Last week New Mexico's governor Bill Richardson met with North Korea to try to "turn it down a notch", and it seems he may have succeeded. South Korea carried out its previously scheduled military exercises this week, and as of this writing North Korea has responded only with more of the same rhetoric they've been spouting for years. This may be as much of a stand-down as we can hope for at this point. If the two Koreas revert to hurling harsh words at each other instead of ordnance, that's more than fine in my book. Absolutely no good can come of Korea's personal cold-war turning hot. It is almost impossible to imagine some 20,000,000 troops engaged in combat on a peninsula only a little bigger than Florida, the South armed with some of the most technologically advanced war machines in the world and the North armed only with 1950's vintage Soviet-era relics, but lots and lots of them. And chemical, biological and atomic weapons.
We can only hope that diplomacy, or at the very least a somewhat enlightened sense of self-preservation, will keep the tinder box from being sparked.
|North Korean Romeo class attack submarine|
|South Korean Sohn-Wonyil class attack submarine|