NEWS FROM ASIA
North Korea ‘ready for sacred war’ with the South
BBC News reports: “North Korea is ready for a sacred war of justice using the nuclear deterrent, its armed forces minister has said.
Kim Yong-chun said exercises conducted by South Korea near the border were a preparation for war with the North.
The drill is one of the largest in South Korea’s history, involving tanks, helicopters and fighter planes.
Tension has been high since North Korea shelled the South’s Yeonpyeong island last month, killing four South Koreans.
South Korean President Lee Myung-bak has promised immediate retaliation to any further Northern attack.
The South Korean army acknowledged that the drill was aimed to display its firepower.
Although the South has conducted 47 military drills this year, this is the largest winter live-fire exercise ever conducted on land.
The North earlier branded Seoul’s exercises warmongering but until now had not threatened the South with any retaliation.
During a meeting in the North Korean capital, Mr Kim, quoted by Pyongyang’s Korean Central News Agency, accused the South of preparing for a new Korean War ” (North Korea will undoubtedly be part of the second invasion of the Armageddon campaign Revelation 16:16. Presently China controls North Korea and she obeys Chinese orders. Watch for more shocking developments as North Korea threatens the South Koreans and our American troops stationed at the 38th Parallel Revelation 16:12; Revelation 9:14-18. See also the next two reports.)
North Korea ‘has boosted special forces’
BBC News reports: “North Korea has increased its investment in tanks and special forces, a South Korean defense review has reported.
The paper, written every two years, notes the North has trained at least 20,000 more special forces.
It said the North remained capable of a massive surprise bombardment of the South’s capital, Seoul.
Tensions on the Korean peninsula this year have resulted in cross-border artillery fire and calls for new talks.
The total size of the North’s military remained unchanged at about 1.19 million, the paper said, but the number of special forces within that had risen to 200,000.
These are soldiers trained to carry out assassinations, and the infiltration and disruption of key facilities, the paper said.
It said the North had deployed its new battle tank, Pokpung-ho (or Storm Tiger), which reportedly made its debut in 2002 ”
South Korean president ramps up aggressive stance towards North
The London Daily Telegraph reports: “South Korea’s armed forces will respond relentlessly if they are attacked again by North Korea, the country’s president warned, providing further evidence that Seoul is determined to maintain a newly aggressive posture against Pyongyang.
We have now been awakened to the realization that war can be prevented and peace assured only when such provocations are met with a strong response, said President Lee Myung-bak in a national radio address, Fear of war is never helpful in preventing war.
Mr. Lee’s hard-line government has been under pressure after critics said it had failed to respond fiercely enough to the North Korean bombardment of an island off the South’s west coast in November that left four dead.
The government has responded by firing its defense minister, installing more hawkish commanders and staging a series of US-backed live-fire exercises along the land and sea borders with the North in a bid to deter any further attacks.
The South said it was planning more drills, despite objections from Russia and China who have urged calm on both sides and increasingly bellicose rhetoric from Pyongyang which promised a sacred nuclear war if the South impinged on its territory.
But while the world has grown inured to such language from the North in recent years, the hardening tone in the South has raised concerns among many analysts that a future provocation by North Korea could now spark a war between the two sides ”