(NationalSentinel) War Drums: Are the annual Foal Eagle war games currently taking place in South Korea between its forces and those of the United States merely cover for an impending preemptive strike against North Korea?
Another piece of the puzzle has emerged to suggest so. Granted, it’s a Russian media source, but it’s out there so we thought we’d report it.
Pravda.ru is reporting that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has ordered 600,000 people to leave the capital of Pyongyang, ostensibly because the city’s bomb shelters are not large enough to accommodate all residents:
In accordance with the order, 600,000 people should be urgently evacuated. Experts note that the evacuation will most likely be conducted due to extremely strained tensions in relations with the United States of America.
Reportedly, Pyongyang’s bomb shelters will not be able to accommodate the entire population of the North Korean capital. Therefore, 600,000 people – mostly individuals with criminal records – will have to leave Pyongyang to let others use bomb shelters.
It was also said that one modified Ohio type rocket carrier carrying 154 Tomahawk type missiles on board joined the US Navy deployed near the coast of the Korean Peninsula. The missile carrier is expected to arrive at the port of registration on April 18.
Meanwhile, according to South Korean media, residents of the DPRK say goodbye to each other, to their homes, to their places of work, to forests and fields, to the sky, rivers, etc as if the nation prepares for a large-scale war. At the same time, it is forbidden to say goodbye to officers of law enforcement agencies. It is also strictly forbidden to mention the names of national leaders in words of farewell.
None of this has been verified, mind you, nor has an earlier report that China moved some 150,000 of its troops to the Yalu River border with North Korea – a deployment that could not have been conducted in secret, given the enormous logistical chain associated with moving a force of that size and satellite imagery technology. You’ll note that the Pravda.ru report also mentions the Chinese troop deployment, and for the same reason we speculated – to deal with an expected deluge of refugees from North Korea.
There is also this. During an interview with Fox Business‘ Maria Bartiromo earlier this week, President Donald J. Trump, characteristically, would not comment on any military options he may or may not be considering regarding North Korea. However, when asked about it, Trump made it a point to praise the power of the Navy’s submarines (beginning at 9:10):
That’s noteworthy because the Pravda.ru report mentioned “one modified Ohio type rocket carrier carrying 154 Tomahawk type missiles on board.” As noted by The National Interest, the Navy’s Ohio-class attack subs are referred to as “America’s cruise missile submarines,” and are considered to be among the U.S. military’s most potent weapons.
Redesigned as cruise missile launch platforms from their original purpose of launching nuclear missiles, there are four of these boats – the USS Ohio, Florida, Michigan and Georgia. Their Tomahawk missile complement is 154. Granted, Russian and Chinese intelligence agencies know this already, but it’s noteworthy the number was used in the Pravda.ru report in specific reference to an Ohio-class attack sub. And Trump’s comments regarding our “powerful submarines” are equally noteworthy. Plus, this all comes a week following Trump’s first visit with Chinese President Xi Jinping, in which North Korea was one of the White House’s top topics of discussion.
Intelligence analysts rarely are presented with smoking gun evidence, and are instead tasked with piecing together bits of information to form a most likely scenario. Given what has been learned through open-source intelligence (OSINT), it seems more likely than not the Trump administration is planning a strike against North Korea. And Pyongyang appears to be expecting it.
Many things have to align first: Congress has to be brought on board; China has to be convinced of the United States’ very narrow goal of striking only North Korea; the South Korean government has to approve; and other U.S. allies have to be informed.
Time will tell.