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Author Topic: Pretend That North Korea Is Fucking Scary  (Read 17369 times)

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Transportation

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Re: Pretend That North Korea Is Fucking Scary
« Reply #80 on: June 25, 2009, 06:11:06 AM »

A few notes:

1)  An army marches on its stomach.  NK is proven to be unable to feed its population in peacetime.  Expect things to get worse in wartime.
NK gives priority to the army in food rationing. It is essentially a feudal state in this regard. In lots of regards actually, but I digress.

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2)  Tanks don't work as well in jungle.  Ask the Israelis how their push into lebanon went in 06.  This is important as the Merhav 4 is a more modern and respected tank than the decade-old Abrams.
Explain this to me because I am not the most military literate in this regard but:

A: Jungles did not stop tanks last time?
B: How many tanks/infantry do we have on the Korean peninsula right now? A war with NK starts with a massive artillery bombardment at...everything basically. I'm doubting many of the bases would survive. Sea lift capacity is a US strength, but it would take time for reinforcements to arrive.

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3)  Fixed defenses eventually fall.  Ask the french in WWII. 
No one builds them expecting them to survive. They're meant to be a sponge for the opponent's military strength. Both the US and the USSR built mountain fortresses during the Cold War. They were meant to suck up ICBMs and thus reduce how many could be used on other targets, not invincible fortresses.

The border is mined to all hell for a reason.

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4)  A side effect of endless COINops, Canadian doctrine for urban fighting has evolved into something to which destroys the garrison advantage of defending forces.  I would suspect the american's doctrine to be on par at the bare minimum, if not supreme as they have had more hands on through two nations, as opposed to the hottest province of one.
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NK would not be able to invade SK without Chinese assistance.
See B. I fail to see how they couldn't overwhelm the initial defense forces. I mean, Seoul is right fucking there.

We have a bad habit in the US of assuming that the Korean War was exactly like the Vietnam War but a little earlier and somehow or another we won that one.
Most people barely know anything about the Korean War. It was actually extremely unpopular at the time and calling it a victory rather than a stalemate is a tad silly.

Any invasion of NK is always going to come down to three things:

1) Food
2) China's involvement
3) Just how effective is that state-issued brainwashing anyway?
4) US and allied forces going into a meat grinder not seen since Vietnam.
I mean I suppose that could be implied but no one's mentioned it.

Also NK has stores of chemical weapons. :victory:

No, seriously, they will have to invade SK, implode into civil war, or actually attack something before we do anything. Or have anything resembling popular/geopolitical support, for that matter.

The North Korean leadership probably values being de facto gods of their little country. So beyond sword-rattling to keep an external pressure on the populace* I doubt they'll do anything too risky.

*Iran does/did this too but the two countries aren't even remotely comparable.
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Mongrel

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Re: Pretend That North Korea Is Fucking Scary
« Reply #81 on: June 25, 2009, 06:22:18 AM »

Maybe the chassis is, but they've been packing that thing with the latest tech since the beginning. 

True, even the T54/T55 have been upgraded to achieve non-irrelevant battle capabilities in modern times (they still roll over and die to modern armour, but in the hands of a skilled force could still provide an adequate infantry backup... of course any country with the wherewithal to train troops to do that is also smart enough to not be using half-century-old tanks, regardless of how upgraded they are).
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Mongrel

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Re: Pretend That North Korea Is Fucking Scary
« Reply #82 on: June 25, 2009, 06:42:05 AM »

See B. I fail to see how they couldn't overwhelm the initial defense forces. I mean, Seoul is right fucking there.

Don't forget that SK doesn't exactly take that threat lying down. They are a modern and relatively prosperous state (10th largest economy in the world) with a decently strong and substantially-sized military of their own (650,000 active and 3,000,000 reserve, with the fifteenth largest defense budget in the world according to most quoted figures I've seen). They also have about double the population of NK, for what that's worth.

