Small Wars Journal

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09/27/2020 News & Commentary - National Security

News and Commentary by Dave Maxwell. Edited and Published by Riley Murray.

 

1. Reforming Tokyo’s Ballistic Missile Defense is a Priority for Japan’s New Prime Minister

2. US congressman urges end to 'morally bankrupt and failed one China policy'

3. Earth to Washington and Beijing: It’s not all about you

4. PH Air Force eyes 21 second-hand Huey choppers from South Korea

5. Statement by President of Russia Vladimir Putin on a comprehensive program of measures for restoring the Russia – US cooperation in the filed of international information security

6. Taiwanese prepare to defend themselves from Chinese invasion

7. FBI Feeds Intel to DoD for Offensive Cyber Ops, Director Tells Congress

8. Star Wars is Bullsh*t! – Lies Science Fiction Taught Me About Strategic Planning

9. Putin nominated for Nobel Peace Prize

10. Going Global: The F-35 Is Taking Over The World

11. Unmanned aircraft that saw heavy combat in the global war on terrorism are now headed to sea

12. 117 remains of Chinese soldiers killed in Korean War casketed in the ROK

13. 2 Abu Sayyaf members surrender in Sulu

14. Dress right and cover down (1st Special Forces Group and PPP)

15. USSOCOM Awarded 46 IDIQ Contracts Worth $950 Million for Special Operations Forces Support

16. RBG's Trainer, Army Vet Bryant Johnson, Does Push-Ups in Front of Her Casket

17. One of first female Ranger School graduates leads Honor Guard for Justice Ginsburg

18. The Replacements: Why and How “Acting” Officials Are Making Senate Confirmation Obsolete

19. Do our generals and admirals like war too much?

20. The Terrorist Lists: An Examination of the U.S. Government's Counterterrorism Designations Efforts

21. Harvard professor: Trump is not a dictator ... he only plays one on TV

 

1. Reforming Tokyo’s Ballistic Missile Defense is a Priority for Japan’s New Prime Minister

The National Interest · by Matthew Ha · September 26, 2020

From my colleague Mathew Ha. And as Mat mentions, an integrated missile defense system in Northeast Asia would be even better but I know that is a bridge too far (at least it is before the shooting starts).

 

2. US congressman urges end to 'morally bankrupt and failed one China policy'

taiwannews.com.tw · by Taiwan News

Here is a link to the Congressman's OpEd referenced in the article below. https://dailycaller.com/2020/09/24/tiffany-its-time-to-end-americas-failed-one-china-policy/

 

3. Earth to Washington and Beijing: It’s not all about you

https://www.politico.com/newsletters/politico-china-watcher?- by David Wertime – 24 September 2020

A Sunday morning read for all China watchers. This is quite a roll-up of a broad array of commentary.

Earth to Washington and Beijing: It’s not all about you

https://www.politico.com/newsletters/politico-china-watcher?

 

4. PH Air Force eyes 21 second-hand Huey choppers from South Korea

newsinfo.inquirer.net · by Frances Mangosing · September 25, 2020

Security Assistance among two of our allies.  I have flown quite a few hours in a PAF Hueys.  Some of them still had Budweiser beer cans from patching the bullet holes from the Vietnam era.  But the PAF pilots were good.  We did pinnacle landings on the highest point in Basilan and we once flew with a fuel gauge indicating zero fuel yet the pilots knew exactly how long they could fly before we actually ran out of fuel!  

 

5. Statement by President of Russia Vladimir Putin on a comprehensive program of measures for restoring the Russia – US cooperation in the filed of international information security

en.kremlin.ru · September 25, 2020

Security cooperation between the US and Russia?  Very interesting timing for this statement from Putin.  Russian political warfare.  Politics is warfare by other means.  We would do well to remember that.

 

6. Taiwanese prepare to defend themselves from Chinese invasion

The Telegraph · by Nicola Smith

As they must but I hope they never have to.

 

7. FBI Feeds Intel to DoD for Offensive Cyber Ops, Director Tells Congress

defenseone.com · by Mariam Baksh – 26 September 2020

Yes, it is a brave new world.  This is excellent interagency cooperation.  Cyber may be the most important battlespace now and in the future.

 

8. Star Wars is Bullsh*t! – Lies Science Fiction Taught Me About Strategic Planning

angrystaffofficer.com · by KR Paul · September 27, 2020

I have never been a Star Wars aficionado but this should be required reading in SAMS and all PME schools! :-)

 

9. Putin nominated for Nobel Peace Prize

The Hill · by Morgan Gstalter · September 24, 2020

I guess Trump and Putin will duke it out in Norway.

 

10. Going Global: The F-35 Is Taking Over The World

The National Interest · by Dan Goure · September 27, 2020

I hope Dr. Goure means the free world!

 

11. Unmanned aircraft that saw heavy combat in the global war on terrorism are now headed to sea

Stars and Stripes – by Seth Robinson – 26 September 2020

 

12. 117 remains of Chinese soldiers killed in Korean War casketed in the ROK

chinadaily.com.cn · by 刘小卓 – 26 September 2020

How many South Korean soldiers has China returned to South Korea? How many ROK Soldiers (and US and UN soldiers) died in Chinese prison camps in China and have been returned to their home countries?

 

13. 2 Abu Sayyaf members surrender in Sulu

philstar.com · by Roel Pareño

I remember when 17 ASG members surrendered in Basilan in 2002.  But this is even more critical now as we need to separate the ASG from the Islamic State and its influence.   Is the AFP and the Philippine government executing a PSYOP campaign to exploit these surrenders and encourage more?

 

14. Dress right and cover down (1st Special Forces Group and PPP)

https://www.army.mil/article/239394/dress_right_and_cover_down - by Margaret C. Roth – 25 September 2020

Tremendous work by 1st Special Forces Group (and Natick , et el). Great initiative. But note also the equipment and techniques available in the Group as well as the various processes and organizations that came together on this initiative.

I am proud of 1st SFG but this is representative of what the American military writ large can do in the face of crisis, especially an unconventional ones (the essence of unconventional warfare is to solve, or assist in solving complex political-military problems - not that this is an unconventional warfare situation but unconventional warfare thinking can help to solve or assist in solving myriad diverse problems.

 

15.  USSOCOM Awarded 46 IDIQ Contracts Worth $950 Million for Special Operations Forces Support

news.clearancejobs.com · by Katie Keller · September 26, 2020

As I have said if you want to understand the direction of the US military just follow the contracting process.  So much can be gleaned not only from procurement contracts but also service contracts.  And of course, construction contracts provide information about long term plans for basing.  All of this can be combined to understand the direction of future military strategy.

 

16. RBG's Trainer, Army Vet Bryant Johnson, Does Push-Ups in Front of Her Casket

Military.com | By Hope Hodge Seck – 25 September 2020

Pretty classy.  I had no idea of the veteran connection.  30 years in the Army. I am not sure what "Special Forces Airborne Unit” he was a member of. Video at the link.

RBG's Trainer, Army Vet Bryant Johnson, Does Push-Ups in Front of Her Casket

https://www.military.com/daily-news/2020/09/25/rbgs-trainer-army-vet-bryant-johnson-does-push-ups-front-of-her-casket.html
 

17. One of first female Ranger School graduates leads Honor Guard for Justice Ginsburg

wrbl.com · by Chuck Williams · September 25, 2020

I had no idea as well.  I was struck when I heard the commands in a female voice as I watched the ceremony.  In the old days I would have been shocked, but it seems so natural and normal today.  But I did not realize Captain Haver is serving in the Old Guard.

 

18.  The Replacements: Why and How “Acting” Officials Are Making Senate Confirmation Obsolete

The 28 page report can be downloaded here. https://ourpublicservice.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/The-Replacements-1.pdf

 

19. Do our generals and admirals like war too much?

The Brookings Institution · by Michael E. O'Hanlon · September 21, 2020

Spoiler alert. Do not be misled by the clickbait title (I was - based on the title I was ready to take Michael O'Hanlon to task because I assumed the answer to the question might be different).

His conclusion: We would be wrong to put our military leaders on pedestals and assume that they can solve the nation’s problems on their own. But I see no evidence they are trying to hoodwink the country into following some predetermined and overmilitarized foreign policy. President Trump has that one wrong.

 

20.  The Terrorist Lists: An Examination of the U.S. Government's Counterterrorism Designations Efforts

ctc.usma.edu · September 24, 2020

The very comprehensive 105 page report can be downloaded here.  Great work by West Point's CTC.  This may be very useful to researchers.  This is an excellent academic reference.

PDF

 

21. Harvard professor: Trump is not a dictator ... he only plays one on TV

https://www.cnn.com/videos/tv/2020/09/26/will-prejudice-against-the-less-educated-impact-election.cnn

I know I am taking a great risk among many of you for posting a video link to CNN. However, if you can overlook the partisan aspect of this (and I post this with no intent to make a partisan statement) I think it accurately describes some of the fundamental problems we have in today's society (which at the end of the piece the professor notes both Republicans and Democrats contribute to), e.g., the concept of "credentialism." The most important aspect of this short video is the call to return to the dignity of work - whatever work you do that contributes to the public good.  And the contribution of dignified work is not measured in income.  However, what the Professor did not note but in my opinion he is describing,  is that human nature has not changed from the time of Thucydides when he said, "The strong do what they will, and the weak suffer what they must."  Today the rank and file are filled with grievance and resentment and fighting back against the elite. Again, please do not take this as a partisan offering.  I urge you to listen to this and reflect on what the professor says.  I just ordered his book and I look forward to reading it.

 

“No matter what anyone says or does, my task is to be good.”

- Marcus Aurelius

 

“Not all readers are leaders, but all leaders are readers.”

- Harry S. Truman

 

"A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. A murderer is less to fear."  

- Marcus Tullius Cicero (42B.C.)

Riley.C.Murray Sun, 09/27/2020 - 12:02pm
09/26/2020 News & Commentary - National Security

News and Commentary by Dave Maxwell. Edited and Published by Riley Murray.

