Thursday, April 15, 2010

How Many More Sailors Will the Hermit Kingdon Claim?

Forty one years ago today, a U.S. Navy EC121 surveillance aircraft was deliberately shot down by North Korea. The irony of this is that today, it appears that overwhelming evidence came to surface that the South Korean Navy ship was blown into by an external explosion.The Naval History Blog has the full story of Deep Sea 129.

15 April 1969 (Korean time) marked the final flight of a Navy VQ-1 EC-121/WV-2 callsign Deep Sea 129. Roughly 100 nm off the North Korean peninsular site where the Hermit Kingdom today defies the world with its ballistic missile tests, lies the watery grave of 31 Americans (2 bodies were later recovered).
Read more:
15 April 1969: Deep Sea 129 Shootdown

Today, South Korean and U.S. Navy ships raised the stern portion of the sunken South Korean Naval ship.

SEOUL, South Korea – An external explosion most likely sank a South Korean navy ship that split apart three weeks ago, an investigator said Friday, amid concerns about possible North Korea involvement in the disaster.
The 1,200-ton Cheonan split into two pieces after exploding March 26 during a routine patrol near the tense maritime border with North Korea. Fifty-eight crew members were rescued, but 46 were missing for weeks.
There has been some suspicion but no confirmation of North Korean involvement in the sinking. The disputed western sea border has in the past been the scene of three bloody inter-Korean naval battles. South Korean officials have said they will look into all possibilities, including that the ship might have been struck by a North Korean torpedo or a mine left over from the 1950-53 Korean War. The conflict ended with an armistice, not a peace treaty, leaving the Koreas still technically at war.

Read more:
South Korea Says External Explosion Sank Ship

Where will this lead? I venture that it will lead to nowhere. The world plays a waiting game for the hermit kingdom to crumble on it's own. As grand strategist Thomas Barnett has often said. "No country with nuclear weapons has ever gone to war with another with nuclear weapons." So in a form of political checkmate we let this festering sore of a country pick off a few dozen sailors and we respond by sending food shipments to prop them up for a few more years. Oh, the irony!

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