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Blast hints at North Korea’s nuke

by Brendan McGarry on April 2, 2013

The amount of energy discharged from a nuclear bomb recently tested by North Korea may show the device used plutonium, which would mean the country hasn’t yet found the other route to the weapon, according to an arms-control expert.

North Korea on Feb. 12 announced its third test of a nuclear device. The underground detonation has escalated tensions in the region. The U.S. flew pairs of stealth aircraft over South Korea, including F-22 fighter jets and nuclear-capable B-2 bombers, in a show of force. The North threatened retaliation and on April 2 pledged to restart a closed reactor to boost production of the weapons material.

North Korea has steadily increased the explosive power, or yield, of its nuclear tests, to six to seven kilotons in February, from about two kilotons in 2009 and from less than a kiloton in 2006, according to a Feb. 12 report from the Congressional Research Service. The first two are believed to have used plutonium rather than highly enriched uranium. Obtaining the fissile material is the main hurdle in building a nuclear weapon.

“It looks more as if they’re sort of gradually improving a design that they’ve been working on,” said Hans Kristensen, director of the Nuclear Information Project at the Federation of American Scientists, an arms-control organization based in Washington that supports the reduction of nuclear weapons. “You could argue and say, ‘Well, maybe it’s more likely a plutonium device versus them starting all over on a totally new design based on uranium.’”

Still, because so little is known about North Korea’s activities, “it could go either way,” he said in a telephone interview. “We really don’t know one way or the other.”

The U.S. successfully pursued both paths to the bomb during the Manhattan Project in the 1940s, Kristensen said. Early tests of U.S. nuclear weaponry yielded about 15 and 20 kilotons, he said. India and Pakistan’s first atomic devices yielded about 10 to 12 kilotons, he said.

The difference in yields suggests Pyongyang is “still not very good at producing this,” Kristensen said.

A third test of a plutonium-based bomb would also diminish North Korea’s stockpile of the weapons-grade material. The country is estimated to have between 30 and 50 kilograms of separated plutonium, enough for four to seven weapons, according to the CRS report.

While North Korea has acknowledged a uranium enrichment program, it previously said its purpose was to produce fuel for nuclear power. That may have changed under the regime of Kim Jong Un, which last month called for bolstering its nuclear weapons production.

North Korea’s latest atomic test, along with its December launch of a satellite into orbit using a Taepo Dong 2 rocket and recent display of an intercontinental ballistic missile, demonstrates a “commitment to develop long-range missile technology that could pose a direct threat to the United States,” James Clapper, director of National Intelligence, said in prepared remarks last month to the Senate Intelligence Committee.

North Korea probably won’t have the capacity to attack the U.S. with nuclear missiles “for many years,” and its ability to strike South Korea is very limited, according to Siegfried Hecker, a Stanford University professor and former Los Alamos National Laboratory director who has repeatedly traveled to the country to report on its nuclear facilities.

“Nevertheless, this is an uneasy situation with a potential for miscalculations from a young and untested leader,” he said in an April 2 article from Stanford’s Center for International Security and Cooperation.

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{ 151 comments… read them below or add one }

STemplar April 2, 2013 at 11:28 pm

I bet the writers of South Park are trying to do an episode, but with the amount of looney coming from them they have to keep erasing and revising the script.

Interesting stuff from inside China where the internet sites are apparently ripping the Norks and calling what's his nuts 'fatty kim'. The suspension of the editor guru for the editorial in which he called for abandoning the Norks. I think we should continued with measured responses and let them continue their mental spin out. Seems to be working in our favor with Chinese public opinion.

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joe April 3, 2013 at 7:11 am

Not surprising, really.

Whilst a lot of people don't like the PRC's government (for a number of good reasons, let's not have the debate here), few will argue that they're not rational.

A client state you can use to annoy the west and keep South Korea looking over it's shoulder is useful and something they will support.
A nutter who's main contribution to international politics is trying to start a nuclear war is not.

Right now the Chinese public (and more importantly leadership) is probably doing a collective facepalm and muttering "oh, hell, this one's even more pants-on-head crazy than the last one…"

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 10:57 am

Chinese opinion. Yeah, the US could be indifferent on that. Thankfully, the Chinese are starting to leave NK alone. Maybe they have "seen the light". For all we know, maybe a misguided missile courtesy of NK may mobilize the Chinese against Kim. I think its safe to say that in the next Korean war, China won't pull another, "oh, US at my doorstep, lets attack" maneuver. If anything, they may even invade from the north, and plunge south, hopefully stopping at the 38th. Either way, NK is going to fall, I think within 10 years. My question is what is going to happen to the South? It seems there is more attention to the fake threats sent to the US then the real danger for the South. Also, we will be stuck with a population of over 24 million people that hate the US, or people that were ex-North Korean. Eh, doesn't seem like an easy fix.

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STemplar April 3, 2013 at 2:19 pm

The bulk of North Koreans aren't the TV images of the fist pumping alleged zealots. I'm pretty sure people who have primary dietary staples of bark and grass will probably like anybody that hands them a bowl of rice and some bread quite a bit.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 3:14 pm

I don't know about that for sure. By now, they would have revolted. Or tried to. And I think we would have heard about that. The people of NK are pretty well brainwashed.