 

1. The Vise Tightens on the Dollar

2. The next financial crisis may be coming soon

3. China Hits Back at Pompeo’s Espionage Allegation Against New York Consulate

4. The Man Who Can Get Us Out of Afghanistan

5.  Republicans as Avengers? Dan Crenshaw goes all Captain America in new political ad

6. UK develops cyber weapons that could take out power grids in enemy states

7.  How the U.S. Military is Prioritizing Great-Power Competition

8. The Blob Meets the Heartland: Foreign policy should work better for America’s middle class.

9. Deployment of US forces to Taiwan means war: Global Times editorial

10. Air Force Betting on New Robotic Wingman

11. Places and Names: On War, Revolution and Returning

12. Trump’s team plots his departure - even if he won’t

13. Navigating the Asia-Pacific Threat Landscape: Experts Dive In

14. U.S. Commandos Use Secretive Missiles to Kill Qaeda Leaders in Syria

15. Ospreys draw eyes over Ukraine during special ops exercises

16. In a First, 100 Mexican Firefighters Arrive in California to Help Battle Wildfires

17. Dire Straits - Should American Support for Taiwan Be Ambiguous?

 

1. The Vise Tightens on the Dollar

project-syndicate.org · by Stephen S. Roach · September 25, 2020

Troubling news.  Quote: "In short, the vise is tightening on a still-overvalued dollar. Domestic saving is now plunging as never before, and the current-account balance is following suit. Don’t expect the Fed, focused more on supporting equity and bond markets than on leaning against inflation, to save the day. The dollar’s decline has only just begun."

 

2. The next financial crisis may be coming soon

Financial Times · by Gillian Tett · September 24, 2020

More troubling news.  We must protect our economic instrument of power. Quote: "Of course, such a disruption might not merit blazing headlines, given all the other more immediately worrying pieces of news right now. But investors should remember this: if lenders react to a stealthy rise in defaults - and, most important, a fear of future stress - this could tighten credit conditions despite central banks’ policies."

 

3. China Hits Back at Pompeo’s Espionage Allegation Against New York Consulate

caixinglobal.com · by Lu Zhenhua – 26 September 2020

China doth protest too much.  But of course, no country would admit its routine espionage activities even though it is what everybody does.  Admit nothing, deny everything, make counteraccusations.

 

4. The Man Who Can Get Us Out of Afghanistan

spectator.org · by Jeremy Lott · September 26, 2020

Based on this essay it does seem likely this man will shake things up.  But if President Trump is not re-elected, he will have little time.

 

5. Republicans as Avengers? Dan Crenshaw goes all Captain America in new political ad

expressnews.com · September 25, 2020

The 4 minute video is at this link on YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wd6b_8OlwXU

I have never seen a more over the top political ad. :-). I do not offer this as a political statement or endorsement.  It is just an entertaining ad.

 

6. UK develops cyber weapons that could take out power grids in enemy states

Sky News – by Deborah Haynes

Sometimes there is just too much information out there. Or General Sanders is executing an influence operation. Of course, this should not be surprising and I doubt the UK is the only country with or developing this capability. This might be right out of the Chinese Unrestricted Warfare.

Note this article: Energy Grid Supply-Chain Risks and U.S.-China Entanglement https://www.lawfareblog.com/energy-grid-supply-chain-risks-and-us-china-entanglement

 

7. How the U.S. Military is Prioritizing Great-Power Competition

The National Interest · by Michael O'Hanlon · September 25, 2020

Of course, this article is focused on Naval power and rightly so as it is a critical component of great power competition.  And of course, one of the key aspects of strategy is the prioritization and allocation of resources.

But I think we are missing major elements of great power competition:

Problem: We face threats from political warfare strategies supported by hybrid military approaches. 

Gray Zone, Hybrid Conflict, Unconventional Warfare, Counter-Unconventional Warfare, Revolution, Resistance, Insurgency, Terrorism, Civil War ll may occur in the context of Great Power Competition.

In short:

  • Competition equals Political Warfare
    • Most likely
  • State on state warfare less likely
    • Most dangerous
  • Consider lessons from the OSS to operate in the modern era of the Gray Zone and Political Warfare
  • But we must always be prepared for also major theater war

 

8. The Blob Meets the Heartland: Foreign policy should work better for America’s middle class.

defenseone.com · by William J. Burns

An interesting essay. Here is a the link to the Carnegie report: https://carnegieendowment.org/2020/09/23/making-u.s.-foreign-policy-work-better-for-middle-class-pub-82728

This excerpt jumped out at me.  This is what our foreign policy and national security professionals should consider and understand.  But it is also important for our allies to understand this as well. Quote: "Most of those we interviewed saw the value of America’s allies and our country’s active global leadership, but they expected other countries to invest more in their own military and contribute a greater share of the costs of securing peace. They were also skeptical of Washington’s foreign-policy extremes-its episodic crusading impulses as well as its bouts of isolationism."

 

9. Deployment of US forces to Taiwan means war: Global Times editorial

globaltimes.cn

From a mouthpiece of the Chinese Communist Party.  The folks at Leavenworth should be happy with the shoutout for Military Review. Someone besides military professionals is reading their work! 

This is an interesting interpretation of US military and strategic thinking.

But the conclusion gives us an idea of how the CCP views its own actions and how it views the Taiwan-US relationship. And I guess the CCP thinks of itself as "god-like" that can punish sinners.  But I suppose that is how one feels when you think the Middle Kingdom should dominate the region if not the world.

 

10. Air Force Betting on New Robotic Wingman

nationaldefensemagazine.org · by Jon Harper – 25 September 2020

But can you take this wingman to the officer's club for a beer at happy hour for saving your a**?  Seriously though this seems like a pretty cool capability.

 

11. Places and Names: On War, Revolution and Returning

realcleardefense.com · by John Waters

Of course, the title was clickbait for me.  It was not the article I expected but interesting, nonetheless. I have read a lot from Eliot Ackerman, but I was unaware of his background.

 

12. Trump’s team plots his departure - even if he won’t

Politico – 24 September 2020

This is a fascinating read. Again, I do not offer this as a partisan statement but to illustrate what goes on behind the scenes in all administrations and what is required by law.  

 

13. Navigating the Asia-Pacific Threat Landscape: Experts Dive In

darkreading.com

The cyber domain is "key terrain" in great power competition.  Key point: "Both experts agree nation-state groups based out of China pose a major threat to the region. While these attackers typically dominate threats against telecommunications, El-Nabawi says threat intelligence indicates they have also targeted food and beverage, healthcare, manufacturing, and pharmaceuticals, in addition to telecommunications and tech companies."

 

14. U.S. Commandos Use Secretive Missiles to Kill Qaeda Leaders in Syria

The New York Times · by Eric Schmitt · September 24, 2020

Excerpt: "But in an opposite corner of the country, where the United States has no troops on the ground, the military’s secretive Joint Special Operations Command, with help from the C.I.A., is carrying out a shadow war against a different terrorist threat - a small but virulent Al Qaeda affiliate - that American officials say is plotting attacks against the West."

I guess it is not cliche to say this is one helluva missile: "But the modified Hellfire missile carries an inert warhead. Instead of exploding, it hurls about 100 pounds of metal through the top of a target’s vehicle. If the high-velocity projectile does not kill the target, the missile’s other feature almost certainly does: six long blades tucked inside, which deploy seconds before impact to slice up anything in its path... The Hellfire variant, known as the R9X, was initially developed nearly a decade ago under pressure from President Barack Obama to reduce civilian casualties and property damage in the United States’ long-running wars on terrorism in far-flung hot spots such as Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, Syria, Somalia and Yemen."

 

15. Ospreys draw eyes over Ukraine during special ops exercises

airforcetimes.com · by Stephen Losey · September 25, 2020

One of my regrets is that I never flew on a CV-22 while on active duty.

 

16. In a First, 100 Mexican Firefighters Arrive in California to Help Battle Wildfires

kqed.org · by Matthew Green

This is an amazing development on multiple levels.  Thank you to our Mexican neighbors for supporting the US in fighting this disaster.

 

17. Dire Straits - Should American Support for Taiwan Be Ambiguous?

Foreign Affairs – by Bonnie S. Glaser, Michael J. Mazarr, Michael J. Glennon, Richard Haass, and David Sacks - September 24, 2020

To be ambiguous or not to be ambiguous.  That is the question.

A very thoughtful debate/discussion below.

 

 

“The framers of the Constitution took deliberate steps to ensure that treason trials would not be used as political weapons against opponents. Article 3, Section 3 defines the crime very narrowly: ‘Treason against the United States shall consist only in levying war against them, or in adhering to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort.’ This language is drawn from an English statute from 1351 that was also intended to limit the scope of treason. Speaking against the government, undermining political opponents, supporting harmful policies or even placing the interests of another nation ahead of those of the United States are not acts of treason under the Constitution.”

- Carlton F.W. Larson

 

"Until you learn to teach yourself you will never be taught by others."

- J.F.C. Fuller

 

“Our own generation is unique, but sadly so, in producing a school of thinkers who are allegedly experts in military strategy and who are certainly specialists in military studies but who know virtually nothing of military history”

- Bernard Brodie, "The Continuing Relevance of On War"

Riley.C.Murray Sat, 09/26/2020 - 11:29am
09/26/2020 News & Commentary - Korea

News and Commentary by Dave Maxwell. Edited and Published by Riley Murray.

 

1. US joins Seoul in condemning North Korea for killing South Korean official

2. North apologizes for 'suspected' killing of South Korean civil servant

3. N. Korea breached inter-Korean military pact: experts

4. N.K. leader wished S. Koreans health, happiness in letter to Moon, Cheong Wa Dae says

5. N. Korea's killing of S. Korean citizen doesn't seem to have been ordered by Kim Jong-un: spy chief

6. Reports on official killed by N. Korea show discrepancies

7. N. Korean apology for killing incident a 'helpful step':State Dept.

8. What did our nation do for 3 days between civilian’s missing and gov’t announcement?

9. Moon briefed 4 times on killed civil servant, UN message too late to be changed: Cheong Wa Dae

10. U.S. flies spy aircraft over South Korea after N.K.'s killing of Seoul official

11. S. Korea to demand N. Korea make additional probe into killing

12. Kim Jong-un 'apologises for killing of South Korean official'

13. New virus cases fall back below 100 as nation vigilant ahead of key holiday (South Korea)

14. U.S. will support S. Korea's missile defense but decision is up to Seoul: U.S. diplomat

15. Colin Powell downplays threat from North at military conference

16. North Korea’s Yongbyon Nuclear Center: Drying Off

17. The Rise of Women Leaders in North Korea

 

 

1. US joins Seoul in condemning North Korea for killing South Korean official

The Korea Times · September 25, 2020

We should all heed my good friend Greg Scalatoiu's words here. Human rights are a moral imperative and a national security issue.

 

2. North apologizes for 'suspected' killing of South Korean civil servant

koreaherald.com · by The Korea Herald · September 25, 2020

This article illustrates the non-apology, apology.

One of the best explanations in addition to this article comes from Professor Sung Yoon Lee from Tufts who says that Kim Jong-un is playing a "great leader mind -trick" on South Korea with this apology and this apology is actually rebuke of South Korea.

