Beyond the Cusp

August 12, 2017

Trump and America Alone

 

The United States has not ever been known to be alone in the world with friends which can be counted on her two hands. Those days are almost upon us. Very soon the United States will be finding herself blamed for acting when she acts and for standing aside when she doesn’t act. She will start facing denunciations in the General Assembly of the United Nations by votes resembling those only Israel has faced before where 130 will vote to denounce her with maybe a dozen supporting America and the remainder abstaining and in the United Nations Security Council she will find only her own Veto will prevent her facing sanctions. Whenever the United States acts there will be accusations of unilateralism even when her actions are to rescue a nation from hostile acts of their neighbors. What could possibly bring on such condemnations? Well isn’t it obvious? Her own leftists and their NGO’s in their inevitable rush to try and discredit and destroy President Trump will result in their also discrediting the necessary actions he may soon be called upon to decide as certain things reach critical levels after being pushed aside for decades. These situations reaching these points, these deplorable stages, are doing so largely due to President after President kicking the can down the road because to act required somebody actually being the adult in the room and taking the responsibility of what would inevitable be an unpopular series of events.

 

This will burst upon the scene initially with probably facing down the North Korean menace Kim Jong-un and his ever-increasing threat which advances with each missile test. Most observers place his current level of threat lower than it actually is, a common thread in politics where avoiding bad news and terrible situations is often done by underestimating the possibilities. Currently, President Trump and his military are properly giving North Korea and its potential threats its rightful attention but they are likely to back away from confrontation if for no other reason than their knowledge of the firestorm which would follow any military action against the Kim regime. They probably already made the deal not to intervene in exchange for allowing one more set of sanctions just passed by the United Nations Security Council to work. If somebody could give us a reason why these sanctions will function with any superior results than the past five sets of sanctions since the armistice was signed in the early Eisenhower years, that would at least be amusing. The problems with these sanctions are the same as with the previous sanctions, North Korea largely trades with China and some with Russia and little else. These are the two nations which can be counted upon to ignore the sanctions after a brief period of observing them so as to grant them the appearance of working. Sanctions are not the magic tool for breaking the bond that China and Russia have with North Korea. For these two adversaries, North Korea is their arrow in the flank of the United States which seriously hampers the American image and drains off the attentions of the United States from their acts of belligerence. One will always pay attention to the leader threatening nuclear annihilation over those merely pressuring neighboring nations in order to increase their spheres of influence.

 

Map of Approximate Missile Ranges of North Korean Missiles

Map of Approximate Missile Ranges of North Korean Missiles

 

North Korea is soon to reach the point of no return with their having produced a viable and reliable two stage, solid-fueled ICBM and the thermonuclear warhead of five to ten megaton range, a real city-killer with the necessary accuracy to strike within a mile or two from the intended spot anywhere in the world. The advantage they will gain once their ICBM’s are solid-fueled is recognizably dire. Solid-fueled two stage ICBM’s, unlike their liquid-fueled missiles, are ready to be fired instantly by simply, as it is shown in the movies, pressing the large red button on the console (always placed next to the other red button which is for self-destruct of the station). The current liquid-fueled missiles take at least an hour to pump the fuel into the tanks where they also must be kept heavily chilled to avoid the launch becoming a detonation. Such a process is fairly easily picked up by satellites viewing the planet below and thus giving the United States ample warning to take actions either political, economic or military threat as well as preparing an interception under best possible conditions. Solid-fueled missiles simply are fired from their launcher, which in the case of North Korea, thanks to China for providing these, are on mobile launchers which means that their location could be anywhere within North Korea and often have escaped detection. This prevents having the right resources for an interception under best conditions available. This is why the threat from North Korea has, in our opinion, already reached the point where they are at having an advantage.