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STemplar April 3, 2013 at 4:09 pm

Revolt with what? When the dear leader feeds the army and buys off the elite. How are people supposed to revolt when they literally have to turn to grass and tree bark for food? Do you think there are a lot of left over resources for weapons? You're aware that whole generations of families are locked up in gulags for political crimes that grandparents allegedly committed 60 years ago? There is no revolting under those conditions.

admin April 3, 2013 at 2:22 pm

I doubt it's Kim calling the shots. He was educated in Switzerland… He knows well what would happen if he actually started a war. He probably has handlers. Kim Jong Un is just a puppet.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 3:15 pm

Definitely. The "great leader" is just a figurehead who takes food and tortures. It the old generals that surround him that are running the show. But he is dangerous, Kim is.

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Vaporhead April 3, 2013 at 3:26 pm

He may have been educated abroad, but he know's he must maintain complete control of his citizens. One inkling that he is weak would destroy everything they believe the "Great Leader" stands for. All these provacative actions are just that, bunch of saber rattling. Kim isn't stupid enought to actually start another war, at least lets hope not.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 4:47 pm

I doubt that, highly. He was made an "honorary" general in the North Korean military (which means like nothing) for no reason. He is the youngest head-of-state in the world. I am not saying young people are dumb, but he doesn't have the experience, knowledge or any qualities to lead the NK.

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Uncle Bill April 3, 2013 at 9:03 pm

Agree completely.

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whatever April 4, 2013 at 2:47 am

how do you what's on Chinese websites when you don't even read / understand Chinese?

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STemplar April 4, 2013 at 4:37 am

I went to school to learn Chinese while l was stationed in the Arabian Gulf.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 4, 2013 at 1:59 pm

Wait. Firstly, there is no language called "chinese". Its either Mandarin or Cantonese, at least, thats the majority in China. And Mandarin/Cantonese helped you out in the Middle East?

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STemplar April 4, 2013 at 2:02 pm

****face slap***** Big E, just let me handle the troll/reincarnated Restore Palestine please.

orly? April 4, 2013 at 2:25 pm

Enable IFF!

Enable IFF!

Restore Palestine April 5, 2013 at 11:56 am

STumpler can read any language in the universe after snorting some potent magic powders. The freak talks to anything and anyone, including himself. Weeds, grass, ice, stones, his ugly butt, pillows, the moon. You name it, he talks to it.

He is probably a cell mate of BS ENTERPRISE at a mental asylum.

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STemplar April 5, 2013 at 1:07 pm

Arabian Gulf

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hillary cliton April 5, 2013 at 5:45 pm

LOL!

looks like this STumpler freak has been talking to Arabian Gulf lately.

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Restore Palestine April 6, 2013 at 1:39 am

More like arguing with Arabian Gulf, and losing.

Wonder what the mental is going to talk to next. Maybe the Korean Strait, or Sea of Japan.

Davis April 2, 2013 at 11:28 pm

Well it's good to hear North Korea cannot strike the US and has only limited capabilities in striking S. Korea but their continuation of nuclear and missile testing clearly shows their intentions. Hopefully, the Kim regime will collapse before they go full nuclear with ICBM's.

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Sev April 3, 2013 at 8:29 am

They won't. How about we stke all they're missile facilities before they get the capapbility and still have limited striking power? They have nukes and have said that THEY WILL nuke the US. NOw, if they didn't have nukes thats one thing, because it's basically like a crazy guy in a padded cell saying he will kill you. If you let him out, he probably would keep to his word. But now that they have nukes they are more akin to a crazy guy in a barred jail cell with a gun saying he will kill you. I would take him at his word and kill he before he got the chance to shoot me

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Sev April 3, 2013 at 8:33 am

As president I would say "It is my job to ensure the safety of this nation and as such since it is the North's policy to launch a nuclear strike on the US It is now the policy of the United States to use any means at our disposal to destroy North Korea's missile launch sites every time we see them raising a missile until such time where Dear Leader changes his policy from nuking the United States to full dismantlement of their nuclear program."

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whatever April 3, 2013 at 10:04 am

in that case you are more of a brain dead nut job than Kim, and a threat to all people on earth, including the fat asses in America.

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whatever April 4, 2013 at 1:19 am

wait a minute, why are you people down voting my post? did i say something wrong?

USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 10:47 am

I doubt they will ever get ICBMs before the next OPEN Korean conflict. They supposedly tried to skip a step, and decided to build a nuke that would fit above a missile. To bad it backfired. Personally, the threats to the US are WAY overrated. To South Korea, not so much. US missile defense systems will polish off any NK missiles. The South Koreans are the ones in most trouble; the have to LIVE next to these village idiots.

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Musson April 3, 2013 at 8:37 am

How about we unilaterally draw down our own stock of nuclear weapons? I am sure that the NORKs and Iranians would follow our lead and renounce atomic weapons if we just show them the way.

/s

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 10:49 am

I doubt that. Until there are government changes in both countries, they have no reason to yield on their nuclear weapons. Both countries think that the world is against them; and its is pretty much true. The only way nukes will leave Tehran and Pyongyang is by war or some extensive talks and treaties. They won't abandon.

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orly? April 3, 2013 at 11:22 am

Its called the "START" (STrategic Arms Reduction Treaty).