I recommend listening to the 2 minute interview with Professor Lee here on PRI: https://www.pri.org/file/2020-09-25/rare-apology-north-korea

 

3. N. Korea breached inter-Korean military pact: experts

koreaherald.com · by The Korea Herald · September 25, 2020

It is time to recognize the regime has never lived up to the letter and spirit of the 2018 Comprehensive Military Agreement which is formally known as "Agreement on the Implementation of the

Historic Panmunjom Declaration in the Military Domain.  I recommend those with an interest in Korean issues to re-read the agreement and judge north Korean actions (and non-actions).

https://www.ncnk.org/sites/default/files/Agreement%20on%20the%20Implementation%20of%20the%20Historic%20Panmunjom%20Declaration%20in%20the%20Military%20Domain.pdf
 

4. N.K. leader wished S. Koreans health, happiness in letter to Moon, Cheong Wa Dae says

en.yna.co.kr · by 이치동 · September 25, 2020

I wish Woodward had interviewed President Moon so we could see the contents of this letter. I guess Trump is not the only one conducting unconventional, experimental, top-down, pen-pal diplomacy.   But on a serious note this is the Kim family regime's political warfare in action. Of course, the killing of the South Korean civil servant was not planned but any incident that may have occurred would be exploited in some to support Kim Jong-un's political warfare with juche characteristics. The excerpts below illustrate the foundation for future demands for concessions and humanitarian aid  even as the regime will blame the South for the COVID outbreak (the "re-defector" or north Korean operative who returned to Kaesong and conveniently tested positive for COVD-19)

 

5.  N. Korea's killing of S. Korean citizen doesn't seem to have been ordered by Kim Jong-un: spy chief

en.yna.co.kr · by 박보람 · September 25, 2020

While I agree that it is unlikely Kim order this killing. It was a chance encounter.  The unit did not call back to Pyongyang for permission to murder this South Korea.  It was likely operating within defense orders.  It illustrates the internet brutality that is endemic in the north Korean People's Army which is shaped by the party.

But NIS Director Park should not be attempting to let Kim Jong-un off the hook in hopes of sustaining the slight chance for north-South engagement.  What he should be focusing on is how Kim Jong-un is exploiting the chance incident in support of his blackmail diplomacy and political warfare.  The South must protect itself from being "played" again by the north.

 

6. Reports on official killed by N. Korea show discrepancies

donga.com – by Kyu-Jin Shin – 26 September 2020

I think the ROK government is going to come under a lot of criticism.

 

7. N. Korean apology for killing incident a 'helpful step': State Dept.

en.yna.co.kr · by 변덕근 · September 25, 2020

It is helpful for us to understand and expose north Korea's political warfare strategy.

 

8. What did our nation do for 3 days between civilian’s missing and gov’t announcement?

donga.com – 26 September 2020

More basis for criticism of the ROK government and its actions (or lack of timely actions).

 

9. Moon briefed 4 times on killed civil servant, UN message too late to be changed: Cheong Wa Dae

koreaherald.com · by The Korea Herald · September 25, 2020

People are not going to accept this.  A speechwriter could have quickly added a paragraph to his speech along the lines of - "Despite our strong desire for peace and to end the Korean War, north Korea and the mafia like crime family cult known as the Kim family regime continues to conduct brutal hostile operations against the Korean people of the South as well as the continued horrendous human rights abuses against the Korean people in the north. I have just learned that the north Korean People's Army has murdered a Korean from the South who was helplessly floating at sea.  After murdering him they burned his body using the excuse they had to prevent the possibility of the spread of COVID 19.  I call on Kim Jong-un to cease all human rights abuses and come to the negotiating table to seek peace and reconciliation on the Korean peninsula."  That took me about 2 minutes.  I am sure his speech writers could have done it even faster (though would not have used my over the top rhetoric about the regime!).

 

10. U.S. flies spy aircraft over South Korea after N.K.'s killing of Seoul official

en.yna.co.kr · by 오석민 · September 26, 2020

Prudence.

 

11. S. Korea to demand N. Korea make additional probe into killing

en.yna.co.kr · by 오석민 · September 26, 2020

I doubt the regime will respond favorably to this unless it thinks it can somehow exploit this to demand concessions from the South.

 

12. Kim Jong-un 'apologizes for killing of South Korean official'

BBC · September 25, 2020

More analysis on the non-apology, apology.  There may be a perfect storm brewing on the peninsula and in the region.

 

13. New virus cases fall back below 100 as nation vigilant ahead of key holiday (South Korea)

en.yna.co.kr · by 오석민 · September 26, 2020

Some good news.  Chuseok will be the test.

 

14.  U.S. will support S. Korea's missile defense but decision is up to Seoul: U.S. diplomat

en.yna.co.kr · by 변덕근 · September 26, 2020

But ideally, we will develop integrated missile defense capabilities (and even more ideal if we can do it trilaterally!)

 

15. Colin Powell downplays threat from North at military conference

koreajoongangdaily.joins.com

With all due respect to the general I do not think downplaying the threat (from nuclear and missile, to conventional, to regime instability and collapse, to provocations, to weapons proliferation to cyber-attacks, to human rights abuses, to global illicit activities and more) is not helpful.  Never assume the enemy will not attack (or collapse). Make yourself invisible." Sun Tzu.

Colin Powell downplays threat from North at military conference

 

16. North Korea’s Yongbyon Nuclear Center: Drying Off

38north.org · by Peter Makowsky · September 25, 2020

 

17. The Rise of Women Leaders in North Korea

https://www.38north.org/2020/09/ddraudt092520/ - by Darcie Draudt – 25 September 2020

Darcie Draudt is doing important work. This is even more timely and relevant given the rise of Kim Yo-jong.

 

 

“The framers of the Constitution took deliberate steps to ensure that treason trials would not be used as political weapons against opponents. Article 3, Section 3 defines the crime very narrowly: ‘Treason against the United States shall consist only in levying war against them, or in adhering to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort.’ This language is drawn from an English statute from 1351 that was also intended to limit the scope of treason. Speaking against the government, undermining political opponents, supporting harmful policies or even placing the interests of another nation ahead of those of the United States are not acts of treason under the Constitution.”

- Carlton F.W. Larson

 

"Until you learn to teach yourself you will never be taught by others."

- J.F.C. Fuller

 

“Our own generation is unique, but sadly so, in producing a school of thinkers who are allegedly experts in military strategy and who are certainly specialists in military studies but who know virtually nothing of military history”

- Bernard Brodie, "The Continuing Relevance of On War"

Riley.C.Murray Sat, 09/26/2020 - 11:12am
9/25/2020 News & Commentary - National Security

News & commentary by Dave Maxwell. Edited and published by Duncan Moore.

1. The Pentagon is eyeing a 500-ship Navy, documents reveal

2. Services to consider removing all identifying information from promotion board packets

3. Expert panel tells lawmakers U.S. needs to do more to counter Chinese Pacific expansion

4. Automatic US citizenship restored for all military children born overseas

5. America’s top Marine says the US must shake up its military presence in the Pacific

6. Thousands of Xinjiang mosques destroyed or damaged, report finds

7. Xi vs. Trump at the United Nations

8. Inside the Army’s fearless, messy, networked warfare experiment

9. Virus crisis accelerates debates over China, digital divide, panel says

10. US–China rivalry ramps up pressure on the Pacific islands

11. Marines weigh closing Parris Island and San Diego to open new coed boot camp

12. Two steps President Trump could take now to secure missile defense improvements

13. U.S. military, spies and allies fight fake news on social media with wit and humor

14. 8 surviving members of famed Merrill’s Marauders to receive Congressional Gold Medal

15. Weeks before election, Facebook shuts down alleged Russian military intelligence operation

16. Bias in U.S. military promotions cited as senators offer measure

17. US bill halts military aid to PH over rights issue

 

1. The Pentagon is eyeing a 500-ship Navy, documents reveal

Defense News · by David Larter, Aaron Mehta · September 24, 2020

Can we afford this? I believe we need a strong Navy, but are we going to be able to pay for this? 

 

2. Services to consider removing all identifying information from promotion board packets

Military Times · by Meghann Myers · September 24, 2020

I really wonder how this will work. Is it practical? Evaluation reports will have to be edited (think of the use of gender pronouns throughout evaluations as one example), but those reports combined with assignment history (with dates of assignment) will still provide identifying information, especially as personnel become more senior. It is relatively simple to determine who people serving in battalion command and above are.

 

3. Expert panel tells lawmakers U.S. needs to do more to counter Chinese Pacific expansion

USNI News · by John Grady · September 24, 2020

 

4. Automatic US Citizenship Restored for All Military Children Born Overseas

Military.com · by Richard Sisk · September 24, 2020

It is unbelievable that this was even necessary. It was a relatively simple process for us to ensure our daughter's citizenship in 2000 when she was born in Seoul (121 Hospital in Yongsan). The rules put in place in 2019 are just an indication of how certain people really view the US military personnel and civil servants serving their country overseas. Those who enacted these rules or directed the enactment of these rules should be ashamed of themselves.

 

5. America’s top Marine says the US must shake up its military presence in the Pacific

Defense News · by David Larter · September 24, 2020

We need strategic flexibility and our Korean allies do need to understand this. We cannot give up our commitment to Northeast Asia, but we have to have strategic flexibility for all US forces.

That said, Northeast Asia is the most militarized and (potentially) most dangerous region in the world. It is the nexus of the 2d and 3d largest economies of the world, some of the largest armies in the world (China, North Korea, South Korea, Russia, and even Japan), two nuclear powers (China and Russia), and a rogue state that possesses nuclear weapons (nNorth Korea). What happens on the Korean peninsula and in Northeast Asia will have global effects economically and can have catastrophic national security effects. So, while I agree with the Commandant in many respects, we cannot neglect the fact Northeast Asia will remain the potential flashpoint for the world.

 

6. Thousands of Xinjiang mosques destroyed or damaged, report finds

Guardian · by Helen Davidson · September 25, 2020

China's human rights abuses cannot go unchallenged by the international community.

 

7. Xi vs. Trump at the United Nations

FDD · by Thomas Joscelyn · September 23, 2020

 

8. Inside the Army’s fearless, messy, networked warfare experiment

Defense One · by Patrick Tucker · September 24, 2020

 

9. Virus crisis accelerates debates over China, digital divide, panel says

Washington Times · by Guy Taylor · by September 24, 2020

 

10. US–China rivalry ramps up pressure on the Pacific islands

East Asia Forum · by Denghua Zhang · September 25, 2020

Will we establish bases in the Pacific Islands (e.g., Palau?)

 

11. Marines weigh closing Parris Island and San Diego to open new coed boot camp

Military.com · by Gina Harkins · September 24, 2020

Close the iconic recruit depots? Wow. The Marines are shaking things up.

