Posted tagged ‘North Korean H Bomb test’

Our Rhineland moment

September 17, 2017

Our Rhineland moment, Israel National News, Dr. Peter Vincent Pry, September 17, 2017

Just as the Neville Chamberlains of 1939 were so paralyzed by fear of a replay of World War I that they preferred to ignore or explain away Nazi Germany’s rearmament and Imperial Japan’s naval build-up, their U.S. counterparts in 2017 are so fearful of facing a nuclear-armed North Korea that some would like to pretend a nation that has the H-Bomb cannot build a simple reentry vehicle or make an EMP attack.

Our elites cling to the fantasy that China and economic sanctions can save us, that North Korean denuclearization can be achieved peacefully.  But the evidence is now overwhelming that China and Russia have helped build the North Korean nuclear threat as part of their New Cold War to force the United States out of the Pacific and out of its role as the world policeman.

When the U.S. and its allies must seek security from North Korea by appealing for help from Beijing and Moscow, as we are doing now, the world order is already being transformed.  The Nuclear Axis seeks our acquiescence to their domination, peacefully if possible, if necessary through war.

North Korea’s nuclear Hitler has entered the technological Rhineland of H-Bombs and ICBMs.  We must strike.

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North Korea’s successful test of an H-Bomb on September 2 has been preceded by many years of denial behavior by U.S. statesmen, intelligence experts, academics and the press about the sophistication of Pyongyang’s nuclear missile program. Again?

Is the naivete and willful blindness that helped begin World War II on September 1, 1939, being repeated in the response of the U.S. and its allies to North Korea’s nuclear missile program, that apparently tested a thermonuclear H-Bomb warhead on September 2, 2017?

Parallels are striking between what psychiatrists describe as “denial behavior” by western elites that contributed to the Second World War, and “denial behavior” toward the North Korean nuclear threat.

As everyone used to know, when history was taught in schools, prior to 1939 Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan ruthlessly violated international treaties to arm themselves for a major war of conquest, that would become World War II.  Berlin and Tokyo were ineffectually opposed by the League of Nations and the western democracies, who would become their victims.

Less well known is that Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan were helped, unwittingly, by western statesmen, military experts, academics and the press, who could not believe any rational actor would risk replaying the holocaust that was World War I, still recent in many memories.  Complex rationalizations were invented to explain away the words and deeds of Adolph Hitler and Imperial Japan, including their treaty violations and aggression.

Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan’s growing military strength, when it could no longer be denied, was dismissed by confidence that the horrors of a new world war would be sufficient to deter.  Mutual Assured Destruction was an article of faith before World War II, expressed in different words, as when British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain opined, “The bomber will always get through.”

Underestimation of German and Japanese military capabilities set up the allies for near defeat when war came.

North Korea’s successful test of an H-Bomb on September 2 has been preceded by many years of denial behavior by U.S. statesmen, intelligence experts, academics and the press about the sophistication of Pyongyang’s nuclear missile program:

–Just six months ago, most experts thought North Korea’s nuclear arsenal was primitive and tiny, perhaps as few as 6 A-Bombs.  Now the intelligence community estimates North Korea has 60 nuclear weapons.

–Just six months ago, many experts thought North Korea’s ICBMs were fake missiles, only for show, and most experts thought, if they were real, they could not strike the U.S. mainland.  Now the intelligence community estimates North Korea’s ICBMs can strike at least as far as Chicago, and probably hit anywhere in the United States.

–Just six months ago, most experts thought North Korea was many years away from developing an H-Bomb.  Now the U.S. intelligence community assesses that North Korea has the H-Bomb, with a yield tested at 140 kilotons (Japan estimates160 kilotons), about 14-16 times more powerful than the A-Bomb that destroyed Hiroshima, comparable in power to sophisticated U.S. two-stage thermonuclear weapons.

–Just six months ago, most experts claimed North Korean ICBMs could not deliver a nuclear warhead, because Pyongyang had not yet “demonstrated” it could miniaturize an A-Bomb to fit inside a reentry vehicle, or design a reentry vehicle capable of penetrating the atmosphere.  Now the intelligence community assesses North Korea has miniaturized A-Bombs and H-Bombs, and reentry vehicles for missile delivery, including by ICBMs that can strike the United States.

Perhaps the most extreme denial behavior is over North Korea’s capability to make a nuclear electromagnetic pulse (EMP) attack-that could destroy the United States with a single weapon.  The blue ribbon Congressional EMP Commission has warned for years that North Korea probably has Super-EMP weapons.