We've been drawing down our stockpiles since 1991.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 1:42 pm

Albeit slowly. I don't think that we will ever need nukes, at least on Earth. Cold War ended a while back. I say pack 'em up, and if outfit them on spacecraft. Even thought its illegal.

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Mitch S. April 3, 2013 at 2:18 pm

Musson,
Looks like you have to make it clearer you're being sarcastic than just a "/s".

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Musson April 5, 2013 at 1:14 pm

Thanks!

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Kim April 3, 2013 at 4:55 pm

Could this be called 'reverse trolling'?

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whatever April 4, 2013 at 1:22 am

are you the great leader from North Korea?

what does 'reverse trolling' mean? define it please.

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whatever April 4, 2013 at 1:24 am

Musson, if the US wants other countries to renounce nuclear weapons, it should renounce them first, not merely draw down the stock.

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crackedlenses April 4, 2013 at 2:57 am

These are weapons and the national security of all the world's powers we are talking about; no one is going to play nice or play fair. That is why unilateral disarmament never works.

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orly? April 4, 2013 at 9:46 am

Only fools would think it takes a snap of a finger to disarm thousands of nuclear warheads.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 4, 2013 at 1:55 pm

Unless you are a Q or something.

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anonymous April 3, 2013 at 10:44 am

Keep beating those war drums. It worked so well for Iraq.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 10:52 am

Ok, NK does not pose a threat to mainland USA. Simple truth. Their "missiles" would be detected minutes after launch. And missile defense will take care of them. Also, this is assuming that these missiles get past the boost phase of launch, and have the ability to target, well, anything. Finally, whatever missile they want to wave at the US, it doesn't have a nuclear weapon duck (or is it duct) taped to the tip. They don't have the technology, and it will most likely stay that way unless Russia and China go back to freely backing NK, which is the opposite of what we have seen both parties do. No matter what happens, I sense that there will be a MASSIVE dispute on this article. Man, where are those Palestinian monkeys?

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orly? April 3, 2013 at 11:24 am

shhh

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Davis April 3, 2013 at 5:16 pm

Palestinian Monkey probably went to go troll elsewhere after all his post from the last discussion got deleted.
http://defensetech.org/2013/03/19/pacom-contracto

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 5:20 pm

Well dang. About time. But we still have that other Siamese twin around here somewhere.

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Davis April 8, 2013 at 2:59 am

As soon as one goes down another one pops ups. It's tough, but we must remain committed to fighting stupidity as part of the GWOT (Global War On Trolls) campaign.

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superraptor April 3, 2013 at 11:22 am

Japan and South Korea hopefully will move forward to quickly develop their own nuclear deterrence. The US has become militarily weak and unreliable

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greg April 3, 2013 at 11:58 am

Yes our show of force was weak and unreliable.

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superraptor April 3, 2013 at 1:02 pm

2 B-2s are a show of farce, not force, the Chinese are still laughing how we are degrading our military through sequestration while they are building hundreds of new ICBMs.

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anonymous April 3, 2013 at 1:44 pm

Sir, please put down the Fox News.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 1:45 pm

Just no man. Sequestration didn't knock out our navy fleet. We still have hundreds of ships. We also have the largest, most well equipped Air Force. And with the M1A3 under development, we can settle and doubts of our power on the ground. So no. And also, our own missile defense can cope with the ICBMs. Sequestration hits the soldier and military hard. But no hard enough to be weaker than China. Also, your name, "superraptor" shows that you MIGHT be aware of a little plane called the F-22. Yeah, sucks to be a J-21.

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superraptor April 3, 2013 at 4:12 pm

we only have 120 operation worthy F-22s. The F-35 can explode when hit by lightning and cannot stop on wet pavement. Our F-15s are 30 plus year old. Our ICBMs are over 40 years old and are now being inactivated unilaterally by our great leader. If it comes to deterrence, the US has become a joke and our enemies know it. Better watch Red Dawn and the alternate ending

STemplar April 3, 2013 at 2:22 pm

3 B2s and a pair of B1s destroyed 150 targets in Libya in 2 sorties.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 3:17 pm

The B-52 wasn't even around. B-1 can hold over 100,000. In fact, closer to 120,00 pounds. B-2 is 40,000 pounds. B-52 is 70-100,000 pounds. So yeah, bomber fleet=strong.

superraptor April 3, 2013 at 7:06 pm

that's about the entire US strategic aircraft fleet left.

brad April 3, 2013 at 1:12 pm

I want to believe that China has to understand that if North Korea manages to stock pile a few nukes, then it will pose an actual threat to China also.

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STemplar April 3, 2013 at 2:23 pm

That's one of the points the Chinese editorial head made in his article that got him suspended.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 3:18 pm

I don't know. It depends on how extensive China is helping NK. They maybe publicly moving back, but the more I think about it, the more I believe that they might be propping up the Koreans in shady, under-the-table deals.

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STemplar April 3, 2013 at 3:55 pm

There is nothing shady or under the table going on, china provides them like 75% of their fuel oil and the bulk of their food. The Norks exist because of China. A nation that dedicates like 50% of its GDP to the military like the norks do does not exist on its own, its impossible. They are very much still around because of Chinese assistance. That worked for the Chinese as long as they asked the norks to do things the norks wanted to do anyway, now that they are asking for things the norks don't want to do the Chinese are learning the uncomfortable truth that all their money might not have been all that well spent.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 4:56 pm

True, but they have been sort of moving backwards with the aid, in all forms. Overall, I doubt that China will do the whole attack thing it did back in the original Korean war. They will probably caution US troops to not cross the border. But attack? Doubt it.