 

North Korean Missile Launcher Utilizing Chinese Trucks

North Korean Missile Launcher Utilizing Chinese Trucks

 

Unlike those whose responsibility is to give President Trump a picture where he still has the largest possible range of options still available, our assessment is that North Korea has tested their separation technology with their last four launches which were two stage missiles. This was the last remaining step to master before placing a solid fueled second stage, which they have already demonstrated, atop a similar sized first stage booster. That is the formula for a viable ICBM which is all solid-fueled and ready to fly within a moment’s notice. North Korea has had a viable Super EMP warhead for two years by now and they have proven to be capable of aiming a missile to strike the United States from the south coming into the Texas area where NORAD has a soft spot of minimal detection and intercept being designed primarily to prevent Russian attacks and having been adapted to include China but never to intercept a missile coming from the south. This has long been a deficiency the United States had left vulnerable as the cost of closing the circle was considered too high for the limited protection it was thought to provide, a purely political choice and another can kicked down the road. North Korea already has placed a satellite into such an orbit which could be dropped to the required low-earth orbit necessary for optimum EMP detonations currently and this satellite is of unknown function. Military experts have claimed it was much like Sputnik and was merely a proof of capability satellite and nothing sinister at all. Let us all hope they were correct.

 

North Korea likely has a mountable sized warhead which could easily deliver a Hiroshima sized or possibly larger warhead currently in their arsenal. Kim Jong-un may even have a small thermonuclear warhead available for launching. This is the point where it all depends on your faith in the abilities provided by his scientists. It would not make much sense for China to have provided mobile missile launchers for liquid-fueled missiles as it would have been equally illogical to provide such if Kim Jon-un was only going to be targeting South Korea or Japan, as is still being held as his only really viable target by some advisors. These locations could be targeted and struck well before anybody could intervene with the most simple of Kim Jong-un’s known arsenals. The North Koreans have had sufficient weaponry targeting Seoul, South Korea for over half a century initially using simply artillery and subsequently replacing rocket artillery with some missiles, most probably some version of guidable Scud, so as to strike particular targets such as hardened command and control and other bunkers. The targeting which Kim Jon-un has been waiting to have are reliable missiles with which he can target New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, Dallas, Washington D.C. and Colorado Springs with the Air Force Academy and central controls for NORAD.

 

Presumed China Provided North Korean Mobile Missile Carrier

Presumed China Provided North Korean Mobile Missile Carrier

 

The sole thing holding Kim Jon-un from any attack is two fold, first he lacks sufficient missiles to guarantee overwhelming any interception capabilities of the United States and he would prefer to make demands, painful demands, of the United States mainly but addressed to the world. The first demand will be for the United States to remove their bases and soldiers from South Korea. This will be demanded to prove to South Korea as well as Japan, the Philippines and Taiwan that they are basically on their own against North Korea and China. Should the United States approve such a move then Kim Jong-un will know that he has an appeaser to work with and he will continue. The next demand will be to South Korea where he will demand that the peninsula be united under a federation between himself and the President of South Korea and some form of united administration. That will be inconsequential as within weeks Kim Jong-un will have announced that he was granted sole leadership despite any governance that was initially signaled. Kim Jong-un is not the kind of person who shares anything, let alone absolute power. Then he will demand the sanction be removed, as his merger with South Korea should be proof that he is no danger to anybody, he used pure diplomacy for his takeover of the entire Korean peninsula. What he might do after that is anybody’s guess. Japan would be one logical next target, but that would not be a diplomatic move, as Japan would never agree no matter how much pressure the world placed upon them. So, the next step may as well be his swan song, the really big step, demands Security Council permanent status seat with the other nuclear powers because he deserves such respect. Whatever his demand, he will continue making more and more outrageous demands until finally somebody, likely the United States puts their foot down and says no to his demands. That is when he will appear to sulk and be forlorn while waiting for a sufficient period that he feels will have the United States relaxed and not expecting an attack. This is when he might actually be sufficiently unstable and believe that should he decapitate the United States leadership, then the United States might simply not respond and settle for licking their wounds and trying to recover.

