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Growing risk of a nuclear war caused by just one small slip-up

He also said Australia would be wise to make ourselves less of a target to an angry North Korea.

Speaking privately to the Associated Press, officials in Washington echo the warning that Mr Trump’s now former chief strategist Steve Bannon made in his last media interview before losing his job earlier this month: it is too late for a pre-emptive strike.

There’s no military solution, forget it,” Mr Bannon told the American Prospect in an August 16 interview.

“Until somebody solves the part of the equation that shows me ten million people in Seoul don’t die in the first 30 minutes from conventional weapons, I don’t know what you’re talking about, there’s no military solution here, they got us.”

North Korea nuclear war: Why chances of conflict are higher than ever   A FORMER ambassador to South Korea reveals how war could start in North Korea. And all it will take is one tiny slip up. up. news.com.au 31 Aug 17 Debra Killalea  @DebKillalea  THE risk of conflict breaking out on the Korean Peninsula has never been greater as the margin for error shrinks.

That’s the damning assessment by a former Australian ambassador to South Korea who warned the world was running out of options for dealing with Kim Jong-un.

Speaking to news.com.au, former senior Australian diplomat Mack Williams said the Peninsula has faced crisis points before, including in the 1990s.

He warned this time was different, citing North Korea’s weapons stockpile and an unpredictable US leader as reasons the game has changed.

The ambassador to South Korea from 1994-1998 said the difference between now and then was that the North had upped the ante.

“North Korea has developed missiles and its nuclear technology is capable of causing damage.

“Its arsenal is also more difficult to take out.”

Mr Williams, who has a long career in Asian diplomacy, said while no one wanted war, the world had to accept it could happen, and all it would take was one simple error.

“What ante is left in this game?” he said.

“What can (US President Donald) Trump do? He could try and take out North Korea’s rockets but imagine if one hits China or even Russia.”………

“One wrong mistake would be apocalyptic for Japan,” he said.

“Now there are some who believe antimissile capabilities offer some protection.

“But there’s not enough defence against his (Kim’s) missiles.”

He said Tokyo appeared to have played the right card by not attempting to fire at the North Korean missile.

Mr Williams said if Japan shot it down, Kim could retaliate and if it missed then the country would be humiliated.

“On this occasion I believe they did the right thing by not doing anything.”

Writing in IT news, reviews, and analysis site, Ars Technica, writer Sean Gallagher writes the US and Japan took the best course of action.

Missing could have far-reaching political implications and potentially suggest that anti-ballistic missile systems are incapable of protection, he writes.

…… RISK GROWS

Mr Williams said regardless of how conflict broke out, whether it was a misfire or a deliberate act, Seoul would suffer first.

“Hundreds of thousands would be killed in just minutes,” he said.

“No matter how it starts and whether it’s Guam or Japan that’s the target, Seoul will be the first casualty.

“North Korea has a greater array of rockets across the border and America would need hundreds of smart bombs and boots on the ground.

“There would be no way to stop the military bombardment on Seoul.”

Mr Williams said while South Koreans were generally stoic many were becoming increasingly concerned given the DPRK’s missile build up.

“This isn’t South Korea of the 1950s, it’s a modern developed country and the moral obligation to protect them is huge.

“Otherwise all the sacrifices of the Korean War would be for nothing.”

Mr Williams said while the US would ultimately win any conflict and North Korea would be annihilated, the human cost would be huge.

Beijing doesn’t want to see North Korea collapse or a nuclear fight or fallout on its border.

“All hell would break loose,” he said.

He also said Australia would be wise to make ourselves less of a target to an angry North Korea.

‘THEY GOT US’

The US president’s language suggests he’s rethinking any military options that might allow him to knock out North Korea’s small but growing nuclear arsenal and ballistic missile range.

Speaking privately to the Associated Press, officials in Washington echo the warning that Mr Trump’s now former chief strategist Steve Bannon made in his last media interview before losing his job earlier this month: it is too late for a pre-emptive strike.

There’s no military solution, forget it,” Mr Bannon told the American Prospect in an August 16 interview.

“Until somebody solves the part of the equation that shows me ten million people in Seoul don’t die in the first 30 minutes from conventional weapons, I don’t know what you’re talking about, there’s no military solution here, they got us.”

debra.killalea@news.com.au

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September 1, 2017 - Posted by | general

1 Comment »

  1. Nuclear weapons don’t necessarily require missiles to hit their targets; they can be “delivered” inside a ship or container vessel that makes it into a harbor or port. Don’t assume that having an anti-missile capability would prevent a nuclear weapon from being detonated next to or inside a city.

    Comment by Steven Starr | September 1, 2017 | Reply


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