I couldn't say what morale would look like for an invasion North, but at the very least they too will defend their own. And SK's technology and equipment is unquestionably superior to the North's. In a knock-down drag-out fight just between the two Koreas with no outside involvement, I would still bet on South Korea. 

Any invasion of NK is always going to come down to three things:

1) Food
2) China's involvement
3) Just how effective is that state-issued brainwashing anyway?
4) US and allied forces going into a meat grinder not seen since Vietnam.
I mean I suppose that could be implied but no one's mentioned it.

1) While the NK military does get preferential rationing, it's an open question as to how long they could sustain themselves when cut off from the world entirely and as to just how much civilian death they (or the west) will tolerate. I think we can all agree that no war will be taking place unless China has abandoned them.

4) Certainly possible, but not assured. I think 1) 2) and even 3) are all relevant determining factors there and that actually stating 4) straight out is kind of redundant. If the average NK soldier can be convinced to give up quite easily, then there's a chance for the meat grinder to be avoided. It's REALLY hard to predict this kind of thing in advance though, see: Iraq War I (they will resist bitterly!), Iraq War II (We can do this with three guys and a jeep!), etc. Call it wishy-washy arguing if you will, but I refuse to call anything a certainty here.

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Also NK has stores of chemical weapons. :victory:

Assuming they work, this is pretty relevant, yeah.
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Doom

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Re: Pretend That North Korea Is Fucking Scary
« Reply #83 on: June 25, 2009, 10:17:39 AM »

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Navy Stuff

Most modern surface battleships are horrendously outdated for practical use. Sending them towards NK is a death sentence. It's something like "it's easier to send 100 jerks with missiles on fishing boats out than it is to gun down those 100 jerks and they're going to blow up a target 10,000 times their own value."

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4) US and allied forces going into a meat grinder not seen since Vietnam.

This this this. If you thought public support faded quickly for Iraq.. the first few media reports of anything but absolute victory would cause torturous sways of public opinion.

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Iraq War I (they will resist bitterly!), Iraq War II (We can do this with three guys and a jeep!)

Wasn't this the other way around? Iraq War I was dudes surrendering to camera crews while kicking Saddam in the junk and boogie out, Iraq War II was three guys and a jeep busting into Baghdad, then getting blown to smithereens over too many years and counting because Guerilla War?
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Kashan

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Re: Pretend That North Korea Is Fucking Scary
« Reply #84 on: June 25, 2009, 10:24:45 AM »

Wasn't this the other way around? Iraq War I was dudes surrendering to camera crews while kicking Saddam in the junk and boogie out, Iraq War II was three guys and a jeep busting into Baghdad, then getting blown to smithereens over too many years and counting because Guerilla War?

I can't tell whether you're being serious, but the quote was obviously about the contrast between the predictions of how the wars would turn out and how the wars actually turned out as an example of it being difficult to tell how easily the other side will give up.
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Doom

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Re: Pretend That North Korea Is Fucking Scary
« Reply #85 on: June 25, 2009, 10:28:13 AM »

Oh, my bad. Thanks much.
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The Artist Formerly Known As Yoji

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Re: Pretend That North Korea Is Fucking Scary
« Reply #86 on: June 25, 2009, 10:43:17 AM »

We interrupt this otherwise intelligent discussion to bring you a goofy news update: a no-doubt state-staged 100,000 strong anti-US rally in North Korea!

Quote from: Yahoo durrr
SEOUL, South Korea — Punching their fists into the air and shouting "Let's crush them!" some 100,000 North Koreans packed Pyongyang's main square Thursday for an anti-U.S. rally as the communist regime promised a "fire shower of nuclear retaliation" for any American-led attack.

Several demonstrators held up a placard depicting a pair of hands smashing a missile with "U.S." written on it, according to footage taken by APTN in Pyongyang on the anniversary of the day North Korean troops charged southward, sparking the three-year Korean War in 1950.

North Korean troops will respond to any sanctions or U.S. provocations with "an annihilating blow," one senior official vowed — a pointed threat as an American destroyer shadowed a North Korean freighter sailing off China's coast, possibly with banned goods on board.

