Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
August 09, 2017

Stop The Bluster - North Korea Is A Nuclear Weapon State

The Washington Post headlined today:  Trump threatens ‘fire and fury’ in response to North Korean threats

Just another Trump bluster, I thought. Such are mo longer a reason to read a story. But what are those "North Korean threats" he "responded" to? I had not seen any of those. Diving into the story I found :

President Trump used his harshest language yet to warn North Korea on Tuesday that it will be “met with fire and fury and frankly power, the likes of which this world has never seen before,” if it does not stop threatening the United States.
...
It was not immediately clear what Trump was responding to.

The Washington Post needs to fire its headline writer. Why assert that Trump responded to "threats" when there were none? Why assert a reason when you have no fucking clue why he did what he did?

A different shabby site claims that the base for Trump's played-up nonsense was a WaPo piece published the day before:

The president was responding to a report in the Washington Post that, according to a confidential U.S. intelligence assessment presented late last month, the North Korean regime has “successfully produced a miniaturized nuclear warhead that can fit inside its missiles.”

That report was again just bluster. The DPRK (North Korea) had announced a miniaturized nuclear device in March 2016. It even published pictures of it.

On July 4th the DPRK launched its first Intercontinental Ballistic Missile. A second test was successfully launched on July 29 under realistic operational conditions. The DPRK successfully tested nuclear devices at least five times - including a hydrogen device with potentially megatons of explosive power. It has enough nuclear material for some 40-60 weapons. All DPRK claims about progress in its missile and nuke programs have, sooner or later, been proven as truthful. There was and is no reason to doubt its March 2016 assertion.

North Korea is for all practical purposes a nuclear weapon state with the ability to deliver nukes onto the continental United States.

This is not news. Talk about "fire and fury" or an ultimatum to North Korea or of preemptive strikes is all nonsense. Nothing the U.S. can do to North Korea can prevent a response that would nuke and destroy Washington DC or some other U.S. city.

North Korea has good reasons to want nukes and the U.S. missed all chances to remove those reasons. It is way too late to lament about that.

Posted by b on August 9, 2017 at 02:02 PM | Permalink

Comments
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Trump threatens “fire and fury” against North Korea
9 August 2017
Not since the Cuban missile crisis of 1962 has the world stood so close to the brink of nuclear war.
https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2017/08/09/pers-a09.html

Posted by: Robert Beal | Aug 9, 2017 2:07:40 PM | 1

still living the dream of unipolar worlds, when the dream is fading as we speak... wapo - now jeff bozos bs.. nothing more can be expected... titillate folks with garbage reporting..

Posted by: james | Aug 9, 2017 2:30:25 PM | 2

Government, as usual, is the last to comprehend reality. But what happened last year is irrelevant.

The question that actually matters is this: What does the US do now with a whack job that has said he might launch a "preemptive" nuclear attack on Guam? Talk?

Posted by: Don Wills | Aug 9, 2017 2:32:45 PM | 3

This is how western MSM use disinformation - I am so sick of it, what is wrong with these people? Do you seek war and why? Psychopaths.

North Korea hasnt threatened to attack US damnit!
North Korea is of course going to seek nuclear weapons with a madman like neocon-Trump backed up by the EU, global media, Nato etc.
The fact that China, Russia supported this escalation with sanctions is deplorable.
But of course none of this is reported, because then the western propaganda effort will be weakened.

Posted by: Anon | Aug 9, 2017 2:36:10 PM | 4

There is a problem with this. The Russians have said - can't recall which site - that the N. Korean missiles are not ICBMs but only mid range missiles that now go a little farther, They also said, in the same article, that the missiles have no real guidance system. Therefore they are next to worthless as a real threat to any nation except those very close by in a very hit or miss probability.
I trust what the Russians say on this.

Posted by: Tony B. | Aug 9, 2017 2:40:31 PM | 5

Tony B

m. Therefore they are next to worthless as a real threat to any nation except those very close by in a very hit or miss probability.

Why even say North Korea with nukes is a "threat"? Thats the problem right there, why would they be a threat than any other nuclear state?

Posted by: Anon | Aug 9, 2017 2:48:18 PM | 6

It is very difficult to estimate just how long it will be before DPRK is a real threat to the US. One may ask why in the first place as it would be very likely only useful after a US first strike attack. The development of a solid fuel SLBM is the real test as they are rapidly retrofitting each submarine to carry a single missile. These can be run undetected to the US coasts and it doesn't matter if they are ICBMs or not. How soon this potential for retaliation may occur is probably weeks to months.

Posted by: Old Microbiologist | Aug 9, 2017 2:51:41 PM | 7

Tony B

Best thing Russia and China can do is sell some good and accurate Ballistic missiles capable of reaching the continental and outlying USA so that NK doesn't have to develop these missiles.

This way they become less of a threat to Russia and China if, as they say they have no guidance systems and are therefore useless.

These "Russian assessments" must be for laugh because according to these same assessments the Korean nuclear devices are experimental devices with wires a la Rube Goldberg that can not even fit in a cargo plane.

I believe that these assessments are designed to allay the fears of the US and render the situation less explosive. However, the fact that they went along with the SC resolution means that they too feel uncomfortable with NK arsenal so close by.

Therefore, instead of sanctions they should sell some pre targeted ICBMs to NK and preserve themselves and make a few bucks at it too.

Posted by: CarlD | Aug 9, 2017 3:11:31 PM | 8

The usual …When the Repubs destroy a country like Iraq some Dems object cry foul illegit etc. as Saddam may ‘be a dictator’ but it is best not to stir the hornet nest and is Saddam any worse than King Fahd, the Saudis did 9/11? And what was all that about Afghanistan? Taliban are BAD people but what is that a legitimate reason? etc. etc.

Then when they, Dems, come into power they destroy some other countries, in this case, Lybia and Syria, why nobody knows except ‘dictators’ ‘unhappy people’ ‘not democratic’, whatever.

Then the Repubs, or some maverick figure shows up like Trump and the war in Afgh is off (he wants but will others let him, there is a profit circuit in place), the war in Iraq is off (again won’t be allowed most likely, as I said before, these are now occupations, not 'war'), détente with Russia (scotched and leading to mass hysteria and delusion with all neos and PTB in unison promoting bash Russia and get rid of Trump), the core template of switcheroo occupation and killing remains:

Trump and Co. have it in for Iran - and now N. K. - their own genocidal massive bombing campaigns to rival that creep non-American Obama who made ‘disastrous mistakes’ !

Posted by: Noirette | Aug 9, 2017 3:13:55 PM | 9

Dear Washington Post, please fire your headline writer. Why assert that Trump responded to "threats" when there were none and when you have no fucking clue why he did what he did?

Dear b, Do you have a clue why did he what he did?

Posted by: From The Hague | Aug 9, 2017 3:22:10 PM | 10

AND...DPRK is vastly more likely to use them in retaliation than say Russia or China. Their decision is far less complex (blaze of glory and all that vs. preserving some parts of a large country, "depending on the breaks").

Posted by: ritzl | Aug 9, 2017 3:29:50 PM | 11

The leadership of North Korea has continuously made hostile and threatening statements against South Korea and against the United States since the truce was signed in 1953.

And, after all, remember that they gratuitously invaded South Korea in June of 1950.

The Norks have been preparing for war, unendingly, for no useful purpose. South Korea--and the US--would be quite content with either a peaceful reunification or a cessation of the hostile bombast.

Posted by: Desertrat | Aug 9, 2017 3:48:47 PM | 12

Same question as Tony B. 5:
How do we know these were actually ICBMs? It's not like they flew that far, is it?
(sorry if I missed some info or clear hints, please enlighten me)

Some thoughts, not completely consolidated:

Trump's stirring up conflict in Korea may have to do with the withdrawal from most of Syria - distraction.

On the other hand, the new S Korean president advocates for dialogue with the north and doesn't seem to be too keen on THAAD, so some escalation may be necessary to convince him of the need for such protection.

Posted by: smuks | Aug 9, 2017 3:52:16 PM | 13

@12

You forgot the small print:
'This statement was brought to you courtesy of Pentagon & friends.'

Posted by: smuks | Aug 9, 2017 3:54:11 PM | 14

#12: How neatly you've flipped everything on its head--can't tell if you're joking or serious.

Posted by: WorldBLee | Aug 9, 2017 3:54:13 PM | 15

North Korea does not yet have a missile that can reach any of the lower 48 US states -- let alone Washington D.C. They might be able to hit Alaska, but even that's iffy.