 

12. Two steps President Trump could take now to secure missile defense improvements

Defense News · by Trey Obering & Rebecca Heinrichs · September 23, 2020

Missile defense and missile attack are arguably two of the most important capabilities for the future.

 

13. U.S. military, spies and allies fight fake news on social media with wit and humor

Newsweek · by Naveed Jamili & Tom O’Connor · September 24, 2020

 

14. 8 surviving members of famed Merrill’s Marauders to receive Congressional Gold Medal

Military Times · by Claire Barrett · September 24, 2020

Some good news. Better late than never.

 

15. Weeks before election, Facebook shuts down alleged Russian military intelligence operation

CNN · by Donie O'Sullivan · September 24, 2020

We must be more aggressive than the Russians in shutting these down.

 

16. Bias in U.S. military promotions cited as senators offer measure

Bloomberg · by Josyana Joshua · September 24, 2020

Again, how practical will this really be? The truth is future general officers are identified early in their career by other general officers. The words "must select for general officer" (or other "code words") written by general officers on evaluation reports throughout an officer's career do more to determine promotion to general officer than race or gender or anything else. If you do not have those words consistently written in your evaluation reports throughout your career, you are unlikely to be promoted to general officer.

 

17. US bill halts military aid to PH over rights issue

Inquirer.net · by Philippine Daily Inquirer · September 25, 2020

Obviously, this could have a serious impact.

 

"Because arrogance is born in personal vanity, arrogant people are driven without mercy. They can never get enough power to fill the soul's needs or enough respect to overcome the fear that they deserve less than they are getting."

-Lewis B. Smedes

"Remind me to write an article on the compulsive reading of news. The theme will be that most neuroses can be traced to the unhealthy habit of wallowing in the troubles of five billion strangers."

- Robert A. Heinlein

"Foreknowledge cannot be gotten from ghosts and spirits, cannot be had by analogy, cannot be found out by calculation. It must be obtained from people, people who know the conditions of the enemy."

- Sun Tzu, The Art of War

dwmiv Fri, 09/25/2020 - 11:33am
9/25/2020 News & Commentary - Korea

News & commentary by Dave Maxwell. Edited and published by Duncan Moore.

1.  N.K. leader apologizes to S. Koreans for 'unsavory' shooting case: Cheong Wa Dae

2. The unrepentant brutality of the Kim regime

3. North Korea commits act of brutality

4. Gov't and military are in dereliction of duty

5. What was S. Korea doing for 34 hours after its civilian was killed by N. Korea?

6. 3 fall Army brigade deployments to Afghanistan, South Korea and Europe announced

7. Fertilizer factory explosion claims eight deaths in S. Pyongan Province

8. N. Korea and China recently signed agreement aimed at easing border tensions

9. Repatriated North Korean escapee asks police to send her back to prison

10. North Korea arrests two for using fake money to buy food

11. Moon vows firm response to threats to S. Koreans' lives, safety

12. New defense minister holds first meeting with USFK commander

13. N.K.'s apology shows hotline between Seoul, Pyongyang spy agencies possibly in operation

14. Pyongyang General Hospital: a bright white beacon after the rains

15. Moon's adviser suggests N.K. leader hold summit with Moon and explain about killing

16. For North Korea, UN membership is a key link to larger world

17. What would Trump do with North Korea if he wins a second term?

18. North Korea's nuclear fishing lesson

 

1. N.K. leader apologizes to S. Koreans for 'unsavory' shooting case: Cheong Wa Dae

Yonhap News Agency · by lcd@yna.co.kr · September 25, 2020

What military has their soldiers carry blank rounds while on active duty guarding their nation? Firing two blanks and then 10 live rounds? 

Notice the admonition in this apology - the South should be helping with the suffering from the coronavirus.

We should not be duped by this "apology." Kim is conducting his usual political warfare with Juche characteristics. Yes, it is unusual to receive such a message so quickly. It may be because Kim is facing so many internal problems and he is preparing for future blackmail diplomacy to coerce aid from the South after blaming it for any COVID outbreak in the North (recall the re-defection of the likely North Korean operative who returned to Kaesong who the North said had tested positive for COVID?). The North is likely going to make demands of the South in the near future so this is a necessary step to prepare for that.

So, they only burned the material but never recovered the body? Note the letter counters what the North calls the regrettable that the South Korean military would say they burned the body. (I would bet the signal intercepts confirm the burning).

This is in no way a sincere apology. Again, this is political warfare. And this action by North Korean soldiers is an indication of the nature of the Kim family regime.

I fear this unusual apology will be misinterpreted as Kim is changing his ways and will actually be used as justification for advancing engagement with the North because Kim has apologized and express sincere regret. The only thing Kim regrets is that he has not yet extorted sufficient concessions from the South.  But he will spin (and is spinning) this incident in a way to set up getting such concessions.

 

2. The unrepentant brutality of the Kim regime

HRNK · by Greg Scarlatoiu · September 24, 2020

Statement from our Executive Director of the Committee on Human Rights in North Korea on North Korea's brutality. We should not forget that the Kim family regime is the worst human rights abuser in the modern era. And we should not believe that the North's rapid "apology" indicates any sincere repentance.

 

3. North Korea commits act of brutality

Dong-A Ilbo · by Editorial Board · September 25, 2020

The Dong-A Ilbo editorial board weighs in.

 

4. Gov't and military are in dereliction of duty

Chosun Ilbo · by Editorial Board · September 25, 2020

Questions on this tragic event's timeline. I think that, despite the regime's apology and, frankly, bulls**t explanation (e.g., firing blank rounds??), I am pretty confident there are intelligence intercepts that capture the NKPA describing what happened in real time. But there are some difficult and important questions for the South Korean military and government.

 

5. What was S. Korea doing for 34 hours after its civilian was killed by N. Korea?

Dong-A Ilbo · by Kyu-Jin Shin · September 25, 2020

A key question. Obviously, this undermines confidence in the military and the government. It also reinforces the perception the South wants engagement to support peace at all costs. The costs of peace can be catastrophic in blood and treasure if that peace is not built on a foundation of resolute strength and the commitment to national security above political agendas.

 

6. 3 fall Army brigade deployments to Afghanistan, South Korea and Europe announced

Army Times · by Kyle Rempfer · September 24, 2020

I am waiting for the shoe to drop on Korea. Cancelling the brigade rotation to Korea and bringing home the current rotational brigade with no replacement would be an October surprise to say that we are reducing forces because Korea will not pay for the US presence. It would not technically violate the NDAA, which says no funds will be appropriated for withdrawal of forces unless the SECEDEF certifies such withdrawal will not harm the national security of the US and its allies. Fortunately, I have not heard any discussion of this idea but, for those with a political agenda rather than a national security agenda, I could see this idea as one they would consider.

 

7. Fertilizer factory explosion claims eight deaths in S. Pyongan Province

Daily NK · by Jong So Yong · September 25, 2020

It is dangerous to work in fertilizer factories anywhere but especially in North Korea. And, of course, fertilizer can be dual use. 

But note how the Socialist Workers Paradise of North Korea and the Kim family regime treats its people.

 

8. N. Korea and China recently signed agreement aimed at easing border tensions

Daily NK · by Jang Seul Gi · September 25, 2020

Ease tensions but not trade restrictions? Note the subtitle. Failure to re-open the border means the 400+ markets will continue to be severely impacted, which will contribute to the widespread suffering of the Korean people in the North.

 

9. Repatriated North Korean escapee asks police to send her back to prison

Radio Free Asia · by Jien Kim, Leejin Jun, & Eugene Whong · September 23, 2020

The suffering many Korean in the North endure is just unimaginable.

 

10. North Korea arrests two for using fake money to buy food

Radio Free Asia · by Hyemin Son, Leejin Jun, & Eugene Whong · September 23, 2020

North Korea is arguably the most proficient nation in the world at counterfeiting money (e.g, US one hundred-dollar bills). So, I guess it follows that it should be good at spotting counterfeits used among the population. But the real story is how much the Korean people are suffering and how desperate they are to survive.

 

11. Moon vows firm response to threats to S. Koreans' lives, safety

Yonhap News Agency · lcd@yna.co.kr · September 25, 2020

I have not been able to visit the new Special Warfare Command at Icheon. It is interesting that President Moon gave his address there.

But this statement begs the question: what actions will he take?

 

12. New defense minister holds first meeting with USFK commander

Yonhap News Agency · scaaet@yna.co.kr · September 25, 2020

I wish he had met with the ROK/US Combined Forces Command commander as well as the United Nations Command commander.  (note my attempt at humor for those who understand the complex command relationships in Korea)

 

13. N.K.'s apology shows hotline between Seoul, Pyongyang spy agencies possibly in operation

Yonhap News Agency · julesyi@yna.co.kr · September 25, 2020

I will bet there is even international cell phone connectivity. I bet the head of the NIS in the South and the head of the UFD and the RGB in North Korea have exchanged cell phone numbers. The "hotline" concept may be outdated. But it is fun for the press to speculate about it.

 

14. Pyongyang General Hospital: a bright white beacon after the rains

38 North · by Samantha J. Pitz · September 24, 2020

If and when complete, will the regime begin to announce that it has a coronavirus outbreak?

 

15. Moon's adviser suggests N.K. leader hold summit with Moon and explain about killing

Yonhap News Agency · by elly@yna.co.kr · September 25, 2020

Only Moon Chung-In could try to spin the North's brutal act (as well as its previous demolition of the liaison office) as a way to create a summit opportunity. But I doubt the North would come to a summit and "explain" its actions to President Moon.

 

16. For North Korea, UN membership is a key link to larger world

Miami Herald · by Foster Klug · September 24, 2020

 

17. What would Trump do with North Korea if he wins a second term?

National Interest · by Wallace C. Gregson · September 24, 2020

Good question. But what I want to know is what Kim Jong-Un will do if he is elected for a 2d term or if Biden wins.

 

18. North Korea's nuclear fishing lesson

Washington Examiner · by Tom Rogan · September 24, 2020

An interesting assessment. I disagree with the characterization of being erratic. I think the military was acting as it was trained and within its orders. It may seem erratic to us, but I think it is an indication of the mindset that has been instilled in the military. But does that mean Kim is going to launch an ICBM with a nuclear warhead at the US? No one can know for sure, which is why we must never assume the enemy will not attack, but make ourselves invincible (Sun Tzu).

 

"Because arrogance is born in personal vanity, arrogant people are driven without mercy. They can never get enough power to fill the soul's needs or enough respect to overcome the fear that they deserve less than they are getting."

-Lewis B. Smedes

"Remind me to write an article on the compulsive reading of news. The theme will be that most neuroses can be traced to the unhealthy habit of wallowing in the troubles of five billion strangers."

- Robert A. Heinlein

"Foreknowledge cannot be gotten from ghosts and spirits, cannot be had by analogy, cannot be found out by calculation. It must be obtained from people, people who know the conditions of the enemy."

- Sun Tzu, The Art of War

dwmiv Fri, 09/25/2020 - 10:16am
9/25/2020 News & Commentary – Korea

News & commentary by Dave Maxwell. Edited and published by Daniel Riggs

1. N. Korea shoots S. Korean official to death at sea, burns his body: defense ministry

2. Moon calls N. Korea's killing of S. Korean official 'shocking,' not tolerable for any reason

3. Inter-Korean ties thrown into abyss following N. Korea's killing of S. Korean citizen

4. New virus cases over 100 for 2nd day, sporadic cluster infections still worrisome

5. Unification ministry strongly condemns N. Korea's killing of S. Korean as 'inhumane act'

6. Unification Ministry suspends investigations into human rights in N. Korea

7. North Korean Provocations Likely Around U.S. Presidential Election

8. Missiles, Submarines and More: How North Korea Supplies Iran With Weapons

9. Kim Jong-un 'narrowly avoided assassination attempt' by North Korean foes

10. Moon pleads for UN to end the Korean War

11. Donald Trump’s Second-Term North Korea Strategy: A Deal or Ignore Kim?

12. There Isn’t A Military Solution to North Korea (And The American Public Agrees)

13. Pompeo to visit S. Korea next month

14. How Coronavirus Impacts North Korea's Nuclear Program

15. How Extreme Flooding in the DPRK Affects Daily Life

16. Japan PM tells South Korea it’s time to fix strained ties

17. Warner Bros. to Cut Operations in South Korea (Report)

 

1. N. Korea shoots S. Korean official to death at sea, burns his body: defense ministry

en.yna.co.kr · by 오석민 · September 24, 2020

This is quite a response to President Moon’s call for an end of war declaration and a peace process for the Korean peninsula.

 

2. Moon calls N. Korea's killing of S. Korean official 'shocking,' not tolerable for any reason

en.yna.co.kr · by 이치동 · September 24, 2020

President Moon please reassess your assumption that Kim Jong-un desires your vision of peace on the Korean peninsula.  This is an indication of the true nature of the Kim family regime though I am sure the regime will blame this on "rogue elements."  While that may be so in this case but they were acting in accordance with their training indoctrination. Would South Korean military personnel have done this?  It is time to assess the Kim family regime as it really is and not as we would wish it to be.

 

3. Inter-Korean ties thrown into abyss following N. Korea's killing of S. Korean citizen

en.yna.co.kr · by 고병준 · September 24, 2020

north-South relations have been in an abyss for 7 decades or at least since the Pyongyang Declaration in 2018.  Kim Jong-un has no intention of pursuing peace in accordance with President Moon's vision. Regardless of the olive branches the South offers the regime will always be the Scorpion - "because it is my nature."

 

4. New virus cases over 100 for 2nd day, sporadic cluster infections still worrisome

en.yna.co.kr · by 주경돈 · September 24, 2020

Cope, contain, and manage.  The coronavirus is a virus like the Kim family regime.  One that just will not go away and cannot yet be cured or eradicated. 

 

5. Unification ministry strongly condemns N. Korea's killing of S. Korean as 'inhumane act'

en.yna.co.kr · by 이원주 · September 24, 2020

Pro forma from the MOU.  But is this a human rights abuse?

 

6. Unification Ministry suspends investigations into human rights in N. Korea

donga.com· September 16, 2020

I want to reprise this article to emphasize how the Ministry of Unification views human rights in north Korea.  Human rights in north Korea is a moral imperative and a national security issue and cannot be overlooked, sidelined, minimized, or neglected.

 

7. North Korean Provocations Likely Around U.S. Presidential Election

CSIS  · by Victor Cha

I am not so sure this time due to what is happening inside north Korea, but this is some excellent background on provocations.

 

8. Missiles, Submarines and More: How North Korea Supplies Iran With Weapons

The National Interest · by Mark Episkopos · September 23, 2020

It is good the author is linking to Dr. Bruce Becthol's work.

 

9. Kim Jong-un 'narrowly avoided assassination attempt' by North Korean foes

dailystar.co.uk · by Robin Cottle · September 23, 2020

A sensational report from the UK Daily Star that should be taken with a big grain of salt.  This is also being reported by the Japanese Self Defense Forces.

If we are going to think about possible assassination of Kim Jong-un I would call attention to the research and analysis of Dr. Sungmin Cho.  This is a less likely scenario.

 

10. Moon pleads for UN to end the Korean War

asiatimes.com · by Andrew Salmon · September 23, 2020

I doubt the UN will move on this.  And I think the only way to bring an end to the Korean War is for the north and South to negotiate an end to the war.  Perhaps the UN could offer to facilitate negotiations but we should keep in mind the UN Security Council Resolutions 82-85 which are still in effect.  The UN identified north Korea as the aggressor who attacked the sovereignty of the South and the UN called on members states to come to the defense of the Republic of Korea's freedom.  The two belligerents are the north and South.  The UN provided a UN Command and member states to help defend the South under UN authority and the UN flag.  The PRC provided the Chinese People's Volunteers to support the north.  The US did not declare war on north Korea.  So an end of war declaration should be concluded between the north and South.  And the only effective way for that to occur should be through a peace treaty properly negotiated and approved by the north and South, which of course poses constitutional problems for both north and South since they do not recognize the existence of the other and both claim sovereignty over the entire peninsula and all Korean people.

 

11. Donald Trump’s Second-Term North Korea Strategy: A Deal or Ignore Kim?

The National Interest · by Robert E. Kelly · September 23, 2020

A pessimistic view from Professor Kelly.  Either broad possibility is problematic and I hope we will find a more effective way forward (whomever wins the election).

 

12. There Isn’t A Military Solution to North Korea (And The American Public Agrees)

The National Interest · by Jessica Lee · September 23, 2020

First of all there is always a military solution.  There are multiple military solutions to north Korea; however, it is unlikely we want to expend the blood and treasure to implement them unless the north forces our hand.  

But it is this kind of analysis that undermines diplomacy and peaceful solutions because it undermines deterrence.  Kim Jong-un must know that we are always preparing military options and depending on the conditions that we have the capability and the will to execute them.

There are pundits who claim the north wants security guarantees and to be left alone which is why it has built the 4th largest army in the world and developed nuclear and ICBM capabilities.  That is only half right.  While it claims deterrence and the desire for its own security, it wants to be left alone so that it can have its way with South Korea and dominate the entire peninsula. 

One of the basic traits of the Kim family regime is that it exploits weakness and respects strength.  And strength deters the regime.  It is arguments such as this that undermines that strength and shows weakness that will be exploited by the regime.

But let me be clear as to my personal beliefs:

  • I support peace on the Korean peninsula
  • I support a diplomatic solution to the north Korean nuclear threat
  • I support ROK engagement with the north
  • I do not support a weakening of the ROK and ROK/US defensive capabilities
  • I believe there cannot be success for US, ROK, and Japanese interests without strong ROK/US and Japan/US alliances
  • Despite the above I think we have to accept that north Korea may have a continued hostile strategy and therefore while we prioritize diplomacy we have to remain prepared for the worst cases.  I hope I am wrong here and that Kim Jong-un will dismantle his nuclear weapons and seek peaceful co-existence.
  • There are no ”experts” on north Korea – it is the most difficult intelligence target – the proverbial “hard target”
  • At best we are students trying to understand the nature of the regime and the security problem on the Korean peninsula
  • Anything I say can and should be challenged
  • However, now that I am retired I am no longer constrained by doctrine, funding, or a chain of command so I can tell you how I really feel

 

13. Pompeo to visit S. Korea next month

en.yna.co.kr · by 김보람 · September 23, 2020

What is on the agenda? China? Quad Plus? Special Measures Agreement?  north Korea?

 

14. How Coronavirus Impacts North Korea's Nuclear Program

The National Interest · by Yong-Chool Ha · September 23, 2020

 

15. How Extreme Flooding in the DPRK Affects Daily Life

38north.org · by 38 North · September 23, 2020

 

16. Japan PM tells South Korea it’s time to fix strained ties

apnews.com · by Mari Yamaguchi

It takes two to solve this problem.  Are Moon and Suga willing to pledge that they place national security and national prosperity first priorities while pledging to manage the historical issues.

 

17. Warner Bros. to Cut Operations in South Korea (Report)

Variety · by Patrick Frater · September 23, 2020

 

---------------

 

"Perhaps the most central characteristic of authentic leadership is the relinquishing of the impulse to dominate others."

- David Cooper

 

"The young always have the same problem - how to rebel and conform at the same time. They have solved this by defying their parents and copying one another."

- Quentin Crisp

 

"Read, observe, listen intensely. As if your life depended upon it."

- Joyce Carol Oates

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DanielRiggs Thu, 09/24/2020 - 10:35am
9/25/2020 News & Commentary – National Security

News & commentary by Dave Maxwell. Edited and published by Daniel Riggs

1. Three Ways to Clean Up the Toxic Minefields of Social Media

2. The Mysterious Case of the Missing 250-Ton Chinese Power Transformer

3. Sen. Tammy Duckworth introduces bill to ban camouflage for federal agents

4. Secret Service consults with Cyber Command, private sector in updated approach to financial crime

5. Cyber Airmen Trained for a China-Taiwan Conflict That Unfolds Online

6. PACAF: Chinese Propaganda Targeting Andersen AFB is an Attempt to Intimidate

7. These Marine Expeditionary Forces are creating new war plans with Navy fleets to counter China

8. CIA clamps down on flow of Russia intelligence to White House

9. An Asian NATO? The U.S. Has Better Options for Its Allies

10. FBI, DHS Warn of 'Likely' Disinformation Campaigns About Election Results

11. FBI and CISA PSA: Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) | Foreign Actors and Cybercriminals Likely to Spread Disinformation Regarding 2020 Election Result

12. (Philippine) Army captain named as operator of fake Facebook accounts

13. Op-Ed: Retired military leaders shouldn’t endorse presidential candidates. America is divided enough

14. Navy SEAL Chief Who Defied Trump Steps Down For New Assignment

15. What U.S. Troops Are Really Doing In Syria

16. The US is preparing for a fight with China in the Pacific. Here's how Army special operators will fit in

17. New Game, the First Offered by RAND to Public, Challenges Players to Design Defense Strategies for Uncertain World

 

1. Three Ways to Clean Up the Toxic Minefields of Social Media

defenseone.com · by Welton Chang, Dowan Lee and Peter W. Singer

Key points: " Recent actions taken by platforms like Facebook and Twitter to ban political ads, demonetize hateful content, and put disclaimers on certain types of content that is broad reaching and verifiably false, show that social media companies can, in fits and starts, make changes for the better. Yet their approach is woefully late and lacking. It is often characterized by an ex-post response, lack of sustained action, and insufficient sense of urgency.

 

2. The Mysterious Case of the Missing 250-Ton Chinese Power Transformer

Vice

It is a mystery. I would err on the side of caution despite Mr. Lee's research paper debunking the backdoor myth.  I think this could be a page out of Unrestricted Warfare and I think it is a god thing this transformer is not attached to our electrical grid.

 

3. Sen. Tammy Duckworth introduces bill to ban camouflage for federal agents

Newsweek · by Jeffery Martin · September 23, 2020

Police should wear the uniforms of police. The military should wear the uniforms of the military.

 

4. Secret Service consults with Cyber Command, private sector in updated approach to financial crime

cyberscoop.com · by Shannon Vavra · September 23, 2020

Interagency coordination: "Meanwhile, Secret Service also has been staffing up at Cyber Command facilities to gather information from the military’s work about foreign hackers, said Jeremy Sheridan, a deputy assistant director at the agency."

And a "whole of society" effort: "Known as the Cyber Investigations Advisory Board (CIAB), the group met last week for the first time and is expected to provide insights on how the Secret Service must adapt to a rapidly changing criminal underground. The agency is best known for protecting public officials, but it has a long history of fighting financial crime, too."

 

5. Cyber Airmen Trained for a China-Taiwan Conflict That Unfolds Online

airforcemag.com · by Rachel S. Cohen · September 23, 2020

I wonder if the war has already begun in the cyber domain.

 

6. PACAF: Chinese Propaganda Targeting Andersen AFB is an Attempt to Intimidate

airforcemag.com · by Brian W. Everstine · September 23, 2020
China's three warfares: psychological warfare, legal warfare or lawfare, and media or public opinion warfare.  Politics is war by other means and China is conducting political warfare.  Can we compete in this form of Great Power Competition?

 

7. These Marine Expeditionary Forces are creating new war plans with Navy fleets to counter China

marinecorpstimes.com · by Todd South · September 23, 2020

Key point:  "Commandant Gen. David Berger’s guidance has shifted the Corps' focus to a lighter force teamed with its Navy partner to provide combat capabilities that the fleet needs to deter and defeat China along a spectrum of conflict.  And that has all eyes on III MEF, as it sits within firing distance of China."

 

8. CIA clamps down on flow of Russia intelligence to White House

Politico

  1.   A lot of accusations in this. Troubling , if true.

 

9. An Asian NATO? The U.S. Has Better Options for Its Allies

Bloomberg · by Hal Brands · September 23, 2020

What is old is new again. We have tried SEATO and NEATO before.

I think there is merit to some new arrangements in the Aisa-Pacific but they have to be based on the unique political, cultural, geographic, and security conditions and situations that exist.  I would like to see a community of democracies that come together because they share the common values of liberal democracy, individual freedom, free market economy, rule of law, and human rights and who want to protect those values rather than coming together to simply counter the China threat.  But we must also consider the arrangements in a broader context than military and security.  We must also secure ourselves against political warfare, economic warfare, information and influence warfare, cultural warfare and coercive diplomacy or punishment diplomacy.  We should learn a lesson from our deployment of THAAD to the Korean peninsula.  We did that for valid security purposes to protect US and Korean military forces from north Korean missile attacks and because of the nature of the system protects the South Korea population as well.  But as we know China objected and conducted economic warfare against the ROK and ROK business as well as "punishment diplomacy." We did not come to the defense of our ally.  If a new architecture is to be championed it must include mutual defense against the full spectrum of warfare. 

But I agree with Professor Brands that we must shore up our bilateral alliances.  And I would say that only when those alliances are shored up can we consider a broader architecture.

 

10. FBI, DHS Warn of 'Likely' Disinformation Campaigns About Election Results

darkreading.com

Again we have to stop the argument of which candidates are our adversaries trying to support and all agree that they are trying to undermine the legitimacy of our democratic process.  All sides of the political spectrum should be united in defending against these external threats and protecting our electoral process and our nation.

 

11. FBI and CISA PSA: Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) | Foreign Actors and Cybercriminals Likely to Spread Disinformation Regarding 2020 Election Result 

ic3.gov

We need to understand, expose, and counter these threats.  We need to be prepared against the disinformation that will inevitably proliferate as we count votes between the November 3d election and the meeting of the Electoral College on December 3d to determine the next president.

 

12. (Philippine) Army captain named as operator of fake Facebook accounts

rappler.com· Camille Elemia· September 23, 2020

 

13. Op-Ed: Retired military leaders shouldn’t endorse presidential candidates. America is divided enough

Los Angeles Times  · by  ML Cavanaugh· September 23, 2020

 

14. Navy SEAL Chief Who Defied Trump Steps Down For New Assignment

kpbs.org · by Steve Walsh· September 23, 2020

My comments below. I think the headline editor made two errors - Rear Admiral Green is not a "Navy Chief" but he obviously meant "Chief" of the Navy Seals.  And while he is technically "stepping down" from command of NAVSPECWARCOM I think some might interpret the title to mean his new job as Chief of Staff of USSOCOM is a step down (though I think we all know that anything following a command and going from a command to a staff positions feels like a step down. 

 

15. What U.S. Troops Are Really Doing In Syria

The National Interest · by Michael Hall · September 23, 2020

A strong negative critique: "U.S. policy toward Syria is defined by an absurdity that can’t be neatly untangled—a low-intensity regime change mission defined as anything other than its central mission. Every now and then, we’re offered a new explanation for why our troops are in Syria. At this point, the best response is to say, “enough is enough. ”We don’t need to keep playing this game of roulette where Washington spins the wheel and tells us why our troops are there—it’s a racket and should be recognized as such. Syria’s problems aren't our problems and the only sensible option that comports with U.S. interests is a full withdrawal of American forces."

 

16. The US is preparing for a fight with China in the Pacific. Here's how Army special operators will fit in

taskandpurpose.com · by Stavros Atlamazoglou, Business Insider

The two SOF "trinities" apply across the spectrum of Great Power Competition in the Asia Pacific and around the world.

 

  • Irregular Warfare
  • Unconventional Warfare
  • Support to Political Warfare


The Comparative advantage of SOF:

  • Governance
  • Influence
  • Support to indigenous forces and populations

And of course the exquisite CT and DA capabilities will remain a no-fail national requirement

 

17. New Game, the First Offered by RAND to Public, Challenges Players to Design Defense Strategies for Uncertain World

RAND

 

-------------------

 

"Perhaps the most central characteristic of authentic leadership is the relinquishing of the impulse to dominate others."

- David Cooper

 

"The young always have the same problem - how to rebel and conform at the same time. They have solved this by defying their parents and copying one another."

- Quentin Crisp

 

"Read, observe, listen intensely. As if your life depended upon it."

- Joyce Carol Oates

DanielRiggs Thu, 09/24/2020 - 10:33am
9/23/2020 News & Commentary – National Security

News & commentary by Dave Maxwell. Edited and published by Daniel Riggs

1. How to Counter the Chinese Communist Party by H. R. McMaster

2. The world is losing the money laundering fight

3. Who is a terrorist, actually? by Daniel L. Byman

4. Marine Corps’ Builds New Littoral Regiment, Eye On Fake Chinese Islands

5. The Military’s Latest Wearables Can Detect Illness Two Days Before You Get Sick

6. Why skepticism -- not China -- may be the greatest threat to US Pacific strategy

7. Biden Wants to Keep Special Ops in the Mideast. That Doesn’t Mean More ‘Forever Wars,’ His Adviser Says

8. Duterte Gets Tough on China, Leaning Back to Old Ally America

9. Rodrigo Duterte: The Weak Strongman of the Philippines

10. Facebook deletes several fake Chinese accounts targeting Trump and Biden, in first takedown of its kind

11. How Serious Are Threats to the U.S. Homeland?

12. Formal Ties With U.S.? Not For Now, Says Taiwan Foreign Minister

13. China is escalating its punishment diplomacy

14. US strategic clarity on Taiwan could deter China

15. A consensus-driven joint concept for all-domain warfare will fall short

16. The Transformation of Diplomacy- How to Save the State Department

17. China's New War Game Doesn't Prove It Could Successfully Invade Taiwan

18. We Need to Bridge the Gap Between the COIN Generation and the Next Generation

 

1. How to Counter the Chinese Communist Party by H. R. McMaster

National Review Online · by H. R. McMaster · September 22, 2020

Just received his book last evening from Amazon.  Looking forward to reading it this weekend.

 

2. The world is losing the money laundering fight

The Sydney Morning Herald · by Elisa Martinuzzi · September 22, 2020

Does not sound good.  We have to protect our financial systems.

 

3. Who is a terrorist, actually? by Daniel L. Byman

The Brookings Institution · by Daniel L. Byman · September 22, 2020

I hope this is read objectively but it likely will not be by the political tribes.

 

4. Marine Corps’ Builds New Littoral Regiment, Eye On Fake Chinese Islands

breakingdefense.com · by Paul McLeary

Fake Chinese islands!! A Marine will say my grandfather captured Iwo Jima and all I got was a fake Chinese island. (Apologies for the attempt at humor)

 

5. The Military’s Latest Wearables Can Detect Illness Two Days Before You Get Sick

defenseone.com · by Patrick Tucker

A fascinating capability.  I hope it works.

 

6. Why skepticism -- not China -- may be the greatest threat to US Pacific strategy

Washington Examiner · by Craig Singleton · September 23, 2020

Key point:  "Contrary to headlines about the importance of new Department of Defense investment in the region, America’s success in the Western Pacific will ultimately rise and fall based on positive political outcomes as much as it will by military ones."

For our adversaries politics is war by other means.  We must understand that is the essence of Great Power Competition even as we want to define Great Power Competition as state-on-state warfare.

 

7. Biden Wants to Keep Special Ops in the Mideast. That Doesn’t Mean More ‘Forever Wars,’ His Adviser Says

TIME · by Kimberly Dozier · September 23, 2020

A long read on SOF from Kim Dozier. Extensive quotes from Colin Kahl and LTG (RET) Mike Nagata.  This is worth the read for Mike's quotes and observations on SOF in Syria alone.

 

8. Duterte Gets Tough on China, Leaning Back to Old Ally America

Bloomberg · by Philip Heijmans and Andreo Calonzo · September 23, 2020

 

9. Rodrigo Duterte: The Weak Strongman of the Philippines

thediplomat.com · by Mong Palatino · September 21, 2020

Key points: "Duterte has so far sought to overcome these various crises by launching ferocious attacks on activists, shutting down of critical media networks and passing a draconian anti-terror law.  Duterte’s health is deteriorating but he seems hellbent in defending his presidency. But if Duterte’s health continues to decline, or he is otherwise perceived to be ailing, this could be a quandary for the ruling party as the nation moves toward the 2022 presidential elections."

 

10. Facebook deletes several fake Chinese accounts targeting Trump and Biden, in first takedown of its kind

The Washington Post · September 22, 2020

I think we need to purge our biases that say China, Russia, Iran and others want one candidate to win over the other.  Their actions are not really focused on supporting candidates for the purposes of them winning.  Their intention is solely to sow division in the US and undermine the legitimacy of the American democratic process.  And of course they want to harm democracies beyond the US as well.

But this is an interesting connection to the Philippines.

 

11. How Serious Are Threats to the U.S. Homeland?

lawfareblog.com · by Daniel Byman and Seamus Hughes · September 18, 2020

Conclusion: "Action by counterterrorism professionals at the FBI and the National Counterterrorism Center is vital not only for keeping the country safe but also for allowing Americans to mobilize to discuss contentious issues and advocate for their preferred positions without the specter of violence hanging over them. Violence and the fear of it can contaminate politics, leading to the dismissal of different viewpoints as extremist and to calls for government crackdowns on legitimate dissent. At the same time, the more divided the country is, the easier it is for even small attacks to have a disproportionate effect on America and further weaken national cohesion."

 

12. Formal Ties With U.S.? Not For Now, Says Taiwan Foreign Minister

NPR · by John Ruwitch · September 22, 2020

Excellent statement form Minister Wu: "Taiwan is on the front line of the democracies fighting for freedom, democracy and democratic way of life. We have the responsibility to make sure that democracy is successful, and if we want to make sure that democracy in Taiwan is a success, I would certainly urge the international community to voice more support for Taiwan."

 

13. China is escalating its punishment diplomacy

Financial Times · by Jamil Anderlini · September 23, 2020

Key point:  "Today, China claims to be the biggest trade partner to 130 countries and regions and the demonstration effect  - “killing the chicken to scare the monkeys” as it is known in China - is often enough to cow others into compliance."

 

14. US strategic clarity on Taiwan could deter China

asiatimes.com · by Urban C. Lehner · September 23, 2020

 

15. A consensus-driven joint concept for all-domain warfare will fall short

Defense News · by Mark Gunzinger · September 18, 2020

I take his point but if we do not have consensus how do we expect to employ the concept?  And if we cannot get consensus perhaps there is something wrong with the concept.

 

16. The Transformation of Diplomacy- How to Save the State Department

Foreign Affairs · by William J. Burns and Linda Thomas-Greenfield · September 23, 2020

Commitment to public service. (and respect for those who commit to public service)

Conclusion: "Through it all, however, we still remember vividly the sense of possibility and shared commitment to public service that drew the two of us and 30 other proud Americans to our Foreign Service entering class all those years ago. Today, there is a new generation of diplomats capable of taking up that challenge—if only they are given a State Department and a mission worthy of their ambitions and of the country they will represent."

 

17. China's New War Game Doesn't Prove It Could Successfully Invade Taiwan

The National Interest · by Kris Osborn · September 22, 2020
 

Beijing left out certain important possibilities and there are many unknown unknowns.

 

18. We Need to Bridge the Gap Between the COIN Generation and the Next Generation

fromthegreennotebook.com · by Scott Kelly · September 21, 2020

 

-------------------

 

"A room without books is like a body without a soul."

- Cicero

 

"There is no friend as loyal as a book."

- Ernest Hemingway

 

 "I know that I am intelligent, because I know that I know nothing."

- Socrates

DanielRiggs Wed, 09/23/2020 - 10:02am
9/23/2020 News & Commentary – Korea

News & commentary by Dave Maxwell. Edited and published by Daniel Riggs

1. Full text of President Moon Jae-in's speech at 75th Session of United Nations General Assembly

2. Trump leaves out N. Korea for first time in U.N. speech

3. Republic of Korea stresses support for developing nations during COVID-19

4. Korean War 'Must End, Completely and for Good,' Moon Tells UN

5. Possible missile carrier spotted at N.Korea parade practice, U.S. think-tank says

6. Fisheries official goes missing in waters near sea border with N. Korea

7. North Korea: Not Another Summit Until Progress at Working-Level Talks

8. What tighter Party membership requirements may say about North Korean society

9. N. Korea plans outdoor fireworks show to celebrate Party Foundation Day

10. Moon says military plays 'safety pin' role in tumultuous peace process

11. Kim Jong-un Insists N.Korea Needs Nuclear Deterrent

12. North Korea prepares for military parade despite pandemic fears

13. UN Experts See North Korean Nuclear Gains | Arms Control Association

14. Moon's offer of declaring end to Korean War aimed at jump-starting peace process, Cheong Wa Dae says

15. Pyongyang General Hospital project hits a snag: defective insulators

16.Kim Jong-un FURY: North Korean faces death by firing squad for petty crime

17. Moon's UN speech falls flat

18. Defense minister to take Air Force tanker plane to U.S. for Opcon talks

 

1. Full text of President Moon Jae-in's speech at 75th Session of United Nations General Assembly

en.yna.co.kr · by 이치동 · September 23, 2020

A lot of Korean media reporting (and some UN reporting) on President Moon's speech.

President Moon delivered two speeches at the UN this week, one representing MIKTA (Mexico, Indonesia, Korea, Turkey, and Australia), and one to the UN General Assembly.  Both speeches show that President Moon acted as an international statesman.  He offered sound analysis of key international issues and made superb recommendations to the international community.

However, his remarks on north Korea will likely fall on deaf ears.  While South Korea represents a responsible member of the international community, north Korea does not act in any way like a responsible member.

 Kim Jong-un does not share Moon Jae-in's vision for peace on the peninsula.   The only peace that will satisfy him is one in which the north dominates the entire peninsula and the South ceases to exist. Kim interprets Moon's call for peace as a subversive effort to undermine the regime.  In fact, Kim is mirror-imaging because his real strategy remains based on subversion, coercion/extortion (blackmail diplomacy) and, when necessary and possible, the use of force to dominate the peninsula under the rule of the Guerrilla Dynasty and Gulag State to ensure survival of the Kim family regime.

The ROK, the US, and the international community must re-examine their assumptions about north Korea and develop new policies and strategies that recognize that as long as Kim Jong-un is in power the north will never act as a responsible member of the international community.

 

2. Trump leaves out N. Korea for first time in U.N. speech

en.yna.co.kr · by 변덕근 · September 23, 2020

I wonder if Kim Jong-un will feel slighted?  He will make up for it with his parade on October 10.  That will show the world!  

On a more serious note, I think both the PRC and the US left out north Korea because they do not want to publicly engage on the issue for their own strategic reasons.  The PRC knows the regime is facing significant internal challenges and wants to ensure stability so it does not want to cause the north to react.  The US also does not want to cause a reaction in the north so POTUS can tout his foreign policy "success" with no nuclear testing and no ICBM test launches.  He does not want an October Surprise that would jeopardize what he describes as a success.

 

3. Republic of Korea stresses support for developing nations during COVID-19

news.un.org · September 22, 2020

Report from the UN news on President  Moon's speech.

 

4. Korean War 'Must End, Completely and for Good,' Moon Tells UN

Bloomberg · by Jeong-Ho Lee · September 22, 2020

President Moon is doubling down on a peace process.  What is Kim Jong-un going to have to do to make us understand that our assumption that he wants peace and peaceful co-existence is false?  

That said it would be interesting if the south could generate a peace process and bring Kim to the table.  The emphasis would be on the word "process" which would take a long time.  It took more than two years just to negotiate an Armistice.  But if Kim was willing to come to the table it would be. to support his strategy of subversion and he would conduct his political warfare with Juche characteristics to support his long con and achieve his objectives to dominate the peninsula.

 

5. Possible missile carrier spotted at N.Korea parade practice, U.S. think-tank says

Reuters · by Josh Smith · September 23, 2020

A TEL possibly spotted while President Moon is calling for peace and an end of the war.

 

6. Fisheries official goes missing in waters near sea border with N. Korea

en.yna.co.kr · by 고병준 · September 23, 2020

The north conducting another kidnapping operation?  But finding only his shoes aboard is not a good sign.

 

7. North Korea: Not Another Summit Until Progress at Working-Level Talks

heritage.org · by Bruce Klingner

Excellent run down from Bruce Klingner.  A wise conclusion: The United States should remain open to a negotiated diplomatic resolution to the long-standing North Korean nuclear problem. But Washington should avoid being over-eager to grab at a tempting diplomatic agreement that does not reduce North Korea's military threat but could lead to reduced U.S. pressure or military deterrence in South Korea. As the United States continues pressing for a well-crafted comprehensive agreement, it should maintain current force levels in South Korea and Japan.

But the $64,000 questions is will Kim ever allow substantive working level talks?

 

8. What tighter Party membership requirements may say about North Korean society

nkeconwatch.com · by Benjamin Katzeff Silberstein · September 22, 2020

Key point: "The Party is still, perhaps now more because of the money-making opportunities it gives in the (semi-)private sector, an extremely important institution for social and political advancement, marketization or none."

 

9. N. Korea plans outdoor fireworks show to celebrate Party Foundation Day

dailynk.com · September 22, 2020

Recall Kim Yo Jong asking for a DVD of the US Independence Day celebration.  I am sure she is trying to outdo the US show.

 

10. Moon says military plays 'safety pin' role in tumultuous peace process

en.yna.co.kr · by 이치동 · September 23, 2020

I hope this is some kind of mistranslation.  I think the analogy of the military as a safety pin will create all kinds of satirical memes.  I am sure the military uniform will have a new badge added to it - the order of the safety pin.

But seriously, I think his intent is correct.  The military provides the foundation for a peace process and provides the bulwark to deter war.  It is the strength of the military that can support peace.

 

11. Kim Jong-un Insists N.Korea Needs Nuclear Deterrent

english.chosun.com · September 23, 2020

Kim Jong-un provides his almost completely honest assessment.  He left out that his nuclear program supports blackmail diplomacy as well as provides a critical warfighting capability should Kim judge he can either win a war or he is forced to go to war by internal conditions that threaten the existence of the regime.

Key quote: "Continued strengthening of self-defense capabilities based on nuclear weapons guarantees our autonomy and right to live as well as the prosperity of our nation," he was quoted as saying."

