Saturday, December 09, 2017

How Might A Nuclear War With North Korea Unfold?

Well I'm glad to see that the U.S. and South Korea have ended a massive military exercise without the North Koreans declaring war on them.

The US doubled down on provocative bomber flights near the border with North Korea this week, at the same time as Pyongyang asked when, not if, war would break out.

But there can be no doubt that the situation on the Korean peninsula is getting more more and more dangerous.

David Parkins

The New York Times editorial board says Trump's scare tactics should scare everyone.

Whatever the goal, the rhetoric is disturbingly reminiscent of the George W. Bush administration’s propaganda campaign that prepared America for war against Saddam Hussein. Outside experts are increasingly concluding that the Trump administration’s threats may not be empty and that officials are seriously contemplating attacking North Korea and its nuclear weapons and missile arsenal.

And in the Washington Post a military expert takes a look at what might happen if  war does break out. 

No one wants to fight a nuclear war. Not in North Korea, not in South Korea and not in the United States. And yet leaders in all three countries know that such a war may yet come — if not by choice then by mistake. The world survived tense moments on the Korean Peninsula in 1969 , 1994 and 2010. Each time, the parties walked to the edge of danger, peered into the abyss, then stepped back. But what if one of them stumbled, slipped over the edge and, grasping for life, dragged the others down into the darkness?

And paints a devastating scenario.

An accident that could so easily happen.

When a South Korean airliner strayed into North Korean airspace, a Northern air defense crew, already jumpy and anticipating the allied maneuvers in the Sea of Japan, mistook it for an American bomber. The crew fired a surface-to-air missile, sending the plane plunging into the ocean, killing all 250 people on board.

Followed by retaliation.

The South Korean public was outraged. Within hours, Moon ordered South Korean missile units to strike the air defense battery, as well as select leadership targets throughout North Korea. Moon’s limited missile strike might have been enough by itself to start the nuclear war of 2019. South Korean and American officials are still trading accusations. But the surviving members of the Moon administration insist that things would have been fine had President Trump not picked up his smartphone: “LITTLE ROCKET MAN WON’T BE AROUND MUCH LONGER!”

And a Trump tweet that sent things spiralling out of control, and ended in catastrophe...

The direct hit on Manhattan killed more than 1 million people. An additional 300,000 perished near Washington. The strikes on Jupiter and Pearl Harbor each killed 20,000 to 30,000. These were just estimates; the scale of the destruction defied authorities’ ability to account for the dead

The Pentagon would make almost no effort to tally the enormous numbers of civilians killed in North Korea by the massive conventional air campaign. But in the end, officials concluded, nearly 2 million Americans, South Koreans and Japanese had died in the completely avoidable nuclear war of 2019.

It's a horrible scenario, and one that could be worse if it ends up triggering World War Three.

And it's hard to believe that the spectre of nuclear war is back.

But in Hawaii the air raid sirens are wailing again...

And it's time everybody confronted this hard truth:

Until Trump is removed from office by whatever means necessary.

Anything could happen.

And nobody is safe...


Jackie Blue said...

It's a coin toss as to who's going to "flip" first: North Korea or Iran. Either way, heads or tails, everybody loses. And it very well may end up being both. Not to mention the possibility of another Cuban Missile Crisis, as Pyongyang's diplomats have held meetings with the government in Havana to discuss a potential deterrent system against the mad gringo government 90 miles north in Mar-a-Lago. Last time around, though, there was a statesman in charge named Jack Kennedy. This time, it's a dangerously narcissistic and incompetent onetime game-show host and pro wrestler who wants fireworks for Christmas so he can have bigly yuge "ratings." All he cares about is that his, um, audience is much, much biglier than Barack Obama's.

Whodathunkit, though: the real WMD doomsday device we should have been wary of isn't even the red button or nukes per se, but the TV remote and now the Twitter app. All the Dotard cares about is turning real life into one of his stupid cliffhanger Apprentice episodes, complete with more pyrotechnics than Michael Bay could show off in a thousand lifetimes and plenty of Trump-branded popcorn to go around. He even has a tendency to make cryptic announcements on Friday nights so that people have to stew over the weekend and "tune in next week!" to find out what's going to happen next. Same bad time, same bad channel. This is how he gets his revenge on Hollywood for not making him A-List: he goes down to D.C. and launches the A-Bomb. Hurry up and give him a participation-trophy Oscar already so that he gets what he wants and goes away.