Posted by: Seamus Padraig | Aug 9, 2017 3:54:42 PM | 16

CarlD 8
"However, the fact that they [Russia] went along with the SC resolution means that they too feel uncomfortable with NK arsenal so close by."

Alternatively they are just sensibly playing for time with the world's other nuclear armed madmen. For the US Congress at the moment has all the finer qualities of the Mad Hatter's tea party; best not to overly upset the attendees.

Posted by: frances | Aug 9, 2017 3:55:04 PM | 17

Seamus Padraig 16

Another comment that Pentagon could have made... So what if it could "reach" US? US nukes "reach" North Korea. What is your point saying this?

Heck people, if WE here use the same bluster propaganda as neocons, what have this place become?

Posted by: Anon | Aug 9, 2017 3:58:07 PM | 18

Regarding the newest UNSC sanctions on DRNK, they don't carry much weight beyond what was already in place as these two items explore, http://www.atimes.com/article/north-korea-fire-fury-fear/ and http://theduran.com/china-gets-its-way-on-north-korea-despite-resistance-in-washington/

Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 9, 2017 4:00:58 PM | 19

#12

Read The hidden history of the Korean War by I.F. Stone
Read Rogue State by William Blum
Read The Korean War: A History by Bruce Cumings

Posted by: From The Hague | Aug 9, 2017 4:10:27 PM | 20

http://www.cnn.com/2017/08/08/politics/
north-korea-considering-guam-strike-trump/index.html

NK threatened Guam AFTER Trump threatened NK for making indeterminate threats.

"Fire Fury and Frankly Power". - Donald Trump

Frankly Power is very bad.

This threat event is a major distraction. Something else is afoot.

Posted by: fast freddy | Aug 9, 2017 4:17:21 PM | 21

Posted by: Desertrat | Aug 9, 2017 3:48:47 PM | 12
"The leadership of North Korea has continuously made hostile and threatening statements against South Korea and against the United States since the truce was signed in 1953."
Not so; when Kim took over he tried to open relations with all of the world, inviting leaders to visit, saying he wanted to end hostilities with the US. He was snubbed by all of the west. Further his was the first nation to offer condolences to the US and assistance in ending terrorism after 9/11. Imagine his surprise to instead be immediately told he was a member of Bush's "Axis of Evil."

"And, after all, remember that they gratuitously invaded South Korea in June of 1950."
There are two sides to that coin; the SK occupiers wanted to stay, the North wanted them out and the country unified.

"The Norks have been preparing for war, unendingly, for no useful purpose."
Not so. The US bombed and destroyed all of NK's major dams AFTER the armistice was signed causing hundreds of thousands of deaths and famine. The US and SK run multiple military exercises on NK border each and every year at both planting and harvest time causing NK to remove its army from helping in the fields to guarding its borders. NK has no reason to trust the US and realizes that any "drill" could become a live invasion at the drop of a hat. "Be prepared" is an entirely sensible strategy for them given past and present history.

"South Korea--and the US--would be quite content with either a peaceful reunification or a cessation of the hostile bombast."
Not so, NK has repeatedly said that it would end its nuclear programs if SK and the US ended their drills. The US has refused to even recognize his offer. Both China and Russia support NK offer and position BTW.

So you may ask; why now is the US so insistent that Kim is insane and the world must be protected from him by, of course, the US. Because SK has a new leader named Moon who ran on a platform of opening dialogue with NK, resuming trade, allowing visitation to NK by SK citizens and reducing the US presence. He also has refused to agree to the additional TAAD missiles the US surreptitiously brought into his country just prior to his election without his knowledge. Result; The Horror!!! The new SK admin wants peace!!! Peace would mean the expulsion of US troops, US weapons from SK and an end to the US ability to spy on China and Russia from SK. Now you see the world of NK/SK as it really is:)

Posted by: frances | Aug 9, 2017 4:23:26 PM | 22

Now see here:

/~~~~~~~~~~
http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-08-09/trump-boasts-americas-most-powerful-nuclear-arsenal-ever#comment-10034690

I do not think this is about blustering at all. I think this is a strategy. Donald may actually be learning what is really at stake. That is very good.
\~~~~~~~~~~

Get it?

Posted by: blues | Aug 9, 2017 4:25:36 PM | 23

Here's the real deal. If America accepts Kim's nukes, then one day it will be told to leave the Korean Peninsula.
Seoul is not worth 10 U.S. cities.

Therefore the only alternative is war, the sooner the better, since America will not abandon its forward base on the border of Russia and China.

Posted by: RenoDino | Aug 9, 2017 4:34:18 PM | 24

Yeah your only alternative is war. Your only alternative is always war. Thanks for all the fucking fish.

Posted by: blues | Aug 9, 2017 4:44:11 PM | 25

So they have nukes. They're still not going to target us and commit national suicide.
They are useful to them to stop us from laying an Iraq or Libya on them.
If we just ignored them, nothing would come of it.
As #20 alludes, we've done a lot more bad things to them than they've ever done to us.
The US always has to act like a school yard bully. Running our big mouth.
Do we have a single adult present anywhere in our leadership?
If we do I haven't seen one.

Posted by: Kraken | Aug 9, 2017 4:44:49 PM | 26

blues @25--

The irony of RenoDino's statement is that if there is war the Outlaw US Empire will most certainly lose "its forward base on the border of Russia and China" and likely all its Japanese bases, too. People like him and Desertrat are clearly led by the nose and have no opinion of their own.

Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 9, 2017 4:50:32 PM | 27

Trump and doublespeak:

"I modernized our nuclear arsenal."

It's been infused with increased graft, therein it has become more modernized.

Posted by: fast freddy | Aug 9, 2017 4:56:37 PM | 28

b - "Okay - just another Trump bluster," I thought. No longer a reason to read such a story. But what are those "North Korean threats" he "responded" to? I hadn't seen any of those.

The only public statements coming from the North Korean government are published by their official news agency the Korean Central News Agency, KCNA. Reuters spun two recent announcements a certain way and the MSM ran with that, embellishing as usual and ignoring context or any mitigating facts.

Links to english translations of the KCNA announcements can be found on my post @199 on the most recent open thread. Curiously enough, they no longer work for me today. I never though MoA was so popular! In any case, the former KCNAWATCH page listing KCNA announcements is still in Google">https://kcnawatch.co/">Google cache from 9:28 GMT on the 9th. The links within to the translated KCNA announcements now all redirect to the NK*NEWS.org front page, so either they're gone or we can't see them anymore. The Google cache for both of those translated articles is also gone.

The NK source for these announcements was listed as www.naenara.com.kp - a horribly slow and klunky site. The "US 'beheading' strike" announcement can be found here. I use CIA... er, Google Translate, so I'm not sure if I'm looking at their translation or the CIA... umm, I mean Google's.

Keep in mind that this is North Korean government 'news'. The only context offered here is that North Korea is apparently responding to a specific threat: a preemptive strike by the US designed to kill Kim and destroy the leadership. This in itself isn't unique - Kim has been paranoid about pending US actions in the past. The US Navy SEALS grabbing him last spring was the latest one I recall. His response isn't totally out of the blue here though - something happened that made him react. Trump, in turn, was responding to this (or other recent KCNA releases). That, the B-1 exercises and USAF announcements like this: South Dakota Airmen arrive ready to 'Fight Tonight' from Guam no doubt then prompted KCNA to issue another statement about being ready to attack Guam if it was used as a staging point.

I'm not taking sides here, just pointing out that the MSM is careful to emphasize North Korean paranoia and threats while minimizing (or outright ignoring) US provocations seemingly specifically designed to elicit such responses. In a subsequent post on the Open Thread, I linked an article with a Brian Williams quote regarding his recent program on North Korea: "Our job is to scare people to death".

When I see the MSM pushing a particular narrative, I can only make one conclusion about how this will all end.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Aug 9, 2017 5:19:34 PM | 29

let we forget
If you think Trump is bad on DPRK, imagine Hillary as US president http://www.newsweek.com/hillary-clinton-donald-trump-too-friendly-north-korea-465617

Posted by: brian | Aug 9, 2017 5:30:52 PM | 30

A warning to Trump: Don't touch the nuclear deal with Iran!

