Thursday, June 25, 2009

North Korea is a Larger Threat Than the US is Letting On.

Editorial: Maybe the threat to North Korea isn't external

Submitted by SHNS on Thu, 06/25/2009 - 16:37. An editorial / By Dale McFeatters

North Korea celebrated the 59th anniversary of the start of the Korean War by threatening another war and much else besides.

In what seems to be an orchestrated effort to keep its people continuously alarmed and their minds off their poverty and malnutrition, the regime of Kim Jong Il regularly forecasts an imminent attack by the United States and South Korea.

If that happened, the North Korean people were told, "a fire shower of nuclear retaliation" would fall on South Korea. And as for us, the U.S. imperialists, we would be wiped off the face of the globe "once and for all."

Actually, under the Colin Powell doctrine of "you break it, you've bought it," North Korea, short of a deliberate act of war, is remarkably safe from attack. No one -- not the United States, South Korea and Russia -- wants to be responsible for 24 million desperate and starving North Koreans in a land ravaged by a war that they would certainly lose. Daunted by the prospect of refugees flooding over its border, China refuses to give Kim's regime the shove that would bring it down.

A crowd of 100,000 turned out -- or, perhaps more accurately, was turned out -- in Pyongyang for the anniversary. The dramatic show of national unity, the bellicose rhetoric and a likely series of short- and medium-range-missile tests may have less to do with any imagined threat from outside and more to do with turmoil within. A not-unreasonable guess might be that the ailing Kim's plan to name his clearly unqualified 26-year-old son as his successor might not be going all that smoothly.

Meanwhile, President Obama quietly extended U.S. economic sanctions on North Korea for another year, and a U.S. Navy ship is tracking a North Korean freighter in accord with a new U.N. resolution that gives the organization the right to approve the interdiction and search of North Korean ships believed to be trafficking in illicit weapons.

Read More From Source Here

The Pentagon shrugged off a threat from North Korea Wednesday to wipe the United States off the map.

"I don't even know how to respond to that. It's silliness," said Pentagon spokesman Geoff Morrell."For what and with what?"

But even as the spokesman discounted the threat from the communist nation, which reportedly may fire a Taepodong-2 toward Hawaii in early July, he defended Defense Secretary Robert Gate's decision to move the THAAD system to Hawaii along with the massive SBX radar system.

"I don't think he would have deployed that THAAD if he didn't think there was a reason to do so," he said.

Tensions have been high since North Korea walked away from nuclear disarmament talks and warned it would fire a long-range missile.

U.S. officials have said it would take at least three to five years for North Korea to pose a real threat to the U.S. west coast.
Read More From Source Here

Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD), formerly Theater High Altitude Area Defense, is a United States Army project to develop a system to shoot down short- and medium-range ballistic missiles using a hit-to-kill approach. The missile carries no warhead but relies on the kinetic energy of the impact. THAAD was designed to hit Scuds and similar weapons, but also has a limited capability against ICBMs.

The THAAD system is being designed, built, and integrated by Lockheed Martin Space Systems acting as prime contractor. Key subcontractors include Raytheon, Boeing, Aerojet, Rocketdyne, Honeywell, BAE Systems, and MiltonCAT. Development was budgeted at over USD$700 million for 2004, and full deployment is expected to cost tens of billions of dollars[citation needed].

Although originally a U.S. Army program, THAAD has come under the umbrella of the Missile Defense Agency. The Navy has a similar program, the sea-based Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense System. THAAD was originally scheduled for deployment in 2012, but deployment has recently been accelerated to 2009.

Read More From This Source Here

Sea-Based X-Band Radar is a floating, self-propelled, mobile radar station designed to operate in high winds and heavy seas. It is part of the U.S. Defense Department Ballistic Missile Defense System.

The Sea-Based X-Band Radar is mounted on a fifth generation Norwegian-designed, Russian-built CS-50 semi-submersible twin-hulled oil-drilling platform.

Read More From Source Here

After the radar has been mounted on the vessel, the entire structure will measure over 280 feet from the keel to the top of the radar’s dome, displacing 50,000 tons of water. To put this in perspective, SBX will be roughly the size of two football fields. A commercial C-band satellite will establish communications between the platform and shore facilities. It will take between 50 and 55 people on the platform and an addition 30 to 40 on shore to maintain the system.

Once operational, SBX will use its finely focused beam to track an incoming ballistic missile through space during the 20 or so minutes that it is outside the Earth’s atmosphere.

Read More From Source Here

Since these items that are made to take out missiles if launched, let's just say, from North Korea, and are being done from Alaska, which has a missile defense battalion, is it a coincidence that Sarah Palin took a "top secret" trip to meet with the missile defense battalion this week?

If anyone has more information on this, please do tell.

Additional resources:

Missile Defense Agency click here for information

No comments: