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Post Reply Russia Threatens Invasion If North Korea Nuclear Rhetoric Continues
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Posted 3/9/16 , edited 3/9/16

outontheop wrote:

The irony of Russia lecturing another nation on inacceptability of a policy of nuclear first-strike runs thick, considering that the Russian military doctrine rolled out a couple years ago includes just that: the threat of pre-emptive strikes, to include nuclear, if an existential threat to the Russian state existed.


True, and kudos for remembering.


outontheop wrote:

North Korea is not an EXISTENTIAL threat to the US. They cannot end the US as a country. That does not mean the ability to smuggle a 10+ KT nuclear device into a major port city is not a "threat". Of course they are a threat.


They're a significant regional threat for sure, and as long as they continue to base the legitimacy of their government and its terribly repressive system on a state of perpetual war with the US and the ROK they will never stop being a regional threat. The part that makes it really tricky, though, is that Kim Jong-Un doesn't seem to be as able to finely tune the dial to just the right amount of sabre rattling as his father was, so in some ways we're dealing with a more irrational DPRK than before. They shouldn't be feared, but they also shouldn't be underestimated.
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Posted 3/9/16

paul25454 wrote:

Technically we are still at war with North Korea. We are only at a cease fire right now. With no plans of a truce talks.


Factually incorrect.

....well, unless you are South Korean. The US was never AT war with North Korea, it was a state of declared hostilities under UN purview. Not a declared war. Aside from that, most of the combat was against Chinese communist forces, not North Koreans.
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Posted 3/9/16

PeripheralVisionary wrote:


Our bombs still won't reach them.


Look out, professional military personnel, PV the 19-year-old military analyst is here to tell us what our weapons can and cannot do, regardless of entire development lines being dedicated to this exact, specific target set. *rolls eyes*
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Posted 3/9/16 , edited 3/9/16

Dariamus wrote:

A 20' long 1' diameter tungsten telephone pole traveling at ~mach 10 has considerable penetrating power.



...but these are not the weapons in question. Seriously, what fevered anime sci-fi wet dream did you pull THAT one from?

Mach 10 in lower earth atmosphere is mildly ludicrous, and terminal effect of a one inch penetrator rod on large-volume cave systems would be minimal anyway. The mechanism of kinetic energy dump wouldn't work against that target set.

Long-rod penetrators are for use against hardened metallic targets with small internal volume and preferably with ignitable materials inside. You know, like... tanks. Not caves.

Also, a tungsten rod of that size would weigh approximately 21,000 pounds. How do you plan to get that up to mach 10? That's about seven times the throw weight of a Minuteman ICBM. Going to bring the Saturn V out of retirement? Next you'll be suggesting we use EFPs the size of the a stadium *rolls eyes*
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Posted 3/9/16
Now, I *would* generally agree with PV's assessment that a war in Korea should be avoided.... however, the problem is that it can only be avoided so long. The real problem is that once nK has developed the means to reliably produce moderate volumes of nuclear warheads, it will likely move to include them in their arms export portfolio. North Korea has no self-sustaining economy, and has always relied on income from a) extorting the free world by promising to end the provocations if given ludicrous aid packages (and then starting the provocations again when the aid starts to dry up), and b) through weapons exports to nations under arms embargos by the rest of the world.

In desperate need of cash (as always), the possibility of nK selling warheads to terrorist groups (or employing them through plausibly deniable intermediaries) is entirely possible.

A conventional nK could be waited out. A nuclear nK cannot. At some point, action will need to be taken, and if it is to be done, the time window is limited to before they go nuclear.
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Posted 3/9/16

outontheop wrote:


paul25454 wrote:

Technically we are still at war with North Korea. We are only at a cease fire right now. With no plans of a truce talks.


Factually incorrect.

....well, unless you are South Korean. The US was never AT war with North Korea, it was a state of declared hostilities under UN purview. Not a declared war. Aside from that, most of the combat was against Chinese communist forces, not North Koreans.