North Korea confirmed the EMP Commission’s assessment by testing an H-Bomb that could make a devastating EMP attack, and in a public statement: “The H-Bomb, the explosive power of which is adjustable from tens of kilotons to hundreds of kilotons, is a multi-functional thermonuclear weapon with great destructive power which can be detonated even at high altitudes for super-powerful EMP attack according to strategic goals.”

Pyongyang also released a technical report accurately describing a Super-EMP weapon.

Just six months ago, some academics dismissed EMP Commission warnings and even, literally, laughed on National Public Radio at the idea North Korea could make an EMP attack.

Amazingly, Sig Hecker, a respected scientist and former director of Los Alamos National Laboratory, is still in denial about the North Korean EMP threat, claiming it must be disinformation.  But since their H-Bomb is undeniably real, so too is North Korea’s EMP threat.

Amazingly, some academics are still bending over backwards to deny North Korea has miniaturized warheads, reentry vehicles, and ICBMs that can strike the U.S., inventing preposterous theories to escape reality, just like their brethren who paved the way to World War II with denial.

Just as the Neville Chamberlains of 1939 were so paralyzed by fear of a replay of World War I that they preferred to ignore or explain away Nazi Germany’s rearmament and Imperial Japan’s naval build-up, their U.S. counterparts in 2017 are so fearful of facing a nuclear-armed North Korea that some would like to pretend a nation that has the H-Bomb cannot build a simple reentry vehicle or make an EMP attack.

Another factor that helped bring on World War II was the western democracies were undergoing a civilizational crisis, as we are today.

Elites and peoples lost faith in themselves and their institutions as a result of the Great Depression and World War I.  Many believed the false narrative that the First World War resulted from a conspiracy by “merchants of death” among the industrial and political elites to become wealthy by war profiteering.  Nationalism was condemned by many as the root of war.  Globalists of the 1920s and 1930s fantasized that a Kellogg-Briand Pact and League of Nations could outlaw war, just as globalists today fantasize that the United Nations, international treaties and sanctions can achieve a world without nuclear weapons, while doubting the nationalist values and institutions that made the United States, and the Free World, great and free.

Indeed, economic sanctions against Imperial Japan, viewed as a peaceful way to stop Tokyo’s aggression against China and Manchuria, instead resulted in Japan’s surprise attack against the U.S. Navy at Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941.

Most dangerous, the Neville Chamberlains of 1939 believed that because “the bomber will always get through” they could deter World War II.  The Neville Chamberlains of 2017 are so fearful of nuclear weapons that they are ready to surrender to the fantasy that we can learn to live with a nuclear-armed North Korea.

Those like Susan Rice, former national security advisor to President Obama, who are willing to make the world, in President Kennedy’s famous words about protecting freedom, “pay any price, bear any burden” to stop Global Warming, are all too eager to surrender our children to a future of Mutual Assured Destruction with Kim Jong-Un.

The new rationalization for doing nothing militarily is it is too late, would cost too many lives, and we can learn to live with nuclear North Korea as we did with the USSR during the Cold War.  But North Korea is not the USSR, and the nuclear-armed Caligula in Pyongyang is not  Moscow’s Politburo, dangerous as it was.  And the Cold War is no good paradigm for survival.  The world barely escaped a thermonuclear holocaust at least a dozen times. (See my book “War Scare: Russia and America on the Nuclear Brink.”)

The U.S. and allied elites have so educated themselves about the horrors of nuclear war that we are self-deterred, and will not act militarily to save ourselves.

Our elites cling to the fantasy that China and economic sanctions can save us, that North Korean denuclearization can be achieved peacefully.  But the evidence is now overwhelming that China and Russia have helped build the North Korean nuclear threat as part of their New Cold War to force the United States out of the Pacific and out of its role as the world policeman.

When the U.S. and its allies must seek security from North Korea by appealing for help from Beijing and Moscow, as we are doing now, the world order is already being transformed.  The Nuclear Axis seeks our acquiescence to their domination, peacefully if possible, if necessary through war.

If Russia and China’s North Korean nuclear gambit works in the Pacific, look next to Iran going nuclear, creating another nuclear crisis for the United States and its allies in the Middle East and Europe.  Iran’s nuclear missile program has been and is being helped by Moscow, Beijing, and Pyongyang, because Tehran is part of the Nuclear Axis waging the New Cold War against the still unwitting democracies of East and West.

U.S. abject surrender to a nuclear-armed North Korea by accepting Mutual Assured Destruction with Kim Jong-Un for ourselves and our allies, after proclaiming for 25 years that this is impossible, will destroy our credibility.  Russia, China, North Korea, and Iran will see such weakness as an invitation to aggression in Asia, the Middle East, Europe, and against the United States.