 

This is why Kim Jong-un need be countered on the United States terms and not wait for him to become an actual threat. That leads us to President Trump and the current situation. President Trump currently has his hands tied until Kim Jong-un either carries out a nuclear test or another missile test this time using both stages being solid-fueled systems. This will prove his ability to launch on command instead of having an hours waiting for fueling for launch when ready, not immediate. With this proven technology, the United States will be on notice that Kim Jong-un will be readily capable of striking any number of targets potentially within the Continental United States, that would be CONUS Command, and possibly any target within the United States as well as Europe. Whatever the perceived and admitted abilities of North Korean missile technology, they are frighteningly close to their desired capability and already are capable of striking the United States with a devastating EMP device which could bring down most, if not all, of the North American electrical grid. We would call that a very definite threat to the well-being of every American as such a devastating strike would minimally kill three-quarters of the population of North America. Canada would also be direly adversely affected. This places President Trump with the unenviable decision of does he act now, before anything horrific occurs or does he wait for a provocation which nobody could fail to recognize and admit he acted according to the betterment of the American people or did he act as a warmonger seeking personal glory. We may as well face the reality of this situation. Should President Trump act to prevent any of the dire consequences of a nuclear capable Kim Jong-un, then the media, Congress and other world leaders and especially the United Nations and their army of NGO’s and Agencies will all unite to condemn the man who destroyed the peace solely for self-aggrandizement. And should President Trump wait until Kim Jong-un acts and attacks the United States then President Trump would be pillories as the President who did not have the foresight or the willingness to act in the face of impending danger and allowed the needless suffering of the people of Japan, South Korea or wherever Kim Jong-un ordered the strike and if it was the United States, all the more Trump will be condemned. If Kim Jong-un were to strike Japan and President Trump responds by attacking North Korea then he will be criticized if his attack is too large in scale or if it is considered insufficient in scale. The secret is if it leaves Kim Jong-un with any ability to strike further, then the attack proved to be insufficient and Trump is an incompetent. If, on the other hand, the attack decapitates North Korean military and political structure and removes all threats, then Trump is a warmonger bringing undue suffering to the people, the innocent people of North Korea. If then China were to take hold of most of North Korea, well, then Trump is an incompetent again for not seeing this inevitability and acting to prevent the Chinese from taking over the northern half of the Korean Peninsula and thus threatening South Korea even worse than Kim Jong-un had threatened them. If United States and South Korean troops enter the North and unite the peninsula, well then Trump did it for the land and to force democracy war upon North Korea without even asking them if they desired such. You basically get the idea, either he is a warmonger or he was unprepared or he was a warmonger just before he was unprepared or he is a warmonger land grabber. Whatever President Trump does about North Korea, or does not do about North Korea will prove to have been wrong in the immediate media coverage and in the halls of Congress. We predict that if President Trump were to take steps to replace Kim Jong-un and manage this without firing a single shot or missile and all of North Korea were hailing him as their savior, impeachment charges would be brought up in the House of Representatives on charges of unnecessarily involving the United States in regime change for no reason. Of course, if he waits and Washington D.C. becomes a target, then there likely will be no action from Congress, as they will be scrambling to get far enough from the Capital in the period they have between warning and strike. With the EMP scenario, Congress might meet and actually still have electricity as the coasts might survive such a strike, and they would most definitely be bringing impeachment even if they were doing so by candle light. The end result of any action or inaction on North Korea will be impeachment, that is about the only sure bet.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

July 30, 2017

North Korea Sending Trump Personal Message

 

Kim Jong-un has allowed his latest missile to do his talking and his message could not be clearer. President Trump has just been asked whether he feels ready to actually challenge the leader of North Korea or is he ready to back down, bringing his ships home, especially the three aircraft carriers, and stand down from his demands. There will be further questions the least of which will be will the world actually do anything in about six months, a year tops, when Kim Jong-un decides the time has come to unify the Korean Peninsula and place all of it under his benevolent rule. That ought to satisfy his appetite for the remainder of the decade before his sights turn to Japan. Oh, also, should Kim Jong-un be permitted to unify the Korean Peninsula under his rule, the world should expect the unification of China with Taiwan being reunited with Mainland China under the Communist’s rule. Taiwan would still be granted some additional freedom in a similar manner as has been permitted Hong Kong. This would include the slow tightening of the Communist noose that is initially placed loosely around Hong Kong’s neck. Believe it or not, these are the very ramifications that are facing President Trump and the allies of the United States in and around the Sea of Japan as well as Taiwan further south. In our map below, North Korea, as the greatest threat, is colored in red, China, the potential secondary threat, is colored in brown and South Korea, Japan and Taiwan are colored in yellow as the targets depending on the United States to enforce their protection.

