Wednesday, October 11, 2017
Army Col. David Maxwell (ret.), a former Special Forces officer who once patrolled the Demilitarized Zone separating North and South Korea, painted a bleak picture of the opening hours of war between the neighboring countries.
As a guest on the BBC Radio 4 “Analysis” program, Maxwell—who is now the associate director of the Georgetown University Center for Security Studies—said one “miscalculation” by Kim Jong-un could turn into a full-blown war. In the first day of such a conflict, he predicted 64,000 fatalities:
"If I am a North Korea commander I would unleash the firepower of my artillery and inflict as much death and destruction on the South as I can. In the first hours, there will be hundreds of thousands of artillery rounds and rockets fired to the South, and many of them into Seoul," he said. "Of course, many people won’t get the word, won’t believe it. Many people will be caught out in the open or caught in buildings that will end up being rubble."
South Korea’s capital city and the surrounding metropolitan area accounts for more than half of the nation’s population, and is where most of the country’s foreign visitors are living and working. Those people would have only a matter of minutes to seek shelter. While many countries have agreements with the South Korean government to provide shelter to their citizens, priority will be given to South Koreans in the event of war.
North Korea’s massive chemical weapons arsenal would likely be unleashed, as well. Maxwell said South Korean soldiers in the hills overlooking the DMZ would be their likely target.
"It will be a man-to-man fight in those hills as North Korea tries to destroy the South Korea infantry. North Korean soldiers have to destroy the South Korean military in those hills to allow their tanks and mechanized vehicles to pass."
Because the Korean War ended with an armistice, not a peace treaty, North and South Korea still remain in a technical state of war.
Credit to TruNews copy
While tensions with North Korea have receded in recent weeks, and especially following the latest uneventful weekend, when markets were on edge that Kim could try another missile test launch to celebrate the country's national holiday, this could reverse following news from the BBC that North Korea hackers have reportedly stolen a large cache of military documents from South Korea, including a plan to assassinate North Korea's leader Kim Jong-un.