Just as the Neville Chamberlains of 1939 brought World War II on themselves, the Neville Chamberlains of 2017 are on the verge of bringing on World War III.

Most historians agree that World War II could have been prevented and 60 million lives saved if the Allies had crushed Hitler when his military was still weak in 1936, but he seized the Rhineland anyway to test their political will.

Right now, North Korea has two satellites and fewer than a dozen ICBMs that could threaten the U.S. homeland.  These the U.S. could assuredly destroy in a very limited surgical strike using conventional weapons.

Kim Jong-Un would not likely retaliate massively as his regime would remain in power and retain nearly 1,000 short and medium-range missiles armed with conventional, chemical, biological, and nuclear warheads.  Nonetheless, the U.S. should be prepared to promptly launch a large-scale disarming strike against North Korea using all means necessary-including nuclear weapons.

If Kim is so aggressive that he would bring on himself a nuclear holocaust over the loss of a dozen missiles and two satellites, we had better deal with him now, before he has 100 ICBMs.

North Korea’s nuclear Hitler has entered the technological Rhineland of H-Bombs and ICBMs.  We must strike.

Sent to Arutz Sheva by the author. A version of this piece also appeared on http://www.newsmax.com/

FULL MEASURE: September 10, 2017 – Korean Conflict

September 11, 2017

FULL MEASURE: September 10, 2017 – Korean Conflict via YouTube, September 10, 2017

 

SKorea to deploy more THAAD launchers Thursday

September 6, 2017

SKorea to deploy more THAAD launchers Thursday, DEBKAfile, September 6, 2017

South Korea will add four more launchers to its advanced missile defense system on Thursday amid heightening tensions with North Korea, the South’s Defense Ministry said. The step came after Pyongyang conducted its sixth and most powerful nuclear test on Sunday. Two launchers from the US-made Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system were deployed in April to counter rising threats from the North.

Meanwhile, South Korean President Moon Jae-in met with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday in Vladivostok to discuss the North Korea nuclear issue.

Fat Kim threatens Trump (again)

September 5, 2017

Fat Kim threatens Trump (again), American ThinkerGary Gindler, September 5, 2017

(This is the most fascinating, and best, suggestion on dealing with North Korean nukes I have read thus far –  force China to take care of the problem. Please see also, Chinese Official Says China Might Invade Taiwan If “Peaceful Reunification Takes Too Long.” — DM)

It’s time for Trump to make an unconventional move – a move no one expects.

It is better not to increase the U.S. military potential in the region.  On the contrary, it is better to completely withdraw all American troops from both South Korea and Japan.

In fact, American troops need to be relocated not into the continental U.S., but to Taiwan.

This move by Trump will make China stop playing the role of an outside observer.  China will be faced with a choice – either China joins Trump on this issue, or she will never get back Taiwan, where the headquarters of the 7th U.S. Navy Fleet will now be located.

Of course, America’s allies in the region, Japan and South Korea, in the face of the withdrawal of U.S. troops, will quite justifiably demand new guarantees of protection from the U.S. government.  America should renew its lend-lease program from the Second World War and lease over to Japan and South Korea, for a term of 99 years, all the nuclear weapons they will ask for.  The military budgets of these countries will skyrocket.  China’s inaction toward the Fat Kim regime will lead to the fact that in addition, China will get two unfriendly nuclear powers armed to the teeth at her own border.

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After Kim Jong-un tested his hydrogen bomb, everything in the world went just as we could expect.  Someone started saber-rattling, and someone insisted that the problem of nuclear North Korea cannot be solved by military means under any circumstances.

Both use very serious arguments.  Those who support appeasement of Kim quite reasonably note that the capital of South Korea, with its 25 million-strong population, is at an artillery salvo distance from the border with North Korea.  Even a limited volley from the north will lead to hundreds of thousands of civilian casualties.  Supporters of a massive blow to North Korea argue that it is better to have thousands of casualties among Koreans than to wait until the hydrogen bomb explodes over San Francisco and Americans become the victims.

Both sides have numerous supporters in the highest echelons of power in Washington.

Meanwhile, Fat Kim does not present a threat to the United States at present.  Fat Kim is a threat to President Trump.

Fat Kim is not a dumb bump.  He’s just one of the players in the next political show of the Axis countries.  The North Korean crisis allows others hostile to America – countries such as Iran, Russia, and Syria (i.e., Axis countries) – to check Trump’s resolve.  China is not a member of this Axis, but it watches Trump with great pleasure as he tries to get out of this entrapment.

