Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

4/9/2013 (3 years ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

The world can sleep at night knowing despite the bluster, there's no war on the horizon.

Much has been made of North Korea and its ability to destabilize the region with its powerful military and fanatically devoted populace. Although most of the world dismisses Kim Jong Un's bluster as just that, there are a few who remain concerned that a miscalculation could cause the new leader to blunder into war. In such an event, despite the fact North Korea is a technological backwater, the North Korean juggernaut remains feared.

Nobody knows what this contraption does, and that's scary in an absurd way.

Nobody knows what this contraption does, and that's scary in an absurd way.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

4/9/2013 (3 years ago)

Published in Asia Pacific

Keywords: Kim Jong Un, antics, North Korea, war, assets, liabilities


While plenty reason exists to fear North Korean might, there's also a lot of reason to discount it. Here are four of that country's greatest supposed strengths and why they are really liabilities in the event of war.

Army of 1.2 million. North Korea is legendary for its large military. With approximately 1.2 million soldiers in its army, it can easily overwhelm the South Korean military with an advantage of more than 2 to 1.
However, this isn't such a strength, particularly following any initial thrust.

One million troops consume a lot of food and during combat they consume fuel and ammunition among other supplies. While North Korea can lay in plenty of ammunition, food is perishable and it will be difficult to feed a moving, fighting army that is subject to interdiction by superior enemy airpower.

A more likely outcome will be mass defections and the surrender of large numbers of troops when they are faced with starvation and a lack of supplies.

North Korea is already dependent on international food aid to feed its starving population and most food aid is diverted to the army. However, in the event of war, all food shipments would likely cease and the only food many soldiers would get is that foraged from the countryside. That's not enough to ensure the success of a military campaign. Undoubtedly, this weighs heavily on the minds of North Korea's military planners and leaders and serves as a brake on Kim Jong Un's imperialist ambition.
 
The fanatic devotion of the people. North Korea runs much like a religious cult. Even the news reporters and media personalities are bombastic, emotional, and show more public devotion to "Dear Leader" than many westerners show God in their churches. People are commonly photographed and taped bowing before portraits of their "Dear Leaders" which are regarded as shrines.

Such fanatical devotion could prove dangerous as the populace is apparently ready to fight to the death for their dear leader.

Certainly, there are true devotees. There were good Nazis, and even Japan had to turn away volunteers for kamikaze service. Many Branch Davidians died because they refused to flee their compound as it burned. However, most people are not fools.

North Korea is a nation governed by fear. Not only is the individual who infracts the rules subject to severe punishment, including death, but their families are as well. Many people who would otherwise break away and speak out against the North Korean regime would probably do so if not for fear their family, including children, would spend the rest of their lives in a forced labor camp.

Much of the North Korean economy depends on forced labor and it is widely exploited to prop up the national economy. As a result even minor infractions can land an entire family behind barbed wire.

For this reason, many people will harbor secret resentment against their Dear Leader and hope for a day when they no longer have to feign selfless devotion. A war could provide such an opportunity, especially if it went badly. This is not to suggest that North Koreans would also willingly accept foreign occupation of their country, but they aren't likely to be as quick to die for Dear Leader as one might assume. In fact, the country could be filled with people who would like to see Kim Jong Un fall from power.

This could be the very purpose of the current manufactured crisis. Many speculate that the crisis is being manufactured by Kim Jong Un as a means of consolidating his domestic power. The people are ruled by fear, which works, but also breeds resentment. If the people find an opportunity to throw off the chains of oppression, they may be quick to turn against their own leaders. So far, despite the tough talk, it appears to be a risk Kim Jong Un is unwilling to take.

The bomb. Some of the greatest concern over North Korea is related to its nuclear capability. Kim Jong Un has threatened to deploy nuclear weapons against any nation that threatens North Korea, and has made a public spectacle of threatening South Korea and the United States. The world knows North Korea has the bomb. This will give many pause when it comes to fighting with the state rather than negotiating. 

While the bomb can deter aggression, it can also inspire it. North Korea has both the bomb and a crazed dictator in control of it. This is an unstable combination and that can inspire other states to intervene powerfully before something unpredictable happens.

Indeed, if conflict does occur, the allied nations will probably strike that much harder and with greater intensity in a bid to neutralize the country's nuclear capability. That would include striking command and control facilities and any other infrastructure seen as essential to deployment of a bomb.

So rather than discouraging intervention, the bomb could encourage swift and powerful intervention of the most aggressive sort at the first sign of perceived danger.

Nothing. Perhaps North Korea's greatest wartime asset is quite literally nothing. The country is wracked with poverty, disease, and hardship. What is left for the country to lose when its people already live in a primitive state compared to the rest of the world?

Actually, quite a lot. Anyone who lives in privilege from Kim Jong Un himself to his generals, to his supporters, and to his bureaucrats, all enjoy a fair standard of living compared to the rest of the people. That means anyone who enjoys power of any sort also enjoys privilege and can lose it at the moment of conflict. This is a powerful disincentive to war, especially one the country is likely to lose.

