Lindsey Graham: There’s a 30 Percent Chance Trump Attacks North Korea

Jonathan Ernst / Reuters

 

“I don’t know how to say it any more direct: If nothing changes, Trump’s gonna have to use the military option, because time is running out.”

It’s become a grim ritual in Washington foreign-policy circles to assess the chances that the United States and North Korea stumble into war. But on Wednesday Lindsey Graham did something different: He estimated the odds that the Trump administration deliberately strikes North Korea first, to stop it from acquiring the capability to target the U.S. mainland with a long-range, nuclear-tipped missile. And the senator’s numbers were remarkably high.

“I would say there’s a three in 10 chance we use the military option,” Graham predicted in an interview. If the North Koreans conduct an additional test of a nuclear bomb—their seventh—“I would say 70 percent.”

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Chinese air force holds drills in ‘new routes and areas’ near Korean peninsula

The exercise involved aircraft including reconnaissance planes in areas they have “never flown before” over the Yellow and East seas near the Korean peninsula. Photo: PLA

 

Date and exact location of exercise isn’t revealed but announcement said to be aimed at sending a message to Washington and Seoul

China’s air force recently staged drills involving various aircraft through “routes and areas it has never flown before” over the Yellow and East seas near the Korean peninsula.

Air force spokesman Shen Jinke made the announcement at an airport in northern China on Monday – the same day the United States and South Korea began their biggest joint air force exercise, and days after Pyongyang launched its most powerful intercontinental ballistic missile to date. Continue reading

Exclusive: Pentagon evaluating U.S. West Coast missile defense sites – officials

FILE PHOTO: A Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) interceptor is launched during a successful intercept test, in this undated handout photo provided by the U.S. Department of Defense, Missile Defense Agency. U.S. Department of Defense, Missile Defense Agency/Handout via Reuters/File Photo

 

SIMI VALLEY, Calif (Reuters) – The U.S. agency tasked with protecting the country from missile attacks is scouting the West Coast for places to deploy new anti-missile defenses, two Congressmen said on Saturday, as North Korea’s missile tests raise concerns about how the United States would defend itself from an attack.

West Coast defenses would likely include Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) anti-ballistic missiles, similar to those deployed in South Korea to protect against a potential North Korean attack.

The accelerated pace of North Korea’s ballistic missile testing program in 2017 and the likelihood the North Korean military could hit the U.S. mainland with a nuclear payload in the next few years has raised the pressure on the United States government to build-up missile defenses. Continue reading

US orders 16,000 troops and 230 jets to get ready for WAR with North Korea Today

US fighters and bombers

VIGILANT ACE: US warplanes including fighters and bombers often blast over the Korean Peninsula [Getty]

NORTH Korea better be watching its back today as thousands of US troops and 230 warplanes descend on Kim Jong-un’s doorstep.

Vigilant Ace – a massive joint war games – kicks off today as the US and South Korea rehearse for battle with Pyongyang.

Hundreds of aircraft and thousands of soldiers and airmen are taking part in the drill, which is one of the biggest ever of its kind. Continue reading

North Korea Says “Completed State Nuclear Program”; Warns “The Whole US Is In Range”

 

North Korea claims its “new ICBM can put whole U.S. mainland within range,” says it has “realized great historic cause of completing state nuclear force”

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Following the successful test-firing of its longest range ICBM yet todayYonhap News reports, citing North Korean media, that North Korea will make an important announcement at noon Seoul time (10:30pm ET). Continue reading

Former Kremlin Foreign Policy Advisor Karaganov: We Are In A New More Perilous Cold War

Sergey Karaganov (Source: Karaganov.ru)

 

Former Kremlin Foreign Policy Advisor Sergey Karaganov stated that the world is living in a new Cold War, which is worse than the previous one.[1] “Nowadays the risk of war is much greater than in the past. One of the reasons is that there is no system of agreements, no hot lines and no channels for consultation between the defense ministries. We have prevented a war in Europe by disrupting plans to involve Ukraine into Western alliances. If Ukraine had become a member of NATO, a war would have become unavoidable,” said Karaganov.

He further stated that Russia and China are the “main providers of security” in the world today, explaining that China is providing economic security, while Russia is providing military-strategic security. According to Karaganov, Europe is becoming increasingly focused on itself, while America is destabilizing the world. He then added that multipolarity that Russia had vigorously promoted in order to destroy the unipolar American system is no longer a goal in itself. “Now it is just a transitional period in the history of international relations,” said Karaganov.

Following are excerpts from Karaganov’s interview:[2]

Russia And China Are The Main Providers Of Security In The World Today

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The Deeper Purpose of Trump’s Asia Trip

 

President Trump is wrapping up his historic visit to Asia today. Trump’s journey is the longest overseas trip of his presidency and the longest Asian visit of any president in 25 years.

After a stopover in Hawaii, Trump proceeded to Japan, where he met with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzō Abe, and then to South Korea where he met with President Moon Jae-in. Continue reading

In blow to U.S. alliance, South Korea’s foreign minister assures China on THAAD, Japan ties

U.S. President Donald Trump meets with South Korean President Moon Jae-In at the Blue House in Seoul on Nov. 7. / AP

 

South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-Wha, in a bow to China, has said Seoul will not seek any more deployments of the U.S. THAAD missile defense system.