All the Axis countries are linked by longstanding nuclear technology ties.  Of all the Axis countries, only Syria lacks this technology (the Syrian nuclear reactor, which was built by North Korean engineers, was bombed by Israel in 2007).

The Axis countries are waiting for Trump’s move.  A standard geopolitical analysis shows that there are many options for Trump, but they all range from bad to very bad.

It’s time for Trump to make an unconventional move – a move no one expects.

It is better not to increase the U.S. military potential in the region.  On the contrary, it is better to completely withdraw all American troops from both South Korea and Japan.

In fact, American troops need to be relocated not into the continental U.S., but to Taiwan.

This move by Trump will make China stop playing the role of an outside observer.  China will be faced with a choice – either China joins Trump on this issue, or she will never get back Taiwan, where the headquarters of the 7th U.S. Navy Fleet will now be located.

Of course, America’s allies in the region, Japan and South Korea, in the face of the withdrawal of U.S. troops, will quite justifiably demand new guarantees of protection from the U.S. government.  America should renew its lend-lease program from the Second World War and lease over to Japan and South Korea, for a term of 99 years, all the nuclear weapons they will ask for.  The military budgets of these countries will skyrocket.  China’s inaction toward the Fat Kim regime will lead to the fact that in addition, China will get two unfriendly nuclear powers armed to the teeth at her own border.

If Trump adds to this the ban on trade with all countries that have trade relations with North Korea, then China, with four fifths of its economy dependent on the U.S. market, will suffer the most.

There is every reason to believe that China will make a reasonable choice.  Most likely, she will do this much earlier than the first transport from Japan with the U.S. Marine Corps docks in Taipei.  It is unreasonable to assume that China does not have a well conceived plan for rapid regime change in North Korea.

If wisdom escapes the Chinese communists, then as the icing on the cake, they will get a united Korea at their side.  Capitalistic.  And nuclear.

 

North Korea’s Ultimatum to America

September 5, 2017

North Korea’s Ultimatum to America, Front Page MagazineCaroline Glick, September 5, 2017

(We should strike North Korea and eliminate it as a nuclear threat. We have first-strike capability which, if used can eliminate the danger to South Korea and Japan as well as to America. Perhaps we should wait — but not long — until North Korea “tests” a missile directed toward Guam. Then we should act immediately and without warning. We can even do it successfully without using our own nukes. On the other hand, we have a new option. Please see also, How to neutralize the North Korea threat. It might, or might not, work. If it works as advertised, great. If it fails, we will have lost very little. –DM)

Originally published by the Jerusalem Post

If the US strikes North Korea in a credible manner and successfully diminishes its capacity to physically threaten the US, America will have taken the first step towards rebuilding its alliances in Asia.

On the other hand, if the current round of hostilities does not end with a significant reduction of North Korea’s offensive capabilities, either against the US or its allies, then the US will be hard pressed to maintain its posture as a Pacific power. So long as Pyongyang has the ability to directly threaten the US and its allies, US strategic credibility in East Asia will be shattered.

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The nuclear confrontation between the US and North Korea entered a critical phase Sunday with North Korea’s conduct of an underground test of a thermonuclear bomb.

If the previous round of this confrontation earlier this summer revolved around Pyongyang’s threat to attack the US territory of Guam, Sunday’s test, together with North Korea’s recent tests of intercontinental ballistic missiles capable of reaching the continental US, was a direct threat to US cities.

In other words, the current confrontation isn’t about US superpower status in Asia, and the credibility of US deterrence or the capabilities of US military forces in the Pacific. The confrontation is now about the US’s ability to protect the lives of its citizens.

The distinction tells us a number of important things. All of them are alarming.

First, because this is about the lives of Americans, rather than allied populations like Japan and South Korea, the US cannot be diffident in its response to North Korea’s provocation. While attenuated during the Obama administration, the US’s position has always been that US military forces alone are responsible for guaranteeing the collective security of the American people.

Pyongyang is now directly threatening that security with hydrogen bombs. So if the Trump administration punts North Korea’s direct threat to attack US population centers with nuclear weapons to the UN Security Council, it will communicate profound weakness to its allies and adversaries alike.

Obviously, this limits the options that the Trump administration has. But it also clarifies the challenge it faces.

The second implication of North Korea’s test of their plutonium-based bomb is that the US’s security guarantees, which form the basis of its global power and its alliance system are on the verge of becoming completely discredited.

In an interview Sunday with Fox News’s Trish Regan, former US ambassador to the UN John Bolton was asked about the possible repercussions of a US military assault against North Korea for the security of South Korea.

