Beyond the Cusp

August 15, 2017

Trump and a War with North Korea

 

We have an added introduction. The latest reports as of just before posting was that North Korea had backed down and decided to talk and cease their missile launching. We feel the article will still be relevant, as Kim Jong-un will likely play games similar to those we are all here very familiar with from Mahmoud Abbas. He will make demands, make half promises and then claim that the United States reneged on their promise, thus he will not need to keep his promise. Then more talking and somewhere between Thanksgiving and Christmas Kim Jong-un will announce he has had it with the American double-dealing and perversity and lies and return to firing missiles. The probable reason Kim Jong-un even agreed in the first place is he needs time to manufacture the weapons his latest nuclear breakthrough allows him to build. First, he needs to perfect the manufacturing process and then go into production. After he has made some number of warheads, thermonuclear warheads most likely, then he will return to his threatening ways as then he will have a number of deployable weapons making his threats real. For that reason, the article will still apply somewhere near when Americans are doing their Christmas shopping. It will just add more joy to the season, not.

 

The way we have read the potential conflict between the United States and North Korea has us somewhat confused. Much of the news appears to center on the threats President Trump has made in reference to the continued missile and other tests by the North Korean military and what President Trump has framed as threats coming from North Korean dictator, Kim Jong-un. The framing has appeared to place the threats as coming from President Trump and any threats made by Kim Jong-un have been in reaction to things said by President Trump. This has given the impression that should any actual fighting or launchings of missiles should erupt that it would be on President Trump that all blame should be placed. The theory is that President Trump should never have stood so strongly opposing to the tests and actions by North Korea or to the statements from Kim Jong-un and instead should have sought to have coddled Kim Jong-un by seeking to placate the dictator and give him some room to retain dignity by being able to claim he had stood up to the United States, demanded relief of some kind or other demands and in the end probably just required sending funds and possibly other material support in order to end any potential for confrontation.

 

Then there are other reports which claim that Kim Jong-un has intentionally provoked President Trump and threatened actual missile attacks and implied heavily that such an attack may very well carry a nuclear warhead should the North Koreans decide that was a necessity. They have stated that President Trump has been responding to North Korean provocations and been attempting to prevent any such attack and bring an end to the North Korean nuclear program before they develop an active nuclear stockpile of weapons, of nuclear warheads of immeasurable potential for destruction. There have been reports of Kim Jong-un making threats to strike Guam if the United States does not back off their provocations. Exactly what these provocations are has been only vaguely referred to in most of the media, well, almost all of the media. So there appears that there are two contrasting media viewpoints with one claiming that the threats and belligerence has come from President Trump forcing retorts by Kim Jong-un and the other the opposite with the North Korean actions pushing this crisis and President Trump simply trying to protect the interests of the United States and her allies in the region.

 

President Trump and Kim Jong-un in Missile Face-off

President Trump and Kim Jong-un in Missile Face-off

 

We wondered ourselves exactly who has been pushing whose buttons. We thought back and remember some of the beginnings of this ever-worsening crisis. The North Koreans have been suspected of working in conjunction with the Iranians. There have been reports that Iran has invested large quantities of funding with the North Koreans and there have been North Korean scientists witnessing Iranian missile launches, Iranian engineers witnessing North Korean nuclear tests and reports of cooperation to a high degree between these two adversaries of the United States. Reporting on the Iranian agreement reached by President Obama and the Iranians stated that Iran would be capable of producing nuclear weaponry before 2025. This is interesting as some have theorized that Iran already has nuclear weapons and had tested them in North Korea. For this service, the Iranians presumably provided the North Koreans with funding and in return, additionally in this deal the North Koreans provided the Iranians with missiles and carriers modeled after Russian ballistic missiles. And where did we find corroborations for this, CNBC (see video at link below).

 

The dangerous tie between North Korea and Iran

 

The entire North Korea imbroglio has been playing out exactly as one might expect from a B-movie. Kim Jong-un has thrown missile after missile into the Japan Sea and Pacific Ocean as an open challenge to President Trump.