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STemplar April 3, 2013 at 5:05 pm

I would think what China does would depend on what was done to us and our response. If the norks did something really nuclear stupid then I think China would wash their hands of them. If they shell the islands again, I doubt they would be cool with a land invasion northward.

Tribulationtime April 3, 2013 at 1:26 pm

A few questions to share. How can Little Big Kim (aka The Great Leader) save the face?. Someone Knows What F…king Shht NKorea wants?. How do affect this crisis to Iran affair?. What if Nkorea bombs damaged nuclear power central in Japan? Can China afford a bridgehead in the peninsula without Nkorea buffer?. Do a Tactical Nuke bring International Green Light to attack Iran?. I can´t foresee the future but i very sad why i feel this time war gonna re-start. I hope the whole thing don´t exceed operations in DMZ and near around.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 1:50 pm

Okay, I will answer them in order for ya'. 1) He can't. 2) They want control over everything, and to elevate Kim Jon-Dumb I mean -un to dictator of Earth. 2) Iran and NK share some of the same ideals, such as wiping away the US. They both want, or have, Nukes. They could try and form a new Axis power. But they wouldn't be near as strong as the Axis powers in WWII. 3) Tricky for NK, as they have no bomber fleet worth mentioning, and US and Japanese aircraft are ALWAYS on alert in case we get a little hero to try and do some funny business. 4). Maybe. Depends on what their agenda. 5). Hmmm. Well. I think that if Iran openly gives dirty bombs to terrorists, and assists the wrong folk, then maybe. But I HIGHLY doubt it. The tactical nukes are designed for superpowers, no wanna-bees. We reserves MOABS and JDAMS for those fools. So there you go.

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Taylor April 3, 2013 at 1:51 pm

North Korea working with Iran, so the Iranians could have purchased a plutonium nuke already and could probably test their own weapon designs in North Korea to maintain the cover that they are not pursuing nuclear weapons.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 2:01 pm

Well, Iran hasn't kept that cover well. No matter what the situation is, we know for sure that NK is making nukes. Iran is developing them, but actually having one is doubtful. They are working together, trading Uranium and Plutonium and scientists. Just I doubt that their actual nuclear bombs are joint projects.

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STemplar April 3, 2013 at 2:26 pm

Maybe, kind of shows why this endless dithering with the various negotiations that have nothing to show for 10 years of effort are probably pointless.

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Skyler the Weird April 3, 2013 at 4:24 pm

Let's call North Korea Austria-Hungary. The PRC is Imperial Germany. the US is the British Empire. They will back their Ally cause there is no way their number one trading partner will go to a world war with them for backing an inavasion of Serbia/South Korea.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 5:06 pm

I don't think you can compare this to WWI or WWII. WAY to many variables to deal with that. Just stick to what it is. If SK is attacked, US will go in. If SK attacks, notice now I am saying that SK is doing the attacking, then the US will back them up, but not as readily. Either way, NK will have US fighters and bombers flying over it, and US naval ships in its waters.

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Yet cubic April 3, 2013 at 5:08 pm

I think war is inevitable. North Korea cannot handle the sanctions and this is squeezing them. It's like a hungry dog trying to get a piece of food from a lion it knows its suicide but will take that chance it has no choice it will starve anyway. It seems that North Korea doesn't know how to initiate the war so just like I kid it's ramping up its rhetoric. The US should take them very serious. The question is what will they do to ignite the war and what will be there reason

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Simple Man April 3, 2013 at 5:39 pm

That's all we need. Nuclear proliferation.

South Korea, and particularly Seoul, would bear the brunt of the damage, from artillery fire mainly.

Our own missile defense system is in question as the results have not been spectacular. But at the same time deception is critical to success. Let's hope that if they do launch we can knock them down without detonating them.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 7:01 pm

Detonating what? That hasn't been answered. NK missiles CAN NOT launch a nuclear warhead. A) it doesn't have the thrust requirements. B) Even if it could (which it can't), the nukes they are making aren't that powerful.

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Mikey April 3, 2013 at 6:10 pm

It's my hope that before Fat Kim can do anything rash, the Generals will step in and kick his *&# . This kid is about as smart as a bowl of soup. At least the Generals have got some brains between their ears. Fat Kimmey is trying to keep hold of Daddies country. And he's not very good at it.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 7:02 pm

Ehmm. No, the won't give Kim the boot, as he is basically a god to NK. And the Generals are just as bit as crazy as Kim-jong-un, if not more so.

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Engineer April 3, 2013 at 8:57 pm

Ok – this has stopped being funny. Time for us to get the Chinese on board and tell them they need to make their boy Kim to go away – he is bad for business – Chinese Business!

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whatever April 4, 2013 at 4:05 am

N Korea is playing the US as if it were a monkey.

a few NK announcements here and there, and the donkeys in the US spend hundreds of millions moving tons of ships, aircraft and other military assets around, staging silly monkey exercises and patrols that NK doesn't give a damn about.

sounds like good business to China.