Regan asked, “What are we risking though if we say we’re going to go in with strategic military strength?… Are we going to end up with so many people’s lives gone in South Korea, in Seoul because we make that move?” Bolton responded with brutal honesty.

“Let me ask you this: how do you feel about dead Americans?” In other words, Bolton said that under prevailing conditions, the US faces the painful choice between imperiling its own citizens and imperiling the citizens of an allied nation. And things will only get worse. Bolton warned that if North Korea’s nuclear threat is left unaddressed, US options will only become more problematic and limited in the years to come.

This then brings us to the third lesson of the current round of confrontation between the US and North Korea.

If you appease an enemy on behalf of an ally then you aren’t an ally.

And eventually your alliance become empty of all meaning.

For 25 years, three successive US administrations opted to turn a blind eye to North Korea’s nuclear program in large part out of concern for South Korea.

Presidents Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama all sought to appease North Korea’s aggressive nuclear adventurism because they didn’t believe they had a credible military option to deal with it.

In the 1980s, North Korea developed and deployed a conventional arsenal of bombs and artillery along the demilitarized zone capable of vaporizing Seoul.

Any US military strike against North Korea’s nuclear installation it was and continues to be argued, would cause the destruction of Seoul and the murder of millions of South Koreans.

So US efforts to appease Pyongyang on behalf of Seoul emptied the US-South Korean alliance of meaning. The US can only serve as the protector of its allies, and so assert its great power status in the Pacific and worldwide, if it prevents its allies from being held hostage by its enemies.

And now, not only does the US lack a clear means of defending South Korea, and Japan, America itself is threatened by the criminal regime it demurred from effectively confronting.

Regardless of the means US President Donald Trump decides to use to respond to North Korea’s provocative actions and threats to America’s national security, given the nature of the situation, it is clear that the balance of forces on the ground cannot and will not remain as they have been.

If the US strikes North Korea in a credible manner and successfully diminishes its capacity to physically threaten the US, America will have taken the first step towards rebuilding its alliances in Asia.

On the other hand, if the current round of hostilities does not end with a significant reduction of North Korea’s offensive capabilities, either against the US or its allies, then the US will be hard pressed to maintain its posture as a Pacific power. So long as Pyongyang has the ability to directly threaten the US and its allies, US strategic credibility in East Asia will be shattered.

This then brings us to China.

China has been the main beneficiary of North Korea’s conventional and nuclear aggression and brinksmanship.

This state of affairs was laid bare in a critical way last month.

In mid-August, Trump’s then chief strategist Steve Bannon was preparing a speech Trump was set to deliver that would have effectively declared a trade war against China in retaliation for its predatory trade practices against US companies and technology. The speech was placed in the deep freeze – and Bannon was forced to resign his position – when North Korea threatened to attack the US territory of Guam with nuclear weapons. The US, Trump’s other senior advisers argued, couldn’t declare a trade war against China when it needed China’s help to restrain North Korea.

So by enabling North Korea’s aggression against the US and its allies, China has created a situation where the US has become neutralized as a strategic competitor.

Rather than advance its bilateral interests – like curbing China’s naval aggression in the South China Sea – in its contacts with China, the US is forced into the position of supplicant, begging China to restrain North Korea in order to avert war.

If the US does not act to significantly downgrade North Korea’s offensive capabilities now, when its own territory is being threatened, it is difficult to see how the US will be able to develop an effective strategy for coping with China’s rise as an economic and strategic rival in Asia and beyond. That is, the US’s actions now in response to North Korea’s threat to its national security will determine whether or not the US will be in a position to develop and implement a wider strategy for maintaining its capacity to project its economic and military power in the Pacific in the near and long term.

Finally, part of the considerations that need to inform US action now involve what North Korea’s success in developing a nuclear arsenal under the noses of successive US administrations means for the future of nuclear proliferation.

In all likelihood, unless the North Korean nuclear arsenal is obliterated, Pyongyang’s nuclear triumphalism will precipitate a spasm of nuclear proliferation in Asia and in the Middle East. The implications of this for the US and its allies will be far reaching.

Not only can Japan and South Korea be reasonably expected to develop nuclear arsenals. Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan and other inherently unstable Arab states can be expected to develop or purchase nuclear arsenals in response to concerns over North Korea and its ally Iran with its nuclear weapons program linked to Pyongyang’s.

In other words, if the US does not respond in a strategically profound way to Pyongyang now, it will not only lose its alliance system in Asia, it will see the rapid collapse of its alliance system and superpower status in the Middle East.

Israel, for one, will be imperiled by the sudden diffusion of nuclear power.