March 6, of four ballistic missiles.
April 5, a failed launch exploding immediately after launch.
April 15, in the parade celebrating the birth of its founder, Kim Il Sung, displays several new ballistic missiles.
April 16, there was another failed launch exploding after launch.
May 14, tests of one of the missiles displayed in the parade which experts assess that it is capable of a range of 4,800 kilometers.
July 4, North Korea successfully flight tested its first intercontinental ballistic missile, the Hwasong-14, and with that launch it included a functional reentry vehicle, something not stressed seriously enough by reports but the return to splashdown confirmed this fact.
August 8, a leaked Defense Intelligence Agency report found that North Korea has produced miniaturized nuclear warheads.
August 9, North Korean made a statement detailing a plan to test four Hwasong-12 intermediate range ballistic missiles.

 

President Trump did something by sending an aircraft carrier group into the Sea of Japan off the Korean Peninsula. Kim Jong-un launched another missile, this time straight over Japan registering alarms from the Japanese detection systems causing an alert. President Trump upped his ante sending a second aircraft carrier group to join the first. A third aircraft carrier was deployed to the area to take part in war games with the Japanese and South Koreans. That was the height of the United States presence but still Kim Jong-un continued leading to the latest threat to strike Guam. The United States since deployed additional bombers to Guam and other stations in the Pacific Rim. This is where the world stands at this point. There has been quite a large amount of talk about the prospect of imminent war between the United States and North Korea. There is one large and critical item, this noise and bluster is mostly relegated to the media with the intent of making President Trump appear unsettled and potentially unstable and thus forcing a situation which could result in war, or as they love putting it, nuclear war. The problem with their claims is that President Trump has promised “Fire and fury” should Kim Jong-un actually attack Guam, Japan, South Korea or anywhere else which falls within the range of his missiles. Kim Jong-un has been the sole person to mention striking anything with a nuclear missile though only through innuendo. The United States does not require nuclear weapons to strike at North Korea and probably could use minimal weaponry in a strike to simply decapitate the leadership of North Korea and end the communist tragedy which had victimized the people of North Korea since early in the 1950’s. The most serious threat is to Seoul, South Korea as North Korea has sufficient artillery and rocket artillery to all but wipe the Seoul metropolitan area from the map. That is and will remain the most pertinent threat held by the North Koreans, as they would only require a few salvos and a full launch cycle of the MLRS (multiple launch rocket system) to cause unrecoverable damages south of the border. The North Korean Army has sufficient troops located near the border to completely overrun the South Korean and United States troops guarding the DMZ (demilitarized zone). There are approximately thirty-thousand United States Army personnel assigned to the DMZ.

 

President Trump has also attempted to have China intervene and has pressed the United Nations and passed through the United Nations Security Council sanctions against North Korea to apply financial pressures into play. President Trump received a unanimous vote putting the sanctions in place, quite an accomplishment considering the record of the Security Council’s past. The one thing which can be assured is that President Trump will not break with the United States not being the ones to initiate a war without exhausting every other avenue and will continue seeking Chinese intervention, as they are the North Koreans closest ally officially. We felt the need for the official comment as nobody knows the full extent of the cooperation and reliance upon one another between North Korea and Iran which may actually be one another’s best friends, just not officially. Even if Iran is the best friend on Kim Jong-un’s speed-dial and rolodex, the Iranians are not about to be of any assistance to the United States and this is nothing new as they would not have assisted President Obama either despite what the media may have attempted to pass off as truth. The final reality is the leader most likely to initiate a war will be Kim Jong-un but President Trump will be the one to end it as well as the best hope to avoid the need or probability for war.

