WAR nears between N-South Korea-USA over sunk SK ship
May 20, 2010 - WAR could be near between the 2 Koreas
May 7, 2010 proof of torpedo
March 28 - Many reports as this story broke suspected North Korea.
One theory now is a floating NKorea mine. Time will tell.
Regardless what we are told, I will remain suspicious.
March 30 - South Korea military put ON ALERT
NORTH KOREA TORPEDO SINKS South Korean Naval ship
March 26, 2010 North Korea 'torpedoes and sinks' South Korean navy ship with 104 sailors on board.
South Korean navy ship sunk in the Yellow Sea near Baengnyeong island off the west coast.
It may have been hit by a North Korean torpedo and several sailors were killed.
It is believed 59 sailors have been rescued.
A South Korean warship later fired at an unidentified vessel toward the north,
indicating a possible attack, and South Korea presidential Blue House was holding an emergency security meeting.
The ship appears to have begun sinking after an explosion at the rear of the ship.
In apparent retaliation, the South Korean navy shot at an unidentified ship in the direction of North Korea.
One report said the target turned out to be a flock of birds.
The South Korean vessel alleged that the North Korean vessel had crossed the disputed sea border, North Korea denied.
A man from North Korea recently escaped. I am sure NK didnt like that at all.
South Korea news
North Korea news
South Korean Sailors Reportedly DieSouth Korean Sailors Reportedly Die as Ship Sinks Near North Korea
There was a possibility that the explosion was caused by an attack from North Korea or the boat’s own explosives.
A news report says a number of South Korean sailors died and more than 40 are missing after their military ship sank off an island not far from North Korea, as the South Korean navy shot at unidentified ships near the maritime border.
A South Korean naval ship sank near the disputed maritime border with North Korea early Saturday, prompting the South's military to rush vessels to the site to rescue its sailors and raising fears of an attack by the North.
The ship, on a routine patrolling mission with 104 crew members on board, began sinking off the coast of South Korean-controlled Baengnyeong Island close to North Korea around 9:45 p.m. (8:45 a.m. ET), Rear Adm. Lee Ki-sik of the Joint Chiefs of Staff told reporters late Friday.
Lee said an unexplained hole in the bottom of the ship caused the vessel to take on water. South Korea's Yonhap news agency reported that the ship was damaged by an explosion, and said the military had not ruled out the possibility of an attack by North Korea.
A rescue mission was under way. Officials told Yonhap there were some deaths among the sailors but did not specify the number. The military, meanwhile, moved to strengthen its vigilance near the maritime border, the site of three bloody naval clashes between the warring Koreas. The divided peninsula remains in a state of war because the three-year Korean conflict ended in a truce, not a peace treaty, in 1953.
Earlier Friday, North Korea's military threatened "unpredictable strikes," including a nuclear attack, in anger over a report that South Korea and the U.S. were preparing for possible instability in the totalitarian country.
After the ship began sinking, President Lee Myung-bak convened an emergency meeting of security-related ministers, including the defense minister and other top military officials. After three hours, they agreed to meet again Saturday without making any statement about the cause of the incident, presidential spokesman Lee Dong-kwan said.
Lee ordered the military to focus on the rescue, he said.
Six naval ships and two coast guard vessels rushed to save the crew, Yonhap said. Rescue helicopters and ambulances also sped to the scene, military officials said.
A naval official told Yonhap there were deaths among the sailors, and the cable network YTN said some 40 crew members were missing. However, military officials told the AP they could not confirm deaths, and said 58 sailors had been rescued, with two being airlifted for emergency medical treatment.
Yonhap reported earlier that a South Korean ship fired shots toward an unidentified target in the direction of North Korea, raising fears of an exchange of gunfire.
The military official confirmed that South Korean torops fired shots but said the object detected by radar may have been a flock of birds.
Senior government officials told South Korean media the ship may not have been the target of an attack, but could have struck a rock or been impaired by an explosive on board.
Baeknyeong Island, four hours by boat from the port of Incheon, is the westernmost point of South Korea and is a key military post for South Korea because of its proximity to the North.
Stratfor IntellegenceStratfor origninally emailed me this story.
Here is Stratfor's update.
I put more credibility on Stratfor than general CONTROLLED press.
World govts will probably make this non-news, and its VERY BIG NEWS.
A South Korean ship has been sunk in the vicinity of the maritime border with North Korea.
While details are sketchy, initial reports suggest that some South Korean naval ships had been involved in combat with an unidentified ship in the area immediately preceding the incident.
Other reports suggest that the ship was struck by a torpedo.
Yet another indicates a stern explosion.
Tensions between the two Koreas have always been at least moderately high,
but recent governments in the South have tended to seek a rapprochement.
Last year, however, a new government came to power that revoked the “Sunshine Policy” and took a firmer stance against the North
A South Korean presidential spokesman said North Korea did not cause the sinking of the South Korean vessel Cho An.
Even though lack of subsequent military conflict shows that the incident has now become a political event,
the maritime boundary of the Korean Peninsula should be watched closely in the coming days
to see how the incident fits within Pyongyang’s attempts to hold its own as it approaches the
resumption of international negotiations and an important leadership transition.
NWO plans NUCLEAR CONFRONTATION between KoreasNEW WORLD ORDER plans call for a
HAIR RAISING NUCLEAR CONFRONTATION
on the KOREAN PENINSULA
Part of the Plan to produce the appearance of Antichrist calls for a very frightening nuclear confrontation between North and South Korea.
The stage seems to be set now for this scenario to occur.
This is just one more sign that the appearance of Antichrist may be very close.
North Korea Threatens ‘Nuclear Strikes’ Against South, U.S.
There was valid reason to believe North Korea had a hand in this.
They have been threatening again recently.
This news will probably be spun into nothing, but it has the feel of a crisis.
It wouldnt take much for that little runt to start a nuclear war.
North Korea Threatens ‘Nuclear Strikes’ Against South, U.S.
March 26, 2010
North Korea said its military is ready to unleash “unprecedented nuclear strikes” against the U.S. and South Korea following a report the two are preparing for possible political instability in the communist country.
“Those who seek to bring down the system in the DPRK, whether they play a main role or a passive role, will fall victim to the unprecedented nuclear strikes of the invincible army,” state-run Korean Central News Agency quoted an army spokesman as saying, using the acronym for the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.
KCNA criticized a report in the March 19 issue of South Korean newspaper Dong-A Ilbo that U.S. and South Korean officials will meet in April to discuss contingency plans for internal upheaval in the North.
Kim Jong Il’s regime has made similar threats before, saying on March 9 that it would increase its nuclear deterrent capabilities if the U.S. and South Korea continue joint military exercises.
