- Drone almost blocks California firefighting planes
- Tornado rips off roofs, downs trees near Boston
- GOP: Environmental rules keeping agents from accessing border
- John Kerry: Millions displaced by religious fighting in 2013
- Federal appeals court rules against Virginia’s gay marriage ban
- White House says Russia ‘losing’ war in Ukraine
- Hamas turns to North Korea for weapons deal, Iran for money
- Syrian casualties surge as jihadis consolidate
- U.N. rights chief: Flight MH17 downing possible war crime
- Attack on park in Gaza war kills 10, mostly children
U.S. F-22 fighter jets deployed to Korea as North and South increase war threats
Question of the Day
U.S. F-22 advanced stealth warplanes flew to South Korea Sunday to join ongoing joint military exercises there, a further demonstration of U.S. military superiority meant to intimidate and cow Pyongyang.
The deployment comes as the strategic temperature on the divided peninsula ratcheted to fever pitch over the weekend.
Tensions have been high since the second week in March when month-long U.S.-South Korean joint military exercises commenced and the United Nations imposed sanctions on North Korea to punish its illegal nuclear test in February.
But over the weekend, North Korea declared it was in an “actual state of war” with the South, and Pyongyang’s state media reported that third generation hereditary dictator Kim Jong-Un had signed off on a war plan including missile strikes against the United States.
In reality, analysts say, North Korean missiles can reach U.S. bases in South Korea and Japan, but not U.S. territory.
South Korea has vowed a strong response to any aggressive North Korea act.
The U.S. military command in South Korea said the deployment was going ahead despite big cuts to the training budget being carried out as part of the sequester -- the series of deep, across-the-board sending cuts in federal agencies including the Pentagon which kicked in this month.
"Despite challenges with fiscal constraints, training opportunities remain important to ensure U.S. forces are battle-ready and trained to employ airpower to deter aggression, defend [South Korea] and defeat any attack against the alliance," the command said in a statement to the Wall Street Journal.
Last week, U.S. nuclear-capable B-2 stealth bombers dropped dummy ordinance on South Korean islands as part of the drill and defense officials pledged continuing demonstrations of American military might to deter North Korea.
The stealth capabilities of U.S. airpower underline a key weakness of North Korea’s -- it lacks the advanced technology needed for early warning of attacks by stealth planes.
“They have no way to detect the most dangerous weapons with which the United States can attack them, no way to get any warning,” veteran military intelligence analyst and Korea-watcher John McCreary told The Washington Times.
“That is very scary for them.”
Senior North Korean leaders are meeting this week in the annual plenum of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Korean Workers’ Party.
U.S. officials are watching closely to see whether the North continues its threats to lash out against American and allies in the region, the journal said.
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Shaun Waterman is an award-winning reporter for The Washington Times, covering foreign affairs, defense and cybersecurity. He was a senior editor and correspondent for United Press International for nearly a decade, and has covered the Department of Homeland Security since 2003. His reporting on the Sept. 11 Commission and the tortuous process by which some of its recommendations finally became ...
- Senator's memo shows Iran links in Homeland Security's troubled immigration program
- Help wanted: Homeland Security plagued by vacancies at the top
- Dems back bill to fix problems in investor visa program
- Democrats proceed with Mayorkas vote despite pending investigation
- NSA monitored 'World of Warcraft' players
Latest Blog Entries
TWT Video Picks
By Scott Pinsker
- Illegal immigrants demand representation in White House meetings
- Hillary Clinton: Forget Obama, George W. Bush made her 'proud to be an American'
- D.C. police chief orders officers not to arrest legal gun owners carrying weapons in public
- Tennessee Gov. Haslam slams White House for secret dump of illegals in his state
- Babson College, BYU win top spots in Money magazine's college rankings
- CURL: Obama, staffers not even pretending any more
- Family of Marine killed in Afghanistan pushes back against cover-up
- D.C. seeks stay in order striking down ban on handguns in public
- DeSean Jackson working on offensive cohesiveness with Redskins teammates
- Ohio sheriff sends bill to Mexico for cost of jailing illegals
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world
Fighting in Iraq