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Subject: Someone please tell me Iraq has nothing to do with this
eu4ea    10/10/2006 12:54:12 AM
Pretty please. I need some reasurance here... Maybe something about how having 140,000 troops tied up fighting an arab civil war really and truly does nothing to hamper our ability to realistically threaten these guys. Perhaps a reflection about how dictators *across the world!* are all now quaking in their boots after seeing how easy it was for us to do saddam in and how much we love having 140,000 troops tied up for at least 5-6 years. Maybe more, if we're lucky. Perhaps some insight about how this actually all vindicates the Iraq "strategy" - see, that Kim guy now has nukes and he's thus hard to get at. If Iraq had gotten them, they would be real hard to get at, too, except that they never had them, we never found them, but ..ummm Nigerian yellowcake! Or something. Anything at all, really Heart eu4ea
 
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eu4ea       10/11/2006 12:26:58 PM

It's so hypocritical that I'm guessing it's humor. Recap: We can't can't cry wolf at the UN like we did 17 times with Iraq...What a big help that would be. Iraq was WMD-less and no threat to it's neighbors...thank goodness we had them so well-contained economically then, huh? Anyhoo,tell that to Iraq's neighbors..oh wait, ya can't, they're dead...victims of WMD's. Finally, economic sanctions are the fast-track to prosperity for a particularly unpredictable and dangerous country. At first I didn't get it, I started to get mad..I'm with ya! Good one!

Platy,
Some of yr post used to be pretty good, but just yesterday we got this gem about Iraq:
"We found banned weapons. We found banned equipment, we found banned chemicals, we found WMD's, we found deployable WMD's we found stockpiles of WMD's" http://www.strategypage.com/militaryforums/35-44105.aspx, ;

Today it's no less than "tell that to Iraq's neighbors..oh wait, ya can't, they're dead...victims of WMD's".

Wow... what to say... Is it time to maybe try a tiny little bit of reality again? 

Let me know when you do - when that happens, I'll be happy to discuss any of these issues with you

Heart,

eu4ea


 
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joe6pack       10/11/2006 2:31:52 PM
"I'm pretty sure it could, given a compentent US administration that had no tied up our resources in a pointless military adventure in Iraq. For one, China today is not the same China it was 10+ years ago. For another NK is a net liability, not a net asset to them - they're the ones with the nuclear-armed nutcase and impending refugee catastrophe on their border, not us. And for a fourth, we and Japan have (or would have) much to offer, more than enough to offset any losses caused by pacifying NK."
 
Please explain this assertation other a "I don't like Bush" gripe.   Explain how having more ground forces available right now makes any difference at all?  Do you honestly beleive South Korea would allow us to build up forces in South Korea to threaten North Korea with?    I'd also dispute that China isn't the same China from 10 years ago.  Where do see any significant changes in their policies from that time period?   For being a net liability they have kept it going for the last 60 years.  


"Indeed, China is the only real obstacle here - the 3 western nations in the Security Council are calling for a chapter 7 resolution (heavy economic sanctions and/or war), and Russia alone would not veto it.  China is the real issue, and even at this stage they are not entirely opposed.  As to economic sanctions/blockades they most certainly are not ilegal given a chapter 7 UN resolution, like the one we had around, say, Iraq. "
 
Sanctions are one thing an actual naval blockade is effectively a declaration of war.  Sanctions and blockade are not synonyms.  The UN is not about about to support a real blockade.


"The possibility of, and incentive for a diplomatic breakthrough, like the one we had with China under Nixon is definitivelly there - we are just not in a position to take it, and even if we were it's unclear that this Administration is competent enough to achieve any such thing and provide actual security from real threats.  So far their track record has been to get 100,000+ of our soldiers tied up for 3+ years in a pointless quagmire - and then lie about it."
Your rant about Iraq, is seriously taking this away from being a reasonable discussion.  If you are so concerned that troop levels in Iraq are relevant to North Korea, explain it.  US ground fources are not a viable solution to this problem and therefore have very little do with the situation.
 
  
 
 
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eu4ea       10/11/2006 4:48:49 PM
Joe,

Sure, I'd be glad to. 

Re: point 1.  Having military assets on the ground (or even a credible threat of being able to deploy such assets) is most certainly germane to the military threat we can pose to NK, and the type and amount of protection we can provide to SK.  In the scenario of a UN-imposed embargo on NK both of those would be *extremely* relevant.  I fail to see what's unclear or controversial about that.