 

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

 

August 10, 2017

Guam, North Korea, Nukes and Trump’s Predicament

 

President Donald Trump is in a precarious predicament when it comes to North Korea and the pressing threats. We can get to the predictable results shortly, but first it bears analyzing the sticky situation in which the President has been forced by his own Congress in which his own party presumably has a majority. The one thing which is always tricky when one sits atop a democratically elected government in a nation which is in no mood for military adventurism, getting backing for starting a conflict. This is even true when the adversary is an obviously crazed dictator with delusions of grandeur who believes he is holding the upper hand. Kim Jong-un believes that now that he presumably, if his threats and intelligence reports are to be believed, has the more powerful position with a nuclear weapon miniaturized and capable of being mounted atop any of his ballistic or ICBM missiles. Even if we were to grant that the North Korean weapons was sufficiently powerful as half a megaton, he still would need five just to level any sufficiently targetable metropolitan area within the United States and a degree of accuracy to give the optimal spread of impact sites. Despite this and now a direct threat by Kim Jong-un to strike Guam with one such said missile, President Trump still has his hands tied.

 

Logically, one would believe that the current situation being what it is, President Trump could simply order a decapitating strike on North Korean leadership and with one set of at most a dozen high explosive missiles from an Arleigh Burke Destroyer and the top generals and Kim Jon-un could be entered into the history books and the North Korean threats put to bed while the United Nations Security Council decided who would be assuming the reconstruction of North Korea, the United States, China or preferably South Korea with a unified Korean Peninsula. That is where the problem enters the picture. While history has shown that virtually no Democrat Senator would ever vote to impeach a Democrat President, Republicans are more than willing to entertain and even advise a Republican President to resign as they will refuse to protect their own Party’s President from impeachment as was the case when Republican Senate leadership informed President Richard Nixon that should he actually fight impeachment, they were ready and very likely to vote for his impeachment. So, should President Trump actually take it upon himself without a declaration of war from Congress to attack North Korea, we can bet that within hours the House of Representatives would have drawn up charges of impeachment, approved them by a significant majority and sent the case to the Senate for trial. All that is required in the House of Representatives to bring forward charges is a simple majority and then a two-thirds majority in the Senate is required to convict, which with the several “Never Trump” Republicans becomes a distinct possibility. On the other hand, should North Korea launch a successful attack then we could expect Congress to again attempt charges of impeachment for President Trump’s lack of action in the face of an obvious menacing threat. President Trump is in a damned if you do, damned if you don’t situation.

 

Arleigh Burke Destroyer Missile Firing

Arleigh Burke Destroyer Missile Firing

 

Even should Kim Jong-un launch missiles at Guam, should all the missiles either be intercepted, the preferred case, or simply miss their target thus causing no actual harm, President Trump would remain to be facing the previously described situation of not having complete authority to act without facing potential impeachment and facing the exact same result should he not act and a subsequent strike prove successful. This is most definitely an unpleasant situation faced by President Trump. The latest, as of this writing, the ball had been shot into President Trump’s court with Kim Jong-un’s announcement that North Korea has manufactured a miniaturized nuclear warhead with which they can now top their missiles and his making a direct threat to attack Guam should the United States continue their belligerence. The current ballistic missiles in the North Korean arsenals which potentially could strike Guam include the Hwasong-10 liquid fueled, Hwasong-14 solid propellant and the Pukguksong-2 solid propellant. The liquid fueled missile would require a fueling cycle which might make it being detected by satellite imagery while the solid propellant are ready to launch by the pressing of a launch signal without any preparation other than raising the launch on the mobile carriers, which many claim were provided by China (see image below), or opening the silo on the underground silo launch sites. Each of these missiles is capable of carrying the claimed nuclear warhead or a sizeable high-explosive traditional explosive warhead. These facts make Kim Jong-un’s threat a credible threat and is just another step further climbing the tree and neither side has shown any indication of attempting to steady the situation and reduce tensions. This latest threat was in response to the reaction to the previous slightly more vague threat of severe consequences by Kim Jong-un if the United States did not pull back to which President Trump promised in his response stating, “North Korea best not make any more threats to the United States. They will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen.” This drew the directed threat upon Guam by North Korea. The comments by President Trump received the expected criticisms from Senator Dianne Feinstein as well as Senator John McCain (video blow).