March 27, 2010 UPDATEVessels Search S. Korea Waters for Survivors After Naval Ship Sinks
March 27, 2010 UPDATE
Navy and coast guard vessels, as well as air force planes, were combing the waters near South Korea's Baengnyeong Island Saturday in search of 46 sailors missing 12 hours after an explosion occurred on a military ship.
South Korea - Hopes faded Saturday for the rescue of 46 sailors missing 12 hours after an explosion occurred on a South Korean military ship that sank in one of the country's worst naval disasters, even as authorities continued searching the murky waters near the sea border with rival North Korea.
Navy and coast guard vessels, as well as air force planes, were combing the waters near South Korea's Baengnyeong Island where the 1,200-ton Cheonan sank early Saturday in bad weather and rough waves during a routine patrolling mission.
The Joint Chiefs of Staff said an explosion tore a hole into the Cheonan's rear hull late Friday night, shutting off the engine, wiping out the power and taking the ship down a little over three hours later. Officials weren't more specific about where on the ship the explosion occurred.
Most of the vessel was underwater Saturday, though the ship's hull was visible. Officials have yet to confirm any deaths. Some of the rescued were treated for burns, broken bones and abrasions, but none of the injuries was considered life-threatening.
President Lee Myung-bak ordered officials to quickly determine what caused the ship to sink, presidential spokeswoman Kim Eun-hye said.
There was no indication North Korea, which lies some 10 miles from Baengnyeong Island, was to blame, but troops kept a vigilant watch.
Lee reconvened a security meeting and instructed officials to make all efforts to rescue the missing sailors, the spokeswoman said. Kim added there were no signs of North Korean troop movements.
A number of crew members jumped into the water after the explosion, according to the Joint Chiefs of Staff, which said rescuers had picked up 58 sailors but 46 still were missing.
"The sound of people screaming filled the air," Kim Jin-ho, a seaman on a local passenger ship to Baengnyeong, told cable news channel YTN. "Marines on deck were desperately shouting: 'Save me!"'
Hopes for the missing were diminishing with each hour, a coast guard official said. He said humans can survive in winter waters if rescued within two hours, noting that the temperatures of the Yellow Sea at the time was between 37 and 41 degrees Fahrenheit.
He asked not to be identified because of sensitivity of the issue.
Joint Chiefs of Staff spokesman Park Seong-woo said the military will issue a judgment on the cause of the accident after rescue teams search and salvage the vessel for analysis.
The incident is one of worst naval disasters for South Korea. Local media reported that the country's worst maritime accident occurred in 1974, when a ship sank off the southeast coast in stormy weather, killing 159 sailors and coast guard personnel. In 1967, 39 sailors were killed by North Korean artillery.
A South Korean ship on the same patrol mission with the Cheonan fired shots toward an unidentified target in the direction of North Korea on Friday night, but the object detected by radar may have been a flock of birds, according to the JCS.
Some senior government officials have speculated the sinking may have been an accident, not an attack, South Korean media said. Some analysts also shared that view.
"It's looking more and more like it was just an accident that happens on a ship," Carl Baker, an expert on Korean military relations at the Pacific Forum CSIS think tank in Honolulu, said by telephone. He said Pyongyang was unlikely to attack the far more powerful South Korean military.
The ship went down near a dispute maritime border that has been a flashpoint between the two Koreas. Their military have fought three bloody skirmishes in the area in recent years. The South Korean military uses Baengnyeong Island, the closest South Korean territory to the North, as a military outpost.
Earlier Friday, North Korea's military threatened "unpredictable strikes" against the U.S. and South Korea in anger over a report the two countries plan to prepare for possible instability in the totalitarian country.
The two Koreas remain locked in a state of war because their three-year conflict ended in a truce, not a peace treaty, in 1953.
South Korea searches for 46 sailorsSouth Korea searches for 46 sailors
March 28, 2010
Weeping, angry relatives of 46 crewmembers missing after a mysterious explosion sank a South Korean navy ship sailed around the site Sunday as rescue teams struggled to search for survivors.
None has been found since an initial rescue of 58 sailors from the 1,200-ton Cheonan that sank early Saturday near the tense border with North Korea. No bodies have been discovered either. Still, President Lee Myung-bak refused to give up hope.
The ship had been on a routine patrol with other vessels in the Yellow Sea off South Korea's west coast. The exact cause of the explosion — one of South Korea's worst naval disasters — remained unclear and officials said it could take weeks to determine.
Fierce waves and high winds have hampered the search in an area where the two Koreas have fought three bloody naval engagements since 1999. Despite the location of the sinking, North Korea did not appear to be involved.
"We have detected 'no special movements' by North Korean forces; however, we, as a command, continue to monitor the situation and remain prepared for any contingency," Gen. Walter Sharp, chief of the 28,500 U.S. troops in South Korea, said in a statement Sunday.
South Korean troops were maintaining "solid military readiness," the Defense Ministry said. It also said a U.S. military ship would join rescue operations Monday.
The Cheonan sank about a mile from Baengnyeong Island, which is about 10 miles from North Korea. The Koreas remain in a state of war because their three-year conflict ended in a truce, not a peace treaty, in 1953.
The explosion tore open the rear hull of the Cheonan, shut down its engine, wiped out power and caused the ship to sink a little over three hours later. The ship broke into two pieces, officials said.
Military and coast guard ships, helicopters and divers searched the chilly waters Sunday but made little headway due to poor underwater visibility and strong currents.
Rescue ships retrieved about 20 life jackets and 15 safety helmets in waters 7-18 miles away from the site, according to the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Lee ordered officials to "thoroughly investigate" the sinking and make their best efforts to rescue any survivors.
"The president said that utmost efforts must be exerted in the belief that missing crewmembers are still alive and that we must never lose hope," the presidential Blue House said.
Later Sunday, Prime Minister Chung Un-chan sailed to the site of the sinking after flying to Baengnyeong Island to review rescue operations. On the island, marines combed beaches to check for any bodies or debris that may have washed ashore.
As hopes faded for the missing crew, about 80 family members aboard a navy patrol boat sailed around the site and watched rescue operations.
"My son! My son!" one crying woman shouted while boarding the ship at a naval base south of Seoul for the journey to the accident area as other relatives wailed in grief.
Officials will only be able to determine the cause of the explosion after the sunken ship is salvaged, a naval officer said Sunday. The officer, speaking on condition of anonymity because of department policy, said it is likely to take about a month to salvage a ship of that size.
A survivor, Staff Sgt. Shin Eun-chong, 24, told relatives Saturday that he was on night duty when he heard a huge boom behind him that split apart the ship. The vessel started tilting, and his glasses fell off his face as he hit the deck, relatives told The Associated Press.