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STemplar April 4, 2013 at 4:35 am

They are clearly in cahoots with their buddies the Iranians in the Arabian Gulf too.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 4, 2013 at 2:00 pm

Hmm yes. I also think that Pakistan is starting to lean with NK. They weren't to happy about the Abottobad raid, despite their official responses to the attack.

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whatever April 5, 2013 at 2:18 am

Pakistan and NK are friends. The people of both countries are united against the American imperialists and criminals in Asia.

whatever April 5, 2013 at 2:14 am

you mean they are clearly in cahoots with the Arabians in the Iranian Gulf.

sounds like music to me.

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STemplar April 5, 2013 at 4:20 am

Arabian Gulf.

Speedy April 3, 2013 at 9:07 pm

WHY?

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todd April 4, 2013 at 1:05 pm

I think we will soon take out NK's nuclear and ICBM program and stockpiles. Possibly even regime-change. SK has already begun pursuing nuclear weapons, with other regional countries likely to eventually follow. This nuclear proliferation is a long-term threat to US and everyone. If you doubted our policy on denying Iran nuclear weapons, because of the Mideast nuclear arms race that would ensue, what's happening in Asia, with SK (and soon others) considering/asking for/pursuing nuclear weapons technology, is vindication. I think we need to shut it down. All the US steps thus far seem like a logical progression in that direction.

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blight_ April 4, 2013 at 3:44 pm

Clearly people need some re-education about the Democratic People's Republic of Korea and the titles of greatness that come with its hilarious leaders.

It goes (Great Leader->Eternal President), (Dear Leader->Great Leader->Eternal Leader),(Brilliant Comrade->Great Successor->?)

Wonder if the Great Successor will make it to Eternal Successor.

And some bomb targets. You know, for…defense.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_Korean_leader%

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USS ENTERPRISE April 4, 2013 at 4:38 pm

I just call them all foolish fat fellows.

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Benjamin April 5, 2013 at 10:35 am

With Russian diplomats being told to look at evacuating by Pyongyang, things do not look to well.
My thinking is that these missiles (http://www.cnn.com/2013/04/05/world/asia/koreas-tensions/index.html?hpt=hp_t1) being readied will actually be sent on a trajectory to overflight Japan and maybe Guam. Either way, we are going to be forced to attempt to intercept them.

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STemplar April 3, 2013 at 4:30 pm

OMG. Red Dawn. You have officially joined the tinfoil hat crowd.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 4:54 pm

Red Dawn. Ha. Sad movie. Oh and, you want to talk air force? The most "formidable" equipment they got in the air is the MiG-29. How many have been shot by the 30+ year old F-15? What about MiG-21s? The bulk of the NK's air force is frankly pathetic. Also, even if we had just 10, yes TEN, F-22, if each used up 8/10 missiles and got 6 kills, we have 60 kills. And that is considering that the planes are relatively lightly loaded and off. Oh, and USAF pilots>NK pilots. USAF gets to train, NK gets, well, nothing. They don't have enough money or fuel to let their aircraft practice. There. Air-Dominance done. ICBMs. ICBMs. ICBMs. Why? Why do we have to nuke NK? I am not talking about ICBMs (though Tridents do cream most other missile systems). I am talking missiles defense. NK has shown to not be able to hit anything accurately (anyone want to back up that claim, I believe it was a misguided-missile that crashed near Japan?) RED DAWN IS HOLLYWOOD. Hollywood claims that an AC-130 can get away with attacking the White House, and a handful of replacement GI's can take over major world powers. Get real. (EDIT: I KNOW THERE WAS SARCASM IN THE MOVIE REFERENCE)

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 4:46 pm

I KNOW ABOUT THE GULAGS. Go read my other posts, I have mentioned them. Anyways, yeah, they might have difficulty revolting. Hmmph. Well, if they can sneak out of NK, and they surely can sneak in. They may try a sort of Harper's Ferry kinda attack, but it would take a lot of smuggled weapons. Eh. So they can't revolt. But the footage and eye-witnesses (for once) agree with the massively anti-American propaganda. And when NK falls, we are going to have some extreme folks up in the Korean Peninsula.

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STemplar April 3, 2013 at 4:53 pm

There is a mile wide DMZ that is the single most heavily militarized border the word has ever known, and their other border is guarded by a nation that wants the regime in power. How pray tell would you suggest smuggling anything in? Visitors have their cell phones confiscated when they arrive, I think they would notice a conex full of machine guns.

The footage is in Pyongyang, those people get fed.

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STemplar April 3, 2013 at 5:07 pm

The nork air force would be destroyed on the ground.

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superraptor April 3, 2013 at 7:05 pm

Our real adversary is China who would side with NK and the PLA would give the USAF and the USN a run for its money. They have thousands of new nukes including small tactical nukes and would use them early against us. We effectively would be wiped out in SK and would be kicked out of Asia. They are not deterred anymore, but then we have gutted our military, no surprise there.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 5:14 pm

Perhaps. But as history goes, you probably shouldn't hurt your most important customer. Economically, the ramifications of a Chinese attack in NK against US or NATO or UN troops would be, bad. Not like the 50's when the US was less dependent on China. China can't grow with the US, and the US needs the supply lines from China. Both can be independent, but doing so would ruin, well, the world.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 5:16 pm

I know that. But what about the Chinese and NK border? That is the border I am referring to. It is fortified, but not nearly as much. You ALWAYS hear stories of NK escapees. Almost all of them take that route.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 5:18 pm

Same with the navy. Except they will be either sunk, or, well, on fire? I don't know. Either a ship sinks or floats.