Posted by: virgile | Aug 9, 2017 5:33:33 PM | 31

@29
'I'm not taking sides here, just pointing out that the MSM is careful to emphasize North Korean paranoia and threats while minimizing (or outright ignoring) US provocations seemingly specifically designed to elicit such responses'

no doubt about it,..US acts in such a way to get its target to behave violently or irrationally and so justify US 'intervention'

Posted by: brian | Aug 9, 2017 5:34:30 PM | 32

PavewayIV @29--

Got this link to Korean Central News Agency via a Yandex search, which provided numerous hits, initially listed as http://www.kcna.kp http://www.kcna.kp/kcna.user.home.retrieveHomeInfoList.kcmsf;jsessionid=BD82FF78EFB05A60D62EAEC28EC736B7

This item, "KCNA Commentary on S. Korean Authorities' 'Story of Crisis in August'" seems to be the most recent, 9 August. Excerpt:

"The U.S. is a state of aggression and war which has posed a serious threat to the peace and security of the Korean peninsula and the region while pursuing the extreme hostile policy toward the DPRK and nuclear blackmail for more than a half century." http://www.kcna.kp/kcna.user.article.retrieveNewsViewInfoList.kcmsf

KCNA also exists on Twitter, https://twitter.com/kcna_koreannews

Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 9, 2017 6:05:26 PM | 33

The NK do not need Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles they could put a nuke into one of the millions of shipping containers transiting the globe or a submarine as Old Microbiologist suggested @7..http://nationalinterest.org/blog/the-buzz/the-one-north-korea-could-nuke-america-right-now-everyone-20437 Also Interesting comments on that article.

Posted by: harrylaw | Aug 9, 2017 6:22:22 PM | 34

Lets put all this North Korean imbroglio into historical context. In the Korean Peninsula war of the 50's the US had orchestrated a coup and denied the Koreans their rights to self determination. The Korean communist party had won the general elections and had been given a mandate to govern the Korean state . Well The Deep state of the gold old USA was not going to have none of that orchestrated a coup and further destabilised the then united Korean country. pseudo civil war broke out and General Macaurthur invaded and stormed Korea pushing the communist up to the yellow river. China and Russia were not going to have any of that and entered the Frey.
The US bombed the communist defenders back to the Stone Age. The survivors were living in caves . It is estimated that 5 million North Koreans were incinerated by the non stop bombing of the Northern part of Korea. Cease fire was instigated in 53 but since then their has been no peace treaty. Korea during the Carter ,Reagan, Clinton and Bush regimes had and offered to come to some sort of peace treaty and arrangement with regards to their nuclear program. All aforementioned regimes all refused and try to dictate to the NKDR terms of reference. The bellicosity by all the US and South Korean regimes toward the NKDR have been a major cause of them pursuing ballistic missiles and nuclear weapons. So here we r again US and western exceptionalism which what it is really MODERN DAY IMPERIALISM under the guises of democracy human rights and military threats by the other side never the western side.
Have we in the west not learned anything from recent history IE: WMD, six day war. ME dismemberment, Ruining the wealthiest and most equitable country in Africa(Libya). that the western social,econ0mic and political system is dead man walking and that western oligarchs are doing everything possible in order to maintain ISQ.
We in the west via or academicians ,politicos,msm have become such totalitarian ideologues .

Posted by: falcemartello | Aug 9, 2017 6:44:39 PM | 35


'The Norks have been preparing for war, unendingly, for no useful purpose. South Korea--and the US--would be quite content with either a peaceful reunification or a cessation of the hostile bombast.'

Posted by: Desertrat | Aug 9, 2017 3:48:47 PM | 12

farcical..esp the idea US wants peace!

Posted by: brian | Aug 9, 2017 7:18:52 PM | 36

Posted by: harrylaw | Aug 9, 2017 6:22:22 PM | 34

only DPRK isnt like USA that DID nuke people. US goal may be to provoke DPRK to act in such a way that they can nuke DPRK as they did japan

Posted by: brian | Aug 9, 2017 7:20:25 PM | 37

"fire and fury"

During WW2, the US firebombed every major city in Germany and Japan, culminating in the incineration of Nagasaki. A short time later the US firebombed North Korea, killing 2.5 million people, most of them civilians. Most of the deaths on 9/11 were by fire. Israel firebombs Gaza and the US drops white phosphorus on civilians in Syria. Trump is pre-announcing a Satanic ritual act of genocide by fire. In Germany this kind of symbolic savagery was dictated by Churchill, probably on demand from his Rothschild masters. Read the old testament. The symbolic sacrifice of innocents by fire is biblical. How can we end this repeating ritual? If we do not find a way it will consume us all. The fury to be summoned is not at North Korea. It is at life, all life, at existence itself. It is the voice of hell. We must silence this voice for all time.

Posted by: mireille | Aug 9, 2017 7:28:23 PM | 38

So what's the latest on Trump? Two weeks ago he was a fucking star. Have we changed our feeble minds again?

Posted by: peter | Aug 9, 2017 8:10:25 PM | 39

Definitely an ominous statement by Trump. I fear that the neocons are chomping at the bit to have an excuse not just to attack N Korea, but to use one or more nukes when doing it. Right back to the same type people with the same argument they used 72 years ago--gotta nuke Japan to show the USSR we mean business! Trump's references to fire and "likes of which never seen before" telegraph pretty strongly he's being advised that this is the perfect scenario for a limited nuclear action, to finally get to show those Ruskies we are prepared to go nuclear at the drop of a hat. And of course the whole neocon cabal is believing their own propaganda that Kim is just a lone, hated dictator, and that the whole population will be sending us Christmas cards if we would just nuke the bastard for them. They are convinced with him gone, the North will immediately capitulate. I'm afraid this is a very iffy conclusion--good thing it's only millions of Koreans and not humans who will pay the price if they've guessed wrong....

Posted by: J Swift | Aug 9, 2017 8:10:45 PM | 40

karlof1@33 - Thanks for the links, Karlof1. Just found a new release from Pyongyang on KCNA sure to excite the MSM war harpies:

KPA Will Take Practical Action: Commander of Strategic Force

Pyongyang, August 10 (KCNA) -- General Kim Rak Gyom, commander of the Strategic Force of the Korean People's Army, released the following statement on August 9:

As already clarified, the Strategic Force of the KPA is seriously examining the plan for an enveloping strike at Guam through simultaneous fire of four Hwasong-12 intermediate-range strategic ballistic rockets in order to interdict the enemy forces on major military bases on Guam and to signal a crucial warning to the U.S.

On Tuesday, the KPA Strategic Force through a statement of its spokesman fully warned the U.S. against its all-round sanctions on the DPRK and moves of maximizing military threats to it. But the U.S. president at a gold links again let out a load of nonsense about "fire and fury," failing to grasp the on-going grave situation. This is extremely getting on the nerves of the infuriated Hwasong artillerymen of the KPA.

It seems that he has not yet understood the statement.

Sound dialogue is not possible with such a guy bereft of reason and only absolute force can work on him. This is the judgment made by the service personnel of the KPA Strategic Force.

The military action the KPA is about to take will be an effective remedy for restraining the frantic moves of the U.S. in the southern part of the Korean peninsula and its vicinity.

The Hwasong artillerymen of the KPA Strategic Force are replete with a strong determination to fully demonstrate once again the invincible might of the force, which has developed into a reliable nuclear force of the Workers' Party of Korea and the world's strongest strike service, through the planned enveloping strike targeting the U.S. imperialist bases of aggression.

The Strategic Force is also considering the plan for opening to public the historic enveloping fire at Guam, a practical action targeting the U.S. bases of aggression.

This unprecedented step is to give stronger confidence in certain victory and courage to the Korean people and help them witness the wretched plight of the U.S. imperialists.

The Hwasong-12 rockets to be launched by the KPA will cross the sky above Shimane, Hiroshima and Koichi Prefectures of Japan. They will fly 3 356.7 km for 1 065 seconds and hit the waters 30 to 40 km away from Guam.

The KPA Strategic Force will finally complete the plan until mid August and report it to the commander-in-chief of the DPRK nuclear force and wait for his order.

We keep closely watching the speech and behavior of the U.S.


First, this sounds nutty even by North Korean standards of saber-rattling. We're to believe the most secretive nation on earth chooses to advertise 1) the approximate time, number of missiles and flight path of some kind of missile strike and 2) the fact that they are going to hit the water 40 km away from Guam? Funny they didn't publish launcher coordinates and blueprints for the warheads, too. Even so, there's the disclaimer that these are only strike plans that will be proposed to Kim and it's still up to him to approve them. Sure, let's go with that.

I really have to wonder if we're even really looking at the North Korean site or the CIA's 'revised' version of the North Korean site. Honestly, CNN couldn't have cooked up a more ridiculous story. This is embarrassing even by Langley standards. So let me guess... next week or so there will be a report of four nuclear explosions 40 km away from Guam 'encircling' it, but destroying nothing. This will force the US to attack North Korea and 'behead' the leadership in a massive counter-strike. I'm sure we'll have cartoonish diagram showing the trajectories originating from some mountain in North Korea with a little insert of Kim Jong-Il's head. See? Proof!

