Patrick J. Buchanan asks a pointed question: why, over sixty years after the Korean War and twenty-five years after the end of the Cold War, does the US still have 28,000 troops in South Korea? From Buchanan at buchanan.org:
To back up Defense Secretary “Mad Dog” Mattis’ warning last month, that the U.S. “remains steadfast in its commitment” to its allies, President Donald Trump is sending B-1 and B-52 bombers to Korea.
Some 300,000 South Korean and 15,000 U.S. troops have begun their annual Foal Eagle joint war exercises that run through April.
“The two sides are like two accelerating trains coming toward each other with neither side willing to give way,” says Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, “Are (they) really ready for a head-on collision?”
So it would seem.
It is Kim Jong Un, 33-year-old grandson of that Stalinist state’s founding father, who launched the first Korean War, who brought on this confrontation.
In February, Kim’s half-brother was assassinated in Malaysia in a VX nerve agent attack and five of Kim’s security officials were executed with anti-aircraft guns. Monday, Kim launched four missiles toward U.S. bases, with three landing in the Sea of Japan.
U.S. response: Begin immediate deployment of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense missile shield in Korea.
This set off alarms in China. For while THAAD cannot shoot down Scuds on the DMZ, its radar can detect missile launches inside China, thereby, says Beijing, imperiling her deterrent.
For accepting THAAD, China has imposed sanctions on Seoul, and promised the U.S. a commensurate strategic response.
Minister Wang’s proposal for resolving the crisis: The U.S. and Seoul cancel the exercises and North Korea suspends the nuclear and missile tests.
How did we reach this crisis point?
To continue reading: Is a Korean Missile Crisis Ahead?