"...The 'South Korean puppet group' engaged in 'reckless military provocation' by firing 'dozens of shells' inside its territorial waters 'despite the repeated warnings of the DPRK' or Democratic People's Republic of Korea, the North's military said in a statement.So much depends on one's point of view. And preferred reality. As in the - interesting - news coverage of an incident last year:
" 'The revolutionary armed forces of the DPRK standing guard over the inviolable territorial waters of the country took such decisive military step as reacting to the military provocation of the puppet group with a prompt powerful physical strike,' the statement said...."
- "Imperialist American Aggressors Attack Poland?"
(October 30, 2009)
North Korea: Again; StillI'm not going to indulge in the usual 'give peace a chance' stuff. I think it'd be nice if an armed conflict - make that an open armed conflict - on the Korean peninsula didn't happen.
I also think it would be nice if North Korea had someone else running the place.
Part of why I think that Kim Jong Il isn't good for either half of Korea is discussed in an excerpt from today's news that I'll put near the end of this post.
I'm not convinced that direct, massive, 'retaliation' on North Korea is a good idea. On the other hand, I think I can see why President Lee Myung-bak is getting fed up.
What isn't all that clear is just what North Korea's leadership hopes to accomplish.
It's possible that Kim Jon Il wants another set of concessions, in exchange for having his enforcers behave themselves for a while. Or maybe someone in North Korea thinks that, now that they've got nuclear weapons, North Korea is invincible.
Nuclear weapons? Yes. Equivalent to what remains in the inventories of other nations? Not at all likely. A problem for everyone within range of North Korea's missiles? Yes. My opinion.
I put links to other posts about the Korean situation after this excerpt from CNN:
"SK leader: Military should 'retaliate' against NK 'provocation' "Related posts:
Andrew Salmon, Steven Jiang, Yoko Wakatsuki,Joe Sterling, CNN World (November 23, 2010)
"Hours after North Korea's deadly artillery attacks on Tuesday, South Korea's president said 'enormous retaliation' is needed to stop Pyongyang's incitement, but international diplomats urgently appealed for restraint.
" 'The provocation this time can be regarded as an invasion of South Korean territory,' President Lee Myung-bak said at the headquarters of the Joint Chiefs of Staff here, according to South Korea's Yonhap news agency.
"The incident -- in which two South Korean marines died -- is 'the first direct artillery attack on South Korean territory since the Korean War ended in an armistice, not a formal peace treaty' in the 1950s, South Korea's Yonhap news agency reported. The United States has about 28,500 troops deployed in South Korea and are warily watching the situation.
"Calling the act a 'very serious provocation,' Scott Snyder, director of the Center for U.S.-Korea Policy, the Asia Foundation, said the incident was 'unprecedented in recent years [at least since the 1970s if not longer] in terms of artillery beyond the DMZ into civilian areas.'
"Along with the slain marines, 15 South Korean soldiers and three civilians were wounded when the North fired about 100 rounds of artillery at Yeonpyeong Island in the Yellow Sea, South Korea authorities. The attack also set houses and forests on fire on the island.
"South Korea's military responded with more than 80 rounds of artillery and deployed fighter jets to counter the fire, defense officials said.
"Firing between the two sides lasted for about an hour in the Yellow Sea, a longstanding flash point between the two Koreas. In March, a South Korean warship, the Cheonan, was sunk in the area with the loss of 46 lives in a suspected North Korean torpedo attack.
"Lee called 'indiscriminate attacks on civilians are a grave matter.' He said that since 'North Korea maintains an offensive posture, South Korea's military forces -- the army, air force and navy -- 'should unite and retaliate against [the North's] provocation with multiple-fold firepower.'
" 'Reckless attacks on South Korean civilians are not tolerable, especially when South Korea is providing North Korea with humanitarian aid,' Lee said, according to Yonhap...."
- "South Korean Navy Ship Just Happens to be Sinking"
(March 26, 2010)
- "Good News: North Korea Freed American Reporters"
(August 5, 2009)
- "Cyber-Attack Started July Fourth: Common Sense, Security, and the War on Terror"
(July 10, 2009)
- "North Korea's Still There, Still a 'Serious Concern' "
(June 24, 2009)
- "North Korea, American Journalists, the Internet, and Power to the People"
(June 16, 2009)
- "North Korea and the Kim Jong Dynasty: Not All Countries are the Same"
(June 9, 2009)
- "North Korea Holds American Journalists: Let's Not Forget"
(June 5, 2009)
- "North Korea, Nuclear Weapons, Brinksmanship, and Miscalculation"
(May 27, 2009)
A tip of the hat to dragonblogger, on Twitter, for the heads-up on the CNN story.