Heck, why even waste nuclear weapons for a false flag? We still have a THAAD battery on Guam. Why not claim we detected the incoming nukes and took them out before they even hit the target... er, water... whatever. Lockheed Martin stock would go nuclear! It's not like any fishermen around Guam are going to rat out the US and say nothing happened. Once it hits Reuters, it's FACT. Causus Belli - screw you internet conspiratards.

North Korea obviously attacked us first just like they said they would, so we had to kill a few million Koreans to save them. Can't you people see that? Americans are both the victims and the heros here. You should be thanking us, I guess...

Posted by: PavewayIV | Aug 9, 2017 8:45:38 PM | 41

I wish all you hysterical Nuke-heads would calm the fuck down and stop getting your knickers all twisted up over nonsense.

The US won't be nuke-ing N Korea, no matter what dismal future for humanity you idiots claim to have divined, after reading Trumps used-tealeaf twitterings.

The fact that NK borders China simply rules out any US nuke launches in that direction.

The fact that you hysterical idiots can't work that out for yourselves is proof enough that you're just a bunch of hysterical idiots with waaaaay too much time on your hands.

Posted by: Just Sayin' | Aug 9, 2017 9:13:31 PM | 42

Today is the 72nd anniversary of the bombing of Nagasaki.

Nothing new under the sun.

Cheers, fellow barflies.

Posted by: woogs | Aug 9, 2017 9:32:48 PM | 43


http://news.antiwar.com/2017/08/09/mattis-threatens-end-of-north-korea-destruction-of-its-people/
Mattis Threatens End of North Korea, ‘Destruction Of Its People’
Demands North Korea Immediately 'Stop Isolating Itself'

.....Mattis, for his part, accused North Korea of being to blame for everything, demanding that the state “stop isolating itself,” as US officials continue to impose new sanctions and threaten a massive war against them.

North Korean officials have downplayed the situation, though their state media has suggested they are developing a plan that would involving attacking the US island of Guam, and raising the possibility of a “preemptive strike” on the US if they believe an attack is imminent.

The US, of course, has constantly threatened their own preemptive strikes against North Korea for years now, and those threats have only grown. This inevitably raises concerns that one side or the other is going to blink first and jump headlong into a calamitous war

Posted by: michaelj72 | Aug 9, 2017 9:52:48 PM | 44

Collection of various estimates on the nature/size of North Korean nuclear program from GlobalSecurity.org

Nuclear Weapons Program

Of interest are the sections on Stockpile Estimates and Warhead Miniaturization.

Not offered as authoritative; it just illustrates sources and diversity of some of the 'official' estimates, some of which (or none of which) may be right.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Aug 9, 2017 10:47:34 PM | 45

This is laughable. For one I doubt NK leaders have a suicide wish by taking out an asset deemed not that important to most Americans and which would only benefit Trump, much like 9/11 benefitted Bush and his boys. Also, Guam is protected by THADD missile systems so the probability of success is low and the consequences the same regardless

Of course, if such things are believed property in the region gets a lot cheaper which is something tycoons love to see as its a buying opportunity.

I think what we are seeing is an organized campaign to terrorize folks so as to create buying opportunities for the global/regional elites. Nobody is losing sleep in the US over NK launching nukes , but lots of folks in Asia are worried about the US.

Another motive is that perhaps a false flag is being set up where NK can be blamed to gain support for an attack on NK despite its affect on SK and the rest of the region. Without such a trigger an attack on NK is not possible. Thats the real danger here.

What I can't figure is why NK is playing along by fueling the fire?. Maybe Kim and the Generals have cut a deal where they can be whisked away to paradise before the carnage and live like Kings. Much like Gorbachev and top party members when he sold out the Soviet Union

Posted by: Pft | Aug 9, 2017 11:56:00 PM | 46

North Korea may be a nuclear weapon state but the real problem the West has with them is that they are not under the jackboot of the World Bank/IMF. For this reason they need to be bombed back to the stone age....taking with them the rest of the world that agrees to live under private finance fear/loathing/stupidity.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Aug 10, 2017 1:22:27 AM | 47

The best idea I've heard, on another blog; feed them; send grains and fruit. Do it for years; it's cheap and the things NK needs.
Damn straight!

Posted by: V. Arnold | Aug 10, 2017 2:47:04 AM | 48

When, in the history of human warfare, has an enemy provided its opponent with a detailed plan of attack (and all of its opponent's media outlets, no less), on purpose?

Posted by: Josh | Aug 10, 2017 2:55:57 AM | 49

Pathetic warmongering generals in South Korea repeat Trump's threat against North Korea,
https://www.facebook.com/thekoreatimes/posts/1419702031470960

Posted by: Anonymous | Aug 10, 2017 3:41:35 AM | 50

What most American miss while thinking about what going on in Korea is that 1945 did not signify for Koreans an end of short four year long WWII but the end of forty years [40] of horrible Japanese occupation theft of national treasure, slavery, institutional apartheid, discrimination causing pain, suffering and murder of millions and that included institutional rape and kidnapping of Korean women to Japan and elsewhere as a breeding machines for imperial Japan, a subject that even today stirs high emotions within Japanese-Korean relations leading many times even to short shooting wars between them under pretext of territories disputes.

The so called Korean war stems form the fact that, the only political force actively opposed the fascism and militarism in Korea before and during WWII was communist movement. And Korea was not exception where all other political parties cooperated with Japanese occupants and hence lost any credibility after war.
While Korean communist backed by Stalin and Mao [who took over China in 1949] chose democratic path of taking power, they abandoned this path after being outraged seeing US 180 degree turn away from a punisher of a criminal nation into ardent supporter of Japan [hence Japanese miracle].

The US rehabilitation of war criminals bringing them even into Japanese government after Soviets detonated first nuke in 1949, and blocking signing peace treaty with Japan (that included demand for massive reparations] crossed all the Koreans’ political red lines across political spectrum. Even now NK and SK are united in demanding massive reparations from Japan.
The year 1950 marked attempt for final liberation of Korean south from remnants of Japanese collaborators while Kim Il-sung was enjoying huge popularity among all Koreans north and south.

US geopolitics and Deep state obsession with domino fall, did not allow for peaceful Korea, they wanted confrontation with Soviets and Mao [Hot or cold war] and for that end US invaded (under guise of UN) Korea and installed brutal dictators to rule south for decades since population wanted communists in charge as sole protectors from future Japanese militarism epitomized by retaining Japanese Emperor in power. And hence another miracle of an Asian tiger, SK, happened.

One thing that is really outrageous and missing from b analysis here is that Russia and China publicly acquiesced to a psychotic rant of Hal..ey full of lies and hallucinations on which the UNSC resolution is based.

Chinese and Russian as well US military analysts and scholars know NK is not destabilizing the region but stabilizes it removing rather than adding risk of war in the area by balancing force equation. These are illegal sanctions against NK what destabilize NK economy and could lead to sever humanitarian crisis for neighbors.
Of course Russia and China do not intend to follow any ridiculous sanctions aimed solely for starving population, in fact trade between Russia, China and NK is increasing steadily for years , the remittances of money from NK (estimated one million+) working in Russia and China and all over the world increased multiple fold over last decade.

The smuggling operations to and from NK riches epic proportions as well as a lucrative money laundering and parallel transactions involving gold or other collateral is run by anybody who can, including Chinese, Russians and US, UK and EU banks as well as Bitcoin and Ethereum sites.
Dirty cheap NK high tech missile technology is a hit among world's weapons dealers.
NK economy grows faster than China's, about 7.5% (like in the US which grows 2.5% at best, it is about 1% GDP growth coming from military weaponry orders), hence mainstream NK economy grows tremendously, as Boy Un wants to make his people happy under the existential threat to his rule, as US elite did in 1950- under existential threat from Soviet Union.
But there is a real and present danger to Russia and China acquiescing to psychotic delusions of US Deep State namely emboldening the neocon psychotic bullies who will continue to succumb deeper into their brain liquefying cancer and associated mental disease.

Ignoring/acquiescing to their rants like this at UNSC is dangerous for the world peace and will not bring sobriety to rotting neocon brains under clear blackmail from the US. Succumbing to a blackmail only encourages more bullying.

