North Korea

Report: Trump Considering “Limited” Strike on North Korea

JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

The Wall Street Journal reported last night that the Trump regime is considering a "limited" strike on North Korea which they're referring to as a "bloody nose" strategy.

U.S. officials are quietly debating whether it’s possible to mount a limited military strike against North Korean sites without igniting an all-out war on the Korean Peninsula.

The idea is known as the “bloody nose” strategy: React to some nuclear or missile test with a targeted strike against a North Korean facility to bloody Pyongyang’s nose and illustrate the high price the regime could pay for its behavior. The hope would be to make that point without inciting a full-bore reprisal by North Korea.

It’s an enormously risky idea, and there is a debate among Trump administration officials about whether it is feasible.

The primary proponent of this strategy is National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster according to the Wall Street Journal and other publications that corroborated the report. McMaster is opposed by Defense Secretary James Mattis and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson who both think it's a terrible idea.

I believe if launching a limited "bloody nose" attack on North Korea without provoking a deadly response were possible, it would have been done a very long time ago by a previous administration. If at any point, it would have made more sense over 10 years ago before the North demonstrated the capability to deploy nuclear weapons on long-range missiles.

If anyone else occupied the White House right now, I probably wouldn't spend more than a fleeting moment considering the possibility, but Trump is unstable and unpredictable. Who the hell knows what he's going to do about any particular thing on any particular day?

  • muselet

    The hope would be to make that point without inciting a full-bore reprisal by North Korea.

    Hope is a good thing. It’s the thing with feathers, according to Emily Dickinson. It smiles from the threshold of the year to come, according to Alfred, Lord Tennyson.

    What hope is emphatically not is a substitute for rational, sane thought.

    A concussed bee has enough of a grasp of what makes Kim Jong-un tick to know that any military strike would result in South Korea being transformed into a smoking crater and North Korea being tranformed into—as Charlie Pierce has said—a glass parking lot. And yet we have the ninnies in the White House seriously considering a military strike.

    HR McMaster needs to shut up, and go home and play with his big bucket of plastic army men instead of endangering a goodly chunk of Asia with this madness.

    –alopecia

  • fry1laurie

    “Limited nuclear strike”, with a fallout that enters the atmosphere and travels all over the globe, sickening millions more. Seems like a good plan./s

  • Draxiar

    North Korea has rattled their sabers, have terrible human rights records, and tested missiles. While I’m not a fan of NK I have to ask, have they really done anything to warrant a bloody nose strike…or any strike? Am I missing something here? Aren’t they also on the verge of opening up discussions with South Korea? Why not let that process play out, eh?

    • Georgie

      I believe they talked today for over 11 hours, maybe time for the US to see what they decide. http://reut.rs/2qOjSwE .

      • Badgerite

        Does not seem like the right time for a confrontation, does it? When people are talking? Why now.

        • Georgie

          Who know how these people think anymore, it a enigma wrapped in a shit sandwich.

  • This is terrifying. The odds that Kim Jong Un won’t retaliate are very, very small.

    • ninjaf

      And retaliate by melting down the entire Korean peninsula, plus Guam and Japan.

      But hey, they sure bloodied his nose, didn’t they?