As the late, great Gil Scott-Heron said, the revolution will not be televised. The apocalypse sure will be, though. Televised, streamed, "live-tweeted," and for all anyone knows or cares, probably pirated too. Incredible ratings, really, the most bigly incredible ratings. So much winning, such a great crowd. Yuuge, really, really yuuge! Believe me...

Anonymous said...

"And it's hard to believe that the spectre of nuclear war is back."

Actually Donald Trump won the US election and put the kibosh on Deep State plans to revive the Cold War with Russia and the spectre of nuclear Armageddon – which is what HRC was running on. (What the Democrat party is still running on with all their vitriol against Russia – seemingly ignorant the country is no longer a communist dictatorship hellbent on "burying the West.")

Of course, it's not surprising neo-prog hippies are cowering before a ridiculous boy dictator – who's an actual commie guilty of the most vile of human rights abuses!

Trump is doing what previous presidents failed to do: standing up to the intolerable ICBM nuclear ambitions of unstable rouge regimes. Finally a man to do a man's job!

Anonymous said...

What most people do not realize is that from a geo-political perspective Kim Jong Un is acting rationally. The history that is conveniently forgotten includes:
1 - The US and South Korea are still legally at War with North Korea. NK has been seeking a peace treaty on and off since the 50s. SK and the US have refused to negotiate what should be an easy treaty.
2 - During the Korean War, North Korea was flattened. Towards the end of the war US bomber crews returned to base without dropping their bombs because there were no more targets.
3 - Recent history has shown that countries that attempted to negotiate with or become subservient to the US (e.g., Libya, Iraq) and those that oppose US corporate interests but DO NOT have WMD, are destroyed by Coalitions of the Willing, NATO, Arab League, and whoever the US can line up to do the dirty work.

So, unlike the position taken by Anonymous 2:17, I think a man doing a man's job would negotiate a peace treaty with NK and stop working on plans to eliminate the NK leadership or destroy the country.

Where's Waldo

Filcher said...

The US has already stated that they can win a nuclear war if they use a first strike option, so I agree that the question is not if but when, as historically the US has not been reluctant in pursuing an aggressive diplomacy against nations they see as a threat, or when war is a good political/ economic option. I do wonder how happy China will be with a nuclear exchange happening on it's doorstep, or how constrained Russia will be with the threat of nuclear fallout in the eastern part of the country. Chernobyl still is believed to be causing problems as far away as the Scandinavian countries, so I wonder how anyone would think it would not be worse after nuclear devastation.

As for nuclear N Korea, the NPT which N Korea was a signatory to, allows nations to build nuclear power plants for energy. Under Clinton the US agreed to fund the supply of alternative (diesel and oil) energy to N Korea, plus help develop and fund low yield nuclear plants {LWR) that would not create fuel of sufficient grade for nuclear weapons. The N Korea government gave assurances that their nuclear program would be stopped, ( questions were left open as faith in N Korea's word) -however the funding and agreement were blocked by the GOP. Alternative funding was found by the Clinton administration, but the US never followed up on the need to find an acceptable solution to the need of energy in N Korea and the agreement was cancelled. N Korea gave notice they would leave the NPT, which they did under the legal mechanism allowed nations, and restarted their Nuclear ernergy program/ weapons program with alleged help from Pakistan and later Iran (which has never been shown to have any nuclear weapons program and is highly monitotred; although I may be wrong as Ihave not followed this for several years).

During the Bush regime, nuclear technology and resources were given and allowed to several non NPT countries, namely Pakistan and India, while refusing to acknowledge the Israeli nuclear weapons program existed. This tended to water down the effectiveness of NPT and IAEA controls, already under assault from political pressure and falsehoods spearheaded by claims from the Bush administration in their plan to destabilize the ME for profit and populatrity. (Logically, if Bush officials had been right about Saddam, he would have used his nukes as an offensive weapon- suggesting that claims of WMD were known to be false before the invasion of Iraq had begun.)

It is understandable that nations that are under threat from nuclear armed states would desire weapons to guard against attack, historically nuclear nations do not attack one another, as it could result in MAD, or worse. However the converse is also true, that the more nuclear armed nations in the world, the greater the threat of nuclear conflict. We have got to a point where the leaders and statesmen of those nations do not fear the scenario of a nuclear exchange- indeed they now believe a nuclear war can have winners and losers. We must also acknowledge that where once the thought of a billion deaths would prevent drastic action from those in charge, deaths are now just statistics that are meaningless, just numbers similar to those that list people that die from disease and starvation and that could be helped except for the greed and selfishness of our elected officials.

e.a.f. said...

How would a nuclear war with N. Korea unfold? Not well.