That is true but we fought North Koreans first before Communist Russia at that time told China to help fight against the US forces
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Posted 3/9/16

BlueOni wrote:

They're a significant regional threat for sure, and as long as they continue to base the legitimacy of their government and its terribly repressive system on a state of perpetual war with the US and the ROK they will never stop being a regional threat. The part that makes it really tricky, though, is that Kim Jong-Un doesn't seem to be as able to finely tune the dial to just the right amount of sabre rattling as his father was, so in some ways we're dealing with a more irrational DPRK than before. They shouldn't be feared, but they also shouldn't be underestimated.


I mostly agree, but while I agree KJU is less politically adept than his father, I think as much of the reason the saber rattling has gotten ridiculous is because the free world has finally tired of the "Ima threaten you now. Give me free stuff so I stop" "Oh, you stopped giving me free stuff, so Ima shoot rockets! Death to capitalist pig-dogs" circle-jerk. The world has finally called north Korea's bluff, and north Korea doesn't have a plan B.
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Posted 3/9/16

outontheop wrote:

I mostly agree, but while I agree KJU is less politically adept than his father, I think as much of the reason the saber rattling has gotten ridiculous is because the free world has finally tired of the "Ima threaten you now. Give me free stuff so I stop" "Oh, you stopped giving me free stuff, so Ima shoot rockets! Death to capitalist pig-dogs" circle-jerk. The world has finally called north Korea's bluff, and north Korea doesn't have a plan B.


That also seems a fair reading.
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Posted 3/9/16

BlueOni wrote:


outontheop wrote:

I mostly agree, but while I agree KJU is less politically adept than his father, I think as much of the reason the saber rattling has gotten ridiculous is because the free world has finally tired of the "Ima threaten you now. Give me free stuff so I stop" "Oh, you stopped giving me free stuff, so Ima shoot rockets! Death to capitalist pig-dogs" circle-jerk. The world has finally called north Korea's bluff, and north Korea doesn't have a plan B.


That also seems a fair reading.


Mind, I'm not saying you were at all off the mark: KJU is more nuts than an almond orchard.
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Posted 3/9/16 , edited 3/9/16

outontheop wrote:


Dariamus wrote:

A 20' long 1' diameter tungsten telephone pole traveling at ~mach 10 has considerable penetrating power.



...but these are not the weapons in question. Seriously, what fevered anime sci-fi wet dream did you pull THAT one from?

Mach 10 in lower earth atmosphere is mildly ludicrous, and terminal effect of a one inch penetrator rod on large-volume cave systems would be minimal anyway. The mechanism of kinetic energy dump wouldn't work against that target set.

Long-rod penetrators are for use against hardened metallic targets with small internal volume and preferably with ignitable materials inside. You know, like... tanks. Not caves.

Also, a tungsten rod of that size would weigh approximately 21,000 pounds. How do you plan to get that up to mach 10? Going to bring the Saturn V out of retirement? Next you'll be suggesting we use EFPs the size of the a stadium *rolls eyes*


2003 Air Force report on orbital kinetic energy weapons.

The capability to penetrate nuclear bunkers was a specific selling point. The rods weigh ~9 tons each, not 10.5.
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Posted 3/9/16 , edited 3/9/16

Dariamus wrote:


outontheop wrote:


Dariamus wrote:

A 20' long 1' diameter tungsten telephone pole traveling at ~mach 10 has considerable penetrating power.



...but these are not the weapons in question. Seriously, what fevered anime sci-fi wet dream did you pull THAT one from?

Mach 10 in lower earth atmosphere is mildly ludicrous, and terminal effect of a one inch penetrator rod on large-volume cave systems would be minimal anyway. The mechanism of kinetic energy dump wouldn't work against that target set.

Long-rod penetrators are for use against hardened metallic targets with small internal volume and preferably with ignitable materials inside. You know, like... tanks. Not caves.

Also, a tungsten rod of that size would weigh approximately 21,000 pounds. How do you plan to get that up to mach 10? Going to bring the Saturn V out of retirement? Next you'll be suggesting we use EFPs the size of the a stadium *rolls eyes*


2003 Air Force report on orbital kinetic energy weapons.



Oh, you mean a think-tank report based upon speculative engineering, and postulating weapons explicitly forbidden in the START treaty series? Yeah, that sounds TOTALLY operational to me. Super practical for impending employment *rolls eyes*

No, while it sounds cool on paper, it is absolutely impractical. What *is* practical is thermobarics and large penetrating bombs targeting openings and vents.