Monday morning, North Korea followed up its thermonuclear bomb test with a spate of threats to destroy the United States. These threats are deadly even if North Korea doesn’t attack the US with its nuclear weapons. If the US does not directly defeat North Korea in a clear-cut way now, its position as a superpower in Asia and worldwide will be destroyed and its ability to defend its own citizens will be called into question with increasing frequency and lethality.

North Korea Nuclear Progress Puts Iran on Renewed Pathway to Bomb

September 4, 2017

North Korea Nuclear Progress Puts Iran on Renewed Pathway to Bomb, Washington Free Beacon, September 4, 2017

North Korea’s intermediate-range strategic ballistic rocket Hwasong-12 lifts off / Getty Images

Iran and North Korea have been sharing nuclear materials and know-how for well over a decade, according to sensitive intelligence community communications published by WikiLeaks and dating as far back as 2009.

The Obama administration took little action during its time in office to thwart this growing alliance, leading to increased nuclear ties between Iran and North Korea, multiple sources said.

In order to comply with the nuclear agreement, Iran outsourced much of its nuclear technology to North Korea, according to multiple sources, who pointed to evidence of a key 2015 meeting between the two countries surrounding the nuclear portfolio.

“Thanks to the Obama-Khamenei nuclear deal, Iran is flush with cash and has the capacity to be a willing buyer for nuclear material,” DeSantis said. “This represents a major threat to the United States and should be taken seriously.”

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U.S. officials are closely monitoring an ongoing meeting between senior North Korean and Iranian officials that comes on the heels of a nuclear test by Pyongyang, according to senior Trump administration officials and other sources who expressed concern that North Korea is helping to put the Islamic Republic back on the pathway to a functional nuclear weapon.

Sources told the Washington Free Beacon that Pyongyang continues to stockpile illicit nuclear material on Iran’s behalf in order to help the Islamic Republic skirt restrictions implemented under the landmark nuclear deal.

North Korea’s latest nuclear test of a hydrogen bomb has roiled Trump administration officials and led President Donald Trump to consider multiple options for war. However, it also has renewed fears among U.S. officials and foreign policy insiders about Pyongyang’s long-standing relationship with Iran, which centers on providing the Islamic Republic with nuclear technology and know-how.

The head of North Korea’s parliament arrived this weekend in Iran for a 10-day visit aimed at boosting ties between the two countries amid an international crackdown on Pyongyang’s nuclear weapons program, a situation U.S. officials tell the Free Beacon is being closely monitored.

As North Korea makes progress in its nuclear pursuits, it is likely this information is being shared with senior Iranian officials who continue to maintain and build upon the country’s weapons program, despite the nuclear agreement, which only limits a portion of Iran’s nuclear enrichment and research abilities.

One senior U.S. official currently handling the Iranian and North Korean nuclear portfolios told the Free Beacon that the collaboration between these two countries is being closely monitored by the Trump administration, which will not hesitate to take action to disrupt this relationship.

“The history of collaboration between North Korea and Iran has been an ongoing concern and needs to be watched closely,” the official told the Free Beacon. “We’ve been laboring under the false assumption that these oppressive regimes are rational and that we can persuade them to act for the greater good. President Trump has made it clear those days are at an end, and that the United States will do what is necessary to prevent Iran from turning into another North Korea.”

Iran and North Korea have long collaborated on their missile programs and nuclear technology, and the U.S. intelligence community continues to monitor ongoing efforts by the two countries to boost cooperation.

Kim Yong Nam, the head of North Korea’s parliament, reportedly arrived in Iran on Thursday for a high-profile meeting with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani that is likely to center around Tehran’s quest for technology and North Korea’s need for hard currency and financial assets.

Iran has been flush with cash and other financial assets since the nuclear agreement lifted international sanctions and opened the Islamic Republic to new business ties.

Rep. Ron DeSantis (R., Fla.), a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee and the National Security Subcommittee, told the Free Beacon that the increased ties are cause for concern, particularly in light of Iran’s renewed economic success.

“Given that Kim Jong Un is a plump, immature kid who only rules because of accident of birth, it is not clear that he can, through traditional means, be deterred from commencing an attack against the United States using his nuclear arsenal,” DeSantis told the Free Beacon. “What is completely clear is that Kim is willing to transfer nuclear technology to, and assist with nuclear development for, rogue regimes such as Iran.”

“Thanks to the Obama-Khamenei nuclear deal, Iran is flush with cash and has the capacity to be a willing buyer for nuclear material,” DeSantis said. “This represents a major threat to the United States and should be taken seriously.”