But Russia and China seems to play brutal geopolitics as a country club cricket game, not a game leading to annihilation of human race from face of the earth.
Why is that, is a good subject for yet to be written book having to do with rule of united global oligarchic elite.
Whatever your geopolitical persuasion if you think that number one problem with Boy Un in NK is that he is a madman soon (supposedly now after NK firing two missiles recently, missiles tracked closely by Russian military that stated in was intermediate range not long range ICBM able to fly for 3000-5000 km at best reaching Hawaii and parts of Alaska) to be with nukes capable of reaching US West coast think again.
First if he really was a madman he already have proven weapons (possible also chemical WMD) capable of reaching 200 miles into US shores from his fleet of submarines periodically visiting US west coast
Second, if you think that raised and educated in Switzerland Boy Un is a madman I would point you to another madman in WH to nuke.
In fact what is dangerous about Boy Un is his infatuation with the western commercial culture and consumerism that exceeds his farther's, making him prone to addiction to greed rather than power alone, the very weapon of mass economic destruction that devastated America already so in fact there is nothing to conquer in the US except for Grizzly bears an Grand canyon while they last.
Well still, if you think the Boy Un and his (and NK people) worshiping of his ancestors (dad and granddad) is weird ask any Japanese who is current emperor of Japan. He will tell you Emperor is a direct descendants of the Sun, yes, the Sun (god) had sex with another god and made first Japaneses emperor.
Too much cult worshiping for you.

The cult worshiping in embedded in Asian culture much more than in western culture and serves a way of command and control of the people under made up phony religious-like (in NK ideological) claims of divinity of the ancestors that cannot be questioned or denied.

Talking to ghosts of ancestors was as popular a millennium ago as it is today in Japan, just examine NHK broadcast from this year alone documenting otherwise relational Japanese talking with ghosts of the dead.
What you see in NK is what you saw in Japan between 1845 and 1945 under ideology of Shinto cult and after 1945 is the same cult covered with western commercial culture while the "soul of Japanese people" remains the same as in NK or even SK, former under political Soviet/Chinese grip while latter under US grip.
Actually with Trump it is hard to say who is crazy or unstable politically castrated Trump or Boy Un.
It was Un father who begin to work on nuclear weapons and ICBMs after he saw what happened with Saddam Hussein, wrongly accused of WMD and removed with no shred of evidence. Un who grew up in Switzerland continued his father plans but more for economic reasons than geopolitical reasons.

Believe or not Un supported massive reduction of military in NK that constitutes a huge burden obstacle for faster development of consumer market, he wants to see in NK (he remakes Pyongyang into a western style city, rather the soviet style city of his grandfather) and most of all he wanted to develop the efficient agriculture since in NK they have only 4 months of agricultural season.

But there was another solution to the problem of invigorating NK economy via reduction in military spending that was on the table for twenty years already, namely mutual reduction of military in NK and SK and withdrawal of US troops following signing finally a peace treaty and developing method and schedule for reunification
US flatly rejected it every-time it was proposed even by SK government, because as Trump loving Chinese tell us even today, US is not there in SK to fight/protect against NK but to protect their own self-imposed hegemonic interests in Asia (and perhaps keep peace between both Koreas and Japan since old wounds did not heal yet) and hence deployed THAAD that radar covers over 1000 miles into highly militarized Manchuria, China.

In fact the refusal of post WWII peace treaty by US was to protect Japan from massive reparations for FORTY years long Japanese occupation and enslavement of Koreans.
It is laughable reading US MSM aimed for American sheeple, brainwashing about NK as it is run by a unstable psychotic (which he may as well be) while these are US policies that are surely psychotic and put the world on the verge of nuclear war for nothing at all.
In fact Kim dynasty is a direct product of American belligerence after WWII and continuing preventing any equitable peace arrangements in the region.

The question for all of us remain why?
Why NK is not allowed her own "Nixon trip to China", normalization of relations like with Nixon did with communist China, opening up relations and by that weaken the autocratic rule in NK they fraudulently clam they seek?

The answer is that US imperial military would have been obsolete there, would have no excuse to be there and by that US grip in the region would diminish and that D.C. neocons would never accept.

PS. those who understood NK statement about Guam as a threat to attack must have their heads examined. NK spoke about military exercises with conventional warheads in waters off Guam (50 miles) outside US jurisdiction. Shocking! NATO had many times their live fire navy exercises 3 miles off Russian territorial waters in Baltic sea as well as in Black sea. Too close to comfort, hm?


Posted by: Kalen | Aug 10, 2017 4:14:27 AM | 51

First of all, read Andrei Lankov ' The Real North Korea' and you will come to the conclusion that NK is a far too poor nation to develop all these toys the CIA hopes us to believe. Second, check this seriously http://heiwaco.tripod.com/bomb.htm , and you will realize that there is a very good chance nuclear bombs do not exist. Or read professor Okio Nakatani's book ' Death object...' and you can conclude, based on a monte carlo simulation, that nuclear devises do not work.

Look at the timing of NK's recent rocket launch on the 3th of July, and the timing tells this was a convenient Cia psy-op. Look at the NK footage, virtually always computer generated fakery.

Smoking gun: what causes mushroom clouds in a nuclear explosion? What is that matter that rises up? Where do these hot gasses come from? Literally out of thin air. Remember that the bombs in Nagasaki and Hiroshima exploded 600 meter above the ground so thin air is the only explanation since nuclear reactions create little gasses. Both explosions were a Pentagon psy-op.

Posted by: Nils | Aug 10, 2017 5:08:19 AM | 52

Nils | Aug 10, 2017 5:08:19 AM | 52

Um, erm, uh; oh, never mind.

Posted by: V. Arnold | Aug 10, 2017 6:50:07 AM | 53

THe sick def. sec. General Mattis threating North Korea with extermination?

US Secretary of Defense threatens North Korea with the "destruction of its people"?
http://angryarab.blogspot.com/2017/08/us-secretary-of-defense-threatens-north.html

Posted by: Anonymous | Aug 10, 2017 7:47:26 AM | 54

Fukushima had a special gift to make the earth in remembrance of Nagasaki yesterday
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-40886169
"... the safest technology in the world..." no matter where they dig up for the next power plant

Posted by: Mina | Aug 10, 2017 8:28:31 AM | 55

Ringmaster Trump

If I was the cynical sort I might think that:

> Scaramouche was a distraction for installing a General as Chief of Staff (first since Nixon and only the only other one was a person friend of Dwight Eisenhower);

> NK was a distraction for increasing troop levels in Afghanistan.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Aug 10, 2017 9:23:46 AM | 56


Colonel Lang says: " Kim Jung Un IS mad in that he has directly threatened the US with an announced attack to be made on the US sovereign territory of Guam. IMO that in itself justifies a US pre-emptive attack on NoKo. pl "

Reply 10 August 2017 at 08:28 AM

Posted by: Castellio | Aug 10, 2017 10:16:54 AM | 57

Trump and the entire upper echelons of the American State are clearly completely amoral notwithstanding their delusional state of being in thinking that they can order the world to do as they please. If 'they' think that using brinkmanship will yield the capitulation of Russia and China to western plutocratic interests they are delusional. This only adds to their delusional state of being. The only question is how and when this delusion is dispelled and whether billions of people going about their lives will be destroyed in breaking their delusions?

Posted by: BRF | Aug 10, 2017 10:22:01 AM | 58

PavewayIV @41--

Yeah, I also thought that strange. Outlaw US Empire threatening genocide isn't strange and only serves to reinforce NK's image of The Beast. As Kalen points out, the Truth is not with us Americans.

Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 10, 2017 10:42:41 AM | 59

All this tough talk is starting to have an effect on the stock market. Gold price is shooting up like an ICBM. Time somebody had a quiet word with Donald.

Posted by: dh | Aug 10, 2017 10:53:00 AM | 60

@ Virgile #31

His Ambassador at the UN is going to Vienna next week. However in the mean time she has lost two of her key aides: Chief of Staff who came from the Heritage Foundation and is an Israeli firster as well as her communications director. So we will see how well she fares with the folk at the IAEA and whether she will ask/demand that Amano to put "Iran on notice"

Posted by: Yul | Aug 10, 2017 11:13:57 AM | 61

Nils, about what the mushroom cloud is made of. The intense heat of the plasma makes hot air rise and drag everything under it upwards like a huge vacuumcleaner, including the ground soil.
Very small nukes dont produce a similarwise proportioned cloud but it still exposes the very high temperature by the narrow highrising smoke pillar.