...

Quote from: A country with zero economy that can barely keep themselves fed
"Let's crush them!"
"fire shower of nuclear retaliation" for any American-led attack... on the anniversary of the day North Korean troops charged southward, sparking the three-year Korean War in 1950.
"an annihilating blow..."

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Mongrel

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Re: Pretend That North Korea Is Fucking Scary
« Reply #87 on: June 25, 2009, 12:31:28 PM »

At this point I actually want them to board that damn ship and call their bluff.

If they don't, it makes most everything done to NK under the auspices of the UN worthless. If the US is too fearful to even inspect a single ship as per the lastest (watered-down) UN Directive, then I think we can all expect that NK is pretty much going to get it's way on everything forever, or at least until they drive China round the twist.

Sure, we all participate in a collective fiction where they bully us and ruin the lives of their own people for maximum personal benefit, but the world needs to do a little pushing back, to show these jokers where the boundaries are.

And if in the end it turns out that they are willing to decare war over that one ship, then the NK leadership is actually a lot less stable and sane than they've been suspected of being, so might as well get the inevitable over with.
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SCD

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Re: Pretend That North Korea Is Fucking Scary
« Reply #88 on: June 25, 2009, 04:13:51 PM »

The only thing that could make this any more perfect is if Franz Ferdinand was playing in Pearl Harbour for the 4th of July festivals.
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Royal☭

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Re: Pretend That North Korea Is Fucking Scary
« Reply #89 on: June 25, 2009, 04:43:06 PM »

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4) US and allied forces going into a meat grinder not seen since Vietnam.

This is the funniest thing I've ever read.  Seriously, good laugh, guys.  Americans can steamroll North Korea, just like we took Baghdad.  It wouldn't be guerrilla style fighting like Vietnam, and it wouldn't be neighboring insurgencies like Iraq.  None of North Korea's neighbors are particularly looking to get into that region to start sectarian violence.

The biggest problem in starting a war with North Korea at this point is the initial damage they could do to South Korea.  And it'd have to be a surprise attack, because if the South could mobilize at all the North would be done for before they had the time to hit the switch.  Sure, they have huge numbers but they couldn't fight a multi-faceted war by any stretch of the imagination.

Robert Koehler's article about the military aspects of both sides is a good read.


Also, all that bluster about "fire shower of nuclear retaliation" and "wiping America off the map" is shit North Korea says all the time.  It's less about provoking the US to do anything and more about just making themselves feel good.

Transportation

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Re: Pretend That North Korea Is Fucking Scary
« Reply #90 on: June 25, 2009, 07:33:24 PM »

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4) US and allied forces going into a meat grinder not seen since Vietnam.
This is the funniest thing I've ever read.  Seriously, good laugh, guys.
Well, we haven't really seen any scary wars since Vietnam, so it's not really hard to put a "not seen since" there.

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Americans can steamroll North Korea, just like we took Baghdad.
...North Korea's weaponry is in a much finer state than Iraq's. They didn't fight a war a decade ago and are autarkic enough that their military is maintainable with or without most sanctions. I mean, most of it's going to be bombed but they've been building in bunkers and mountains and all over the place. It's what most of their budget is for.

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It wouldn't be guerrilla style fighting like Vietnam
Why not? The current power structure has a vested interest in the current regime and ceding North Korea to NATO+ would be stupid beyond belief for China or Russia.

I suppose the only real way they'd be completely alienated is if a nuke was tracked back to them. And even then you'd have hardliners who think they can regain power by outlasting the Coalition (probably everyone with an army if the reason was nuclear) in an occupation. They wouldn't have foreign support in this case, but I'm sure they could live off ammunition reserves long enough to have a favorable post-war government. Maybe.

Frankly, toppling a government like the eternally militarized NK right next to an industrialized SK is unprecedented and would not exactly be easy to contain either. I'm not saying they'll win or anything but this article make it seem like a walk in the park.