 

Presumed China Provided North Korean Mobile Missile Carrier

Presumed China Provided North Korean Mobile Missile Carrier

 

 

The situation currently stands with the exchange of threats and promises resting with President Trump and the likelihood of actual action sitting with Kim Jong-un as it is highly unlikely that President Trump is willing or ready to initiate and military actions. This in no way intends to claim the United States is not fully capable of taking actions to tackle this problem at any point of its own choosing. Kim Jong-un need understand that the United States could lay waste to his entire nation without taxing more than one ballistic submarine which would still have missiles to spare if further response were required. This does not even begin to take into account the three aircraft carrier groups sitting well within range of their aircraft and the missiles on the support vessels which include numbers of Arleigh Burke Missile Destroyers. There is one pitfall which it might be advisable that President Trump not fall into, and that is considering and contending with the size and variety of attack which would be launched against North Korea should it be deemed necessary. We can recall the “Shock and awe,” promised by President George W. Bush at the initiation of the air campaign against Iraqi Dictator Saddam Hussein. Remembering watching the coverage of the initial airstrikes on Baghdad, we recall being somewhat less than “shocked” and well short of “awe” as it appeared that the main damage came in the form of secondary explosions (video below). Don’t get us wrong, the precision was impressive but the display lacked the traditional carnage and city left in flames images. One needs to perceive the exact effect upon the psyche of your opponent when making a display of strength. Sure, the United States military were extremely pleased with the exact precision of their warheads and the minimal amount of collateral damage to the city left by the attacks. One example which was regularly repeated was the removal of a transmission tower striking it such that it missed striking either of the buildings reportedly close on either side. Saddam Hussein would probably been far more impressed had the attack on said broadcast tower taken down the blocks of buildings in every direction and was probably thinking that if this is what the United States calls laying waste to a city, then they are pretty pathetic. Sometimes, when dealing with dictatorial, or even elected, thugs and self-professed military geniuses who, as Saddam Hussein was want of doing, when striking a village or town in order to send a message, they usually laid waste to the entirety of the town, the majority of the residents, and possibly even destroyed the roads and basements of the school house. Simply put, they caused devastation when sending a message. There was the message sent to the Kurds in northern Iraq where chemical weapons were utilized and not a single person escaped, that was the Saddam Hussein understanding of sending a warning, not taking out a single building with a concrete bomb (that is a thousand pounds of concrete in a thin metal shell, such that only the restaurant where Saddam was presumed to be dining was destroyed and the buildings on either side were undamaged. Had a two-thousand pound World War II blockbuster (called such as it would drop and entire block of buildings) bomb been used, then Saddam Hussein, who was less than a few hundred yards from the restaurant having just left, would have been removed by the attack. Sometimes bigger is better as it assures you destroy the intended target. Just because you can guide munitions through the third window from the end on the fifth floor and only destroy that room leaving the rest of the building structurally sound does not mean that would be the best manner of striking that room. Sometimes the entire building need be destroyed to get the message across.

 

 

When it comes to Kim Jong-un, it is unlikely that any amount of damage to his country would have much of an effect upon him. This is a maniac who had a top general hung for being late or contradicting or correcting him in a meeting, had his uncle murdered for treason and had his half-brother murdered in another country simply because he might make a claim to Kim Jong-un’s position. We are speaking of a man who ordered all men to wear their hair styled exactly like his hair (which begs the question of what bald people were to do) or face execution. Wait, he later ruled that men must not wear their hair styled as he does and must choose from fifteen particular styles. You just cannot make this stuff up. What would it take to impress Kim Jong-un that your airstrikes really were serious and, quoting President Trump, “North Korea best not make any more threats to the U.S. They will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen.” That is setting the bar pretty high when one remembers the twenty-four hour bombing of Dresden during World War II (image of firestorm below B&W). There is no way, honestly, that Kim Jong-u would accept that the damage was more than his subjects were willing to endure in support of his rule. He was raised as a man-god and believes of himself as incapable of errors in judgement or that he could be outsmarted or outmaneuvered by any mere mortal, especially President Trump. Kim Jong-un very probably believes his own propaganda.

