Published: Thu, October 12, 2017
World Media | By Shelia Harmon

USA bombers conduct military drills over Korean peninsula

USA bombers conduct military drills over Korean peninsula

North Korean hackers stole strategic plans drawn up by South Korea and the United States on how they would respond to an attack by the rogue regime as well as details of a "decapitation" plan to assassinate President Kim Jong Un, according to a report on Tuesday. In August, Pyongyang threatened to shoot intermediate range missiles towards the vicinity of Guam, a target frequently subjected to sabre-rattling from the North.

Lim and Sullivan are expected to discuss cooperation on major issues including their bilateral relations and North Korea's nuclear program.

"Through the practice this time, South Korean and US Air Forces showed off the allies resolve for strong retaliation against North Korea's nuclear and missile threats", it said.

The exercises came hours after a South Korean lawmaker claimed North Korean hackers had stolen a large cache of military documents from his country, "including a plan to assassinate North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un, and wartime contingency plans drawn up by the US and South Korea", reports the BBC.

"Although I will not comment on intelligence matters or specific incidents related to cyber intrusion, I can assure you that we are confident in the security of our operations plans and our ability to deal with any threat from North Korea", Pentagon spokesman Colonel Robert Manning told reporters. -South Korean war plans, including parts of Operational Plan 5015, which includes procedures for a decapitation strike on the North's leadership if a crisis breaks out or appears imminent.

The South Korean Defence Ministry's official stance is that they cannot confirm anything the lawmaker said in terms of the hacked content due to the sensitivity of the matter. Defense officials refused to comment when reached by other media.

A South Korean presidential official said Tuesday's operation was part of a recently agreed upon rotational deployment of US military assets to the peninsula, according to the Yonhap News Agency.

North Korea is also facing strong sanctions from the USA and firm condemnation from the worldwide community in the wake of repeated missile launches and nuclear tests. Some military experts believe that power supply problems make it hard for North Korea to turn on its air defense radars for 24 hours a day and also that the systems might struggle to effectively track advanced warplanes such as B-1Bs, which have low radar-cross sections.

The two B-1B bombers were accompanied by two F-15K fighters from the South Korean military after leaving their base in Guam, the South's Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a news release. The aircraft then conducted similar simulated air to ground striking drills off the peninsula's west coast, according to South Korea's Defense Ministry.

Like this: