As they used to say when I was a kid, “It’s for real.”
The Wall Street Journal reports the USS George Washington carrier strike group “will join Republic of Korea naval forces…from Nov. 28 to Dec. 1 to conduct (military) exercises,” according to a statement from the Public Affairs Office of the Yongsan Army garrison, Republic of Korea.
What we are being told comes as a result of the artillery exchange between North and South Korea, with the United States following through by bringing a carrier strike group to the waters of Korea.
Actually, the presence of the United States was going to occur anyway. This is part of already-determined military business and was planned because of the May incident, when North Korea allegedly sunk a South Korean ship.
All of this should be of a great deal of concern to us. The North Koreans over the last few months have become more and more loud and aggressive both in talk and actions. Further, the South Koreans have been acting in a highly retaliatory and even (in my opinion) furtive way. While performing their military exercises, they went ahead and fired artillery rounds, even thought they had been warned by the North to stop. Had they continued with their exercises and not fired, that would have put the North in a position of having to be the initiator. As it was, they almost left the North Koreans no alternative but to shoot. Of course, there was no excuse for the North Koreans to shoot at an inhabited island.
There were two South Korean marines killed. I have linked to a site that shows the soldiers being mourned out of reverence to them.
My point in this article is to reflect, hopefully, that there is a real danger here in two ways. North Korea is looking for a different world-standing; they want respect, but don’t know how to get it. Furthe,r they are in the throes of a leadership change due to the age and health of the current leader. They also have what is thought to be some nuclear potential.
However, what worries me more than anything else is that while the world’s eyes are on the Koreas, and engaging in the various holidays, al-Qaeda will take the opportunity to pull a stunt.
Consider the fact that there may be a tie-up at the airports over body scans.
Wall Street Journal Website, Public Affairs Office, “Statement: Naval Readiness Exercise Announced”
Wall Street Journal Website, “Video: South Koreans Mourn Shelling Victims”
Yahoo Contributor Network, Gary Davis, “North Korea Ups Ante: Hits Island, Killing At Least 2 marines in Artillery Exchange With South (Photos, Video)”