North Korea’s latest nuclear test has sparked a fierce war of words with the Trump administration, which announced on Monday that it is considering a range of military options.

United Nation’s Ambassador Nikki Halley said that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is “begging for war” and urged the U.N.’s Security Council to consider a strong response.

“Enough is enough,” Haley was quoted as saying. “War is never something the United States wants. We don’t want it now. But our country’s patience is not unlimited.”

Israeli officials also have warned that North Korea’s latest test is a boon to Iran’s own nuclear program.

“The international response, led by the U.S., to the North Korean regime’s provocations, sheds light on how it will behave toward the Iranian regime on their nuclear efforts in the near future,” Moshe Ya’alon, a former Israeli defense minister, tweeted. “Although the nuclear test is not our issue, the tension should concern us.”

Iran and North Korea have been sharing nuclear materials and know-how for well over a decade, according to sensitive intelligence community communications published by WikiLeaks and dating as far back as 2009.

The Obama administration took little action during its time in office to thwart this growing alliance, leading to increased nuclear ties between Iran and North Korea, multiple sources said.

In order to comply with the nuclear agreement, Iran outsourced much of its nuclear technology to North Korea, according to multiple sources, who pointed to evidence of a key 2015 meeting between the two countries surrounding the nuclear portfolio.

Iran also has opened ballistic missile factories in Syria with the help of Russia and North Korea, according to regional reports.

“North Korea and Iran’s military and political ties are long-standing, and can be traced back to the 1980-1988 Iran-Iraq War, the same time that Tehran developed an interest in nuclear and missile technology,” said Behnam Ben Taleblu, an Iran analyst at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies.

“North Korea’s provision of the Nodong-A liquid fueled medium-range ballistic missile to Iran in the 1990s enabled the mullahs to make significant strides in the missile program and eventually even their satellite launch-vehicle technology,” Ben Taleblu explained.

“While some may see the long-standing missile relationship as merely evidence of the two countries’ interest in conventional munitions, these missiles are capable of carrying nuclear payloads, and offer both rogues the ultimate deterrent weapon with which to ensure regime survival,” he said.

Iranian officials and scientists have been spotted at several of North Korea’s key nuclear test, fueling speculation that the two countries are in close contact on the issue.

“What is almost certain, however, is the following: both in the post- and pre-JCPOA [or Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, the formal name for the Iran deal] era, the two closely watched how each one negotiated with the international community, what deals it struck, the lies that worked and didn’t work, and where and how it could supplement resolve for material capability,” Ben Taleblu said.

Michael Rubin, a former Pentagon adviser and expert on rogue regimes, further told the Free Beaconthat it is suspected North Korean officials played a role in helping Iran recently test fire a series of ballistic missiles, which sparked international outrage and accusations the Islamic Republic is violating legally binding bans on such behavior.

“For those who want to deny the links between Pyongyang and Tehran, it’s easy so long as they ignore their military, diplomatic, and economic ties,” Rubin said. “It’s doubtful there has been a single Iranian missile test where North Korean scientists weren’t present, nor a North Korean test where Iranian scientists didn’t have a front row seat.”

One veteran congressional foreign policy adviser who works on the Iran portfolio told the Free Beacon that efforts to promote a new North Korean nuclear deal in the same vein as the Iran agreement are fruitless, and would only strengthen Pyongyang’s appetite to publicly test its nuclear weaponry.

“The same people who sold the Iran deal are now trying to sell what they call an ‘Iran deal for North Korea,'” the source said. “It’s the same groups, the same people, and the same playbook. Up until this weekend’s nuclear test, they were telling journalists that diplomacy has time to work, that North Korea is still years away from an H-Bomb, and—of course—that additional pressure would lead to war.”

“Now, all at once, their narratives about Iran and North Korea are both colliding with reality,” the source added. “The cost for American national security is staggering.”

Rubin went on to describe the North Korean stand-off as a glimpse into future situations with Iran.

“North Korea is a crystal ball into the future of the Iranian nuclear agreement, and the current diplomatic behavior in which there will be no support for inspections, which risk finding Iran in violation and imperiling the agreement, fits the pattern to a ‘T,'” Rubin said. “In addition, one of the biggest holes to which the Obama administration agreed was not recognizing that Iranian nuclear work doesn’t necessarily take place in Iran.”

USA vs North Korea: This is the US military arsenal poised to WIPE OUT Kim’s threat

September 4, 2017

USA vs North Korea: This is the US military arsenal poised to WIPE OUT Kim’s threat, Express [UK]Will Kirby, September 4, 2017

[French] Foreign minister Jean-Yves Le Drian warned a nuclear strike on Europe was possible and said a world war could erupt in months.

