Monday, November 26, 2012

Could North Koreans ever really invade America?

Questions no one is asking.
(other than FP)
From Foreign Policy's Passport blog:
In the 1984 film Red Dawn, the Soviet army destroys Washington DC. Cuban spies, posing as immigrants, cross in from Mexico and disable America's strategic air command; Russian paratroopers occupy the town of Calumet, Colorado, and a group of patriotic high school students enact guerilla warfare against the invaders. While not plausible, it at least existed within the realm of possibility.

Fast forward to the 2012 Red Dawn remake, opening today: North Koreans, featuring shadowy assistance from Russians, paratroop in and invade Spokane, Washington. Assuming that North Korea actually wanted to invade the United States; would it have the ability to do so?

I spoke with several North Korean experts, who tried to wrap their head around the idea. "It is silly, ridiculously silly," says Andrei Lankov, a professor at Kookmin University in Seoul and the author of several books on North Korea. The country "has no ocean-going navy, and no air force capable of delivering troops on distances more than few hundred kilometers" nor does it have the logistics to support such an operation, he said.

"Boy where to begin," said David Wright, an arms control expert. He cited the difficulty the United States had sending troops across the Pacific to Japan during WW2. With what ships and planes would bankrupt North Korea send troops to the United States? And how would the dozens or hundreds of North Koreans manage to incapacitate the U.S. army for long enough to invade a city? Wright does not know....MORE 
...Wright tried to imagine armed North Koreans invading. He thought of several ways they might make it across the border, one of them involving the soldiers passing through customs, and then stopped. "I don't even know how much it makes sense to try to figure this out," he said....