 

China and North Korea with Their Targets South Korea, Japan and Taiwan

China and North Korea with Their Targets
South Korea, Japan and Taiwan

 

There was a reaction that came initially from Secretary of State Rex Tillerson who issued a statement declaring, “As the principal economic enablers of North Korea’s nuclear weapon and ballistic missile development program, China and Russia bear unique and special responsibility for this growing threat to regional and global stability.” After speaking with Tillerson on Saturday, Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida said Tokyo would join Washington in new appeals to China and Russia to stop North Korea’s missile program. There will be more commentary in the ensuing days, but the main truth, which need be addressed, is that now North Korea can launch a missile and strike the mainland of the United States. Initial reports claim that the extreme range for a missile matching the one launched yesterday using an optimum trajectory could reach Chicago. It was reported to be a Hwasong-14 missile that was launched (see video below), one of the missiles we talked about yesterday in Where Will You Be When Kim Jong-un Launches? What this means is actually far more reaching than most will report. Should North Korea decide they wished to decapitate the United States, they now have the means to launch a small nuclear warhead of minimal yield, which could be designed for a maximized EMP (electromagnetic pulse) which could devastate the United States electrical grid. Should such a device be detonated over the St Louis to Kansas City region, it could quite readily all but destroy the electrical grid of the United States between the Rocky Mountains and the Appalachian Mountains and from well into Canada above the Great Lakes through Texas in the south. Such a weapon would cripple the United States and incapacitate much of the United States military making the ability of the United States to respond to any threat to her allies limited to what could be provided by the Navy. At the moment, such an attack would leave the United States with unmatched power sitting off the North Korean coast in the form of three aircraft carrier groups.

 

 

Still, Kim Jong-un is sending the message that he does not believe that President Donald Trump has what it takes to actually do anything as if he did have such nerve, he would have already taken steps against North Korea. Kim Jong-un may not even be controllable by Russia or China, as he may have gone off the reservation and is now beyond control of anyone and only his death will prevent him from continuing to work towards his dream of weakening the United States, slowly making them powerless against him in the area around the Sea of Japan. The Sea of Japan is the pool of water over which Kim Jong-un desires control, and that makes South Korea and Japan his first natural targets. But there is one difficulty between Kim Jong-un and his goal of ruling his entire small fiefdom, the United States and its ability to crush him should he move even the slightest bit towards his goals. This is why he must first force the United States into knowing that any move made which would support either South Korea or Japan should either come under attack from Kim Jong-un, that he would not hesitate in launching ICBMs striking at the United States with sufficient numbers that they would face devastating destruction beyond what they could absorb. Kim Jong-un has already convinced the world that he cares little about anything but expanding his control and had definite delusions of grandeur and that his thoughts may not even be discernable and thus he becomes unpredictable. Some believe that Kim Jong-un has no real connection with reality and that he could do the unthinkable and begin a nuclear war by launching a nuclear strike on numerous cities within the United States plus using EMP designed warheads with special detonators that will explode them at the optimum altitude of approximately three hundred miles. We have previously told how North Korea has become even a larger problem than the Middle East or anywhere else. Even Syria is nowhere near the threat, neither is the Islamic State because, simply put, Kim Jong-un has been launching a new missile at an ever-increasing rate with each one surpassing the former. Even more distressing has been that each new missile has a greater range than the previous. There is another reality, which is even more of a worry, these newer missiles are no longer all liquid fueled missiles which take long preparations before launching which would permit the United States to detect their readying and preventing their launch; many are solid fueled missiles which can be launched without necessary preparation. These are the facts and there really is not much more that needs saying at this time, but we expect that Kim Jong-un will see to it he remains in our coverage soon. Until then, allow us a little room for levity as we quote Kim Jong-un as he would be in a Clint Eastwood movie, “These trucks carry six missiles and honestly, well, in all the excitement I’ve lost track of how many I’ve fired. Now, as one of these missiles destroys a city, you have to ask yourself a question, President Trump. Do you feel lucky? Well, do-ya Trump?”