Re: point 2.  China most certainly is not the same country that it was in the early 1990's.  Most of it's leadership has changed, it's economy is 3x the size it used to be, and it has sucesfully gone through the process of absorbing a capitalist state like Hong Kong while keeping it's status as an unabashedly capitalist trade center.  If you had been in China in the early 90's and again in the past couple of years (I suspect you havent - but please correct me if I'm wrong) you wouldnt be asking this question - the difference is night and day.

Re: point 3. Sanctions (particularly any cesation of fuel shipments from China) are a far graver concern than a naval blockade. The bulk of NKs trade (and particularly the most critical items) flow through China. Effectivelly that would give the regime an expiration date of 3 months or less, while a naval blockade they could live with for years.

Re: point 4.  Certainly, I believe our military adventure in Iraq is a central reason why NK (and Iran) feel confident enough to pursue activities like overt nuclear development. In the same paragraph I also state that our goal should be to achieve the kind of breakthrough achieved by Nixon (a Republican) in 1972.  I dont think that either one of those statements betrays an obsession with either Nixon or Iraq - they simply reflect the fact that I believe both of them to be precedents that happen to be highly relevant to our current situation.

Heart,

eu4ea

 
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eu4ea       10/11/2006 6:22:10 PM
Joe,

Sure, I'd be glad to. 

Re: point 1.  Having military assets on the ground (or even a credible threat of being able to deploy such assets) is most certainly germane to the military threat we can pose to NK, and the type and amount of protection we can provide to SK.  In the scenario of a UN-imposed embargo on NK both of those would be *extremely* relevant.  I fail to see what's unclear or controversial about that.

Re: point 2.  China most certainly is not the same country that it was in the early 1990's.  Most of it's leadership has changed, it's economy is 3x the size it used to be, and it has sucesfully gone through the process of absorbing a capitalist state like Hong Kong while keeping it's status as an unabashedly capitalist trade center.  If you had been in China in the early 90's and again in the past couple of years (I suspect you havent - but please correct me if I'm wrong) you wouldnt be asking this question - the difference is night and day.

Re: point 3. Sanctions (particularly any cesation of fuel shipments from China) are a far graver concern than a naval blockade. The bulk of NKs trade (and particularly the most critical items) flow through China. Effectivelly that would give the regime an expiration date of 3 months or less, while a naval blockade they could live with for years.

Re: point 4.  Certainly, I believe our military adventure in Iraq is a central reason why NK (and Iran) feel confident enough to pursue activities like overt nuclear development. In the same paragraph I also state that our goal should be to achieve the kind of breakthrough achieved by Nixon (a Republican) in 1972.  I dont think that either one of those statements betrays an obsession with either Nixon or Iraq - they simply reflect the fact that I believe both of them to be precedents that happen to be highly relevant to our current situation.

Heart,

eu4ea

 
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S-2    eu4ea Reply   10/11/2006 6:53:45 PM
 
I don't see Iraq as any distractor to our military capabilities against N. Korea, should war become necessary.  As pointed out by J6P, it's not like you'll be redeploying those forces to S. Korea anytime soon.  Meanwhile our naval and U.S.A.F. posture in northeast Asia remains solid.  
 
That said, I can't imagine that more forces in the region would change our operational options.  They are limited by REGIONAL political considerations that have no evident linkage to Iraq whatsoever.  Iran certainly, within the context of the emerging NPT fissures.  However that, too, is a GLOBAL issue with nothing to do about Iraq, Nigerian yellowcake, stainless-steel cylinders, Spetznatz guarded trucks passing through the night into Syria, etc... 
 
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joe6pack       10/11/2006 10:35:13 PM

Joe,

Sure, I'd be glad to. 

Re: point 1.  Having military assets on the ground (or even a credible threat of being able to deploy such assets) is most certainly germane to the military threat we can pose to NK, and the type and amount of protection we can provide to SK.  In the scenario of a UN-imposed embargo on NK both of those would be *extremely* relevant.  I fail to see what's unclear or controversial about that.

Re: point 2.  China most certainly is not the same country that it was in the early 1990's.  Most of it's leadership has changed, it's economy is 3x the size it used to be, and it has sucesfully gone through the process of absorbing a capitalist state like Hong Kong while keeping it's status as an unabashedly capitalist trade center.  If you had been in China in the early 90's and again in the past couple of years (I suspect you havent - but please correct me if I'm wrong) you wouldnt be asking this question - the difference is night and day.

