U.S., South Korea put on massive military drill
A South Korean helicopter attacks an "enemy" target during a live-fire exercise Friday south of the Demilitarized Zone.
June 22nd, 2012
10:12 AM ET

U.S., South Korea put on massive military drill

U.S. and South Korean forces on Friday conducted what they called their largest live-fire military exercise since the end of the Korean War, according to reports from South Korea.

More than 2,000 troops plus fighter jets, helicopters and armor from both nations participated in the hourlong exercise, conducted as about 4,000 spectators looked on, according to a report from Stars and Stripes.

The exercise took place in Pocheon, about 20 miles (32 kilometers) southeast of the Demilitarized Zone that marks the border between North and South Korea.

Enemy territory during the exercise was marked by a large North Korean flag unfurled on a hillside, according to the report. After it was obscured by smoke during the U.S. and South Korean attacks, the North Korean flag was replaced by one from the South to signal victory.

"We train together to ensure we are ready to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with our (South Korean) army partners if called upon,” said Lt. Col. Joe Scrocca, a spokesman for the U.S. Army's 2nd Infantry Division. “We are a more lethal force together than we would ever be separate.”

Meanwhile, the U.S. aircraft carrier George Washington was to lead a large naval drill off South Korea beginning Saturday, according to a report from the Yonhap News Agency. About 8,000 military personnel, along with about 10 ships and submarines, were to participate.

"Throughout the joint military exercises, South Korean and U.S. forces will show off their resolute capabilities," Yonhap quoted South Korean Navy Brig. Gen. Park Seong-bae as saying.

He warned North Korea not to react in a hostile manner.

"We will immediately retaliate against any provocations from North Korea," Yonhap quoted the general as saying.

The North reacted angrily after naval drills this week between U.S., South Korean and Japanese forces.

"The dangerous moves to knock into shape the triangular military nexus is an act going against the trend of the times for regional peace and stability, including on the Korean Peninsula," read a piece in the ruling party newspaper Rodong Sinmun, according to Yonhap.

"Dark clouds of a new war are thus hanging heavily in Northeast Asia, including the peninsula," the newspaper said, according to Yonhap.

And before that North Korea's official state media Korean Central News Agency called the exercises provocations.

"Even the slightest provocation on the peninsula may promptly lead to an all-out nuclear war between both sides and a regional war because it is the region where the world's biggest military forces including nukes are concentrated and there is neither lasting mechanism nor guarantee for averting a war," the North Korean agency said.

Tension in the Korean peninsula has escalated since North Korea's shelling of a South Korean island in 2010, which killed four, and sinking of a South Korea warship that killed 46 sailors in a torpedo attack blamed on the North. The North has denied it was behind the attack.

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Filed under: Military • North Korea • South Korea
soundoff (167 Responses)
  1. pocsee

    this drill is every important for the sake of future conflict. allied forces will be ready to defend and to strike back. it's always good to have a drill like this to keep off those regime. nokor, and syria.. while russia and china are fake friends they'l always oppose. remember the history guys USA is always there for help!.. long live the USA and the world!

    June 22, 2012 at 9:38 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Everett Wallace

    I see you flexin, looks good, do what you do, just a little bit louder now.

    June 22, 2012 at 10:13 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Paul Martin expat British foreign correspondent

    OKay so tehy are playing war games again but theis NOT the 50's and if the north loses it again they could and would rduce Seoul to ashes,no problem. With nukes and over a million robotic trained uniformed killers ready to attack at any time if ordered to I don't see how the US and SK could be so confident ! War games is one thing reality is another !

    June 22, 2012 at 11:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mad Sam

      @Paul Martin: Those "robots" would mostly desert their army and flee south, get captured, get killed by their more-advanced enemies (the U.S. and South Korea), or they would surrender by the thousands. North Korea is a house of cards, ready to collapse at any moment.

      June 22, 2012 at 11:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • heroicslugtest

      Their nuclear tests have been hit or miss affairs with no rocketry involved.

      When they did try rockets, it was all miss.

      Any application requiring that the two be used in concert, and be carefully aimed, is almost certainly beyond their technical means.

      June 23, 2012 at 6:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • Richards

      THe leaders of NK do not desire the massive nuclear retaliation that would occur if they nuked SK.

      June 24, 2012 at 3:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • Nadbash

      This is little more than just another salvo in the great east asian p1$$ing contest.

      June 25, 2012 at 10:39 am | Report abuse |
    • DIng Dong

      Perhaps because they have failed to execute even the most preliminary steps towards launching a missile...let alone a missile with a nuclear war head on it.

      June 25, 2012 at 1:57 pm | Report abuse |
  4. mikeytost

    Good job barry stir the pot youll get something going somewhere before the election. Its your only hope to try and be re-elected,

    June 23, 2012 at 9:55 am | Report abuse |
    • shepherd

      hmmm i am an iraq veteran. I was deployed to Iraq. I was later sent to 2ID. We are always in the field preparing for war> However we have one massive military drill atleast once a year.

      June 24, 2012 at 1:58 am | Report abuse |
  5. Philip

    N. Korea is a well orchestrated and closely studied excercise in crowd control.
    For example, if you get caught shoplifting one time in a N. Korean city, you are bannished to the countryside to live as a peasant for the rest of your life.
    Imagine that happening here. Keep shoplifting and see it happening here.

    June 23, 2012 at 4:22 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Philip

    Economic crisis. How much of it was made by dishonest citizens?

    June 23, 2012 at 4:24 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Kenny Rogers

    Sorry, Queebosabe, it will never happen here....as much as you would glorify in it.

    June 23, 2012 at 4:29 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Philip

    N. Korea has always purchased their enriched uranium from US and GB, for example. Legally, after George W. Bush's first energy bill. (making it legal to export enriched uranium to "axis of evil" nations, like N. Korea and Venezuela. (CITGO)

    June 23, 2012 at 4:35 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Philip

    "Never happen here" said the gladiator fan, as Romans could no longer afford the games. (why gladiator games ended before the empire did)

    June 23, 2012 at 4:40 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Philip

    Their ability to end shoplifting is a big hit, no miss.

    June 23, 2012 at 6:51 pm | Report abuse |
  11. magneticink

    Oh, tiptoe from the garden...By the garden of the willow tree...And tiptoe through the DMZ with me...

    June 23, 2012 at 10:28 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Zoglet

    The important thing to remember is that when the US conduct military exercises on someones door step- its NEVER provocation! Even though it will be called provocation the moment the tables are reveresed! Are we clear?
    Double plus good.

    June 24, 2012 at 12:58 am | Report abuse |
  13. RCDC

    I think we (USA) and SK should needs a lot of bankers for nuclear cover strike from NK. In n any event NK make a buke strike on SK. is all over. If there are Nuckear bankers strcutures in SK, there is a chance SK can survive an nuclear attack from NK.

    June 24, 2012 at 12:58 am | Report abuse |
  14. Conse

    This is a good excuse for Russia and Cuba to have join military exercise to prevent any possible invasion from their enemy.
    Russia have funding and long range bomber aircraft..... etc.

    June 24, 2012 at 1:47 am | Report abuse |
  15. dou44

    More US war mongering in a far away place. It is so tiresome to read this macho nonsense. Yankees go home. Find something productive to do.

    June 24, 2012 at 2:13 am | Report abuse |
    • ScoobaSteve

      could you be more narrow minded and molded by the media? Jeez.

      June 25, 2012 at 12:08 pm | Report abuse |
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