North Korea threatens to attack U.S. bases in Japan and Guam

BY JACK KIM | REUTERS | MARCH 21, 2013

North Korea said it would attack U.S. military bases on Japan and the Pacific island of Guam if provoked, a day after leader Kim Jong-un oversaw a mock drone strike on South Korea.

The North also held an air raid drill on Thursday after accusing the United States of preparing a military strike using bombers that have overflown the Korean peninsula as part of drills between South Korean and U.S. forces.

North Korea has stepped up its rhetoric in response to what it calls “hostile” drills between South Korea and the United States. It has also been angered by the imposition of fresh U.N. sanctions that followed its February 12 nuclear test.

Separately, South Korea said a hacking attack on the servers of local broadcasters and banks on Wednesday originated from an IP address in China, raising suspicions the intrusion came from North Korea.

“The United States is advised not to forget that our precision target tools have within their range the Anderson Air Force base on Guam where the B-52 takes off, as well as the Japanese mainland where nuclear powered submarines are deployed and the navy bases on Okinawa,” the North’s supreme military command spokesman was quoted as saying by the KCNA news agency.

Japan and U.S. Pacific bases are in range of Pyongyang’s medium-range missiles.

It is not known if North Korea possesses drones, although a report on South Korea’s Yonhap news agency last year said it had obtained 1970s-era U.S. target drones from Syria to develop into attack drones.

“The (drone) planes were assigned the flight route and time with the targets in South Korea in mind, Kim Jong-un said, adding with great satisfaction that they were proved to be able to mount (a) super-precision attack on any enemy targets,” KCNA reported.

It is extremely rare for KCNA to specify the day on which Kim attended a drill. It also said a rocket defense unit had successfully shot down a target that mimicked an “enemy” Tomahawk cruise missile.

North Korea has said it has abrogated an armistice that ended the 1950-53 Korean War and threatened a nuclear attack on the United States.

Although North Korea lacks the technology to carry out such an attack, Washington said it would deploy more anti-missile batteries in Alaska to counter any threat.

PYONGYANG HAS HACKED SOUTH KOREA BEFORE

The hacking attack brought down the servers of South Korean broadcasters YTN, MBC and KBS as well as two major commercial banks, Shinhan Bank and NongHyup Bank.

South Korean communications regulators said the attack originated from an IP address based in China.

An unnamed official from South Korea’s presidential office was quoted by the Yonhap news agency as saying the discovery of the Chinese IP address indicated Pyongyang was responsible.

Investigations of past hacking incidents on South Korean organizations have been traced to Pyongyang’s large army of computer engineers trained to infiltrate the South’s computer networks.

At least one previous attack was traced to a Chinese IP address.

South Korea’s defense ministry said it was too early to blame the North but said such a cyber capability was a key part of its arsenal. Experts say thousands of North Korean engineers may have been recruited for the purpose.

“Throughout the world, states that create cyber warfare and engage in those types of activities are precisely the same countries that develop nuclear weapons,” Defense Ministry spokesman Kim Min-seok said.

“North Korea has strongly stepped up development of asymmetrical strategy with nuclear development and many types of ballistic missiles as well as a special forces of 200,000 strong.”

How Wars are Born

Global Research

Those of us making the “radical” claim that wars are the result of economic/corporate interests pushed abroad, were recently given a nod of approval from a typically unfriendly source, The New York Times.How wars begin

The corporate controlled New York Times published a revealing article about how U.S. foreign policy really works, and why.  The motive behind the sincerity is that China’s foreign policy was being attacked. However, the article soon made it clear that China’s policy is the same as the U.S.’s :  dominating regions that are of “economic (corporate) interest” — raw materials, cheap labor, shipping lanes, markets, etc. — through military buildup.

Dangerously, the article discusses how China’s economic expansion —and the military buildup used to protect it — is coming into conflict with the U.S.overseas militarism.  For example:

“The Chinese military is seeking to project naval power well beyond the Chinese coast, from the oil ports of the Middle East to the shipping lanes of the Pacific, where the United States Navy has long reigned as the dominant force, military officials and analysts say.”

Why is China expanding militarily?

“Chinese admirals say they want warships to escort commercial vessels that are crucial to the country’s economy, from as far as the Persian Gulf to theStrait of Malacca, in Southeast Asia, and to help secure Chinese interests in the resource-rich South and East China Seas.”  (April 24, 2010).

Shen Dingli, a Chinese intellectual, recently argued in favor of creating the firstChinese overseas military bases (the U.S. has 909 military facilities in foreign countries):

“With the continuous expansion of China’s overseas business, the governments are more accountable for protecting the overseas interests… the guarantee of smooth trading; the prevention of overseas intervention…”   (January 28, 2010 – China.org).

Typically, the U.S. military is in charge of policing most of the global shipping lanes, so that corporate goods are unhampered by pirates or hostile nations, etc.  But China is no longer content with this situation, and wants protections of its own.  But why?

One reason is that China has been listening to the increasingly hostile attitude of the U.S. corporate elite, who have expressed the view that China’s economic rise is inherently in conflict with or in competition with the profit-making ability of U.S. corporations.  Obama’s recent provocations against China — arm sales to Taiwan, the visit to Washington by the Dali Lama, threats about Iran, currency, etc. — are all proof that China’s economic rise will not be met with friendship and cooperation.

The above-mentioned New York Times article admits “…there are few indications that China has aggressive intentions toward the United States or other countries.”  Nevertheless, the whole article intends to scare and frighten. For instance:

“Of particular concern is that elements of China’s military modernization appear designed to challenge our [U.S. Navy’s] freedom of action in the region,” the admiral [Willard] said.

“Japan is anxious, too…”

and

“Lee Kuan Yew, the former Singaporean leader, reflected widespread anxieties when he noted China’s naval rise and urged the United States to maintain its regional presence.”

These scare tactics are intended to steer public opinion into a hostile stance towards China, which the U.S. government views as a possible war target.  This eventuality was made clear later in the article:

“…in reaction to China’s growth, the United States has recently transferred submarines from the Atlantic to the Pacific so that most of its nuclear-powered attack submarines are now in the Pacific… The United States has also begun rotating three to four submarines on deployments out of Guam, reviving a practice that had ended with the cold war…”

And most alarmingly:  “American vessels now frequently survey the [Chinese] submarine base at Hainan island, and that activity leads to occasional friction with Chinese ships.”

China’s economic and military rise is pushing up against territory dominated by the U.S. military, which is pushing back.  Military “incidents” are increasingly likely in this situation, which can be used as a pretext for war.

Behind the military jockeying for power are economic interests.  Controlling the U.S. economy are powerful corporations, who rely on the U.S. military to ensure them super profits overseas, including domination over whole regions — the Middle East, Latin America, the Pacific — that are viewed as the “exclusive economic zones” of U.S. corporations.  The fact that China is now declaring itself master of its own zones is intolerable for U.S. corporations, which will stop at nothing — including war — to maintain U.S. military dominance over the globe.