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STemplar April 3, 2013 at 5:30 pm

A person crossing a border is different than arms smuggling. I don't think the Chinese are quite as loose with arms purchases among private citizens either.

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STemplar April 3, 2013 at 5:32 pm

As history goes as I pointed out in another thread, US industry was selling airplane parts and steel to Japan until 1940, so just because there is business taking place doesn't really provide assurances of no war.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 6:57 pm

Maybe. Or perhaps overwhelming man power attacking an "arsenal". Either way. I am sure that NK people with a brain have thought of the idea. Feasibly, according to your sound logic, seems hard.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 7:00 pm

There is a difference there. Until 1940, yes. But then the Japs *thought* they had gained and advantage with Manchuria. They decided to attack, which went well for the first year or two, and then went bad for the rest of the war. Here, if the US doesn't buy from China, then China losses a lot of money.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 7:14 pm

Please, go read the other comments. Then we can tell you that I doubt that will happen.

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STemplar April 4, 2013 at 12:01 am

Thousands of new nukes? and pray tell where exactly are they getting the nuclear material for thousands of them?

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 7:14 pm

Oh don't even go there. We have enough bombers to bomb anything to submission. It seems like we have another troll here.

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Warfighter April 4, 2013 at 6:17 am

Where do you get this info? If you have some sources, please cite them.

You're coming off as someone with negative levels of credibility, which from my point of view is fact. If you're here to vent some kind of frustration at government, then making all of these unfounded statements will simply get you shot down by people who have facts at hand, and many of who (unlike you, I suspect) have served or are serving in the military and can actually see the fleets of capital equipment in operation with their own eyes. This will only lead to your increased frustration, and won't make you feel any better, so please take the time to think about whether trolling is a positive lifestyle choice.

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superraptor April 3, 2013 at 9:51 pm

Hope is not a strategy. We are completely unprepared for what will hit us, see reference below
http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2012/sep/12/i

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USS ENTERPRISE April 3, 2013 at 10:59 pm

Well dang. But China won't attack. The US has subs, and they will fire back if necessary. Either way, a war between China and the US would be MAD. The US needs China, and China needs the US. Basically, if you declare war with the US, you want to take on AT LEAST the US and NATO. Possibly even the UN, though the opposing teams can veto each other's resolutions. It would be horrific, and literally nothing would survive. China is building up an arsenal, but probably to show it can and "cement" its title as a super power, in both the economic and the military sectors.

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whatever April 4, 2013 at 2:38 am

the article was by Bill Gertz, a proven right-wing dumbass nutjob. he's more like a tabloid sensationalist.

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superraptor April 3, 2013 at 11:19 pm

You are still hoping. Once our forces in Asia are wiped out, our great leaders will be too afraid to launch an ICBM strike because it would annihilate the continental USA through MAD. We will talk sanctions and all this other BS and limp out of ASIA while China is taking over Taiwan, SK, Japan and Australia. We have chosen a path of unilateral nuclear disarmament thanks to Obama unopposed by the worthless GOP leading to our demise.

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Warfighter April 4, 2013 at 6:08 am

Exactly. China knows there is nothing to gain with starting a war. They rely on the rest of the western world to buy what they manufacture so that they can continue to fuel their growth. War would lead to a giant drop in revenue and break their development, which they do nit want to see happen.

Besides, they have their eye on the long game and will win out economically. They are gradually buying out resources and land all over the world. They will dominate, but not through a clash of arms. The US will remain strong, but it is hard to compete against the population mass that China is slowly educating. Even if that mass is its elite, it is still a considerable number of people. A decade ago, there were reports that there were more than 250 million Chinese millionaires. Nothing to sneeze at.

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STemplar April 4, 2013 at 2:08 am

Wow, you have some serious paranoia going there. You realize your position is completely absurd. The US was stretched occupying Iraq and Stan, and you think China will overwhelm, South Korea, Japan and Australia? That has got to be one of the silliest assertions I have seen you post.

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Warfighter April 4, 2013 at 5:53 am

Unfortunately, I think most people can only be bothered to get their intel from movies rather than proper sources. Case in point.

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superraptor April 4, 2013 at 7:44 am

the PLA doesn't care about their millionaires, we are completely outmatched

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superraptor April 4, 2013 at 7:44 am

but well reserached and substantive

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Sev April 4, 2013 at 10:08 am

Yeah nutcase you did. You're the kind of guy that would let a crazy man with a gun go wild because you think that shooting him first would be wrong. You either take the threat seriously and stop the SOB or you wait until he acts. You're fucking crazy to let this fat fuck get away with threatening to nuke us when he has nukes.

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orly? April 4, 2013 at 10:15 am

We have subs with the capability to nuke anything in Asia in under 10 minutes with a push of a button.

We always have.

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superraptor April 4, 2013 at 12:41 pm

Not much longer. Obama does not fund the new class of ballistic missile submarines. I am still waiting for posts/ news references to relieve my paranoia, not much forthcoming so far, paranoia 1, eternal hope 0.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 4, 2013 at 1:49 pm

Well Japan did in '41.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 4, 2013 at 1:51 pm

Well, I don't know. Japan and SK and Australia will help, but to what extent? I know that Japan and Sk will participate, but Aussies? I mean, they aren't in the DIRECT line of fire. They really have more pressing issues with the islands around them. China won't take the US. Their military is building up, but can't compare to the US yet. You see, since the US has a powerful military, people have found ways to make it seem like they can get nothing accomplished. But if you look at some of the modern tech the US has, you will change your mind.