Posted by: Peter Grafström | Aug 10, 2017 11:33:14 AM | 62

Not exactly on topic, but the Guardian publishes these two letters today:

"Reading Suzy Hansen’s account of how the all-pervasive belief in the notion of American exceptionalism has stopped her and her countryfolk from seeing how their view of the world is misconceived (Unlearning the myth of American innocence, 8 August) makes me want to draw attention to our own myopia. Majority thinking in the west has been similarly warped. How else were we persuaded to sign up to the cold war, to go to war with Iraq more than once, to see North Korea only through the eyes of the US generals, to sanction Iran despite its moves to stop nuclear weapons development, to fail to recognise the degree to which US political and economic dominance in South America has twisted and undermined democratic development there, and to support the extension of Nato provocatively to the very doorstep of our “enemy” Russia? Pundits call the last century “the American century”. It’s time to give up on that deal, and ensure we all have an equal share in the current 100-year stretch.
Gillian Dalley
London


•"Suzy Hansen’s article is excellent. I was born in 1942 in Newark, New Jersey; I grew up in and near Newark until I went to college at 18. I’m a nuclear physicist, retired after 38 years in Los Alamos National Laboratory, Euratom, the Department of Energy, and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). My field is nuclear safeguards and nonproliferation.

In 1975, my wife, son, and I moved to Italy, where I worked and lived for the next three years. Before I left, a friend and colleague, who’d lived abroad, told me “when you return, you’ll think the country, lab, and colleagues have changed. No, Doug, it will be you who’ve changed.” This was very true. I learned fluent Italian, pretty good German, and enough French to enjoy France. We travelled all over Europe, and even visited Egypt. Later, 1998-2003, I lived and worked for six years in Vienna, Austria. The IAEA is a United Nations affiliate often called the UN’s nuclear watchdog. At Los Alamos most of my work was with and for the IAEA; this enabled me to live and work in over 50 countries, with people from over 120 countries. I think of myself as much as a citizen of the world as a citizen of the USA.

An article in Foreign Policy lists the 10 most dangerous countries. It will surprise most US citizens that the US is at No 1. We have a larger defence budget than the sum of the next nine countries. In our so-called defence of democracy, we’ve killed millions of people, mostly civilians, in our various wars since the second world war. Our CIA has carried out or engineered the assassination of world leaders who weren’t of the capitalist persuasion we prefer. During recent wars, the CIA established black sites outside the US where they could torture captured people that should have been treated as prisoners of war.

Ms Hansen’s article is spot-on! I realise that what I’ve written is anathema to the majority of our citizenry.
Dr T Douglas Reilly
Los Alamos, New Mexico, USA

Posted by: Shakesvshav | Aug 10, 2017 11:50:00 AM | 63

Meanwhile, US military cant get enough of warmongering so...

US sends McCain’s namesake to challenge Chinese maritime claims

Posted by: Anonymous | Aug 10, 2017 11:51:20 AM | 64

Denis Rodman
Who is he working for?

Who does Denis Rodman represent when he pays his visits to the Swiss-educated gurning North Korean puppenkopf?

Posted by: Just Sayin' | Aug 10, 2017 11:52:56 AM | 65

Yul @60--

Iran continues to be squeaky clean in its adherence to the nuclear deal. Halley will probably present the IAEA with a vial filled with white powder saying it represents proof Iran's violated the agreement. The Iranians aren't fools and know Neocons will seize on anything to annul the deal. Yet, foiling the Neocons is simple by staying clean.

Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 10, 2017 11:59:50 AM | 66

Just Sayin' @64--

Why don't you get on Twitter and ask him. My guess is that he represents himself.

Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 10, 2017 12:05:55 PM | 67

Do not need to stay long in the place where America farted.
And what effect did the last Tomahawk missiles fired at the Syrian airport have?
Comedy of idiots

Posted by: ALAN | Aug 10, 2017 12:18:54 PM | 68

@22 fances.. thanks..

everyone keep desertrat and a few other relative newbies on ignore..

@25 blues.. thanks..ps -moa seems to have been invaded by more then a few morons of late!

@35 falcemartello - thanks...

@42 just sayin' - i tend to agree, but see @57 castellio post for how armchair generals think..

@59 dh... i am sure goldman sachs was ahead of the curve on that one.. they probably fed trump his lines..

Posted by: james | Aug 10, 2017 12:28:49 PM | 69

@68 Goldman could be short and hoping for a market collapse. Mutual fund holders might complain a bit but not enough to cause civil insurrection.

Posted by: dh | Aug 10, 2017 12:35:36 PM | 70

@66

you're surprisingly gullible for someone that can't stop braggin about how intellectual you are.

Posted by: Just Sayin' | Aug 10, 2017 12:43:02 PM | 71

Actually considering how much bragging you do, around here, I guess its not really that surprising

Posted by: Just Sayin' | Aug 10, 2017 12:45:49 PM | 72

@42 just sayin' - i tend to agree, but see @57 castellio post for how armchair generals think.

Posted by: james | Aug 10, 2017 12:28:49 PM | 68

Yes there certainly is a mountain-load of idiocy on this subject floating about, emanating mostly from armchair generals, alleged-intellektuals and various other idiots, all with waaaay too much time on their hands.

Posted by: Just Sayin' | Aug 10, 2017 12:54:40 PM | 73

P.s.

The orange one's "Fire and Fury" line is lifted wholesale from a character in Marvel's Captain America comic.

Ever feel yer being had?

Posted by: Just Sayin' | Aug 10, 2017 12:58:34 PM | 74

Does nobody understand that the Guam stuff is a threat to conduct a MISSILE TEST and not an actual strike? The DPRK is saying that it will launch missiles that will fall just short of Guam, and that's it. I don't know how PavewayIV inferred that there would be live warheads on the missiles.

Posted by: Tokopol | Aug 10, 2017 1:08:31 PM | 75

@ 74

I wonder where the gurning North Korean Rodman-fawning wunderkind got that genius idea from?

Hey, Maybe Denis suggested it to him . . .

Posted by: Just Sayin' | Aug 10, 2017 1:23:46 PM | 76

I know that some of us here at Moon (including b and myself) have found that Colonel Pat Lang at turcopelier is a sensible voice from the military point of view. I am one of those voices that have found Pat Lang's comments very informative and an interesting opening into the thinking of realist US militarist. What is interesting in the above link is the good colonel comes out with two points that absolutely astounded me. 1) The US should use tactical nuclear weapons against NoKo because they verbally threatened the US base in Guam. 2) Iraq actually had a significant nuclear weapons program ('one year from deployment') when the US invaded in 2003.

Point 1 is simply an opinion, so Lang wants the US to launch a nuclear attack on NoKo. But point 2 is supposedly based on evidence (the thing with Pat Lang was that he was an officer in the DIA at the time so he had access to classified information that the rest of us did not). Perhaps he had access to that real evidence but for security reasons cannot share it with us. This is getting unreal.

I still think the good colonel is quite sensible in many areas but if he represents the thinking among the "realist" military thinkers then it seems to me that we (meaning the whole world, not just Moon readers) are in deep shit.

Posted by: ToivoS | Aug 10, 2017 2:32:00 PM | 77

Tokopol@74 - The translated release is ambiguous at best - I don't 'know' the North Koreans will have warheads of any type on the missiles. I was mocking the evolving MSM narrative developing around this issue. See below. And regardless of North Korean intent, the US military will consider these missiles armed and potentially nuclear-tipped if they start flying towards Guam, period. They will act appropriately. They don't have the luxury of debating the meanings of North Korean press releases or acting on probability assessments by anyone else.

Castellio@57 - Someone noted elsewhere that technically, Korea hasn't threatened an attack on Guam. Putting a missile 40 km off the coast puts it in international waters. It's a dangerous and provocative move, but not really a direct attack on US territory. I'm guessing at Kim's logic here, not how the US would undoubtedly 'interpret' such an attempt.

If the threat is to be believed, then North Korea wouldn't waste their limited stock of nuclear warheads. They would supposedly be trying to send a message to skeptics that they could hit Guam if the US kept flying mock B-1 attacks from there or massing troops/ships for a North Korean attack. The NK announcement does not say the missiles will be nuclear tipped. In fact, if they are just going to be hitting the water for a missile capability display, then they might not even be armed. At this point however, dissecting the garbled translation of what may or may not have been a North Korean official news agency announcement and attempting to divine actual intent is reading tea leaves. In any case, it would most assuredly be turned into - using SST Publius Tacitus reference - a Korean Gulf of Tonkin. In fact, it has already started.

Another purpose?

The US would shoot any Guam-oriented missiles down with the single Guam or 1+ South Korean THAAD batteries. I have to wonder if North Korea doubts US claims on the efficacy of THAAD and might be trying to demonstrate this one way or the other to the world. That would explain the odd plan for four simultaneous launches terminating around and close to Guam. Besides the US, I can think of two other countries that would be intensely interested in the anti-missile performance of the THAAD in Guam: Russia and China. Kim would be doing them a favor with this missile warning shot - you can't buy that kind of intelligence today at any price.