Some families also vented anger at the military, accusing authorities of a cover-up and saying survivors told them the Cheonan was leaky and in need of repair. They shouted "Liars!" and jumped on a car carrying the rescued ship captain as it drove away.
Korea ship split in halfSouth Korea ship split in half
Sunday, 28 March 2010
Sunk South Korea naval ship Cheonan 'split in half'
South Korea has not given up all hope of finding survivors
The force of Friday's mysterious explosion which sunk a South Korean naval ship appears to have split the vessel's hull in two, officials say.
The two halves are lying on the sea bed but bad weather has prevented military divers from reaching the wreckage.
46 sailors are missing and rescue workers say it is unlikely that anyone could have survived three days in the near-freezing water.
The cause of the explosion on the 1,200-tonne Cheonan remains unclear.
The BBC's John Sudworth in Seoul says several possibilities have been suggested:
* an accidental onboard explosion
* a blast caused by hitting rocks or sea mines
* or a deliberate outside attack.
The naval patrol vessel sank near the disputed maritime border with North Korea but military officials say there is no indication the North was involved.
58 sailors, including the captain, were rescued from one of the South's worst sea disasters.
Some rescue-workers say it is still possible that some people could have survived in air-pockets inside the ship, although the water in the Yellow Sea is about 4C.
After visiting the disaster site, Defence Minister Kim Tae-young said: "The vessel appeared to have been split into half," reports South Korea's Yonhap news agency.
Although the waters are fairly shallow, the exact location of the wreckage has not yet been located, according to defence ministry spokesman Won Tae-jae.
Navy and coast guard vessels, as well as air force planes, are still scouring the area near South Korea's Baeknyeong Island.
A group of 80 family members have sailed around the crash site and watched the rescue efforts, the AP news agency reports.
But some relatives are accusing the navy of a cover-up, saying the ship was in need of repair.
Earlier, the ship's rescued captain has been recounting what happened.
"There was the sound of an explosion and the ship keeled to the right. We lost power and telecommunications," Yonhap quoted Choi Won-il as saying.
"I was trapped in the cabin for five minutes before my colleagues broke the window in and let me out. When I got out, the stern had disappeared."
A number of the crew jumped into the water, Yonhap said.
"Yells and screams filled the air," witness Kim Jin-ho, a seaman who was on a local passenger ship bound for Baeknyeong, told cable news channel YTN.
"Marines on deck were desperately shouting: 'Save me!"'
South Korean President Lee Myung-bak convened an emergency meeting of security officials and said all possible causes for the sinking would be investigated.
He ordered the military to focus on rescuing the sailors.
There were initial reports that another South Korean ship had fired shots toward an unidentified vessel, but officials later speculated the target had been a flock of birds.
The incident comes at a time of tension between the two Koreas. International talks aimed at ending the communist North's nuclear ambitions have been stalled for months.
North and South Korea are still in a official state of war because the 1950-53 Korean War ended only in a truce.
Since then, they have fought three bloody skirmishes in the Yellow Sea.
In January, North Korea fired about 30 artillery shells not far from Baeknyeong. South Korea fired 100 warning shots in response, but no injuries were reported.
South Korea recognises the Northern Limit Line, drawn unilaterally by the US-led United Nations Command to demarcate the sea border at the end of the Korean War. The line has never been accepted by North Korea.
Stern of ship locatedNorth Korea warns of "unpredictable incidents
including the loss of human lives" if tours to DMZ continue
March 29 - (Yonhap NEWS )
South Korea says it has located what it believes is the stern of the navy ship that sank Friday after explosion.
South Korea said Monday it has detected what is believed to be a rear part of a sunken Navy vessel, which might be carrying crew members who went missing after a mysterious explosion tore apart the ship near the border with North Korea three days ago.
The 1,200-ton South Korean Navy corvette "Cheonan," carrying a crew of 104, sank late Friday near the Yellow Sea border with North Korea after an unexplained powerful explosion that officials and witnesses said snapped the vessel in two. Fifty-eight sailors, including the ship's captain, were rescued, but 46 others are still missing.
The military found the front of the Navy ship Sunday, but was unable to detect for days the location of the rear of the broken vessel, where the majority of the missing sailors are presumed to be trapped.
With the ship shutting out water for a maximum of 69 hours after going under, according to experts, the clock was ticking for the survival of the missing crew.
On Monday, officials said that a 30-meter-long object has been detected by sonar in waters about 40-50 meters from the scene, and that it is believed to be the back of the wrecked vessel.
"We're using an unmanned camera to confirm," a military official said Monday, asking for anonymity as he was not authorized to speak to media on the issue. "If the currents remain gentle, we may be able to see some positive results within the morning."
As anger and desperation of the relatives are growing, South Korean President Lee Myung-bak instructed a thorough investigation into "all possibilities" of the blast with the cause yet to be found.
Washington and Seoul have both been cautious talking about the possibility of Pyongyang's involvement, even though the disaster site is close to the scene of three naval clashes between the two divided Korean states in 1999, 2002 and most recently in November last year.
The U.S. Forces Korea in a statement Sunday said, "We have detected no special movements by North Korean forces."
As part of the widening efforts to locate the missing crew members, the U.S. 7th fleet will be sending its rescue vessel "Salvo," which participated in the Foal Eagle joint military drill with Seoul earlier this month, to assist later in the day, according to Seoul's defense ministry.
The South Korean military refused to make any negative presumptions about the fate of the missing sailors, stressing that "no deaths have been confirmed yet."
Sunday's searches found items that appear to be from the sunken boat, including body armor and safety helmets no further than 16 miles from where the site of the accident, according to the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS).
The JCS believes an explosion tore a hole in the rear of the vessel, shutting off the engine and taking the ship down in less than three hours. Officials remain cautious about the cause, however, until specialists are able to reach and investigate the craft.
The incident comes amid heightened tension between the two Koreas, which technically remain in a state of conflict since the 1950-1953 Korean War ended in a truce, not a peace treaty. North Korea has said in recent weeks it is bolstering its defense in response to joint South Korean-U.S. military drills that were held this month.
North Korea does not recognize the western sea border, drawn by the United Nations at the end of the Korean War, and claims that it should be redrawn further south.
The sunken vessel, 88 meters long and 10m wide, was put into service in 1989 and was equipped with missiles and torpedoes, according to Navy officials.
The incident is said to be one of South Korea's worst naval disasters.
Sunken section of South Korean naval vessel foundSunken section of South Korean naval vessel found
Monday, 29 March 2010
The South Korean military says it has located the stern of its warship that sank in mysterious circumstances on Friday following an explosion.
