Obama: U.S. Will Defend South Korea

Update: President Obama said tonight the U.S is going to hold "joint military exercises" with South Korea and is sending a carrier to the region. The purpose is to deter N. Korea attacks and " to signal to China that unless it reins in its unruly ally it will see an even larger American presence in the vicinity."


Are we going to enter yet another war? President Obama today addressed the crisis in South Korea. Does he mean diplomatially or militarily? So far, no troops have been repositioned. But, Obama wouldn't speculate on U.S. military options.[More...]

Washington has relatively few options when dealing with Pyongyang. Military action is particularly unappealing, since the unpredictable North possesses crude nuclear weapons as well as a huge standing army. North Korea exists largely outside the system of international financial and diplomatic institutions that the U.S. has used as leverage in dealing with other hostile countries, including Iran.

What are North Korea's objectives? A war or just more concessions? How will China respond? And will Kim Jong Il's recent anointment of his youngest son, Kim Jong Un, as his heir apparent make a difference?

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  • Display: Sort:
    I think (none / 0) (#1)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Nov 24, 2010 at 05:55:31 AM EST
    Obama will get us into another war simply because he is weak.

    Are there any troops (none / 0) (#2)
    by BackFromOhio on Wed Nov 24, 2010 at 08:31:04 AM EST
    even available???

    The military is one of the few growth (none / 0) (#7)
    by MO Blue on Wed Nov 24, 2010 at 09:29:03 AM EST
    industries left in the U.S. at the moment. Don't think that they would have much trouble increasing the ranks. In fact, I think a few months back, Military Tracy said they were turning people away because all the quotas were full.

    Possibly a result of (none / 0) (#13)
    by BackFromOhio on Sun Nov 28, 2010 at 12:51:20 PM EST
    high unemployment.  But what we need in event of major military action are trained troops, not newbies?  

    Why are we linked to S Korea at this point? (none / 0) (#3)
    by BobTinKY on Wed Nov 24, 2010 at 08:31:47 AM EST
    Sure, North Korea is a bizzarre and cruelly run nation but the Cold War has been over for decades.

    What will be the rationale given now for puttng hundreds of thousands of US troops in harm's way?  North Korea is intent on world domination & China, Russia or Japan is next on their list of intended conquests, thenthe US?  That's  a bit far-fetched.

    What exactly is the threat to the United States?  And I don't mean our interests, I mean our sovereignty and way of life?  At most, once upon a time the Korean peninsular was the stage for a proxy Russian/Chinese-USA war.  

    If a war erupts it will be an unimaginable bloodbath, but why must Americans be inserted into the middle of it?

    War is not going to erupt (5.00 / 1) (#5)
    by gyrfalcon on Wed Nov 24, 2010 at 09:10:54 AM EST
    and nobody's going to send more U.S. troops to Korea.

    As far as I can tell, SKorea pretty deliberately provoked this whole deal by staging a massive military exercise in an area that's disputed territory between the two countries.  NKor asked them not to, they gave them the finger and started blasting away.  NKorea quite predictably started shelling them.

    NKorea does some crazy stuff, but this one looks to me like it's on SKor.

    The Obama administration is reacting to this with surprisingly over-the-top rhetoric, but nobody's going to go to war over it.  I only hope they had some pretty strong rhetoric privately for the SKoreans for being deliberately provocative.


    These things can get out of hand real quick (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by BobTinKY on Wed Nov 24, 2010 at 09:27:58 AM EST
    I don't doubt S Korea is not comepletely the victim.  What difference does it make?  I also think that may be actors who would love nothing more than to see the US get bogged down in yet another war.

    What concerns me is our outdated pledge to come to S Korea's assistance in the event of a conflict with the North.


    Maybe...in the next few months (none / 0) (#11)
    by christinep on Wed Nov 24, 2010 at 12:47:50 PM EST
    the elusive trade deal that we have been working on with SKor can now be "worked out." Leverage. Concluding the trade deal would be significant in terms of jobs, $$, foreign policy savvy, etc. Who knows?

    Obama Overreacting (none / 0) (#12)
    by norris morris on Thu Nov 25, 2010 at 05:38:13 PM EST
    Both NKorea and SKorea are involved in this and it's not a really bg deal.....yet...until we make it a big deal.  Again.  Obama should put this to China as NKorea intends expansion there, not here.   It certainly could have begun with SKorea's show of military strength too close to  and as suggested in some of the comments here....

    More meddling and engagement as Obama suggests is very troublesome.  We are stretched to the max. The American Empire is in trouble enough with Iraq,Afghanistan, and the many billions a month that could be put to better use during this serious economic downturn.

    We should stay out of this.


    I'm with you man... (none / 0) (#4)
    by kdog on Wed Nov 24, 2010 at 08:51:05 AM EST
    it might take 100 years, but we need to pull back from our commitment as the world's crooked cop.

    I'm not saying leave allies high and dry and go back on our word...a slow draw back with an explanation to our allies that the free national defense days just because ya didn't go commie are coming to an end...we can't afford it.

    I don't think we'll see a full-blown war though, to S. Korea's credit they haven't retaliated from the odd mortar attack in the past...they're trying to keep the peace.  And it's not like N. Korea has invaded, this is more of "hey, look at me, we've got guns too!" type of thing from N.K., desperate to be considered a player on the world stage.


    The North Korean attack (none / 0) (#8)
    by KeysDan on Wed Nov 24, 2010 at 09:56:27 AM EST
    began after South Korean military on "exercises" fired test shots into waters near the North Korean coast. This sounds pretty provocative on South Korea's part, especially during the time of replacement of Kim Jong-il, who is ill. The South Koreans may feel emboldened by our Cold War defense hang-over.  Not a reciprocal feeling of love as noted in the recent rebuff to President Obama on trade.  The key to diplomatic resolution is not so much NK or SK, but China--we have some leverage in that we are one of those predatory borrowers.

    That does not excuse .. (none / 0) (#9)
    by nyrias on Wed Nov 24, 2010 at 10:05:21 AM EST
    shelling real people.

    I thought this site was for human lives. Those got killed deserved a lot better than some violent criminals that got the needle here.

    N Kor can fire some rockets into the sea too. There are MANY options aside from killing people and N Kor chose to kill people.

    Plus, it is a response to the N Koreans sinking a S Kor ship a while ago.


    Who talking excuse? (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by KeysDan on Wed Nov 24, 2010 at 11:17:32 AM EST
    Actually, I think I mentioned a diplomatic solution, via North Korea's enabler, China. However,  South Korea should not be able to depend on the  US for military intervention based on a tit-for-tat.   While some politicians may enjoy the brinksmanship of the Cold War era, it is risky business to be jettisoned by difficult, but necessary, restraint.