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Japanese Prime Min. Kan describes Korean peninsula as "on the brink" of war, adds Pyongyang needs to be severely reprimanded
Should hostilities ever resume on the peninsula, U.S. military officials say one of the first orders of business probably would be to coordinate an evacuation from South Korea of perhaps hundreds of thousands of Americans and other foreign nationals.
Just don’t expect the massive undertaking to run like clockwork, they warn, especially if the operation is conducted while missiles are flying and tanks are rolling.
ROK Foreign Ministry to hold media briefing in one hour.
1996 Miss Universe @aliciamachado77 closes account amid ridicule for tweeting about "attacks between the Chinas."
To be honest, I had no idea about the attack until the evening of the 23rd, when the officers were informed that our pass privileges, regardless of who our sponsors are, were canceled for the weekend, and that there would be NO alcohol consumption until further notice. This, fairly devastating, news led most of us to rush to the computers to find out the details of the event. Since that time, there has been little to no change on this particular installation, but of course, I cannot speak for the other Camps around Korea. The bottom line is simple, for the foreseeable future, everyone here is safe, and though we remain ready to act (since we're all sober and just hanging around) we do not expect anything serious to occur....cont.
According to reports out of top Chinese mainstream news outlets, the RAND Corporation recently presented a shocking proposal to the Pentagon in which it lobbied for a war to be started with a major foreign power in an attempt to stimulate the American economy and prevent a recession.
ROK Foreign Ministry, at press briefing, says joint war games with U.S. from Sunday will send clear message (to DPRK, China).
North Korea: is the heir apparent influencing policy?
Tuesday 23 November 2010 1:20 pm
An interesting article in today’s Asia Times may throw some light on today’s incident in the Yellow Sea off the two Koreas.
The author, Kim Myong-Chol, who lives in Tokyo but is described as “an unofficial spokesman” for the North Korean government, is talking up the role of Kim Jong-un, son and heir apparent to President Kim Jong-il.
“The young general has proved in the eyes of the Workers Party of Korea and the military that he is decisive and ready to risk war at anytime with the US and Japan over the slightest infringement of the sovereignty and independence of North Korea,” he writes.
He says that the 27-year-old “has authored papers on nuclear war strategy, missiles and long-range weapons for use in ground warfare and air-defence, winning the acclaim of military leaders.”
Now, this could be complete nonsense – bigging up the previously unknown Kim – or it could indicate that the new Kim is influencing policy. Which would be alarming, as shooting incidents between North and South Korea are on the rise, and a report by a US atomic scientist suggests that the North has vastly stepped up its nuclear programme.
As was the case with Kim Il-sung and Kim Jong-il, the young general shines with such virtue and magnetic appeal that he fascinates the elder, more experienced leadership of the Workers' Party of Korea (WPK), as well as the Korean People's Army commanding generals, their rank-and-file members and the masses. He comes across as a leader who can achieve a spiritual and political connection between the leadership and the population and weave North Korean society into a close-knit, harmonious political family.
Secondly, the young general has proved in the eyes of the WPK and the military that he is decisive and ready to risk war at anytime with the US and Japan over the slightest infringement of the sovereignty and independence of North Korea.
In 2009, the young general ordered a prompt retaliatory nuclear assault on the mainland US and Japan should take place if they intercepted the second North Korean satellite launch vehicle.
South Korea military defends response to attack
25 Nov 2010 08:38:13 GMT
(Adds quotes, details)
By Jack Kim
YEONPYEONG, South Korea, Nov 25 (Reuters) - A senior South Korean marine on Thursday defended the 10 minutes it took to retaliate after a North Korean attack amid criticism the response was too slow.
Two days after North Korea fired a barrage of artillery shells at the island of Yeonpyeong, killing two civilians and two soldiers and destroying dozens of houses, members of President Lee Myung-bak's own party and opposition lawmakers accused the military of acting too late.
Marine Lieutenant-General Joo Jong-hwa told reporters visiting the island on Thursday it took 10 minutes to return fire, contradicting earlier reports that it took 15.
