U.S., South Korea Sign New Military Plan Formalizing Joint Response Against Any North Korean Provocations

by Colonel on March 25, 2013

“South Korea has signed a new military plan with the US to counter what officials call North Korean “provocations”.

The plan provides for a joint response between both countries in the event of a limited attack from the North, officials say.

Help from the US – which has 28,000 troops in South Korea – has until now been optional in minor skirmishes.

Regional tension remains high after the North’s third nuclear test last month.

The US already offers South Korea a “nuclear umbrella”, but Cold War experts have pointed out that while nuclear deterrence may address the possibility of all-out war, it does not deter low-level incidents.

Under the new plan, South Korea will be able to call on US assistance should Pyongyang follow through with its recent threats, for example to attack remote South Korean islands.

” — Copyright 2013 BBC

“They called the contingency plan “South Korean-led, U.S.-supported.” It laid out various types of localized North Korean provocations and a joint South Korean-American response to each of them, South Korean officials said. By putting the allies’ combined commitment on paper, the agreement will help serve as a deterrent against North Korean provocations, they said.

But the two allies refused to disclose more details on such sensitive and potentially volatile questions as how far the United States would go in its supporting role, especially at what point American troops would directly join a South Korean counterattack against a North Korean provocation.

In recent weeks, South Korea has said that if provoked, it would attack not only the origin of the North Korean provocation but also “its supporting forces and its commanding post.”

” — Choe Sang-Hun, Copyright 2013 The New York Times Company

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