The authorities are hoping that some of the 46 crew members still missing may be alive but trapped in underwater air pockets in the wreckage.
Military diving teams were due to begin a search for survivors.
The vessel sank close to the sea border with North Korea; the South says it is open-minded on the cause of the blast.
The South's defence minister said it could have been caused by a drifting mine.
Rescue officials said at the weekend that the explosion had broken the ship into two parts. 58 crewmen were saved soon after the ship went down.
Navy divers have been hampered by strong currents and murky waters, but have now located the stern on the sea bed.
It is the part of ship that contains the sleeping compartments and so is thought to be the most likely location in which survivors might be found.
"Divers confirmed the location of the rear part and installed a buoy there," said Joint Chiefs of Staff spokesman Lee Ki-shik.
He told a news conference underwater cameras would be sent down to search for possible trapped survivors.
But it is now a race against time, our Seoul correspondent John Sudworth says.
If any of the 46 missing crew members are still alive, calculations suggest that any oxygen in the trapped air will soon run out.
Yonhap news agency quoted officials as saying that parts of the ship were able to shut out water for a maximum of 69 hours.
President Lee Myung-bak urged rescuers not to give up hope of finding survivors and to investigate all possible causes of the sinking.
"Look into the causes of the incident thoroughly and leave no single piece of doubt behind," the AFP news agency quoted him as saying.
Yonhap said 24 military vessels, with air support, were involved with the search. A US rescue vessel Salvo, with more than a dozen divers on board, has also joined the operation.
The 1,200-tonne Cheonan naval patrol vessel sank near the disputed maritime border with North Korea - the Northern Limit Line - but military officials say there is no indication the North was involved.
South Korea recognises the line, drawn unilaterally by the US-led United Nations Command to demarcate the sea border at the end of the Korean War.
But it has never been accepted by North Korea, and the area has been the scene of deadly clashes between the navies of the two Koreas in the past.
Our correspondent says that no unusual military movements were detected on Friday night, however, leading to speculation that the sinking was due to some kind of accident.
South Korea Defence Minister Kim Tae-Young said the explosion could have been caused by an old North Korean wartime sea mine which drifted into southern waters.
"Though many mines were removed, it must have been impossible to retrieve them all," AFP quoted him as saying.
NKorea May Have Floated Mine at SK shipNorth May Have Floated Mine to Damage Navy Ship
torpedo - floating mine - rogue waves can split a ship in half
March 29, 2010
North Korea may have deliberately directed an underwater mine toward the South Korean naval ship that exploded and sank three days ago near a disputed maritime border, the defense minister told lawmakers Monday.
Defense Minister Kim Tae-young said military authorities have not ruled out North Korean involvement in the sinking of the Cheonan, which split apart within minutes of an explosion in the rear hull late Friday night, according to the ship's captain.
Fifty-eight crew members were rescued from the Yellow Sea waters near Baengnyeong Island west of Seoul, but 46 others are missing, most likely inside a rear segment of the ship, military officials said. Divers rapping on the stern with hammers got no response Monday, military officials said.
South Korean officials have been careful to say the exact cause of the explosion remains unknown, and that the rescue mission remains their priority.
However, Kim told lawmakers Monday that North Korean involvement was one possibility.
"North Korea may have intentionally floated underwater mines to inflict damage on us," he said.
The two Koreas remain in a state of war because their three-year conflict ended in a truce, not a peace treaty, in 1953. North Korea disputes the maritime border drawn by the United Nations in 1953, and the western waters -- not far from where the Cheonan went down -- have been the site of three bloody skirmishes between North and South.
A mine placed by North Korea during the Korean War may also have struck the ship, he said. Many of the 3,000 Soviet-made mines North Korea planted during the war were removed, but not all. Kim noted that a North Korean mine was discovered as recently as 1984.
There are no South Korean mines off the west coast, he added. Kim also ruled out a torpedo attack, citing rescued sailors who were manning the radars.
Officials have also said an internal malfunction may be to blame. The 1,200-ton Cheonan is designed to carry weapons, and was involved in a previous skirmish with North Korea.
U.S. and South Korea military officials said there was no outward indication that North Korea was involved in the sinking of the Cheonan.
However, "neither the government nor the defense ministry has ever said that there was no possibility of North Korea's involvement," Kim said.
The North Korean military was keeping a close watch on the search operation, the Joint Chiefs of Staffs said in a defense committee report cited by the Yonhap news agency.
But Pyongyang's state media have made no mention of the ship. The North Korean military's first comments since the ship went down warned the U.S. and South Korea on Monday against engaging in "psychological warfare" by letting journalists into the Demilitarized Zone.
President Lee Myung-bak said rescuers "should not give up hope" of finding the crewmen, according to a statement from the presidential Blue House after Lee met with a security ministers Monday.
"We'll continue our search operation until the last minute without giving up hope of rescuing even a single survivor," a Joint Chiefs officer said Monday on condition of anonymity in line with department policy.
But the prospect of pulling out anyone alive seemed dim Monday. Any navy crewmen who initially survived and managed to seal themselves inside watertight cabins would likely have run out of air by Monday night since the supply of oxygen in the cabins was estimated to last up to 69 hours.
Rough waves over the weekend prevented military divers from gaining access to the wreckage. On Monday afternoon, divers finally reached the ship's rear segment -- where most of the missing were believed to be trapped.
Divers knocked on the ship with hammers but there was no response, Rear Adm. Lee Ki-sik of the Joint Chiefs of Staff told reporters.
The U.S. Navy sent four ships and a team of divers to join the search, said Lt. Anthony Falvo, a spokesman for the U.S. 7th Fleet, based just south of Tokyo.
At a naval base south of Seoul, anguished relatives waited for news from the search mission, some pounding their chests with grief.
PROBABLY WAS a TORPEDO after allSouth Korea ship torpedo likely
Well, it appears my own suspicions are shared by SKorea
Friday, 2 April 2010
South Korea's defence minister has renewed speculation a torpedo could have caused the blast that sank a warship off its coast last week.
Kim Tae-young said it was a "likely possibility" the Cheonan had been hit by such a missile, but that all possibilities needed to be considered.
Mr Kim did not say who would have fired a torpedo or under what circumstances it could have happened.
Rescuers are still searching for 46 sailors missing on board the ship.
Officials say some could be trapped alive in watertight sections of the vessel.
"We'd like to think our sailors were well-trained enough to survive days underwater," said Cdr Song Moo-jin of South Korea's naval salvage unit.
Mr Kim had previously said a sea mine could have caused the blast, which tore the 1,200-tonne corvette in half near Baengnyeong Island, close to the maritime border with North Korea.