Re: point 3. Sanctions (particularly any cesation of fuel shipments from China) are a far graver concern than a naval blockade. The bulk of NKs trade (and particularly the most critical items) flow through China. Effectivelly that would give the regime an expiration date of 3 months or less, while a naval blockade they could live with for years.

Re: point 4.  Certainly, I believe our military adventure in Iraq is a central reason why NK (and Iran) feel confident enough to pursue activities like overt nuclear development. In the same paragraph I also state that our goal should be to achieve the kind of breakthrough achieved by Nixon (a Republican) in 1972.  I dont think that either one of those statements betrays an obsession with either Nixon or Iraq - they simply reflect the fact that I believe both of them to be precedents that happen to be highly relevant to our current situation.

Heart,

eu4ea


1) Its really not in my opinion.  Its like saying if we only had 16 bullets for the gun instead of 15 we now have.  US ground forces really haven't been relavent in Korea for the last 15 years or so (maybe longer) other than as an absolute guarantee the US would be involved in the defense of SK.  A significant build up in troops would likely provoke a war, unless you think Kim really hasn't learned anything from the past two Gulf Wars.  Regardless, South Korea will not allow it.  I was in the military last time this issue came up and we were a lot closer to a war with North Korea then and units were held back from deploying to South Korea (for just that reason, or at least one of the reasons).  There will be no ground war in Korea unless North Korea starts it and we will not provoke one.  The elements that would be involved in any sort of embargo would be the Navy and Airforce.  Neither of them are tied down in the middle east.  There is nothing controversial about it.  But the idea that US ground forces have some sort of strategic place here is one of two things;  either its a political beef / agenda (regarding Iraq) or a serious misunderstanding of the reality on the ground in Korea.
2) Leaders change and economy improved.  I'll agree to that.  Please point to where their foreign policy or strategic posturing in Asia has changed in that time period. 
 
3) Lets leave out naval blockade, the terminology is being used incorrectly.  China "could" cut off aid to North Korea, but they have chosen not to (at least to this point).  I find it doubtfull they will.  Even if they do, I doubt South Korea will go along with it.  It seems likely more aid would then flow from the South to the North.  Both China and South Korea's policy is that a quick collapse of the North Korean state is against their national interest.  
 
4) The point is flawed in my opinion.  The Iranian and North Korean nuclear programs have been in existence for decades. For the sake of argument I'll concede that recent events may have encouraged them to rush their programs.  However, its simply not cause and effect.  North Korea has wanted a nuclear weapon for a very long time. 
 
Comparing US diplomacy with China and Iran or Korea is also flawed in my thinking.   North Korea has never in its history had a really productive (honest) diplomacy with the United States. Heck, they don't even have a peace treaty with South Korea after&n
 
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sentinel28a       10/13/2006 7:06:25 AM
EU, I would agree that, ground forces wise, Iraq does have us pretty well tied down.  However, the USN and USAF are a much different story, and they would be the forces likely used if it became necessary to preemptively strike North Korea.  Unless the DPRK was preparing a nuclear strike, or seemed about to (with Kim you can't take too many chances), we would probably leave them alone in any case, if for no other reason than to keep Seoul from being flattened and China from getting pissed.  Any ground forces that went into North Korea would probably end up being South Korean or Chinese in any case.  It's a different story entirely if the DPRK invades; even then, aside from the 2nd ID, the majority of troops in contact would be South Korean.
 
Another point you might've not considered is the extremely rugged terrain of North Korea.  It's worse than Afghanistan or Iran, and Iraq (which is mostly flat, except for the Kurdish north, which was already ours) is not even worth mentioning in comparison.  We learned bitter lessons on Korean terrain, not to mention Korean weather, in 1950-53. 
 
While I agree that, even in 2003, North Korea was probably more of a threat than Iraq, I don't think the going would've been any easier whatsoever.  Assuming China would stand idly by while we toppled one of its client states and put troops on its physical border, you're talking very hard going in terrain that suits the defense. Chasing a DPRK insurgency around the mountains wouldn't be any easier than chasing them around Baghdad or the Hindu Kush; the Kuwaitis, Saudis, and Jordanians were at least open to the idea of toppling Saddam, while South Korea apparently is still under the sad impression that Kim can be reasoned with.  Our own antiwar opposition would scream bloody murder either way, as they would if we invaded any country, except perhaps the Sudan (and then only because George Clooney said it was okay).  I see little difference in world opinion if we had drove on Pyongyang in 2003 rather than Baghdad--with, again, the notable exception of full scale war with the third largest strategic power and the largest armed forces on the planet. 
 
