The head of the U.S. Pacific Command underscored his willingness to serve Donald Trump’s administration in order to tackle the mounting security challenges posed by China and North Korea.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un may fire an intermediate-range ballistic missile on Tuesday to warn President Obama’s successor that Pyongyang will continue its nuclear and missile development programs regardless of international sanctions, South Korean military officials said Monday.
One of the more surreal experiences available to someone living in the year 2016 is to wake up in Seoul—home of K-Pop, Gangnam style, and a growing collection of attractive postmodern skyscrapers built with the accumulated wealth of the last few decades—and then travel up the highway to the North Korean border. This doesn’t take long. If Seoul were Washington, D.C., the ironically named demilitarized zone would be substantially closer than the city of Baltimore, or, to go in the other direction, roughly as far away as Manassas. That’s about 25 miles.
The United States and South Korea are deepening defense cooperation amid continued nuclear and missile provocations from North Korea.
North Korea will have enough material for about 20 nuclear bombs by the end of this year, with ramped-up uranium enrichment facilities and an existing stockpile of plutonium, according to new assessments by weapons experts.
North Korea conducted its fifth and biggest nuclear test on Friday and said it had mastered the ability to mount a warhead on a ballistic missile, ratcheting up a threat that its rivals and the United Nations have been powerless to contain.
North Korea fired a submarine-launched missile on Wednesday that flew about 500 km (311 miles) towards Japan, a show of improving technological capability for the isolated country that has conducted a series of launches in defiance of U.N. sanctions.
North Korea warned Monday that it would launch a preemptive nuclear attack against the U.S. and South Korea if they showed the “slightest sign of aggression” toward Pyongyang while conducting their annual military drills.
Thae Yong-ho, a top North Korean diplomat at the embassy in London, has defected to South Korea, the South Korean government announced on Wednesday.
Donald Trump was widely criticized after telling the New York Times last month that he would not offer military support to NATO allies attacked by Russia that have not “fulfilled their obligations to us.”