Kang also assured that the South will not join the U.S. missile defense networks nor seek a trilateral alliance involving Japan, Yonhap reported on Nov. 10. Continue reading

U.S. on alert for China moves

Chinese soldiers and children holding U.S. and Chinese flags line up on the tarmac to greet President Donald Trump as he arrives at Beijing Airport, Wednesday, Nov. 8, 2017, in Beijing, China. Trump is on a five country trip through Asia traveling to Japan, South Korea, China, Vietnam and the Philippines. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

 

China’s government is known for using high-level foreign visits to conduct tests of new military equipment such as missiles and stealth aircraft, and the White House is hoping Beijing does not conduct provocative tests while President Trump is visiting the country this week.

The most notable example was the January 2010 visit to China by then-Defense Secretary Robert Gates, when the Chinese military sought to sabotage the trip by flight-testing the first J-20 stealth fighter. Mr. Gates wrote in his memoir that the People’s Liberation Army nearly “wrecked” the visit. Two hours before he met with then-Chinese President Hu Jintao, China released photos of the new J-20 in what Mr. Gates called “about as big a ‘f– you’ as you can get.” Continue reading

S. Korea ‘in talks to buy nuclear submarine’ from US: reports

 

South Korea is negotiating with the United States to buy nuclear-powered submarines to guard against threats from Pyongyang, local reports said Tuesday, as President Donald Trump said Seoul would buy “billions of dollars” of US weapons.

Nuclear-powered submarines can stay submerged for months, giving them a far greater range than their diesel-powered counterparts, and are also crucial to any seaborne nuclear deterrent. Continue reading

Turkey’s Nuclear Ambitions

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (then Prime Minister) meets with Russian President Vladimir Putin on July 18, 2012. Their meeting focused on nuclear cooperation, among other things. (Image source: kremlin.ru)

 

  • Russia’s ROSATOM already has nuclear cooperation deals with Iran, Jordan and Saudi Arabia, among others. Turkey is just the latest to benefit — possibly along with Iran and North Korea, both of which have been openly threatening to destroy America — from Moscow’s play for power in the Middle East and the Mediterranean.
  • The West would also do well not to feel secure in the knowledge that Turkey is a party to the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).
  • Nuclear reactors in the hands of a repressive Islamist authoritarian such as Erdogan could be turned into weapons factories with little effort.

Turkey’s announcement over the summer that it had signed a deal with Russia’s State Atomic Energy Corporation (ROSATOM) — of Hillary Clinton’s Uranium One stardom — to begin building three nuclear power plants in the near future is cause for concern. The $20 billion deal, which has been in the works since 2010, involves the construction in Mersin of the Akkuyu nuclear power plant — Turkey’s first-ever such plant— will be operational in 2023. Continue reading

North Korea SURROUNDED: US warships, bombers, missiles and 80,000 soldiers READY

The USS Theodore Roosevelt aircraft carrier leads a formation of ships (UIG Via Getty Images)

 

NORTH Korea is nearly totally surrounded by a wall of US warships, bombers and missiles with more than 80,000 soldiers on alert as Donald Trump heads for Asia.

The US President is jetting into the Pacific this week for a whistle-stop tour of the nations surrounding North Korea.

Trump will be popping in for one-on-one meetings with the leaders of China, South Korea and Japan – with Kim Jong-un’s nukes right at the top of the agenda. Continue reading

China has practiced bombing runs targeting Guam, US says

Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Joseph Dunford reviews a Chinese honor guard during a welcome ceremony at the Bayi Building in Beijing, Tuesday, Aug. 15, 2017. (Mark Schiefelbein/AP via Pool)

 

JOINT BASE PEARL HARBOR-HICKAM, Hawaii – China has practiced bombing runs targeting the U.S. territory of Guam, one of a host of activities making U.S. forces here consider Beijing the most worrisome potential threat in the Pacific, even as North Korea pursues a nuclear warhead.

Beyond the well-publicized military build up on man-made islands in the South China Sea, China has built up its fleet of fighters to the extent that it operates a daily, aggressive campaign to contest airspace over the East China Sea, South China Sea and beyond, U.S. military officials here in the region said. China has also taken several other non-military steps that are viewed as attempts to make it much more difficult for the U.S. to operate there and defend allies in the future.

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The devastating tolls of a new Korean war

 

When the Korean War ended in 1953 millions of people were dead and South Korea was a smoking wasteland, Seoul having changed hands four times over the course of the conflict.

Now as well as the South’s seat of government, the city is a gleaming hub of technology, K-pop, and plastic surgery, home to 10 million people with even more again in the surrounding area. Continue reading

Saudi Arabia to Extract Uranium for ‘Self-Sufficient’ Nuclear Program

The Kingdom Tower stands in the night in Riyadh / REUTERS

 

ABU DHABI (Reuters) — Saudi Arabia plans to extract uranium domestically as part of its nuclear power program and sees this as a step towards “self-sufficiency” in producing atomic fuel, a senior official said on Monday.

Extracting its own uranium also makes sense from an economic point of view, said Hashim bin Abdullah Yamani, head of the Saudi government agency tasked with the nuclear plans, the King Abdullah City for Atomic and Renewable Energy (KACARE). Continue reading