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

July 28, 2017

Where Will You Be When Kim Jong-un Launches?

 

Kim Jong-un likes launching missiles. He likes to launch a bigger and scarier missile every nine months or so. That is less than good news if one lives in California. You see Kim Jong-un just launched a ballistic missile which can, in theory, easily strike Hawaii and possibly also reach parts of Alaska. This is the same North Korean dictator, or as he forces his subjects to call him, Dear Leader, who launched his ballistic missiles over Japan and into the Pacific Ocean simply to let Japan’s rulers understand that he was capable of easily striking their islands. Kim Jong-un regularly launches attacks on South Korea including the sinking of the South Korean Navy Corvette warship Cheonan. That was the equivalent of an open declaration of war. As China is Kim Jong-un’s closest ally, South Korea would be heavily dependent on the assistance of the United States in any confrontation with North Korea. As the Cheonan was sunk in March of 2010, while President Obama was in the White House and responsible for all American military, South Korea was probably ordered to simply accept the loss and allow the United States to talk down the situation. Then in another incident in 2013, North Korea released a photo displaying a missile strike plan targeting Honolulu, Los Angeles, Washington D.C. and Austin, Texas.

 

This begs the question, how long will a world, which knows what is inevitable, allow Kim Jong-un to develop longer ranged missiles, larger nuclear warheads and the miniaturization of said warheads for mounting ever greater yields atop his missiles. Soon his missiles will be capable of striking anywhere in the continental United States and soon after anywhere on the planet. In a similar short period, he will be capable of placing thermonuclear warheads atop these weapons and can already place nuclear EMP devices upon his missiles. The fact that North Korea placed a small satellite, weight about fifty to one-hundred kilos, into low earth orbit using a north-south orbit he would be capable of placing a ten to fifteen kiloton warhead to use as an EMP device to detonate over North America which could destroy much of the United States and Canada electricity grid. Yet the world allows Kim Jong-un to continually test these missiles without any seeming concern or distress. What will it take before somebody decides to sound the general alarm and actually get serious about this ever-growing threat.

 

North Korean Missile Launcher Utilizing Chinese Trucks

North Korean Missile Launcher Utilizing Chinese Trucks

 

We understand that President Trump talked with President Vladimir Putin of Russia (as if anybody needs such identified) and President Xi Jinping of China asking that they interject their influence with Kim Jong-un and have him rein-in his missile and nuclear programs. They both declined to take any direct interjections and within the next six months, Kim Jong-un responded with one nuclear test and three missile launches. What has made matters more concerning has been the fact that despite North Korea not producing mobile missile launchers for ballistic missiles, China has seen fit to provide Kim Jong-un with an inestimable number of launchers which makes detection of launch sites far more difficult. Europe and the United Nations appear to be satisfied that the North Koreans have only the most modest range ballistic missiles and the missiles only threaten those nations within a limited and local radius. The latest missile tested by Kim Jong-un was a Hwasong-14 missile which, according to North Korean officials, was capable of hitting the “heart of the United States” with “large heavy nuclear warheads.” Their test launch of the missile was tracked by South Korean military and reportedly flew after launch into a high-altitude trajectory of 1,730 miles and flew horizontally about 577 miles into the Sea of Japan with a total time of almost fifteen minutes. All of the North Korean missiles have mobile launch capability and fit on their redesigned launchers which are using Chinese made heavy trucks to power them. China claims they were unaware that the North Koreans were planning to utilize their heavy vehicles for missile launchers.

 

North Korean Hwasong-10 missile

North Korean Hwasong-10 missile

 

Fisher of the Virginia-based International Assessment and Strategy Center was quoted in The National Interest warning, “This is truly dangerous.” North Korea has “crossed the line from failure-prone, liquid-engine, long-range missiles to long-range, solid-fuel ones.” And now, having made it to the other side of the threshold, it can make rapid improvements: “We can now expect the North will soon produce solid-fuel, intermediate- and intercontinental-range ballistic missiles and space launch vehicles.” Add that they are also using what are apparently Chinese designed launch vehicles and everything enters into a whole different theater. The North Koreans using either given or stolen Chinese technology in their launch vehicle construction allows them to constantly move their launch vehicles around making them next to impossible to track and know reliably where they are all located. They have been known to have numerous fake launchers which they can use as decoys adding to the level of difficulty.