But on Friday, he told parliament a torpedo was "a more realistic cause than a mine".
Mr Kim said sailors who had escaped the ship had not reported detecting any incoming missiles before the blast, the Yonhap news agency reported.
Earlier in the week, South Korea's President Lee Myung-bak said there had to be "no suspicion or negligence" in the investigation.
Shortly after the sinking, Seoul said it did not believe Pyongyang had fired on the ship.
There were initial reports another South Korean ship had fired shots toward an unidentified vessel after the blast, but officials later speculated the target had been a flock of birds.
Officials have said establishing a definitive cause could have to wait until the ship is salvaged.
The search for the missing sailors continued on Friday, after poor weather disrupted operations on previous days.
Yonhap said 169 military divers were searching the area throughout the day although conditions were still difficult.
Oxygen has been piped into the vessel, but divers have detected no signs of life.
Pyongyang has made no official comment on the incident.
It does not accept the maritime border, known as the Northern Limit Line, which was drawn unilaterally by the US-led United Nations Command at the end of the Korean War.
The sea border has been the scene of deadly clashes between the navies of the two Koreas in the past.
GOOD MAPS on this link
Stern of South Korea naval ship lifted from sea bedStern of South Korea naval ship lifted from sea bed
South Korea says an external explosion likely sank one of its navy ships 3 weeks ago
15 April 2010
The South Korean navy has raised the stern section of one of its warships which sank after an unexplained explosion last month.
A giant floating crane winched the stern of the ship up from the sea bed.
58 sailors were rescued at the time of the sinking, which occurred near the sea border with North Korea.
It is thought the bodies of more than 40 missing crew are trapped in the shattered hull of the corvette.
The Cheonan, a 1,200-tonne navy gunboat, sank in mysterious circumstances three weeks ago.
Officials are trying to determine the cause of the explosion; reasons range from accident to attack from the North.
South Korean officials said the stern section would be taken by barge to a naval base for a thorough investigation.
Once it has been drained of water it will be examined to try to determine the cause of the blast.
South Korean TV stations are broadcasting images of the salvage operation, with camera crews kept at a safe distance because this section of the ship is thought likely to contain many of the bodies of the missing crew members.
The Cheonan sank close to the sea border which marks North and South Korean territorial waters.
South Korea has been careful not to level any direct accusations against the North, but it is also very clearly not ruling out the possibility that the ship was attacked, reports the BBC's John Sudworth, in Seoul.
President Lee Myung-bak has called for an objective investigation, the findings of which must be beyond dispute, followed by "stern measures" against whoever was to blame.
South Korea's defence minister has renewed speculation a torpedo could have caused the blast.
Kim Tae-young said it was a "likely possibility" the Cheonan had been hit by such a missile, but that all possibilities needed to be considered.
Pyongyang has made no official comment on the incident.
It does not accept the maritime border, known as the Northern Limit Line, which was drawn unilaterally by the US-led United Nations Command at the end of the Korean War.
The sea border has been the scene of deadly clashes between the navies of the two Koreas in the past.
North Korea torpedoed South's navy shipNorth Korea torpedoed South's navy ship
Even tho it has appeared as if SKorea cant make up their mind, I always thot it was a torpedo.
Now its MURDER .. and therefore justification for WAR
April 22, 2010 Reuters
South Korea suspects a torpedo from a N. Korean sub sank its navy ship last month
South Korea's military believes a torpedo fired from a North Korean submarine sank its navy ship last month,
based on intelligence gathered jointly with the United States
The Yonhap news report appears to be the clearest sign yet that Seoul blames Pyongyang for what would be one of the
deadliest incidents between the rivals since the end of the 1950-53 Korean War.
It puts more political pressure on President Lee Myung-bak, but analysts do not see it triggering a war.
The military's intelligence arm sent the report of "certain" North Korean involvement to the presidential Blue House soon after the incident, Yonhap quoted a high-ranking military source as saying.
Lee's government has come under criticism for what many see as its overly cautious handling of possible links to North Korea.
It has called for a thorough investigation of the sinking, thought to have killed 46 sailors.
Market players have been calmed by the South's measured response, seeing
Seoul as unlikely to take aggressive moves that would escalate into armed conflict and harm the export-driven economies of North Asia, responsible for about one-sixth of the global economy.
South Korea's defense ministry had no comment on the report.
"North Korean submarines are all armed with heavy torpedoes with 200 kg (441 lb) warheads," the military source was quoted as saying by Yonhap. "It is the military intelligence's assessment that the North attacked with a heavy torpedo.
"The military intelligence has made the report to the Blue House and to the Defense Ministry immediately after the sinking of the Cheonan that it is clearly the work of North Korea's military," the source was quoted as saying.
South Korea plans to soon raise the front half of the 1,200-tonne Cheonan, which went down near a disputed sea border with North Korea, and will issue its verdict on the cause of the explosion that sank the warship after that.
Analysts said there is little South Korea can do even if Pyongyang is found to be the culprit, because a military response was likely to hurt its own quickly recovering economy and bolster North Korean leader Kim Jong-il's standing at home.
Lee ended a decade of no-questions-asked aid to the destitute North and called for a hardline push for Pyongyang to disarm.
"The nuclear issue has still not been resolved. This and the Cheonan incident all serve to inflict a negative impact on the Lee administration," said Lee Nam-young, a political analyst at the Sejong University in Seoul.
The reclusive North has denied it had anything to do with the sinking near the disputed sea border off the west coast that has been the scene of two deadly naval battles in the past decade.
It accused Lee of using the incident for political gains ahead of crucial local elections in June.
South Korea has few economic options left to hurt the North. It has already suspended its unconditional handouts that once were worth more than $1 billion to the North, which has an estimated yearly GDP of $17 billion.
The greatest risk to the region is a brief armed conflict where North Korea fires tens of thousands of artillery shells into the Seoul area, home to about half of the South's 49 million people, and fires its hundreds of missiles at major cites in the South and Japan.
Yonhap said the South Korean and U.S. military suspected the North was stepping up drills to infiltrate a submarine south of the naval border, hidden among Chinese fishing boats, and wage a surprise attack against the South.
South Korean ship sunk by crack squad of human torpedoesSouth Korean ship sunk by crack squad of human torpedoes
TRUTH IS STRANGER THAN FICTION!
April 22, 2010
A South Korean warship was destroyed by an elite North Korean suicide squad of 'human torpedoes' on the express orders of the regime's leader, Kim Jong-il, according to military intelligence reports.
The attack on the 1,220-ton Cheonan, which sank on March 26 with the loss of 46 of its 104 crew, was carried out in retaliation for a skirmish between warships of the two nations' navies in November of last year, South Korea claims.