Given Trump is the idiot in this, I would suggest the U.S.A. would start things without thinking how it would impact N & S Korean civilians and those in Japan. Once the U.S.A. throws out the first nuke, the N. Koreans will return fire. There goes the real estate values and 20 million around Seoul. Then perhaps another 20 million in Japan, if they don't have missiles in place yet. Then goes Guam and Canada's favorite vacation spot, Hawaii.

By the time that is all done, the main land of the U.S.A. will most likely miss out on any damage, unless China seizing the moment, bombs the U.S.A. Now if all is good and the aim is straight, Canada will only have to deal with the nuclear fall out, but lots of Canadians will die because of it. Vancouver's real estate values will fall, supply chains will be out of commission for 5 years and importing food, will not be easy. Cash machines won't work. Europe will sit this one out. Australia, most likely also.

Russia may seize the moment to move into areas of Europe they want back. Saudi Arabia will spend some time bombing the life out of whatever countries they deem un friendly. In short the world will be a mess. So that is how it will play out, in my opinion.

My recommendation, keep a fair amount of cash in your home, with enough food, water and medical supplies to last awhile. Help will not be coming shortly. Well perhaps G.B. may send medical staff to Canada. We are after all part of the Commonwealth. South America and parts of Africa can expect a lot of refugees.

Filcher is quite correct in writing leaders see winners and loosers in a nuclear war now, however, its the Russians who have the "limited" nuclear war heads. the U.S.A. is a tad short of them at the moment and N. Korea hasn't developed them yet. Russia developed a smaller, "smarter" nuclear bomb which they would like to use in Latvia, Estonia, etc. without loosing all the real estate. One small nuclear bomb can get countries to give it up. However, in dealing with the U.S.A. and N. Korea, I think they'll use the big stuff.

Some may even see a billion dead as a good method of re balancing the world population. It is a tad crowded with 5 to 6 billion we currently had. When I was younger there were only 3 billions, but the loss of a billion would have to involve India and China and I don't think India is going to "play". The nuclear fall out may result in the billion deaths, and the famine to follow. Trump will be just amazed that so many people died because he doesn't have a clue about what war is.

Anonymous said...

Little Kim is playing yesterdays game when moralistic warmongers were the decision makers in Washington. The Dotard is similar to a crime boss who just moved into the big estate on the outskirts of town.He is basically isolationist and members of the community can either pander to him or respectfully ignore him but open defiance is at your own risk. If Kim were flexible he would play the game and blame crooked Hillary for his acts of defiance,toss out a few cheap ego boosting bones and negotiate a non proliferation self defense strategy with the Dotard. Unfortunately Kim seems to be locked into his own ideologue driven strategy and even if he comes to his senses there are others waiting in the wings to challenge the Panderer in Chief. This chapter of human history that started in the late 40's with the Israeli Palestinian conflict, the Korean war and the birth of the Dotard is not poised to end well. Hopefully the ghost writers have a few pleasant surprises in store!

Simon said...

hi Jackie...I think the Trump mob would rather go to war with Iran, but will find it easier to go to war with North Korea. And of course either option would be insanity. A psychopath like Trump is unable to feel or care about the pain of others, and that's what makes him so dangerous. People all over the world need to make it clear to their leaders that nuclear war is out of the question...

Simon said...

hi anon...I don't agree with those who would whip up anti-Russia hysteria to revive the Cold War. But when you're dealing with a dictator like the one in North Korea, being unnecessarily provocative, is not a sign of strength. The problem is that North Korea is now a nuclear power, and sooner or later the West is going to acknowledge that, or it will lead to disaster...

Simon said...

hi anon 5:11... I am aware of the way the U.S. bombed North Korea practically back to the Stone Age, and it was a crime against humanity. But both sides need to look ahead, do what they can to defuse the crisis, and resolve the Korean issue the only it can be resolved, through negotiation...

Simon said...

hi Filcher...the idea of a war on the Korean peninsula is bad enough, but like you I worry about whether China and Russia might end up getting involved, which could result in a nuclear apocalypse. I can believe that some in the Pentagon and in the White House think they could strike North Korea and not get a response. It's total insanity and those who hold those views should be arrested immediately. As I mentioned above, the people of this planet need to make it absolutely clear to their leaders, that nuclear war is not an option. Period...

Simon said...

hi paint a grim scenario, but what makes it so scary is that tactually could happen. I thought we'd left the era of nuclear war behind us in the past, and to see it rise up again is worse than any horror movie. We are doing enough damage to our earth as it is, inflicting a nuclear war on it would be in my opinion the beginning of the end for humanity, and must be resisted by whatever means necessary...