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The biggest problem in starting a war with North Korea at this point is the initial damage they could do to South Korea.  And it'd have to be a surprise attack, because if the South could mobilize at all the North would be done for before they had the time to hit the switch.  Sure, they have huge numbers but they couldn't fight a multi-faceted war by any stretch of the imagination.
Why wouldn't they be the first to strike? Any invasion scenario involves having them already attacked something or other. They'll be firing first. That's the whole point of all that artillery and thus wipe out industry/military/command areas and throw the South Koreans into disarray.

I think they're getting around to moving their capital elsewhere but moving all their command structures around will take some time.

Quote
Robert Koehler's article about the military aspects of both sides is a good read.
That budget figure on the bottom is rather misleading from, well, every possible standpoint. NK doesn't publish reliable figures and currency conversions are pointless for a society that intentionally isolates itself from the international market. And outdated doesn't mean useless as the article is implying.

tl;dr Humanitarian disaster in a control with an abundance of weapons. I can't really see that as being simple, hence the meat grinder comment.
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The Artist Formerly Known As Yoji

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Re: Pretend That North Korea Is Fucking Scary
« Reply #91 on: June 27, 2009, 11:55:38 PM »

It's not Afghanis-tan (or even with any real topic), but hey.
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The Artist Formerly Known As Yoji

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Re: Pretend That North Korea Is Fucking Scary
« Reply #92 on: June 30, 2009, 12:11:15 PM »

I guess someone on board misbehaved since they turned the boat around. In seriousness, I wonder if they're just throwing us for a loop here.

Quote from: some senior administration official who's been tracking this stupid pleasure cruise
The whole thing just doesn’t add up. My worry is that we make a big demand about seeing the cargo, and then there’s a tense standoff, and when it’s all over we discover that old man Kim set us up to look like George Bush searching for nonexistent W.M.D.

Granted, this the Kingdom of Batshittia North Korea we're dealing with, but one of the dumbest things you can do is underestimate someone. I wouldn't be surprised if this was some kind of hand-waving, but it's not like this has distracted us from their planned fart in Hawaii's general direction or those journalists they arrested earlier.
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Mongrel

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Re: Pretend That North Korea Is Fucking Scary
« Reply #93 on: June 30, 2009, 12:36:02 PM »

Well, there are a lot of reasons that might have heappened. It might even be the case that the intended recipient wasn't happy about the heat that the Kang Nam was bringing to their doorstep, so perhaps they cancelled their order.
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McDohl

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Re: Pretend That North Korea Is Fucking Scary
« Reply #94 on: July 07, 2009, 10:28:57 AM »

So.

Our Blow Shit Up Day has come and gone.

Why hasn't Mr. Kim Jong Il given us his fireworks?  He's late.  IF there's anything I hate, it's tardiness.
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The Artist Formerly Known As Yoji

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Re: Pretend That North Korea Is Fucking Scary
« Reply #95 on: July 07, 2009, 10:48:10 AM »

I thought they spat a salvo of seven missiles a few hundred kilometers off the eastern coast... for freedom and Juche or something.

Who knows, maybe they're running behind trying to make more duct tape to keep their rockets together.
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Büge

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Re: Pretend That North Korea Is Fucking Scary
« Reply #96 on: July 07, 2009, 12:01:49 PM »

I'm a fan of orange juche, myself.
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The Artist Formerly Known As Yoji

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Re: Pretend That North Korea Is Fucking Scary
« Reply #97 on: July 30, 2009, 12:05:52 PM »

I guess the world must not be paying enough attention to the North, seeing as they flipped out and kidnapped another band of innocents for "outrageous transgressions" or whatever. I haven't been keeping up with it these days.

So, with Congress taking a break in August to dodge health care reform, can we take an afternoon to sanction Cadillac imports to the North? That should get Li'l Kim's attention.
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Kazz

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Re: Pretend That North Korea Is Fucking Scary
« Reply #98 on: July 30, 2009, 03:52:09 PM »

Kim Jong-Il learned a valuable lesson from the Iraq conflict:

Nothing is more lucrative than losing a war to America.
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Brentai

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