As North Korea warned foreigners on Tuesday that they might want to leave South Korea because the peninsula was on the brink of nuclear war — a statement that analysts dismissed as hyperbole — the American commander in the Pacific expressed worries that the North’s young leader, Kim Jong-un, might not have left himself an easy exit to reduce tensions.

Why is this happening? Maybe this is the answer.

Divisions within the military, and the desire of a leader who may be only 30-years-old to consolidate his position, could be one factor behind the current spate of aggression.

“The further north you go (in North Korea), the more you hear rumours of dissension and divisions over who is or who would have been a better leader,” said Joseph Bermudez, an expert on the North Korean military and an analyst at DigitalGlobe.

On the other hand…

When asked if the North Korean army is still strong, Lt Kim answered automatically: “Yes, very strong”. The man who smuggled him out of North Korea, however, doubled up laughing at the officer’s response.

“They are taught that they are the strongest army in the world, and the best equipped. But in reality, their equipment is what we were using in China 60 years ago!” he said.

  1. Dallas says:

    Let’s give thanks that God chose President Obama as the leader during this crisis much like she chose to have John Kennedy in charge back in the day.

    • deowll says:

      Are you being sarcastic?

    • Mextli says:

      Yep, John Kennedy sure did a great job with Vietnam. I understand he liked to play Dominos.

      I’m sure Barry can do as well with his policy.

      • Dallas says:

        Kennedy (and God) diffused the Cuban Missle crisis and gave the word a second chance. A Teapub would have nuke’d Cubaa and your children might have been born with 3 legs. You know that’s right.

    • McCullough says:

      When you do that, you do realize you sound exactly like a North Korean.

      Except for the God part.

      • Dallas says:

        During these times, we need a steady hand in our government. All of the world leaders agree that two term Pres. Obama is taking the appropriate measured response to this loon.

        If this was happening during the previous Cheney administration, you know we would be in war with N Korea, China and you would not be getting a Galaxy 4 cellphone for a long time.

        • jpfitz says:

          Your right Dallas, ignore the petulant Pedro.

          “North Korea has been able to grow its nuclear program primarily because the Bush administration abruptly vacated the previous Clinton administration policy of engagement — in March 2001, a dozen years ago this month. Bush told a shocked South Korean president Kim Dae Jung about this unanticipated policy change in private during a summit. To reporters and the public at large, Bush says,

          “Part of the problem in dealing with North Korea, there’s not very much transparency. We’re not certain as to whether or not they’re keeping all terms of all agreements.”

          “At the end of 2002, North Korea kicked out all IAEA inspectors — those which had been monitoring NK’s nuclear program under the Clinton administration’s previously negotiated 1994 Agreed Framework — thereby eliminating any transparency just as North Korea removed monitoring devices and seals from their nuclear program equipment.”

  2. WmDE says:

    I searched for a higher resolution version of the photo. Google’s first choice was a Chinese site.

    Great pictures!

  3. The0ne says:

    I don’t know about you guys but I am hoping for a war with N.Korea and China, when they back them up. When this happens I’m signing up to go killing (if the service will take a middle age man). I can’t say much about N.Korea since I haven’t visited it but as for China I despise that country. I despise how they treat young children and kids. Live free or die hard!

    • The Wrong Guy says:

      So, you’re a psychopath who just wants to kill? To kill soldiers forced to go fight by their dictators? Huh.

      • The0ne says:

        Nope, I’m just a guy joining the military to go to War and KILL. That’s War. What’s so hard to understand about that? You mean you want me to wait until I’ve experienced bullets flying around me, until I have friends died, until I see them abuse kids? Or are you saying it sucks to have a reason beforehand? Sure I’ll admit my reasons are cynical but hey why don’t some of you try firsthand seeing how these kids are mistreated. Reading about them is definitely not the same as experiencing it in person, try it.

        Government or not, NO ONE is doing anything about them. I know, I’ve search, talked to people, talk to law offices and courts and all that I could. So why should I pity the government or the people that don’t care? Wait for revolution you said…yea, that guy that stood in front of those tanks…he’s nowhere to be seen any longer.

        So if no one gives a hoot and I kinda do what can I do? Hmm…this is a good opportunity I say wouldn’t you?

        And before anyone goes off saying yes there are organizations out there to help they are not enough. The corruption is too organized, too large and too dangerous to tackle. For “your” christ sake, people are kidnapped, maimed to hell, tossed into the streets to beg for money. And I’m a psychopath? For wanting to “join” the military and go to War and kill people? 😀

    • spsffan says:

      Better watch out. You might wind up on the “group W” bench.

  4. jim g says:

    Obam will protect us. Right????

  5. MikeN says:

    Hey, I thought Bill Clinton disarmed that country after Jimmy Carter went and arranged a deal.

  6. Tim says:

    Duck-‘n’-Cover themes are timely and all, but this picture is of sex education depicting felacio under the tele-promptor for future pages.

  7. sho off says:

    Our military has been testing Reagan’s “Star Wars” non-stop for 27 years. They better be able to shoot down the missle or the Trillion (yes that is right a Trillion) dollar program should be shut down and the engineers, brass, and congressmen that built it should be jailed for fraud and theft. Period.

    • ± says:

      High school physics scribbled on the back of an envelope then, and still now, proves that with current technology you have near zero chance of shooting down an incoming ICBM traveling at 3 miles per second. Starwars was always a big lie to the American public. No enemy has been fooled since the (successful) lie of Nike missiles in the early ’60s used against the Soviets.

      The only way to have a chance of thwarting a missile launch against any target is to shoot it down during it’s launch phase.