 

Pukguksong-2 Launch Vehicle Recently Deployed by North Korea

Pukguksong-2 Launch Vehicle Recently Deployed by North Korea

 

All of this leads to the main problem, what does Kim Jong-un plan to do once he has the ICBM’s and the nuclear, or thermonuclear, warheads placed atop the missiles which he has placed throughout the countryside all over North Korea, under trees and in other concealed locations. If, as it was reported at the time, when John McCain calling Kim Jong-un a “crazy fat kid,” with grandiose tantrums, caused his regime to claim that was actually a “grave provocation, little short of declaration of war.” Now consider what fat-boy Kim Jong-un is pondering with three super-carrier groups sitting off his shores in the Sea of Japan or just slightly further afield in the Pacific Ocean. To Kim Jong-un (yes, I am enjoying typing his name repeatedly) that must be tantamount to bring half the world down on his little fiefdom. But he knows he has little to fear because the United States never acts without the permission of the United Nations and he has two big bad veto-wielding protectors sitting on the Security Council. But the Security Council is not the problem as the problem is a paranoid-schizophrenic megalomaniac with delusional-rant disorder, namely Kim Jong-un.

 

Each leader of North Korea, all three, have been just that little more unbalanced than the previous one. Kim Jong-il was somewhat less stable than Kim-Il-sung and Kim Jong-un is exactly as balanced as one would expect a child-king-god-dear leader who was raised in a bubble of wealth and being given his every whim being told constantly how he would rule over the world and be the most loved and cherished individual to have ever graced the face of the planet. Remember that we are talking about a leader of a nation where starvation is a national pastime who eats Russian caviar as the jelly on his peanutbutter sanwiches. A man who swills champagne as if it were soda pop and eats like royalty, just look at his rotund physique to judge if he has ever gone without a meal. He killed his uncle and one of his commanding generals and ordered his half-brother murdered. Kim Jong-un has to be the least stable leader on the planet even ahead of Recep Tayyip Erdoğan who has delusions of being the new Caliph of the reestablished Ottoman Empire. Maybe the two should meet, then again, maybe not. Kim Jong-un could be every month on a psychiatric disorder of the month calendar. And thus far the world has not decided to take away the book of matches he is playing with, or the nuclear tipped ICBM’s he is developing. Where is this a good idea? Eventually he will decide what is the use in having a stockpile of nuclear tipped ICBM’s if he does not use them. After all, what are they for. Sure they would probably make his little nation safe from any ideas of attacking him.

 

So what use will Kim Jong-un find to do with such power, such a threat? Sure he will initially make demands of Japan and possibly demand that South Korea be sacrificed for the general good of the peninsula demanding it be reunited under his rule. Kim Jong-un will demand food and whatever his demented little twisted heart desires and who will stand up to him and tell him no? Eventually there will be a first leader who says no and then what? How long before the entire world tires of his constant demands or else your destruction and strike at Kim Jong-un instead. Once anybody attacks Kim Jong-un you can bet he will simply start letting fly his nuclear tipped ballistic and intercontinental ballistic missiles targeting everybody near and far. Leaders from nations around the world will be falling over one another in trying to grant him presents if only he stops destroying everyone. What kind of world will it be when Kim Jong-un holds the ability to strike any nations, any city anywhere on the planet? Perhaps leaders of the world, and this includes China and Russia, should start to consider such a world. Oh, and China and Russia, do not for a moment think that Kim Jong-un will leave your nations alone and only pick on everyone else as he probably does not care about loyalty or friends, just ask that general, his uncle and his half-brother. If those who were close to him were inconsequential, how can you believe he will not wring your countries dry along with everybody else once he believes everybody fears him as if he were a god. Remember, he was raised to believe he was a god. Somebody will have to stand up and stop him eventually and that need be discussed while the price may be a few hundred-thousand or maybe fifty-million and before it becomes three-trillion or worse, a full seven or eight trillion. For those counting, that last number is everybody except Kim Jong-un, approximately.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

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