Far from being fearful of North Korean conflict, the world should recognize that there's little to worry about from North Korea. What we are most afraid of is also that which keeps them restrained. In reality, they must fear war as much as we do. For that reason we can go back to sleep at night.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copyright 2016 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for May 2016
Universal:
Respect for Women: That in every country of the world, women may be honored and respected and that their essential contribution to society may be highly esteemed.
Evangelization: Holy Rosary: That families, communities, and groups may pray the Holy Rosary for evangelization and peace.



Comments


More Asia Pacific

Is all social media fake? Revealed: China owns 448,000,000 FAKE social media profiles, but why? Watch

Image of How many social network accounts are fake?

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The next time you encounter an internet troll, be warned, he could be getting paid to fan the flames, or to douse your conversation. A new study our of Harvard reveals that China is using an army of 448 million fake troll accounts to influence public opinion. And China ... continue reading


Mafia-related demonic possessions cause children to froth at mouth and convulse Watch

Image of Over 80 school children in Peru are believed to be victims of demon possession (YouTube).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

A "mass demonic possession" has erupted at Peruvian school Elsa Perea Flores, leaving over 80 students convulsing, frothing at the mouth, fainting, and displaying erratic behavior. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The children, most of whom are between 11 and ... continue reading


Obama to Hiroshima: Will he really be welcome? Watch

Image of US President Barack Obama will be the first sitting president to visit Hiroshima (aljazeera).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

U.S. President Barack Obama is set to become the first sitting president to visit Hiroshima following the atomic attack August 6, 1945. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Critics worried Obama's trip was to apologize for the devastation, but according to The New York ... continue reading


Child raped by father then lashed as punishment Watch

Image of India continues to modernize itself but the shift is too slow for many (Wikipedia).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

India is famous for it's diverse culture, vibrant clothing, incredible festivals, elephant gods, elaborate gold jewelry, the Taj Mahal and spicy food. It is an amazing place for tourists to visit - but what about the natives? LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - India ... continue reading


WARNING GRAPHIC VIDEO - Terrorists behead Canadian hostage, release FULL VIDEO Watch

Image of Abu Sayyaf is an ISIS affiliate in the Philippines.

By California Network

Abu Sayyaf, an affiliate of ISIS in the Philippines, has released the full video of the beheading of Canadian hostage, John Ridsdel. LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) - The graphic video shows the brutal beheading of Canadian hostage, John Ridsdel. He was beheaded ... continue reading


China prepares long-range NUCLEAR WARHEAD in battle for South China Sea Watch

Image of China tested their DF-41 missile (globalsecurity).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

China continues to test the limits of its DF-41 long-range intercontinental ballistic missile as tensions rise between the country and the U.S. over the South China Sea. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to The Free Beacon, Pentagon officials reported the ... continue reading


God's Intervention? Baby girl incredibly survives devastating Japan earthquake Watch

Image of Rescuers discover 8-month-old baby in the rubble of a crumbled building (BBC).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Following a 6.5 magnitude earthquake, nine have been reported dead and over 800 people suffered injuries - but God ensured the safety of one blessed little girl. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to NBC News, an 8-month-old girl was sleeping peacefully when ... continue reading


No more Christmas in Nepal? Watch

Image of Nepal says no more Christmas.

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Nepal first recognized Christmas as a national holiday eight years ago, but the 2015 Christmas celebration will be its last. Nepali government officials announced Christmas is no longer recognized as a national holiday, prompting the Christian minority to rise together ... continue reading


'This Christian nursing home is not a place for religious activities': Christians victims of persecution Watch

Image of China destroys thousands of crucifixes to effort to eradicate Christianity (ChinaAid).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

China's government has destroyed over 1,500 crucifixes in Zhejiang province, China as part of a plan to eradicate the Christian communities. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Christianity is spreading across China, leading the communist government to grow upset over ... continue reading


We DON'T know it all! Discovery proves Silk Road reached farther than believed Watch

Image of The Silk Road ended with the arrival of sailing ships and modern transportation, but it's mystique still captures the imagination and intrigues historians who appreciate its impact on the development of modern civilization.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

A well-known ancient trade network may have stretched much father than previously believed according to new evidence discovered in Nepal. Chinese-made objects in a 1,600 year-old tomb suggests the Silk Road may have extended south into Nepal. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


All Asia Pacific News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

  • Daily Reading for Wednesday, June 1st, 2016 HD Video
  • Daily Readings for Saturday, May 28, 2016
  • WARNING: Exorcist claims demon is targeting families
  • Your Daily Inspirational Meme: He will never leave you
  • Woman diagnosed with 'nightmare bacteria' in US
  • Bl. Margaret Pole: Saint of the Day for Saturday, May 28, 2016
  • Advent Prayer HD Video

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Jude 1:17, 20-25
17 But remember, my dear friends, what the apostles of our Lord Jesus ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 63:2, 3-4, 5-6
2 Thus I have gazed on you in the sanctuary, seeing your power and your ... Read More

Gospel, Mark 11:27-33
27 They came to Jerusalem again, and as Jesus was walking in the Temple, ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for May 28th, 2016 Image

Bl. Margaret Pole
May 28: Martyr of England. She was born Margaret ... Read More