Military exercises

in Fear (and hatred)North Korea has threatened “indiscriminate” nuclear strikes on the US and South Korea as the two begin their largest ever military drills.

North Korea’s top diplomat for U.S. affairs said Thursday that Washington “crossed the red line” and effectively declared war by putting leader Kim Jong Un on its list of sanctioned individuals, and said a vicious showdown could erupt if the U.S. and South Korea hold annual war games as planned next month.

Han Song Ryol, director-general of the U.S. affairs department at the North’s Foreign Ministry, said in an interview that recent U.S. actions have put the situation on the Korean Peninsula on a war footing.

The exercises, Key Resolve and Foal Eagle, are an annual event and always generate tension.

The order for a “pre-emptive nuclear strike of justice” was made in a statement put out by Pyongyang.

Such rhetoric is not uncommon, and experts doubt the North’s ability to put nuclear warheads on its missiles.

North Korea says it sees the annual US-South Korean war games as a rehearsal for invasion. Last year, it threatened to turn Washington into a “sea of fire”.

“We will launch an all-out offensive to decisively counter the US and its followers’ hysteric[al} nuclear war moves,” a newsreader on the state-run North Korean KRT news channel said of the latest exercises. but why would a small state make such threats the answer because its reacting to new threata from the USA and south Kofrea.

What are these new threats?

Han said North Korea believes the nature of the maneuvers has become openly aggressive because they reportedly now include training designed to prepare troops for the invasion of the North’s capital and “decapitation strikes” aimed at killing its top leadership.

Han says designating Kim himself for sanctions was the final straw.

 

Approximately 17,000 US forces are participating in the exercises, alongside around 300,000 South Korean troops – both significant increases on 2015’s numbers.

Despite starting on the same day, Key Resolve is more computer simulation-driven and ends on 18 March, while Foal Eagle is more focussed on field exercises and runs until 30 April.

The South’s defence ministry has warned Pyongyang against any “rash act that brings destruction upon itself”.

“If North Korea ignores our warning and makes provocations, our military will firmly and mercilessly respond to it,” said spokesman Moon Sang-gyun.

Japan’s foreign minister also demanded that North Korea show restraint. It seems N korea being a proxy of china is being given the shaft to show China whos boss in the area.

N korea a pawn of china is eager to make threats on behalf of China but knows it is a toothless dog without its major

 

ally

 

south korean troops

.US and South Korean (blue head bands) marines take part in a US-South Korea joint landing operation in Pohang, South Korea (07 March 2016)

S koreas governt propagated channel has said

“North Korea’s nuclear, and nuclear missile development is absolutely unacceptable. We will coordinate with the international community to demand that North Korea show restraint, and abide by the various resolutions including that of the six party talks,” said Fumio Kishida.

“The Obama administration went so far to have the impudence to challenge the supreme dignity of the DPRK in order to get rid of its unfavorable position during the political and military showdown with the DPRK,” Han said, using the acronym for North Korea’s official name, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. 

“The United States has crossed the red line in our showdown,” he said. “We regard this thrice-cursed crime as a declaration of war.”

Although North Korea had already been heavily sanctioned internationally for its nuclear weapons and long-range missile development programs, Washington’s announcement on July 6 was the first time Kim Jong Un has been personally sanctioned.

Less than a week later, Pyongyang cut off its final official means of communications with Washington — known as the New York channel. Han said Pyongyang has made it clear that everything between the two must now be dealt with under “war law.”

The exercises also brought out peace protesters in SeoulSouth Korean protesters shout slogans such as South Korea military soldiers take part in the South Korea and U.S. joint military exercise at the Seungjin firing drill ground on August 28, 2015 in Pocheon, South Korea.

Though unconfirmed, South Korea’s Yonhap news agency, citing military sources, has reported that the exercises will include training for precision attacks on North Korean leadership and its nuclear and missile facilities.

These latest exercises come just days after the UN passed new sanctions against North Korea following its recent nuclear test and rocket launch.

On Saturday, the Philippines impounded a North Korean cargo vessel under the toughened measures. A presidential spokesman said the crew would be deported and the ship subject to a UN-mandated inspection.

The North responded to the sanctions by saying it was readying nuclear weapons for “pre-emptive” use, and by firing short-range missiles into the sea.

Seoul is expected to announce more sanctions of its own on Tuesday, which is likely to draw another angry response from Pyongyang.

The US and South Korea on Friday also began formal talks on the deployment of a US missile defence system to the peninsula, a move strongly opposed by North Korea, Russia and China.

Beijing says the Thaad anti-missile system compromises its security and would undermine its nuclear deterrent.