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North Korea threatens its strike would ‘turn everything to ashes’

clock03-29-2010, 12:34 AM
Yorum: #1

Rhetoric gets hot in game of attack one-upmanship

North Korea threatens its strike would ‘turn everything to ashes’
March 31, 2008

Tensions on the Korean Peninsula reached a new peak yesterday. Pyongyang wasted no time responding to Seoul’s refusal to apologize for remarks made last week concerning a pre-emptive strike on the North in the face of a nuclear attack.

The North said yesterday its own attack would, once realized, “turn everything to ashes.”

North Korea’s military editorial unit under the communist regime’s mouthpiece, Korea Central News Agency, said a top South Korean military commander’s remark “reflects Seoul’s new North Korea policy.”

General Kim Tae-young, when asked at a National Assembly hearing on Wednesday how he would react if the North launched a nuclear attack against the South, said South Korea would “identify possible locations of nuclear weapons and make a precise attack in advance.”

Kim officially took office on Friday as the South’s new chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

“South Korea’s current North Korea policies are clearly against the principles of progress in North-South relations and peaceful prosperity,” the North Korean editorial said. “Our traditional response is to counter fire with fire and aggression with super aggression.”

“Once our pre-emptive attacks begin, it will turn everything not just to a sea of fire but to complete ashes,” said the editorial.

A senior official at the Defense Ministry said yesterday that Kim Tae-young’s remark is “not something we have to apologize for,” adding the government has no intention of apologizing.

“The government will make a decision within two or three days on whether to send a response [to North Korea] or not,” the Defense Ministry official said.

“North Korea is overreacting to Kim’s remark.”

Pyongyang called the remarks a “reckless act of aggression.”

According to North Korea’s Central News Agency, Kim Young-chul, North Korea’s chief military negotiator to the South, sent a letter Saturday to his South Korean counterpart.

The letter, which characterized the March 26 remark by Kim Tae-young as “the single gravest challenge in the history of North-South relations,” also demanded that Kim withdraw his remark and offer an apology.

“Otherwise, we will take it [Kim’s remark] as an official stance by South Korea that it seeks to stop all relations and contacts with the North,” the KCNA quoted the letter as saying. “Our military will respond by making faster and stronger pre-emptive attacks at the slightest sign of a pre-emptive attack by the South.”

South Korea’s Blue House also reacted sternly to the newly intensified rhetoric from the North, indicating President Lee Myung-bak is unwilling to budge after the North’s latest move.

“The practice of the Blue House responding to each threat from North Korea is no longer desirable strategically,” said one Blue House official who refused to be named.

It is not the first time that Pyongyang threatened the South with a “sea of fire.” In 1994, a North Korean nuclear negotiator used the term during the first nuclear crisis on the peninsula.

In another sign of the brewing political tension between the two Koreas, North Korea’s Foreign Ministry denounced the UN Human Rights Council’s newly adopted resolution condemning the North’s human rights record.

In a break with past administrations, South Korea voted in favor of the resolution.

By Jung Ha-won Staff Reporter/ Kim Min-seok JoongAng Ilbo [[email protected]]


To summarize the recent events, the defence minister of South Korea has stated that the South Korean military will engage in preemtive strikes on North Korean nuclear facilities if they spot preparation of firing nuclear weapons. North Korea has asked the defence minister to apologize and rescind his statement on preemtive strikes, but the defence minister refused. So North Korea comes up with the usual "we will shoot you!" threats, though I doubt this will really affect anything. South Koreans became accustomed to such threats I guess.
clock07-07-2012, 05:57 PM
Yorum: #2
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