The South Korean government has refused to comment officially on the reports but Defence Minister Kim Tae Young told a parliamentary session that the military believed that the sinking was a deliberate act by North Korea.
Officials in military intelligence say they warned the government earlier this year that North Korea was preparing a suicide-squad submarine attack on a South Korean ship.
"Military intelligence made the report to the Blue House [the presidential office] and to the Defence Ministry immediately after the sinking of the Cheonan that it was clearly the work of North Korea's military," a military source said.
"North Korean submarines are all armed with heavy torpedoes with 200kg warheads," the source said.
Experts who examined the ship, which sank in the Yellow Sea, say that the blast happened outside the vessel's hull, ruling out the possibility of an accident.
North Korean officials who have defected to South Korea but still have contact with North Korean military sources say they have been told that the attack was carried out on the orders of Mr Kim and involved a unit of 13 specially trained commandos and modified midget submarines.
The submarines were manoeuvred close to their target before being detonated, probably along with their crews. Alternatively, the attackers may have used timed charges.
If North Korea was behind the attack, it would be the bloodiest single incident since an uneasy truce brought the Korean War to an end in 1953.
It also leaves Lee Myung Bak, the South Korean president, with a decision to make on retaliation or ignoring the provocation according to analysts.
"This puts Lee in a very difficult situation, but I do not think that an Israeli-style, targeted response is likely," said Aidan Foster-Carter, an expert on Korean affairs at Leeds University. "That is because the United States won't have it and there is the danger that any retaliation will descend into a horrible war."
Describing the attack as "calibrated and deniable," South Korea has little choice but to take its complaint to the United Nations, he said, although that is unlikely to have any impact on the North Korean regime and will not assuage public anger in the South.
The reports come a day after two North Korean agents posing as defectors were arrested for plotting to assassinate Hwang Jang-yop, the highest-ranking member of the North Korean Workers' Party to defect to the South.
Commenting on the sinking of the Cheonan, Mr Hwang said: "It's obvious that Kim Jong-il did it. We know that he has been preparing for this kind of incident."
The North has denied involvement in the sinking, saying the government in Seoul is using the incident to whip up support ahead of elections in June.
However, following the skirmish with South Korea in November, in which a North Korean ship was set on fire and three sailors killed, The National Defence Commission, North Korea's most powerful military body, threatened a "holy retaliatory war".
N Korea says it will seize 5 SKorean assetsNorth Korea says it will seize 5 SKorean assets
NOW WHAT? - Does NORTH KOREA WANT WAR??
April 23, 2010 AP
North Korea said Friday it will confiscate five South Korean-owned properties at a jointly-operated mountain resort in the isolated communist country, a development likely to worsen already-soured relations.
North Korea has been demanding that the South resume tours to the facility, which had been a key source of foreign currency earnings for the impoverished nation but were suspended after a North Korean soldier shot a South Korean tourist to death in 2008.
South Korea has refused to restart tours until its demands for a joint investigation into the death are carried out and measures to guarantee the safety of tourists are outlined.
Tensions between the two Koreas are already high after a South Korean navy ship sank last month, killing at least 39 people and leaving seven missing, amid suspicion that North Korea may have been responsible. North Korea has denied involvement.
"The confiscated real estate will be put into the possession of the (North) or handed over to new businessmen according to legal procedures," North Korea said in a statement carried by the official Korean Central News Agency on Friday.
The five seized properties were identified as a fire station, a duty-free shop, a reunion center for families separated by the 1950-53 Korean War, a cultural center where North Korean troupes performed for tourists and a spa.
The North also said it will freeze ownership of all the remaining South Korean real estate at the resort on the country's east coast and expel all their management personnel. The North warned that it will "take more rigid follow-up measures" if South Korea challenges what the North calls legitimate steps. It did not elaborate.
The two Koreas started the tour program more than a decade ago as part of reconciliation efforts on the divided peninsula, which remains technically at war because the 1950-53 conflict ended with an armistice, not a peace treaty.
South Korea said it cannot accept the North's move and vowed to strongly deal with what it called North Korea's illegal and unreasonable steps. "We are reviewing specific countermeasures," Unification Ministry spokesman Chun Hae-sung told reporters. He declined to elaborate.
Spokesman Roh Jee-hwan of Hyundai Asan, the main private South Korean tour operator at the resort, had no immediate comment.
Paik Hak-soon, a North Korea analyst at the private Sejong Institute think tank near Seoul, said the tour program fell victim to inter-Korean confrontation and suggested Seoul offer high-level talks with North Korea to resolve the dispute.
The North's statement faulted South Korea for linking the sinking of the warship to the North, and called South Korean President Lee Myung-bak a traitor for comments connected with the North's celebrations of its late founder's birthday last week.
Lee had criticized North Korea for spending a reported 6 billion won ($5.4 million) on fireworks to mark Kim Il Sung's birthday, saying the money would have been better spent on corn to ease the country's chronic food shortages.
Separately, Lee said Friday that Seoul will cooperate with the international community on necessary steps after the outcome of an investigation into the sinking of the ship, which split into two. He did not elaborate.
His foreign minister has said Seoul will consider taking the case to the U.N. Security Council for possible stronger sanctions against North Korea if it is confirmed to be behind it.
South Korean officials have said that so far there has been no definitive evidence indicating the North's involvement in the incident. However, suspicions have been fueled by the North's history of attacks on the South and comments by the chief investigator that the ship was likely brought down by an external explosion.
On Friday, a huge floating crane hoisted the bow of the 1,200-ton Cheonan to the surface of the Yellow Sea in preparation for pulling it out of the waters and onto a barge Saturday, according to South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Last week, South Korea salvaged the stern and moved it to a naval base south of Seoul for investigation with foreign experts.
NORTH KOREA TORPEDO SINKS South Korean Naval shipNORTH KOREA TORPEDO SINKS South Korean Naval ship
Probe concludes torpedo sank South Korea ship: report
May 6 2010 SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA
Investigators probing the deadly sinking of a South Korean navy ship in March near the North have concluded that
a torpedo was the source of an explosion that destroyed the vessel, a news report said on Friday.
The team of South Korean and foreign investigators found traces of explosives used in torpedoes on several parts of the sunken ship as well as
pieces of composite metal used in such weapons, South Korea's Yonhap news agency said quoting a senior government official.
South Korean officials have not officially accused the North but made little secret of their belief Pyongyang N.K.
deliberately torpedoed the 1,200-tonne corvette Cheonan in March near their disputed border in retaliation of a naval firefight last year.