 

12. North Korea prepares for military parade despite pandemic fears

The Telegraph · by Nicola Smith

Because everyone loves a parade and it is the antidote for 3 natural disasters, a failed economy, and a pandemic.  This is an example of Kim Jong-un's benevolence and how much he cares for the Korean people who are suffering in the north.

 

13. UN Experts See North Korean Nuclear Gains | Arms Control Association

armscontrol.org · by Julia Masterson · September 2020

No surprise here.  But north Korea is not an arms control problem.  For those who advocate establishing an arms control negotiations regime you will be giving Kim exactly what he wants which is to be recognized as a nuclear power and keep his nuclear program.  And to agree to enter into the process he will demand the lifting of sanctions.  Victory for the long con.

 

14. Moon's offer of declaring end to Korean War aimed at jump-starting peace process, Cheong Wa Dae says

en.yna.co.kr · by 이치동 · September 23, 2020

How does a declaration of the end of the war work? Do both north and South Korea agree to it? DO they sign an agreement? Does the UN Command and the Chinese People's Volunteers also agree to it? What happens to UN Security Council Resolutions 82-85 which are still in effect? We should not forget that the UNSCrs designated the north as the aggressor who attacked the South and called on member states to come to the defense of South Korea's freedom.

 

15. Pyongyang General Hospital project hits a snag: defective insulators

dailynk.com · by Jim Yoo Jin ·  September 22, 2020

This is a problem for the regime as it wants this hospital open by October.

This will be another Kim Jong-un failure though we will probably see him blame others and punish them.  But this is an interesting situation and shows the desperation of the regime: " North Korean authorities seemed to view the incident as serious enough to warrant punishment of the factory's management. The source explained, however, that the authorities were so concerned about finishing the hospital's construction on time that they left the factory management in place for the time being so that the facility's insulator production remained undisrupted."

 

16. Kim Jong-un FURY: North Korean faces death by firing squad for petty crime

Express · by Rebecca Perring · September 21, 2020

It may seem like a petty crime to us but information is a deadly threat to the legitimacy and survival of the Kim family regime.

 

17. Moon's UN speech falls flat

koreajoongangdaily.joins.com · by  Ser Myo-Ja

Joongang Ilbo's criticism of the President's speech.

 

18. Defense minister to take Air Force tanker plane to U.S. for Opcon talks

koreajoongangdaily.joins.com · by  Kim Sang-Jin

 

--------------------

 

A room without books is like a body without a soul."

- Cicero

 

"There is no friend as loyal as a book." 

- Ernest Hemingway

 

 "I know that I am intelligent, because I know that I know nothing." 

- Socrates

 

DanielRiggs Wed, 09/23/2020 - 10:01am
9/22/2020 News & Commentary - National Security

News & commentary by Dave Maxwell. Edited and published by Duncan Moore.

1. Treasury sanctions key actors in Iran’s nuclear and ballistic missile programs

2. The US Navy has drifted badly off course

3. On a California tour, Pentagon chief scrutinizes a Navy in flux and a warship gutted by fire

4. After a grueling deployment, the carrier Eisenhower gets set for a dubious ‘double pump’

5. Our greatest national security threat is our national security establishment

6. Analysis: how Trump’s TikTok deal helps China

7. Ruth Bader Ginsburg, an advocate for military women, will be buried at Arlington

8. Esper and Milley appear to adopt different strategies to deal with Trump as election approaches

9. Philippine Air Force receives first four of six Super Tucano aircraft

10. Secret CIA assessment: Putin ‘probably directing’ influence operation to denigrate Biden

11. Trump's former national security adviser warns of another 9/11-style attack in the future

12. Vatican, China prepare to renew historic deal to US anger

13. The U.S. Army should plan to send four divisions to Taiwan: Expert

14. Droned out of action: the distortion of US counter-terrorism in Somalia

15. DOD personnel proving productive, resilient during pandemic

16. In America's absence, China is taking Latin America by storm

17. Taiwan led the world in closing down for Covid-19, now it wants to do the same with opening back up

18. Commentary: most Americans want more global engagement

19. Latest tell-all, by former National Security Adviser McMaster, is not all about Trump

20. A scene breakdown of a Marine Corps ad created by an Oscar-winning duo

21. Military-style Marshall Plan needed to combat climate change, says Prince Charles

22. Edward Snowden agrees to give up more than $5 million from book and speeches

 

1. Treasury sanctions key actors in Iran’s nuclear and ballistic missile programs

US Department of the Treasury · September 21, 2020

I received the following comments from Dr. Bruce Becthol, who arguably knows more about North Korean support to Iran's missile program than anyone. I hope we do see another show drop with North Korean entities sanctioned for their activities with Iran.

 

2. The US Navy has drifted badly off course

Defense One · by John R. Kroger · September 21, 2020

This is quite a critique. I will be interested in hearing the assessment of naval professionals. I will forward CDR Salamander's blog post with his views.

Even as a former Army guy, I recognize how critically important our Navy is to our national security - across the spectrum of competition and conflict. This is a troubling essay.

 

3. On a California tour, Pentagon chief scrutinizes a Navy in flux and a warship gutted by fire

Washington Post · by Dan Lemothe · September 21, 2020

I do dislike this false comparison: the US military must reorient itself from 20 years of COIN to high intensity warfare. If you do not think irregular warfare, unconventional warfare, and political warfare will continue and will not be the dominant forms of competition and conflict during the future of Great Power Competition, you are not paying attention to policies, strategies, actions, and activities of the revisionist and rogue powers. Minimizing the effort against the fifth major threat (that of violent extremist organizations) does not mean that the other four adversaries are not conducting proxy warfare, economic warfare, political warfare, and irregular warfare. What do we think the Little Green Men are doing for the Russians? What about the Russian PMCs? What about China’s Three Warfares and Unrestricted Warfare? What is the IRCG doing in Syria and Lebanon and Yemen among other places? And North Korea is conducting subversion and it is own form of political warfare as a matter of routine and has been doing so for decades. Sorry to hijack this important article for my rant, but we have to be able to walk and chew gum at the same time.

 

4. After a grueling deployment, the carrier Eisenhower gets set for a dubious ‘double pump’

Defense News · by David Larter · September 20, 2020

I do not think we as non-naval personnel can understand and appreciate the impact of this "double pump" and its impact on sailors and ships.

 

5. Our greatest national security threat is our national security establishment

CDR Salamander · September 21, 2020

This is CDR Salamander's critique of the Eisenhower "double pump," but with a broader focus as the title states.

 

6. Analysis: How Trump’s TikTok Deal Helps China

Defense One · by Patrick Tucker · September 21, 2020

 

7. Ruth Bader Ginsburg, an advocate for military women, will be buried at Arlington

Stars & Stripes · by Steve Beynon · September 21, 2020

 

8. Esper and Milley appear to adopt different strategies to deal with Trump as election approaches

CNN · by Barbara Starr · September 21, 2020

Civil military relations in this administration will be studied for years to come.

 

9. Philippine Air Force receives first four of six Super Tucano aircraft

Janes · by Marhalim bin Abas · September 21, 2020

 

10. Secret CIA assessment: Putin ‘probably directing’ influence operation to denigrate Biden

Washington Post · by Josh Rogin · September 22, 2020

I do not think Russian really cares who wins. I think it is more interested in sowing devision and in undermining confidence in our democracy. The argument that Russia really wants Trump to win over Biden is a distraction and is part of what prevents us from mounting an effective defense. It is a brilliant strategy by the Russians when you think about it. The same with China and Iran. We are making ourselves a perfect target for interference in order to undermine the legitimacy of our political process.

 

11. Trump's former national security adviser warns of another 9/11-style attack in the future

Washington Examiner · by Mica Soellner · September 21, 2020

 

12. Vatican, China prepare to renew historic deal to US anger

Barron's · by Catherine Marciano · September 21, 2020

I guess Ambassador Gingrich was unable to prevent this.

 

13. The U.S. Army Should Plan To Send Four Divisions To Taiwan: Expert

Forbes · by David Axe · September 22, 2020

Note the photo. I wonder why they chose to use a photo of a US Special Forces detachment in 1972 in Taiwan.

Here is the Military Review essay this article is based on. No disrespect but I am trying the discern the author's expert credentials. I am having a hard time envisioning four division's worth of equipment afloat and getting it deployed to Taiwan before the PLA commences operations. Or are we going to fight over the single beach landing site to get four decisions ashore so we can repel a PLA invasion? 

 

14. Droned out of action: the distortion of US counterterrorism in Somalia

Zignal Labs · by Bilva Chandra · September 21, 2020

This is very important analysis from Zignal labs.

 

15. DOD personnel proving productive, resilient during pandemic

US Department of Defense · by David Vergun · September 21, 2020

Not to beat a dead horse, but the military has to learn to fight through this pandemic and it should learn lessons that can apply to a biological attack.

 

16. In America's absence, China is taking Latin America by storm

National Interest · by John Turner · September 21, 2020

Nature (and China) abhors a vacuum.

 

17. Taiwan led the world in closing down for Covid-19, now it wants to do the same with opening back up

CNN · by Paula Hancocks · September 22, 2020

Both Taiwan and South Korea learned and applied lessons from the past. We should learn from them.

 

18. Commentary: Most Americans want more global engagement

Chicago Tribune · by Ivo Daalder & Dina Smeltz · September 21, 2020

Retrenchment is not the answer. Most Americans understand that. And engaging globally does not mean not putting US interests first. Our interests must always come first. But we cannot protect and advance US interests through retrenchment. We must be engaged in the world.

 

19. Latest tell-all, by former National Security Adviser McMaster, is not all about Trump

NPR · by Ron Elving · September 21, 2020

 

20. A scene breakdown of a Marine Corps ad created by an Oscar-winning duo

PetaPixel · by Doug Jackson · September 21, 2020

This is a brilliant ad by the Marine Corps.

 

21. Military-style Marshall Plan needed to combat climate change, says Prince Charles

Reuters · by Matthew Green · September 21, 2020

The Marshall Plan must be one of the most mis-applied analogies.

 

22. Edward Snowden agrees to give up more than $5 million from book and speeches

CNN · by Katelyn Polantz · September 21, 2020

Snowden is just weird (in addition to being a traitor). I cannot figure him out. I would like to know the 56 speeches he made and who paid him an average of $18,000 per speech. It is good work if you can get it, I suppose!

 

"The ones who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones that do."

- Anonymous

"Where men are the most sure and arrogant, they are commonly the most mistaken.”

-David Hume

"Too much has been said of the heroes of history - the strong men, the strenuous men, the troublesome men; too little of the amiable, the kindly, and the tolerant.”

-Stephen Leacock

dwmiv Tue, 09/22/2020 - 1:20pm