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STemplar April 4, 2013 at 1:52 pm

Japan lost too, bad.

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orly? April 4, 2013 at 1:55 pm

Japan had more landing ships.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 4, 2013 at 1:53 pm

Oh go and make yourself a dirt bunker and cry about it. China needs the rest of the world's market to grow. Its weird, because we need China to survive, and China needs us to grow, and well survive. I don't think we have ever seen such interdependency. A war amongst the titans would be catastrophic to everything we know.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 4, 2013 at 1:53 pm

I have heard that some mountains in NK are rich in either plutonium or Uranium.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 4, 2013 at 1:54 pm

He doesn't fund NEW subs. Heck, did the Seawolf class just disappear? What happened to the Virginia Class? Come on. Paranoia 0, truth 1.

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STemplar April 4, 2013 at 3:51 pm

Why would anyone bother with details with you when you throw out some news links that really don't have any either and you engage in baseless hyperbole. We are not "completely outmatched" that is utter nonsense. The PLA is not going to just roll over the 7th fleet like they don't exist. China doesn't have the logistical capacity to invade and occupy Taiwan properly, they certainly aren't going to roll up South Korea, Japan and Australia. Your posts are paranoid ranting.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 4, 2013 at 1:57 pm

Hmm yeah, I messed up the numbering, so sorry. Yeah, SK is in the worst place here. Invasion tunnels, NKs, yeah, its not good. But a dirty bomb can go off anywhere.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 4, 2013 at 1:57 pm

B-2 took off from the Continental US. It can make that distance.

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orly? April 4, 2013 at 2:00 pm

superraptor doesn't believe in facts.

He believes that all the EIGHT submarine squadrons that operate in the Pacific all blew up after Obama went into office.

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superraptor April 4, 2013 at 3:09 pm

these are attack subs with all their nuclear cruise missiles removed by Obama in 2008. You can find this information online. Paranoia 1, eternal hope 0. And if you show me where the USN has found funding for it replacement of the OHIO class submarines, let me know. It is not going to happen.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 4, 2013 at 3:18 pm

Ach. True. Hey, that means the US wins. Heck, not so bad. I just don't want another Pearl Harbor, though I doubt it could happen again.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 4, 2013 at 3:18 pm

And very strict protocols. But in the end, the Higgins brought up US marines, and we won.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 4, 2013 at 3:21 pm

My god man. We are not arguing over the next class of Subs. We are talking about this :http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Submarines_in_the_United_States_Navy. Additional proof in the citations for that article.

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blight_ April 4, 2013 at 3:33 pm

Surprised people aren't complaining about how the INF Treaty of Reagan bought peace in Europe in exchange for weakening IRBM options in the Pacific.

Pershing/GLCM wasn't a bad combo.

From http://blogs.fas.org/security/2013/03/tomahawk/

"Originally 758 TLAM/Ns were planned but only 350 were built, and 260 were left when the Obama administration decided to retire the weapon.

After the unilateral retirement of the SUBROC, ASROC, and Terrier missiles, the navy was left with B61 and B57 bombs on aircraft carriers and land-based anti-submarine aircraft, as well as the TLAM/N. Work initially continued on the B90 NSDB (nuclear strike and depth bomb) to replace the naval B61 and B57, but in September 1991 president George H.W. Bush unilaterally cancelled the program and ordered the offloading and withdrawal of all non-strategic nuclear weapons.

The Clinton administration’s 1994 Nuclear Posture Review followed up by denuclearizing the entire surface fleet, leaving only TLAM/N for some of the navy’s attack submarines. The missiles were stored on land, however, and never made it back to sea.

In the early part of the George W. Bush administration, the navy wanted to retire the TLAM/N, but some officials in the National Security Council and the Office of the Secretary of Defense insisted that the weapon was needed for certain missions in defense of allied countries. As a result, the TLAM/N survived the 2001 Nuclear Posture Review, and up through 2005 the navy continued to test launch the missile from attack submarines.

Some official and lobbyists tried to protect the TLAM/N during the 2009 Congressional Strategic Posture Commission process, but they failed. The Obama administration’s 2010 Nuclear Posture Review determined that the TLAM/N should finally be retired because it was redundant."

Mixed bag. Generally:

Reagan: Didn't procure as many TLAM-N as hoped.

Bush Sr: Offload "non-strategic nuclear weapons"
Clinton: Remove nuclear missiles fired from surface ships from inventory. Remove TLAM-N from SSN's, store missiles ashore.
Bush Jr: Keep TLAM-N
Obama: Finally retire TLAM-N

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superraptor April 4, 2013 at 3:47 pm

that's called unilateral disarmament.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 4, 2013 at 4:36 pm

Hmph. Obama. Great.

