The tension between the United States and the hermit kingdom of North Korea continues to mount as a war of words rages between President Trump and Kim Jong Un.
The diminutive despot of North Korea has been spending the better part of the last year insulting and threatening President Trump and the people of the United States through his state run media and a litany of incredibly disturbing missile tests and nuclear detonations.
After dual ICBM launches in June – something that the international community didn’t believe possible – American military strategists were essentially put on notice. Kim could now send a rocket as far as Chicago, according the expert analysis of the projectiles, but the question still remained as to whether or not North Korea could find a way to attach a nuclear device to such a projectile.
Then, just days later, Kim and his cronies detonated what they claimed to be a hydrogen bomb in a deep, underground nuclear laboratory in the North Korean mountains. Observers from around the world have warned that the device’s richter scale signature was consistent with the possibility, and photos of Kim inspecting a similar device indicated that the dictator may finally have the combination needed to wreak havoc anywhere on the planet.
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These concerns have prompted a fervent response from the United States, North Korea’s primary nemesis in the West, with Secretary of Defense James “Mad Dog” Mattis visiting U.S. ally South Korea this week. During his visit, Mattis was reminded of some sobering realities concerning the deranged despot to the North.
“As U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis peered into North Korea from a lookout post on Friday, he was given a blunt reminder by his South Korean counterpart of the vast amount of North Korean artillery within range of Seoul.
“Above the faint sound of North Korean propaganda music being blasted from across the border, South Korean Defense Minister Song Young-moo suggested that U.S. and South Korean missile defences simply could not stop all of them.
“‘Defending against this many LRAs (long-range artillery) is infeasible in my opinion,’ Song told Mattis, citing a need for strategies to ‘offensively neutralise’ the artillery in the event of a conflict.”
“Mattis replied: ‘Understood.'”
While Kim Jong Un may be seen as a kook on the international stage, he and his predecessors have spent decades fortifying their isolation and intensifying the threat they pose to South Korea and others.
In many ways, North Korea’s ability to strike Seoul and other cities in South Korea has been the rogue regime’s only insurance policy against a wholesale invasion by saner forces. Now that Mattis, a brilliant military mind in his own right, has seen firsthand what Kim is capable of, the United States may finally be able to move forward in their preparations for conflict with the madman of Pyongyang.