Keep in mind that both China and Russia are still furious with the US for putting anti-missile systems on their borders. THAAD is designed to intercept high-altitude ballistic missiles in their terminal phase - something neither Russia nor China would use against targets in a bordering country. The THAAD missile itself only has a range of a few hundred kilometers. The real threat in their eyes is the THAADs surveilance radar - the mobile AN/TPY-2 'Eye of Sauron'. The US claims it will only be used in 'terminal mode' in South Korea with a range of about 600 km. The radar can be reconfigured to a 'forward base mode' in a few hours which may have a range of up to 3000 km. See map here. It essentially becomes a giant spy radar tracking everything in the air deep into Chinese or Russian territory. Imagine how the US would react to Russia placing a long-range radar on the Mexican border with a view of most of the US to 'protect Mexico from US ICBMs'.

China and Russia wouldn't encourage Kim to do his warning missile strike near Guam, but you can bet they won't be complaining one bit if it happened. They'll be watching and listening very closely. The US can threaten North Korea with retaliation *if* they carry this out, but what if Kim goes ahead anyway? Lockheed and Raytheon better deliver their claimed 100% accuracy first with a anti-ballistic missile system that has costed US taxpayers well over $10 billion dollars so far. If it can't even stop simple North Korean missiles, it isn't going to work against Russia's reentry vehicles and their sophisticated anti-ABM capabilities.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Aug 10, 2017 2:32:18 PM | 78

@76 toivo.. pat lang has come unhinged.. i hope the koolaid tastes good..

Posted by: james | Aug 10, 2017 2:37:05 PM | 79

mind you, the same thing could be said for usa foreign policy for some time now..

Posted by: james | Aug 10, 2017 2:38:05 PM | 80

@48 V. Arnold

"The best idea I've heard, on another blog; feed them; send grains and fruit. Do it for years; it's cheap and the things NK needs. Damn straight!"

I totally agree, it's a poetic type engagement and attempt to win them over with kindness..... which of course is totally alien to the gung-ho american military mentality and also alien to the intents of all Empires, and the purpose of all those US military bases and US military force in Asia, and also in the US which could be directed at North Korea, or any adversary. in the world.

This sanctions regime which the US has practiced since the days of the wonderful Cuban revolution, trying to strangle other nations through embargoes really is not only inhumane but counter-productive in the long run, not to mention that I consider it a 'crime against humanity'. How many real people have suffered in Cuba, Iran, Iraq (under the heinous Clinton-Blair sanctions), North Korea, Syria and now to include even in Russia? and by what right really does the US do this, how does it force the entire world economic system to bend to its will? - to deny other nations the right to access money on international markets, to prevent them from using the international wire systems to pay for goods and services. By what right? Is there some UN charter thing or UN Security Council resolution allowing this form of economic warfare - it's barbaric and people suffer, all because the Elites of one nation force the rest to bow to it, it's so f**king medieval! By what right, I ask you? The Divine Right of Empires?

Not many people discusses either the wisdom nor the (in)humanity of these kinds of sanctions, and the real human suffering that they cause, and in this case, who knows, the terrible war the sanctions (and the constant military badgering and what the press calls 'military exercises' which are in fact war games) will provoke......

Posted by: michaelj72 | Aug 10, 2017 2:49:04 PM | 81

@76 He was referring to Iraq being a year or so away from a "detonatable nuclear device" in 1991.

Posted by: bbbar | Aug 10, 2017 2:54:32 PM | 82

China and Russia wouldn't encourage Kim to do his warning missile strike near Guam, but you can bet they won't be complaining one bit if it happened. They'll be watching and listening very closely.
Posted by: PavewayIV | Aug 10, 2017 2:32:18 PM | 77


It amazes me just how you people can repeatedly churn out such ridiculous nonsense

I guarantee they will be complaining - especially the Chinese.

The Chinese won't want to give the Yankee Imperialists any excuse at all to up the tension in the region.

They certainly won't want an idoit in N.Korea supplying the Imperialists with any ostensibly plausible grounds for increasing their military presence/hardware (Thaad etc) on the Korean peninsula.

The idiot gurning wunderkind's moronic missile antics are absolutely perfect for the US. They love that idiot wunderkind to bits for the moronic missile nonsense he and his military are currently churning out

The Chinese on the other hand are probably beginning to wonder just which side the idiot gurning wunderkind is playing for.

My bet is "Denis' side."

Without a doubt the Chinese hate the idiot wunderkind right now, and if they have any sense are probably, as I write this, gaming the outcome of simply entirely removing him, and his top brass, from the equation.

-----------

Re: the antics and idiocy of Col. Pat Mustard [a.k.a. Lang]

Never seen the attraction myself - he's a decidedly 2nd rate analyst/thinker, with little in the way of enlightening info or insight to offer. Mostly he seems to do a lot of name-dropping which seems to impress a whole horde of other 2nd or even third rate thinkers [see several shining examples of the genre, posting not too far above this comment]

The supposedly high regard others have for him completely mystifies me, and reminds me of the mystifyingly similar high regard other 2nd and 3rd raters have for other intellectually unenlightening members of the alt-commentariat, people like Magnier and Mercouris to give just two examples

That Patrick Armstrong fellow knows a thing or two, though. Far superior output compared to that of the ridiculously bombastic Col Pat Mustard.

Posted by: Just Sayin' | Aug 10, 2017 3:17:41 PM | 83

81,

The sanctions regime of the "good ole U S of A" was first implemented against Haiti in 1803 in the form of a total trade embargo that lasted until 1865.
Even though the new Latin American Republics, Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador owed their independence to the human, material and economic support of Haiti, the United States conspired to prevent the participation of Haiti at the first American Hemisphere Nations Congress held in Panama in 1824.

It did not invoke the Monroe Doctrine to prevent France from demanding war reparations from it's victor, Haiti. The US even supported the move that made Haiti penniless for two centuries and even added insult to injury by acquiring the debt and changing the interest rate from 4 to 7%.

But, paradoxically, Haiti's problems began in earnest when Lincoln lifted the embargo and established an "embassy" (legation) in 1965. From there on,
the locals never managed to elect a President of their choice.

Cuba better be vigilant with the "Embassy", the mother of most political troubles wherever it stands.

Posted by: CarlD | Aug 10, 2017 3:37:35 PM | 84

81
correction: not 1965 but 1865. sorry for the typo.

Posted by: CarlD | Aug 10, 2017 3:39:08 PM | 85

If the United States dares go to open war with North Korea, then America's nose will be broken. This for one hundred percent.

Posted by: ALAN | Aug 10, 2017 4:15:26 PM | 86

This is a war in progress, a war of words. What complicates analysis is that PRNK seems quite willing to match its opponent in this war of words. What complicates discussion is that some of us would like to use some of these words to agree on the current reality of this world.

Oh well. I look forward to the Guam test - I hope it happens, because parabolic arcs are worth a thousand words - and words, as we know, have been cheapened by this current war. And PRNK is real, and beyond the words can actually do things in the real world, unlike its adversary, which is increasingly unreal.

The US will do nothing of material impact. If the US could do anything, it would now be doing it, and would have already done it. The US can do nothing. It is a dying empire, with a bit of cash, a vast propaganda foothold in the world shielding its true emptiness, and a lot of old contacts that are all in the process of reviewing their relationship with said US.

Also, it is possessed of a huge greed for all the mineral wealth in places like Afghanistan and North Korea that somehow it and previous colonial empires missed out on stealing. As it dies and falls into reverie, it dreams of stealing the mineral wealth of places like North Korea, Iran, Russia...but it's only a dream. And the war of words rages on, exactly as if it were real.

~~

Escobar on PRNK: North Korea: fire, fury and fear
Korybko on US & Afghanistan: Russia Isn't Arming the Taliban, But the Deep State Wants Trump to Think So
And a link from the Escobar piece: North Korea is sitting on trillions of dollars of untapped wealth, and its neighbors want in

Posted by: Grieved | Aug 10, 2017 4:25:47 PM | 87

Grieved @87--

Nice take on situation--Those making their own reality are no more than dream masters and their engineered reality merely ephemeral.

Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 10, 2017 5:58:36 PM | 88

"OPLAN 5027 a series of military operations plans made by the United States and South Korea for the defense against a possible North Korean invasion.