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STemplar April 4, 2013 at 4:22 pm

You are drawing that conclusion, there is no quantitative #s that support your assertions. We are not unilaterally disarming. The Chinese don't have a snowball's chance in hell of invading South Korea, Japan, and Australia. You are engaging in paranoid ranting and nothing more. I am not going to go back and forth with you and point out the folly of China engaging in a massive war in its own region with the very nations that are driving its own economic growth and quite honestly its own survival. You have a linear narrow view of war and geopolitics.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 4, 2013 at 4:37 pm

? Firstly, pull out the carriers. Next, we have destroyers and subs. Where is our weakness?

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superraptor April 4, 2013 at 4:55 pm

you may have read that SK has requested from the US to enrich to enrich its own uranium. The trust of our allies in US and our commitment to their defense including nuclear deterrence is diminshing. We are unilaterally disarming as we are not building new nuclear warheads or ICBMs. If we want to have a smaller, but reliable nuclear deterrent force, we will have to have new ICBMs and warheads. Our Minuteman missiles are falling apart. The US has become all hat, no cattle.

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STemplar April 4, 2013 at 4:58 pm

You're nuts.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 4, 2013 at 5:14 pm

Oh yes. Yeah, that is what is happening. EXTREME SARCASM. Look, let me put it this way. We have the most powerful bomber fleet. We have the most extensive, most powerful air force. Our ground forces are some of the most efficient on the planet (went through Saddam's lines in the first Gulf War in 90 minutes). The navy is the largest, and with the current build up of carriers and destroyers, we are set for the next 35 years. And trust me, in 35 years, we won't have Obama in office.

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superraptor April 4, 2013 at 5:27 pm

you still have not provided one meaningful reference to back up your assertions. If you have any positive information about the state of our Minuteman III force, post it.

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yogiberra111 April 5, 2013 at 12:07 pm

Bingo! Don't feed the troll.

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STemplar April 4, 2013 at 5:31 pm

I don't care about them, here is some reality for your paranoid nightmare world you live in.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_the_largest_

Why the F would China destroy its own economy? You are living in a fantasy. You need to watch less Red Dawn and read more Wall Street Journal.

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superraptor April 4, 2013 at 6:06 pm

actually my favorite movie is Iron Sky, and by the way the WSJ had some great articles about the negative effects of sequestration on our military

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Warfighter April 4, 2013 at 6:24 pm

Without mentioning that even with sequestration, the US defence budget is larger than the spending of the countries with the next 4-5 largest militaries in the world COMBINED. Cutting some % spending sucks, but it isn't all doom and gloom.

The big cost advantage for China is that they have cheap labour, so it offers some offsets, but they would still need to increase their spending dramatically to compare to what the US is putting into the pot.

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whatever April 5, 2013 at 2:11 am

but the only crazy man right now is America, not NK, yes?

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USS ENTERPRISE April 5, 2013 at 10:33 am

No. NK crazy, US sane in comparison.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 5, 2013 at 10:34 am

Yup. Give it up. You are a Palestinian troll.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 5, 2013 at 10:41 am

Yeah, the numerous charts that have been produced that address the defense spending put the US in a class of its own. The thing with China is that it is a rising, if not current, superpower. But a superpower needs to set the trend, in law, military, technology, and innovation. China needs to work on all of these things. Their workers have very little rights, they work in oppressive conditions. Also, their population growth is odd; parents are allowed only one child. This is a problem, as when the current chinese citizens grow old, they will need support, and the rest of the population will be stretched to take care of the old. Finally, the communist government will fall sooner or later. The censoring and violent reactions to protest in China aren't helping the government score points, and they will have to change to a democracy and overturn many of the aforementioned laws to survive in the exclusive "superpower" club that is reserved with "free" countries.

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USS ENTERPRISE April 5, 2013 at 10:43 am

Okay, did some more research. The language "chinese" has the DIALECTS of Mandarin and Cantonese. I should have stated that in my original post, but failed to do so. And frankly, I think we can all take "restore Palestine". Finally, its facepalm, not face slap.

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yogiberra111 April 5, 2013 at 12:01 pm

Yes, a troll or the stupidest individual to ever post here.

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Restore Palestine April 7, 2013 at 2:33 am

HaHaHa. Enough bombers to bomb *anything* to submission?

Exactly how do you bomb, say, the Pacific Ocean, "to submission", BS ENTERPRISE?

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DavidLight April 8, 2013 at 3:07 am

Restore Palestine you would know all about losing. You spent a lot of time on this flame war and lost pretty bad.
http://defensetech.org/2013/03/19/pacom-contracto

What was even more pathetic was that after you lost, you used the cowardly tactic of disliking every comment written by USS ENTERPRISE, Davis and TheProIsraelLobby, multiple times to try and drag the comment rating down. You also continued to like your own comments multiple times as if it would make people believe you were actually intelligent. Sorry Restore Palestine, no one was buying it.

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Restore Palestine April 8, 2013 at 8:53 pm

I spent a lot of time here? HaHa! Yet another "new poster" with familiar reading problems and hallucinations. So how do you allocate your time among your daily tasks of BS'ing, hallucinating, and reading all the crap from yourself, STumpler, BS ENTERPRISE, Davis, and other by-products of multiple personality disorders?

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USS ENTERPRISE April 11, 2013 at 6:47 pm

Hey, why don't you read about the ENTIRE PACIFIC AIR CAMPAIGN, circa 1941-1945.

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orly? April 11, 2013 at 9:52 pm

Restore Palestine again demonstrates he knows no history.

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