
    Japan has always shown their willingness to be used as cannonfodder for US, further Ukranians, Romanians, Poles, Europe and all kind of mercenary thugs would be willing lapdogs.

    • Majority of Japanese does not but we are the looser of WW2. My country has been kept under occupation substantially for 72 years due to the US intervention back in 1959 for our supreme court decision to make US-Japan security treaty put above our pacifist constitution. The intervention was found in US National Archive in 2008 for the first time. Things are more complicated than you think.

      • as

        The farthest east Japan needs a guardianship at it’s lowest point after the war to keep the land from further retaliation from the Soviet or the Chinese which the US offers. Now and then the country stayed occupied by US foreign forces due to the same problem which is that they couldn’t contest the Chinese full might in the event of conflict of interest thus pushing them into the US hands though i question that it actually made them secure since the US are repeat offenders in prolific military adventure (or misadventures) that put the stake higher than ever since now you have two superpowers with nuclear and one of them continuously waving their d*cks around from your backyard.
        IMO their best chances are in the greater asia coalition rather than the west far across the Pacific however Japanese per tradition just can’t make a respectful bow to the Chinese. Maybe start by admitting it’s past misdeeds and actually apologizing for them.

        All in all they ultimately need to embrace their neighbours as friends and it’s strength. Unfortunately those need mutual respect to start with.

        • 3 cheers for ur analysis. let me supplement it with my observation after 2 decades of in-depth and 1st hand research on contemporary chinese and asian histories. here is what i concluded:
          Since the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom, in China there has emerged a large group of anti-China and anti-Asian elements. Taking advantage of opium damage to china, they turned China into a living hell. Most of them are pro-Western. Among them, Christians have an undying hatred against China and Asia.
          Sun Yat-sen and the nanking massacre Memorial in Nanjing are their symbols.

          There is still a long way to go for China and Asia to return to their old glory days and peace in the world.

          here is that original chinese post(which might get me arrested in china, if not for my buddy-buddy relation with the military technologists:

          自从太平天国,中国冒出了一大羣的反华和反亚份子。 趁着鸦片的危害,他们把中国变成了人间地狱。他们多半是亲西方的。而在他们之中,和中国 和 亚洲 有不公在天 之仇 的 是 基督徒。
          南京的孙中山 和 日本大屠杀 纪念馆 就是他们的 象徵。
          中国和亚洲的复兴 和 世界 的 和平 还 有很长的路要走。

          • as

            The discovery of the land in the far east inhabited by an advanced civilizations that the Christianity doesn’t know anything about. Probably back then.
            Once the Christianity works in semi or full theocracy that their upper echelons are believed to be God’s messengers and for the messenger that directly communicates with the god it’s a folly to admitted that they weren’t informed by the omnipotence of the gods.
            In the end they have to make up lies after lies when they have to explain just where the heck is prester john kingdom ?

          • the first christians who came did think they v found paradise. but the god-chosen smart jews just wont have it. they couldnt have bunch of chinese to be their gods. so the smartest of the jews, karl marx, wrote something in the new york daily magazine that the chinese civilization was backward and corrupt and should be overthrown, and the chinese, god or not,actually had love for opium in their genes. collaborating with his cousins, sassoons and rothchilds and hiring the british navy, the trio managed to bring to china a century of opium holocaust, which was finally stopped by mao with support from the japanese.

      • “complicated” is ok, but opposite to the fact is not. we r stucked with the latter.

    • the danger is for the american military warmonkeys to take thing in their own hands, as happened at least 5 times in plans and actual order and action to nuke china.

  • Solomon Krupacek

    to much words for nothing.

    dear swiss guy, i remember such aricles abou afghanistan. and despite all “clever” articles yanks had no problem to destroy talibans units, weapons. they took also bin laden.

    similarly, it is primitively easy to bom in the ancient age north korea. for amrica this is enough. they dont care, which regime will be established by chinese, important is, no nuclear program.
    finally, be sure, america will hit. and will hit hard. i dont want moralize now, it is legal or not, simply the fact is, they will hit. and maybe japan will hit as first. what then?

  • america needs north korea as an alibi to keep its nuke ass on japan and s.korea.
    japan needs north korea to build up its arms to someday free itself from under america’s ass.
    china needs an arms race with japan to take taiwan back from america’s protection.
    have i miss anything?

  • Don’t forget the hundred thousand plus Chinese “Volunteers” who managed to cross the Yalu and totally surprise the American forces during the Korean War.

  • Cheryl Brandon

    U$A should not be at any peace talks; They carried out bombin raids which completely flattened North Korea; The Koreans should be calling for them to go before ICC for dropping 630,000 bombs on such a area??? China and Russia actually share borders with North Korea so, what the FUCK is USA is doing there? They only kill/destroy and walk away like cock sure criminals???

  • “All the threats coming out of US politicians are nothing more than delusional hot air.”
    —————–
    You’re assuming the lawmakers and cronies running the show are creatures of reason spouting hot air – what if they’re not? What if they’re half as stupid, ignorant and arrogant as they appear to be?