      The trillion dollars is a total fraud.

      • MikeN says:

        Or you just send a nuke in the general area of the missile at its middle phase.

  8. dcphill says:

    At my school we weren’t taught to hide under the desk. We learned to put your head between your knees and kiss our
    ass goodby

  9. spsffan says:

    Funny how they waited until that *unt Hillary was no longer secretary of state to pull this.

    • GregAllen says:

      “*unt Hillary”?!?!

      .. and then the conservatives act all hurt and confused when we call them out of hating women.

      • spsffan says:

        1. I’m not a conservative.
        2. I don’t hate nice women.
        3. I do hate *unts.

        • Hmeyers says:

          Obama sent Hillary to go terrorize places like Libya, Syria and North Korea.

          Bill Clinton was President and most powerful man on Earth and couldn’t deal with Hillary, what chance do little despot states have.

          Now that Kerry — stands by while college student gets tasered for no reason — is the guy the little despot states aren’t afraid no more.

      • So What? says:

        You know when you say *unt you sound like a stuck up fart who wouldn’t say shit if they had a mouthful of it. Find your balls and be an adult and just say cunt, phrasing it any other way just sounds stupid.

    • jpfitz says:

      Women HATE that word. No matter how passionate one feels….. that word in mixed company and in general shows disrespect to all.

      Let’s not chase the few women here on DU away.

      • So What? says:

        Who gives a fuck? I hear woman use it more than men so the must not hate it that much. If your going to insult someone than do it, don’t half ass it and think your being cute or protecting someones delicate sensibilities.

  10. noname says:

    And who says it will come from N. Korea, Uncle Dave?

  11. Cap'n Kangaroo says:

    My prediction is that if NK gets close to really starting a conflict, China will step up and tell the West “We got this.”

    The last thing China wants is the West dealing with their neighbor. They will take out the little fart and install someone they know is much more stable. You gotta think the Chinese intelligence has many high-level contacts in the NK government and military. A few words in the right ears and Kim Jong-un will suffer a massive heart attack or stroke.

    • Hmeyers says:

      China won’t allow actual trouble. Only perceived trouble and aggravation.

      • msbpodcast says:

        Lets look at who is being threatened.

        We’re their biggest export market… They aren’t going to look favorably at us being attacked.

        Watching the US (Alaska, Hawaii and some possessions anyway,) Russia, India, South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Malasia, Indonesia, and themselves be targeted by some trumped up twirp with bad hair may be more than they can put up with.

        I suspect that the Kim dynasty is coming to an abrupt end, (exactly like what happened to Hussein.)

        China can keep the territory and use it like they do Tibet and the other Himalayan kingdoms.

        I’m sure that Best Korea, with its seven decades decades of non-development, is going to make a great unspoilt eco-tourist destination among the Chinese elites.

        They get to build the country up using the latest technology, charge the peasants out the ying-yang for the privilege and look like liberators to history and to current events.

  12. Supreme Ultrahuman (I see the comment system is still designed for retards.) says:

    The first country ever to be run by a Cabbage Patch Kid and look what’s come of it…

  13. jpfitz says:

    The whole N. Korea nuclear threat showing Lil Kim peering with cheap binoculars at something in the distance along with Lil Kim threatening America feels scripted. C’mon… Rod-man and some Globetrotters along with what look like handlers travel into N. Korea and now Kim wants war. Bogative, I tell ya, bogative.

  14. Born Too Soon says:

    I was born in 1940 and know that I breathed in my share of Strontium 90 and may be suffering memory loss as a result, but I don’t recall any drill, such as shown in the photograph, ever taking place at school.
    I always assumed the photo was an illustration of an ‘urban legend’ or a vestige of mind control.

    “Show the same photo enough times and people will believe it was common or that they remember participating in such drill.”

    Common sense would tell a thinking person, ‘Hiding under your desk would be futile.’

    • WmDE says:

      The calendar on the wall is February 1951. Also from 1951 is the following film

      I vaguely remember one duck and cover drill and a couple of practice pre-hostility evacuations. Exit school and walk to nearest railroad and hope a train shows up before the Soviet bombers.

      Ducking and covering are not totally useless. For all explosions there is a range at which survival becomes possible.

      During the Chelybinsk meteor ducking and covering might have been advisable. The flash gave an early warning of the blast to come.

      That blast was twenty times the Hiroshima bomb but as everyone was at least 14 miles away injuries were minor. The inverse square law is our friend.

  15. Grandpa says:

    Nothing will happen until the gun control bill is passed and enforced. Then it will be RED DAWN all over again.

  16. orchidcup says:

    I remember the Duck and Cover drills until I was in third grade.

    Even as third graders we figured out it would be better to die in a real nuclear conflict.

    Fear has always been the tool of control for all governments going all the way back to Moses and beyond.

    The first leaders of groups discovered that fear motivates and manipulates the herd to follow instructions.

    • Supreme Ultrahuman (I see the comment system is still designed for retards.) says:

      Better to die? Never.

      Even in Armageddon you should strive to be the last human living.

      • orchidcup says:

        To what purpose?

        The last living human being would have nobody to mate with.

        Sometimes dying is much better than living in hell.

        Ask any religious fanatic that has died.

  17. Nuclear war? It is possible.. And I really don’t want it to happen..
    I thought both Koreas should be like relative peoples, nations. And they fight.. It’s sad! how can we make them be more friendly?

  18. Van says:

    Sadly, that amazingly protective duck-and-cover maneuver can’t be done anymore- kids can’t fit underneath desks.


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