Finally, when push came to shove in 2003, Bush would've had a much tougher time convincing the American people that we should go after Kim, when clearly the present danger was radical Islam.  Of course, by that standard, we probably should've invaded Iran, but that would be very difficult indeed.  Aside from doing nothing, which usually isn't a good idea when you're at war, invading Iraq seems to me--and probably to Bush--a much less iffy proposition than invading North Korea, especially if you're laboring under the same lousy intelligence that the Iraqi infrastructure and economy could be quickly rebuilt with oil proceeds.  The North Korean economy and infrastructure would make even the most optimistic break down and cry, and it doesn't have oil.
 
So, when confronted with the idea of "Which genocidal maniac and terrorist sponsor should we take out next--Iran, Iraq, Syria, or North Korea?" the answer is pretty obvious which one makes the most sense--let's go to Baghdad!
 
 
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EW3       10/18/2006 9:03:09 PM
"I need some reasurance here"
 
Hate to start a whole new thread for just one article, but this thread asks for help......
Of interest is the number of Aegis ships with the KH.  I'm sure one or two of them are equipped for BMD.   Talk about a stick in the eye of the little one.
 
 
 

Kitty Hawk Strike Group Gets Underway
Story Number: NNS061018-13
Release Date: 10/18/2006 11:55:00 AM

By Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Matthew Reinhardt, USS Kitty Hawk Public Affairs

USS KITTY HAWK, At Sea (NNS) -- USS Kitty Hawk (CV 63) and its strike group departed Yokosuka, Japan, Oct. 17, for a fall deployment with embarked Carrier Air Wing 5 after completing a month of maintenance.

The strike group is expected to return to Yokosuka by the end of the year.

Other ships departing with the Kitty Hawk Tuesday included the guided-missile cruiser USS Cowpens (CG 63), and guided-missile destroyers USS John S. McCain (DDG 56), USS Fitzgerald (DDG 62) and USS Mustin (DDG 89).

The destroyer USS Stethem (DDG 63) and guided-missile frigate USS Gary (FFG 51) left Yokosuka last week.

About 7,400 Sailors departed with the eight ships, including more than 5,200 aboard Kitty Hawk alone.

Kitty Hawk, leading the Navy’s only forward-deployed carrier strike group, will spend the underway period conducting carrier qualifications, drills and exercises in the U.S. 7th Fleet area of responsibility.

During this deployment, Kitty Hawk will also take part in ANNUALEX 2006, a joint exercise between the U.S. Navy and the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force.

During the brief in-port period, Kitty Hawk Sailors worked with Ship’s Repair Facility workers, and Japanese contractors on several hundred maintenance projects, said Lt. Cmdr. Billy Partington, Kitty Hawk’s maintenance officer.

“The ship’s engineers had to work extra long hours fixing extra discrepancies that were discovered as maintenance was performed,” said Partington. “Their efforts brought [the ship] back up to 100 percent [mission] capable.”

The Kitty Hawk Strike Group is the largest carrier strike group in the Navy. It includes Kitty Hawk, the aircraft squadrons and staff of Carrier Air Wing 5, USS Shiloh (CG 67) and Cowpens, and Destroyer Squadron 15 staff. The group’s ships and destroyer squadron staff are based at Fleet Activities Yokosuka, Japan, and the air wing and staff are based at Naval Air Facility Atsugi, Japan.

 
 
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Pseudonym       10/18/2006 10:03:54 PM
"That being said, however, you'd have to smoke some *very* good stuff to argue that the Iraqi quagmire is not affecting our ability to credibly threaten (partially militarily - primarily politicaly and diplomaticaly) North Korea."

When have we had any credibility when dealing with the Norks?

They have systematically broken every treaty we have ever made with them, then hid behind China.

We are not going to attack North Korea and they know it, Iraq or no Iraq, we have gone down every possible avenue to deal with them diplomatically, and they have cheated every time.

Unless someone wants to bring all the jobs back from China and threaten the Chinese into stopping their support for the Norks or getting them to deal with the problem, there is nothing to be done.  To do that though would probably turn China into our enemy, while we still have a chance to avoid a war with them...

 
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EW3       10/18/2006 10:12:26 PM

When have we had any credibility when dealing with the Norks?
They have systematically broken every treaty we have ever made with them, then hid behind China.

That is the entire reason that we didn't do bilateral talks with this clown.  
By getting the UN on board, as well as the regional folks, we now have him in a real vice, and the libs can't say it's unilateral action on the part of the US. 
Jimmy Carter, kiss my butt.   

 
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