Experts mention that the United States have in
consideration a preventive strike against North Korea’s nuclear facilities,
seeing it as a necessary thing to do before the North obtains a stable ICBM.
The problem is that it would be hard to destroy some of North Korea’s road
ballistic missiles that are targeting Japan and some parts of artillery that is
Jim Mattis, and his Asian counterparts, have
pledged to increase diplomatic pressure on Pyongyang and to strengthen military
co-operation. The three ministers condemned, in the strongest terms, the
unremitting provocative charges of North Korea. Ministers urge North Korea to
abandon fully and verifiably irreversible nuclear and ballistic programs, reads
in a statement signed by Jim Mattis and his Japanese counterparts, Itsunori
Onodera, and South Korean Song Young-Moo.
The three allies have also pledged to implement
United Nations sanctions against Pyongyang and intensify the exchange of
Other than diplomacy, the United States,
through its president’s twitter account, said: “I am allowing Japan and
South Korea to buy substantially more sophisticated military equipment from the
United States.”Authorization that the United States gave to the eastern country
after a telephone call in which they agreed to increase the carrying capacity
of South Korean missiles and missiles and the defensive possibilities against
the recent threats, although they called for an increase in diplomatic pressure
against the Kim Jong Un regime.
Above diplomacy, US and South Korean government
thought out other options that would stop North Korea from attacking. Due to
many ballistic and missile launches from the North, Trumps administration
thought of placing THAAD missile defense system in South Korea. The discussions
between South Korea and USA about implementing THAAD system (Terminal High
Altitude Area Defense), have been going since few years now, becoming more and
more realistic because of new ballistic or nuclear tests made by North Korea.
For Seoul, the decision to implement THAAD system is necessary in order to
protect the population knowing that there is the possibility to face a war with
North Korea, which has nuclear power to fight against. The interceptive
missiles used by THAAD do not contain explosives, but only target and hit
ballistic missiles at a very high speed so that the target missile is destroyed
by the impact. This also prevents the detonation of a nuclear warhead installed
on such ballistic missile. However, South Korea paralyzed the current
deployment of the THAAD and strongly rejects any increase in US forces in its
territory, as it is concerned to provoke its northern neighbors.
Undoubtedly, China and Russia would also
protest and they do have the necessary power to complicate the life of the
Trump government in other areas such as Eastern Europe or the seas of southern
and eastern China.
The US Navy could increase its presence around
the Korean peninsula by sending more destroyers capable of firing ballistic
missiles and, possibly, deploying a second combat group. But even more
important, perhaps, is that the time is in favor of North Korea, as an increase
in the US military presence by itself it would not force North to cancel its
fast-growing nuclear weapons program, nor missile tests.
Other option to deter North Korea would be for
president Trump keep Obama’s strategy to obstruct North Korea’s missile tests.
On the other hand this effort has a high risk of having unwanted consequences
if China and Russia decide to disrupt the launch tests.
If the US decides to use a radical option that
would be a large scale invasion to North Korea. Given the size of Kim Jong-un’s
army, the power of its artillery, the opacity of its air defenses and the
reluctance of South Korea to support any US military action, this option would
be extremely disparate. Any attempt to invade North Korea would require months
of a US military surge. Gradually in the area, a large-scale participation of
South Korea and a way to ensure the neutralization of the mysterious nuclear
capabilities of Pyongyang. It would also cost hundreds of thousands of lives on
SOUTH KOREAN AND AMERICAN RELATIONS
The United States and South Korea also have
military relations with military tensions and errors. With the Status of Forces
Agreement, US soldiers benefit from a privilege of extraterritoriality, a
status that also covers South Korean soldiers. In other words, judicial cases
involving US soldiers present in South Korea are not judged by South Korean
courts but US courts, and vice versa for South Korean soldiers. However, much
of the South Korean population criticizes the agreement, and denounces the
criminal acts of numerous American soldiers who went unpunished.
The recent declassification of US military
documents again included on the agenda the exactions committed by the GI during
the Korean War, which have been a source of tensions between the two countries
for fifty years. The increasingly important rise of the Chinese economic power
in the Korean peninsula causes additional risks in the relations between the
United States and South Korea. In effect, US influence could diminish if
diplomatic and judicial relations are not rethought and reinforced. Finally, the US and South Korean alliance even though had had
tensions it still stays strong and more powerful than ever.