A major threat of a Korean conflict is the bombardment of the South Korean capital of Seoul, which is one of the world's largest cities and has nearly forty percent of the country's population living within forty miles of it. With an artillery force of over 12,000 self-propelled and towed weapon systems, though outdated and with limited range, the country could "sustain up to 500,000 rounds an hour against Combined Forces Command defenses for several hours." Short-range attacks with nuclear, chemical, or biological warheads are also possible for crossing the Demilitarized Zone or attacks against Seoul, with initial casualties in the thousands."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OPLAN_5027


DPRK Military Doctrine

The perceived value of nuclear weapons for North Korea is reflected in the often cited statement attributed to former Indian Army Chief of Staff Sundarji: "one principal lesson of the Gulf War is that, if a state intends to fight the United States, it should avoid doing so until and unless it possesses nuclear weapons."
In the face of a credible threat of use of nuclear weapons, the United States and its coalition partners could be forced to change the way the US would conduct operations. North Korea may see the threat of use of nuclear weapons against US coalition partners or allies as a powerful tool in undermining US options for coalition warfare, or in seeking through coercion to undermine US basing or other support for operations. North Korea must also perceive enormous value threatening Japan in order to deny the United States access to key ports and airfields in the south.
Nuclear weapons would also serve to coerce and deter the United States from responding to a North Korean attack on the South by launching a counter-offensive aimed at, for instance, seizing Pyongyang.

https://fas.org/nuke/guide/dprk/doctrine/

@Madderhatter67

Posted by: @Madderhatter67 | Aug 10, 2017 6:29:01 PM | 89

Mercouris at The Duran provides us with another update with links to 3 important editorials by People's Daily, Global Times and London Times, the latter of which might be the most astonishing in its remonstration of Outlaw US Empire actions, http://theduran.com/china-warns-us-on-north-korea/

I think the biggest problem driving the situation is the Empire's responsibility for the entire fiasco--its unilateral renouncing of the deal made by Slick Willie--and its tremendous unwillingness to accept that responsibility.

Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 10, 2017 6:35:29 PM | 90

Shooting anything near N Korea's nuclear facilities runs the risk of a huge disaster. A coolant loss to the DPRK's reactors and spent fuel pools would be devastating on an unimaginable scale if done deliberately and left to run their course. The refugee crisis would compound daily and spread as the radiation does. It would be like 100 Fukushimas

I've made some inquiries to see if such variables have in any capacity been factored in. I'll let you know what, if anything comes of it.

Posted by: Liveload | Aug 10, 2017 6:51:56 PM | 91

91

You do that,.

Be sure to get back to us asap.

Them darn variables won't factor themselves you know.

Posted by: Just Sayin' | Aug 10, 2017 7:06:30 PM | 92

Something to ponder from Wiki in answer to the question what does a THAAD system cost." A THAAD battery consists of at least six[33] launcher vehicles, each equipped with eight missiles, with two mobile tactical operations centers (TOCs) and the AN/TPY-2 ground-based radar (GBR);[34] the U.S. Army plans to field at least six THAAD batteries,[31] at a purchase cost of $800 million per battery."

Do the math, 800 million x6 for the basic system plus 22 million a year to run. Oh, and for sure they will test their system; so you can figure 800 million x2 or 3 each and every year. The US is trying to force SK to accept the full THAAD package (they delivered and hid several batteries from the new administration) and as much of the cost as they can shove down their throats.

I think money is what all this bluster is about on the US side which will be realized by forcing the new SK govt to let the US install the full THAAD package. On the NK side it is about national sovereignty and survival. This ranting may have started about money and forcing the new SK admin to bend the knee but it not end well as a number of the key players are very rash and I am not referring to Kim.

Posted by: frances | Aug 10, 2017 7:48:28 PM | 93

...
and you will realize that there is a very good chance nuclear bombs do not exist. Or read professor Okio Nakatani's book ' Death object...' and you can conclude, based on a monte carlo simulation, that nuclear devises do not work.
...
Posted by: Nils | Aug 10, 2017 5:08:19 AM | 52

Unfortunately for professor Okio Nakatani, and Nils, the existence of electricity generating stations, with nuclear furnaces instead of chemical furnaces, suggests that nuclear devices not only work, but work precisely as Albert Einstein predicted.
And the main difference between a nuclear furnace and a nuclear bomb is that in a nuclear furnace the rate of nuclear fission is carefully controlled; whereas in a nuclear bomb the fission is designed to run out of control from the moment the reaction is initiated. This results in all of the nuclear fuel being consumed, and a vast amount of heat (energy) being released, in a fraction of a second.
It's actually quite easy to understand. So if you don't understand it's only because you've decided not to understand.
If you ever get curious, start by acquainting yourself with the meaning and implications of E = M x C x C (where E = Energy, M = Mass, and C = 186,000 (imperial measure) or 300,000 (metric measure).

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Aug 10, 2017 8:36:35 PM | 94

What I don't get about this is the way that everyone accepts as a given that Guam is somehow a part of the US. Take a look at a map; Guam an island group in the western Pacific is a long way away from the US. It was illegally seized during the 42-45 amerikan manufactured contretemps with Japan and never returned, as it was the main base amerika used to fly nuke loaded b52's up to China & Vietnam.
If Guam is indeed a 'united state' why isn't there a Senator Guam much less a coupla congresspersons?

Guam is an illegally seized & occupied imperial possession, just as Hawaii was until after 1945 when amerika decided to integrate it to boost their false claim that Japan had attacked sovereign US territory - a post facto justification for Hiroshima & Nagasaki.
What a cleft stick the people of Guam now find themselves in - the only way they can get good ole apple-pie amerikan democracy is if they are nuked by North Korea something that won't happen until/unless amerika does something really egregious. Of course if that happens there won't be anyone about to vote in the quadrennial beauty contest anyhow..
The indigenous people of the Pacific have suffered under the jackboot of amerikan fascism for too long - the real impetus over all this should be to kick the entire gang of rednecked thugs all the way back to LA or whatever other scabrous shithole they emanated from.

Posted by: Debsisdead | Aug 10, 2017 9:02:07 PM | 95

Just Sayin' @42 says....
"The fact that NK borders China simply rules out any US nuke launches in that direction."
"The fact that you hysterical idiots can't work that out for yourselves is proof enough that you're just a bunch of hysterical idiots with waaaaay too much time on your hands."

My gut tells me something similar to this, although I don't think my time following this forum is wasted. The purpose of forums like this is to pool opinions in an attempt to divine what the hell is going on behind the scenes. Considering ALL possibilities, including the possibility that Power has gone barking mad and will launch Armageddon, is proper inquiry as long as that unlikely hypothesis is given its proper weight in relation to the greater likelihood that the TPTB are basically greedy, materialistic cowards who would start wars for profit but never fight in one. The school yard rhetoric means something and has some purpose - even if it is only theatre. Why perform this grotesque theatre for the masses?

Posted by: Activist Potato | Aug 10, 2017 9:42:03 PM | 96

For years Mdm Park had been trying to stall the installation of THAAD,
she initiated a 'sun shine policy' with Beijing.


SK, dec-2015

'The situation is now considerably better than it was last spring,”
“It would be making a fool of ourselves to [deploy THAAD].”

If North Korea carries out another nuclear test,
as it occasionally threatens to do through its propaganda channels,
that could always cause South Korea to re-evaluate its needs for THAAD,'


6-1-16
Like clockwork, NK stepped up to plate with another nuke test


14-1-16
Seoul spoke of the need to deploy the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense
(THAAD) system on the Korean Peninsula.

The rest is history.

Posted by: denk | Aug 10, 2017 10:42:43 PM | 97

michaelj72 @81

You (and, on other occasions, V. Arnold) are correct. There is all too little discussion of whether particular sanctions are not merely acts of war, but war crimes. We are not, of course, speaking of freezing oligarch bank accounts, but attempting to directly and deliberately inflict economic loss which reasonably can be foreseen as causing misery, suffering and even consequential early death to civilian populations. It can be legitimately queried whether and to what extent particular economic and physical losses rise to the level of terrorism.

Posted by: zakukommander | Aug 10, 2017 11:28:35 PM | 98

@95 debs is dead.. try telling that to your average amerikkkan, lol... thanks for stating the obvious, which is still quite un-obvious to many.. the usa has more military bases on the planet, spread around the planet, then anyone else... i suspect they outnumber the number of private prisons in the usa too, but i have never done the math...

Posted by: james | Aug 11, 2017 2:58:49 AM | 99

zakukommander | Aug 10, 2017 11:28:35 PM | 98
michaelj72 @81

I've asked the poster for permission to quote his entire post here at MoA.
You can also go to the post at Ian's place. It's the second comment;
http://www.ianwelsh.net/ending-north-korea-fear/

Posted by: V. Arnold | Aug 11, 2017 5:18:32 AM | 100

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