The metallic debris and chemical residue appear to be consistent with a type of torpedo made in Germany,
indicating the North may have been trying to disguise its involvement by avoiding arms made by allies China and Russia, Yonhap quoted the official as saying.
North Korea has denied involvement and accused South Korean President Lee Myung-bak's government of trying to use the incident for political gains ahead of local elections in June.
AND FOR THE RECORD -
NORTH KOREA IS MASSING TROOPS ON THE BORDER WITH SOUTH KOREA
Koreas at war over naval sinkingKoreas at war over naval sinking
I DO NOT think this is small. North Korea appears to desire war.
There is talk that a North Korea sub torpedoed the Deepwater Horizon oil rig in the US Gulf of Mexico April 2010.
20 May 2010
SOUTH KOREA will today formally accuse North Korea of an unprovoked torpedo attack on one its naval vessels in March, and refer the matter to the UN Security Council.
South Korea is making a complaint to the UN over the sinking of the Cheonan, in which 46 people died. Seoul claims the vessel was hit in an unprovoked torpedo attack by the North.
Seoul is to announce the findings of an investigative team that includes experts from Britain, Sweden, Australia and the United States on the sinking of the 1,200-tonne corvette Cheonan, which claimed 46 lives.
South Korean foreign minister Yu Myung-hwan yesterday said investigators had enough evidence of North Korean involvement in the
sinking of the Cheonan to warrant taking Pyongyang to the UN Security Council.
When asked by reporters if the North had sunk the ship, Mr Yu said: "I believe that's certainly the case."
Mr Yu's comments are the first by a South Korean official clearly pointing the finger at North Korea for one of the worst attacks on the South since the end of the Korean War in 1953.
The thorough and exhaustive investigation revealed that a "strong underwater explosion generated by the detonation of a torpedo caused the Korean battleship to split apart and sink", Mr Yu said.
North Korea has denied involvement in the sinking of the Cheonan near the tense western maritime border on 26 March.
"The mad confrontation attempt by the South puppet group has left the inter-Korean ties in ruins and the catastrophe of war has been cast over the Korean nation,"
the North's official KCNA news agency quoted the Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of the Fatherland as saying yesterday.
Fragments of a torpedo propeller found near the disaster site were similar to parts from a North Korean torpedo that South Korea obtained seven years ago, the Chosun Ilbo newspaper reported.
A serial number on the torpedo propeller was written in a font typically used in NKorea, and traces of explosives found in the wreckage resemble explosives used in the North Korean torpedo retrieved in 2003.
The Dong-a Ilbo newspaper carried a similar report, saying an 85-ton North Korean submersible is believed to have torpedoed the vessel.
It said the conclusion was based on intelligence on the movement of North Korean submersibles and analyses of intercepted military communication.
South Korea has already briefed the Chinese ambassador on its findings into the sinking. China, host of on-again, off-again six-party talks aimed at reining in North Korea's nuclear weapons programme,
is the reclusive state's only major ally and is loath to penalise it for wrongs perceived in South Korea and the West.
China irritated South Korea earlier this month by hosting North Korean leader Kim Jong-il on a rare trip abroad before the outcome of the investigation was announced.
South Korean president Lee Myung-bak has vowed action against the culprits of the attack and has this week discussed the matter by phone with Barack Obama and Japanese prime minister Yukio Hatoyama.
Possible actions include a request to the UN Security Council for tougher sanctions against the North, and for Washington to put Pyongyang back on its terrorism blacklist.
The two Koreas are divided by the world's most heavily guarded border.
The North disputes the maritime border drawn by the UN in 1953, and the western waters have been the site of several deadly naval clashes since 1999.
In Washington, a US state department spokesman said North Korea must "cease provocative acts, cease acts of aggression that destabilise the region", and
urged it to follow through on past commitments to abandon its nuclear programmes.
The United States had pushed the North to return to stalled six-nation nuclear disarmament talks,
but officials have said the findings of the ship-sinking investigation will be a major factor in whether those talks resume.
U.S. Implicates North Korean Leader Kim authorized AttackU.S. Implicates North Korean Leader in Attack
May 22, 2010 WASHINGTON
A new American intelligence analysis of a deadly torpedo attack on a South Korean warship concludes that Kim Jong-il, the ailing leader of North Korea, must have authorized the torpedo assault,
according to senior American officials who cautioned that the assessment was based on their sense of the political dynamics there rather than hard evidence.
The officials said they were increasingly convinced that Mr. Kim ordered the sinking of the ship, the Cheonan, to help secure the succession of his youngest son.
“We can’t say it is established fact,” said one senior American official who was involved in the highly classified assessment, based on information collected by many of the country’s 16 intelligence agencies.
“But there is very little doubt, based on what we know about the current state of the North Korean leadership and the military.”
Nonetheless, both the conclusion and the timing of the assessment could be useful to the United States as it seeks to rally support against North Korea.
North Korea on war readiness. US-South prepareNorth Korea on war readiness. US-South prepare
It is astonishing things have gone this far!
May 25, 2010 DEBKA
North Korean ruler Kim Jong-il ordered his military to prepare for all-out war after Barack Obama sent the US military to work with Seoul to
prepare for future aggression and plan a joint submarine maneuver for the near future.
Tuesday, May 25, military observers in the Korean Peninsula and Japan were predicting limited skirmishes on land, sea and air.
Some sources found North Korea capable of going all the way to test-firing a nuclear warhead for the first time.
Monday, May 24, President Barack Obama ordered the 28,000 US soldiers stationed in Korea to "work closely with the Republic of Korea to ensure readiness and deter future aggression."
President Lee Myung-bak said Pyongyang must pay a price for the torpedo attack on a South Korean Chenan that killed 46 sailors in March.
Officials accused Kim of personally ordering a submarine to sink the corvette.
Seoul also suspended inter-Korean trade, investment and non-humanitarian aid and banned North Korean merchant ships from passing South Korean waters.
Washington and Seoul have been hoping Beijing would step in to cool the crisis and avert a clash on China's doorstep.
But US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who attended the two-day annual US-Chinese conference in Beijing, failed to persuade Chinese President Hu Jintao to rein in the North Korean ruler and calm the crisis.
China is also reluctant to joint South Korean plans backed by the US and Japan to bring the issue before the UN Security Council for further sanctions against the North.
Past penalties for its nuclear activities have already ravaged the North Korean economy.
debkafile's military sources point to the Korean crisis's grave repercussions for current Middle East war tensions.
North Korea and Iran have worked closely together in the development of their clandestine nuclear weapons programs.
The two rogue powers often pursue the same diplomatic tactics for fobbing off international pressures. For Syrian president Bashar Assad, the brazenly defiant Kim Jong-Il is a role model.
