It has been four days since North Korea launched their fifth and biggest missile test, and the U.S. decided to show its displeasure with it by way of flying some of our battle-tested bombers over their neighboring country of South Korea.
Friday’s test is cited by North Korea as a successful test that proves that N. Korea is capable of mounting and launching a nuclear warhead mounted on a ballistic missiles. This action and the possibility of nuclear attack sets US allies fears to an all time high and is a potential threat to U.S. Bases in South Korea, Japan, and Guam.
U. S. Forces Korea Commander, Gen. Vincent K. Brooks, stated on Tuesday, “North Korea’s nuclear test is a dangerous escalation and poses an unacceptable threat. The United States has an unshakable commitment to defend allies in the region and will take necessary steps to do so, including operations like this one today. Today’s demonstration provides just one example of the full range of military capabilities in the deep resources of this strong alliance to provide and strengthen extended deterrence.”
The B-1s were joined by US F-16 and South Korean F-15 fighters in the low-level flyover of Osan Air Base, 40 miles (64 kilometers) south of the South Korean capital of Seoul.
On the diplomatic front, the US special envoy on North Korea, Sung Kim, said Tuesday that the US and South Korea will be considering “additional unilateral measures” in response to Pyongyang’s latest nuclear test. Kim also said Japan may be included in additional initiatives. The B-1s that flew over South Korea Tuesday were moved to the Andersen Air Force base in Guam in August as part of what the U.S. Pacific Command calls it Continuous Bomber Presence. It is the first time the B-1s, which have the largest payload of any US bomber, have been part of the Pacific bomber force in a decade.
The next step in this Military Chess game is now at North Korea’s feet. Time will tell what they think is the best route to go. Either they back their testing off or they will more than likely continue to poke the sleeping bear until the U.S. and its allies have no choice but to shut it down for them.