"The soldiers did not desert and in the midst of a rain of fire, they pinpointed the target and started firing which has never occurred in the past before," he said. "They did very well."
North Korea says it was retaliating to live fire from South Korea into its waters after warning the South by phone not to go ahead with a drill.
"North Korea argues that we fired at them first, but this is the direction that we fired," he said, pointing southwest, away from North Korea. r.reuters.com...
He said there were fewer North Korean fishing boats in the area than before. "We believe that North Korea has still not eased its firing readiness," he added.
South Korea said on Thursday it would increase troops on islands near North Korea with Pyongyang warning it would follow its bombardment with more attacks if its neighbour tried any "provocations".
Hundreds of terrified residents of Yeonpyeong fled to the mainland on Wednesday after the heaviest attack on the Korean peninsula since the end of the Korean War 1953, many saying they would never return.
Yeonpyeong, a small island just 120 km (75 miles) west of Seoul, is home to about 1,600 civilians and 1,000 soldiers. It lies in Yellow Sea waters claimed by the North but occupied by the South since the end of the war. [ID:nTOE6AM06B]
The United States and South Korea are to hold joint military exercises in the Yellow Sea from this weekend, with the aircraft carrier USS George Washington taking part. (Reporting by Jack Kim; Writing by Nick Macfie; Editing by Alex Richardson)
China says concerned about U.S.-S.Korea military drill
25 Nov 2010 08:13:08 GMT
* Says in contact with Washington over Korea situation
* Says resumption of six-party talks "urgently" needed
* Urges all sides of dispute to "do more to ease situation" (Adds quotes, details)
By Chris Buckley
BEIJING, Nov 25 (Reuters) - China expressed concern on Thursday about South Korea's planned joint military exercise with the United States, and a foreign ministry spokesman refrained from singling out Pyongyang as being responsible for an exchange of artillery with South Korea.
South Korea's foreign ministry said earlier that a joint military exercise with the United States due later this month will send a clear message to North Korea, which shelled a South Korean island on Tuesday, killing four people and triggering a confrontation. [ID:nLDE6AO03G]
"We have noted the relevant reports and express our concern about this," a spokesman for the ministry, Hong Lei, told a regular news conference.
In answers to repeated questions, Hong did not directly criticise the planned U.S.-South Korea military exercises, instead noting China's "concern" about them.
Beijing was angered earlier this year by joint U.S.-South Korea naval exercises off the South Korean coast that those two nations said were meant to warn North Korea. Beijing said such exercises could threaten its security and regional stability.
Friction between Beijing and Washington over Chinese maritime claims and U.S. naval activities has added to irritants between the two countries, which have sparred this year over exchange rate policy, Taiwan, Tibet and Internet policy.
Beijing -- which has been urged by the United States and its regional allies, South Korea and Japan, to help rein in Pyongyang -- was maintaining contact with Washington over tensions on the Korean peninsula, Hong said.
When asked about the responsibility for the incident, Hong said: "We've noted that there are different views of the cause of the incident." He did not single out North Korea for criticism.
Hong's remarks echo China's response to the deadly sinking of a South Korean naval vessel in March, when it refused to blame North Korea for the incident, which killed 46 sailors.
Most nations have condemned Pyongyang for Tuesday's artillery attack, but Beijing's initial response on Tuesday was more muted, calling for both sides to exercise restraint.
The resumption of stalled six-party talks to persuade Pyongyang to abandon nuclear disarmament was "urgently" needed, Hong said, adding that all parties in the dispute in the Korean peninsula should "do more to ease" the situation.
Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi had delayed a plan to visit Seoul this week due to scheduling disputes, Hong said.
The delay could pose a setback for South Korea's plan to pursue constructive engagement with China to use its influence over Pyongyang.
Hong did not directly answer questions about whether China believes the shelling incident should be discussed by the U.N. Security Council.
(Writing by Sui-Lee Wee; Editing by Ken Wills)