A North Korean Offensive Nuke Strike Would Be ‘Suicidal’ – SeoulCC0 / NNSA / Nevada Site Office / The BADGER explosionAsia & Pacific22:09 29.01.2018(updated 22:13 29.01.2018) Get short URL
A decision by North Korea to use a nuclear weapon against one of its adversaries would be “suicidal,” a top South Korean defense official said Monday.
“The North Korean regime will probably be removed from the map if it uses developed nuclear weapons against South Korea or the United States,” South Korean Defense Minister Song Young-moo told reporters at a conference in Singapore, according to the Yonhap News Agency.
Similarly, the US has found itself in a position where a pre-emptive strike against North Korea would lead to comparable nuclear retaliation, former US officials say.
“The window of opportunity to strike North Korea without risk of nuclear retaliation closed many years ago. For more than a decade, it had been impossible to take out North Korea’s ability to launch conventional and nuclear retaliatory strikes against our allies-the only recent development is that our homeland may now also be at risk of a counterstrike,” retired Lt. Col. L. Davis opined in late November.
According to the South Korean defense chief, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un’s rhetoric about using nuclear weapons is merely “propaganda.”
Seoul’s long-stated goal of a “complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization” of the Korean Peninsula is not going to change soon, but that doesn’t mean Seoul and Pyongyang cannot hold talks as they did early in January, the official noted. Denuclearization is “our basic position that can never be yielded,” he said.
“It may be a rough path that could take a long time. But I think we have to go that way by being patient and patient again,” Song stressed, adding that “in particular I would like to say clearly that the policy of sanctions and pressure for a solution to the North Korean nuclear issue is meant to draw North Korea into dialogue, not an aim itself.”