He said: “The situation is extremely serious… we see North Korea setting itself as an objective to have, tomorrow or the day after, missiles that can transport nuclear weapons.

“In a few months that will be a reality.”

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After ’s UN envoy said the country would never bow down to international pressure and give up its nuclear weapons program, diplomatic means of addressing the hostilities appear to have been sidelined in favour of military action.

’s UN ambassador Nikki Haley and the President himself have said “the time for talk is over”, despite China, Russia, and other members of the US administration claiming dialogue remains the main aim.

The US military has a huge presence in the area around North Korea, particularly in Japan and increasingly close allies South Korea.

There are almost 40,000 US troops serving in Japan, more than in any other country, and earlier this year the US Air Force lined up a huge array of helicopters, tactical fighter jets and surveillance aircraft in a show of force aimed to intimidate Kim Jong-un.

Among the aircraft were HH-60 Pave Hawks, a twin-turboshaft helicopter primarily used for the insertion and rescue of special operation personnel.

The aircraft’s versatility makes it incredibly useful in other operations too, including civilian rescue and disaster relief.

The F-15 Eagles, America’s twin-engine, all-weather tactile fighter jets, are also stationed in the region and are among the most successful modern fighters, with over 100 victories and no losses in aerial combat.

Also headquartered in Japan is the Seventh Fleet, the largest of the US navy’s deployed sea forces.

The flagship carrier is the USS Ronald Reagan, a nuclear-powered aircraft supercarrier that forms part of “the most effective and agile fighting force in the world”.

Two US Air Force B-1B Lancer bombers fly from Guam escorted by a pair of Japanese F-15 fighter jets. REUTERS

Also in the fleet are up to 14 destroyers and cruisers at any given time, some armed with ballistic missile interceptors.

A collection of long-range Tomahawk land missiles, which made headlines earlier this year when President Trump fired 59 of them at an airbase in Syria, joins the arsenal.

As if that wasn’t enough, there are also 12 nuclear-powered submarines available should war break out.

South of the demilitarised zone (DMZ), the US has 23,468 troops at 83 different sites as well as hundreds of tanks and armoured vehicles, meaning there is always a heavy military presence should North Korea decide to launch a land attack.

There is also the Terminal High-Altitude Area Defence (THAAD) system, which, despite criticism from Beijing and Pyongyang, is ready and waiting to intercept missiles and destroy the incoming projectiles while in mid-flight.

Guam, the US territory that Kim Jong-un has threatened to fire four ballistic missiles towards, is also host to a huge military presence.

Much of the island is controlled by the armed forces and the Andersen air base hosts a range of bombers, resulting in Guam being dubbed a “permanent aircraft carrier”.

Among the aircraft at the base are B-1B bombers, B-52 bombers and F-35B stealth fighters, some of the US Air Force’s most impressive jets.

The revered B-52 bomber is capable of carrying more than 30 tonnes of weapons. GETTY

The B-1B bomber is heralded for its survivability and although initially designed to carry nuclear arms, it was converted to carry more conventional weaponry after the Cold War.

The US is believed to have at least six B-1B bombers stationed in Guam and is best suited to a ‘medium threat environment’, rather than a heavily defended airspace.

Speaking about plans for a possible preemptive strike on North Korea earlier this month, retired Admiral James Stavridis told NBC News: “The B-1b has also been selected because it has the added benefit of not being able to carry nuclear weapons.

“Military planners think that will signal China, Russia, and Pyongyang that the US is not trying to escalate an already bad situation any further.”

The B-52 was first introduced in 1955 and was originally designed to carry nuclear weapons during the Cold War. It remains one of the most superior aircraft in the US Air Force.

The long-range, subsonic, jet-powered strategic bomber is capable of carrying more than 30 tons of weapons. The aircraft’s fearsome appearance and reputation has resulted in the nickname BUFF, which stands for Big Ugly Fat F*****.

The US also maintains a smaller presence in other countries in the region, including Thailand, Singapore and the Philippines. US military aircraft use Thai runways while the US Navy will operate four warships out of Singapore by next year.

Tensions have been stepped across the region over recent days following North Korea firing a test missile over Japan.

The provocative action saw South Korea and US forces drop bombs on the border of the hermit state.

Earlier today France warned the situation was “extremely serious”.

Foreign minister Jean-Yves Le Drian warned a nuclear strike on Europe was possible and said a world war could erupt in months.

He said: “The situation is extremely serious… we see North Korea setting itself as an objective to have, tomorrow or the day after, missiles that can transport nuclear weapons.

“In a few months that will be a reality.”