 

Image of Dresden Firestorm Consuming the City

Image of Dresden Firestorm Consuming the City

 

The only attack, which would work to prevent Kim Jong-un from carrying out any threat made, would be to remove him from the scene. The required move against North Korea would mean choosing between formulating a coup and implementing a decapitation strike where Kim Jong-un and his top generals are all taken out with one strike. The strike could include several locations, but it would be imperative that the strikes, if at more than one location, be timed close enough such that no one attack point has time enough to convey to their superiors or officials of the state about what was occurring before it was all done. Such an attack could be performed when it is known that Kim Jong-un is attending a launch of one of his missiles or is visiting one of the nuclear facilities or at a test of a nuclear weapon. It would be imperative that the majority of the general staff also be present which is why we chose such events. If there is a known general who would look favorably upon the idea of reconstituting a unified Korea under an elected, honestly elected governance, then sparing him or them would be preferred but they must not be told when and where such a strike might take place as such might allow Kim Jong-un to become suspicious thus leading to his not attending the targeted location. Striking and not removing Kin Jong-un from power would be the greatest possible disaster as it would lead to an immediate launch of an attack on Guam, Hawaii, Alaska and anywhere within the continental United States (CONUS), his missiles could deliver a nuclear payload. It can be assumed that North Korea had at least ten if not many more of these announced miniaturized nuclear devices. Kim Jong-un would not have risked their vulnerability without knowing that he was sufficiently armed with these warheads before allowing their disclosure. President Trump and advisors should take such into consideration and make choices preferably consulting Congress. The problem with consulting Congress would be whom do you trust not to leak the information and thus warning North Korea of the United States intended action or lack thereof.

 

The brinkmanship from both sides is providing a hazardous situation all around. Neither side is showing any signs of climbing down from the tree they find themselves trapped within. The other problem is at what point one side will take action and of what action will they avail themselves. North Korea can technically use knowledge gained from the Iranians very likely with an entire freighter arming kit which would turn any freighter container ship into a missile silo. With this knowledge, Kim Jong-un can use the most basic scud missile to deliver nuclear warheads with little advance warning to every coastal city. Should any freighter so armed receive approval for sailing to make a delivery somewhere along the Mississippi River, then almost every city of any size would become a potential target. Some of the coastal port cities along the east, west and southern coastal regions include but are not limited to New York, Boston, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, New Orleans, Miami, Philadelphia, Tampa, San Diego, Baltimore, Norfolk, Houston and, of course, Washington D.C. despite not being a port city, it is vulnerable from the Chesapeake Bay or Potomac River all the way to the Tidal Basin in the heart of the government. Since North Korea has proven to be capable of orbital insertion, they could place that ever dangerous EMP device they have presumably mastered into a satellite and utilize such at any time simply by detonating the satellite miles over the center of North America and they might wipe out the entirety of the electrical grid or simply destroy well-beyond half of the electrical grid and hundreds, if not thousands, of expensive and in tight supply massive transformers. These devices are manufactured in Germany and Japan and while awaiting delivery, it is possible that the United States might lose as much as three-quarters of its total population with Canada taking similar if not even higher percentages of population loss. Both nations would be decimated and the retaliation upon North Korea might appear to be a purely spiteful move and thus rejected by the State Department and also the Congress. Neither group appears to be sensitive to the people’s desires except at election time, but then they brag about the two or three brave stands they made on legislation they know would be vetoed. Where this is headed appears frightening and one can only hope that the inevitable can be redirected away from any course of actions which includes the destruction of either nation. Thus far, that possibility looks to be bleak.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

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