Kind of like how the US learned to deal with Japanese pillboxes in WW2: it was costly and complex to actually clear and destroy them, but there was no reason to. If you bury the opening and vents (or collapse them), there's no need to worry about actually killing what's inside. Respiration (or lack thereof) will sort that problem all on it's own. And, of course, if they cannot get their artillery pieces out of the tunnel, it doesn't matter if the crew lives or not.
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Posted 3/9/16 , edited 3/9/16

outontheop wrote:


Dariamus wrote:


outontheop wrote:


Dariamus wrote:

A 20' long 1' diameter tungsten telephone pole traveling at ~mach 10 has considerable penetrating power.



...but these are not the weapons in question. Seriously, what fevered anime sci-fi wet dream did you pull THAT one from?

Mach 10 in lower earth atmosphere is mildly ludicrous, and terminal effect of a one inch penetrator rod on large-volume cave systems would be minimal anyway. The mechanism of kinetic energy dump wouldn't work against that target set.

Long-rod penetrators are for use against hardened metallic targets with small internal volume and preferably with ignitable materials inside. You know, like... tanks. Not caves.

Also, a tungsten rod of that size would weigh approximately 21,000 pounds. How do you plan to get that up to mach 10? Going to bring the Saturn V out of retirement? Next you'll be suggesting we use EFPs the size of the a stadium *rolls eyes*


2003 Air Force report on orbital kinetic energy weapons.



Oh, you mean a think-tank report based upon speculative engineering, and postulating weapons explicitly forbidden in the START treaty series? Yeah, that sounds TOTALLY operational to me. Super practical for impending employment *rolls eyes*


SALT only bars nuclear, chemical and biological. Kinetic erergy weapons are inert, existing treaties do not address them.

Systems have been under development since the late 50's, with the Thor project.
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Posted 3/9/16
No more North Korean anime about the glorious leader...
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Posted 3/9/16

outontheop wrote:

Mind, I'm not saying you were at all off the mark: KJU is more nuts than an almond orchard.


Oh, I understood.
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Posted 3/9/16 , edited 3/9/16

Dariamus wrote:

SALT only bars nuclear, chemical and biological. Kinetic erergy weapons are inert, existing treaties do not address them.


The Treaty on Principles Governing the Activities of States in the Exploration and Use of Outer Space, Including the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies (1967), in actual text, bans, and I quote:

"Recalling resolution 1884 (XVIII), calling upon States to refrain from placing in orbit around the Earth any objects carrying nuclear weapons or any other kinds of weapons of mass destruction or from installing such weapons on celestial bodies, which was adopted unanimously by the United Nations General Assembly on 17 October 1963"

It does not say only nuclear weapons, it says weapons of mass destruction. A 21,000 pound inert mass impacting at orbital velocities would be, by any reasonable observers' assessment, a weapon of mass destruction. The total kinetic energy delivered by a mach-10 impact of a 21,000 pound body is roughly half of the energy released by the Nagasaki "fat man" bomb (core weight 14 pounds, 2-3% mass conversion for calculation of energy liberation). Seems high, but consider it's the accumulated energy of what is essentially explosives (rocket fuel) and that the Saturn V weighed 6 MILLION pounds, so if you consider 3/4 of that was fuel (very conservative estimate on weight distribution) and assume the fuel has about the same energy density as TNT, that's 2452 tons, or 2.4 kiloton yield. Yes, my math is fairly fuzzy "ballpark" estimations, because I'm not going to spend hours looking up the precise equations just for a stupid internet forum argument. =P

But none of that really matters, because why would you spend billions for an orbital delivery launch when a) it's impossible to launch ENOUGH of them to service all the targets in a timely manner, and b) there's no point, because all you need to do is render the contents of the tunnel inaccessible?

Also, I'm not sure there's enough (accessible) tungsten in the WORLD to make enough warheads to suffice -.- edit: ok, 61,000 tons produced annually, so supply wouldn't be impossible, but it would still be ridiculously expensive and inefficient.
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