Above all, Pyongyang is the primary source of nuclear technology and sophisticated missiles for Iran and Syria.
The plutonium reactor which the Israeli Air Force destroyed in September 2007 in northern Syria was made in North Korea and, according to debkafile's intelligence sources,
North Korean nuclear scientists and technicians are back at work in the country.
While Israel regards the Korean conflict as remote, Tehran and Damascus are studying its every twist and turn and drawing lessons on the responses of the world powers for their own use.
They are especially interested in China's handling of this crisis as a pointer to whether or not it will veto the sanctions before the UN Security Council against Iran.
By and large, Beijing seeks to manipulate the North Korean and Iranian nuclear programs as levers for reducing American influence in Asia and the Middle East alike.
Therefore, a decision by Hu to go easy on Pyongyang in the current crisis may well be a good-news signal for Tehran.
North Korea's deadly next generation North Korea's deadly next generation
Did 'Junior' give order for fatal sea attack?
May 24, 2010 JOSEPH FARAH'S G2 BULLETIN
LONDON – New intelligence reports reveal the order to attack the South Korean frigate Chenoan personally was given by Kim Jong-un,
the third and youngest son of North Korean dictator Kim Jong-il, according to a report from Joseph Farah's G2 Bulletin.
The previously undisclosed details of the chain of events before the attack have been compiled by the British intelligence service MI6.
The report into the sinking of the 1,200-ton frigate with the loss of 46 lives March 26 was prepared for the United Nations Security Council, which will be asked to respond to the attack.
Details in the report include material obtained by one of Britain's three nuclear submarines, one of which is always at sea somewhere in the world to patrol the ocean.
The submarine was on patrol off the coast of Baennyeong Island, a heavily garrisoned outpost off the North Korean coast, at the time of the attack.
The area is the scene of regular clashes between the rival navies of North and South Korea over the maritime boundary in dispute since the 1953 Korean War armistice.
Tensions have intensified since last year when North Korea announced it was abandoning the terms of armistice. China promptly withdrew its 280-strong shipping fleet from the disputed waters.
The MI6 report says it was then that Kim Jong-il, the self-styled "Great Leader," appointed Kim Jong-un as head of its navy. He was given the official North Korean sobriquet "The Brilliant Comrade."
The MI6 report indicates that on March 26, Kim Jong-un was at North Korea's military nerve center deep beneath Mount Baekdusan –
a sacred place in Korean folklore, where, insists state mythology, Kim Jong-il was born.
North Korean subs disappearNorth Korean subs disappear
May 26 Yonhap
S. Korea on alert as N. Korean subs disappear in East Sea. South Korea military was
tracking 4 North Korean submarines which disappeared from their east coast base after conducting naval training in the East Sea
earlier this week. Locations of the 4 North Korea submarines have been unknown for 2 days.
We are tracking the subs by mobilizing all naval capabilities in the East Sea.
China May Shield North KoreaChina May Shield North Korea
Is the USA willing to go to war with China? Visionaries have seen that.
May 27 (Bloomberg)
Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao is likely to resist pressure to acknowledge that North Korea torpedoed a South Korean warship when he flies to Seoul tomorrow
to meet President Lee Myung Bak and Japan’s Yukio Hatoyama.
China hasn’t followed South Korea, Japan and the U.S. in blaming North Korea for the March 26 sinking of the Cheonan, which killed 46 sailors.
Vice Foreign Minister Zhang Zhijun yesterday repeated a call for “restraint” by both sides and said China had no “firsthand information” on the sinking.
China wants to avoid a conflict on the Korean peninsula, and is concerned that taking South Korea’s side may
provoke North Korea into further escalations and even lead to war, said Shen Dingli, vice dean of the Institute of International Affairs at Shanghai’s Fudan University.
“North Korea is dying, and we can make things worse,” Shen said. “We have assumed North Korea is not a rational actor.”
South Korea’s navy today began exercises off its western coast, including anti-submarine operations involving the firing of depth charges, a military official said.
About 10 warships are participating in the two-day drill, the official said, asking not to be identified because of security concerns.
China has a big stake in stability in Northeast Asia. Japan and South Korea are China’s third- and fourth-biggest trading partners after the European Union and the U.S.,
with combined two-way trade reaching $485.1 billion in 2009, Chinese customs figures show.
China’s two-way trade with North Korea, at $2.7 billion last year, is less than 1 percent of that total, even though the
two countries share a 1,415-kilometer (880-mile) border and an alliance going back to China’s 1950 entry into the Korean War.
“If our region falls into chaos it will undermine the interests of all parties concerned,” Zhang said yesterday.
South Korea, Japan and the U.S. want the North to acknowledge its responsibility for the incident.
An international panel on May 20 concluded North Korea was behind the attack. South Korea wants China to acknowledge the findings.
“They won’t be able to ignore the truth,” South Korean Foreign Minister Yu Myung Hwan said yesterday at a joint press conference with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in Seoul.
President Lee said on May 24 that “no responsible country in the international community will be able to deny the fact that the Cheonan was sunk by North Korea.”
Clinton is also working to bring China around.
“We expect to be working together with China in responding to North Korea’s provocative action and promoting stability in the region,” Clinton said May 25 in Beijing at the conclusion of two days of talks.
China’s government may conclude that taking South Korea’s side will only stoke a cycle of escalation, Shen said.
Wen is scheduled to have talks with Lee and meet with both Lee and Hatoyama at a three-nation summit on South Korea’s Jeju Island May 29-30.
He met with North Korean leader Kim Jong Il earlier this month in Beijing.
Wen will fly to Japan on May 30 and meet with Hatoyama the next day.
China may be willing to condemn the sinking of the Cheonan in a United Nations Security Council resolution provided that North Korea is not singled out for blame, Shen said.
Such an outcome may end the cycle of escalation, he said.
Kim’s regime, which has been relying on handouts since the mid-1990s, is suffering from worsening shortages of goods after its botched currency revaluation late last year.
Academics including Rudiger Frank, professor of East Asian Economy and Society at the University of Vienna, said that was aimed at rolling back an experiment with
free markets that had loosened the state’s control over jobs, food and patronage.
The UN World Food Program said this month its food aid to North Korea will run out by the end of next month.
UN sanctions imposed on North Korea after its second nuclear test in May 2009 caused the country’s international commerce to shrink 9.7 percent last year, according to Seoul- based trade agency, Kotra.
The North doesn’t release its own trade figures.
North Korea this week said it will cut all ties to the South in response to the findings of the panel. Kim ordered his military to be combat-ready,
a Seoul-based dissident group said, sending the Korean won down 3 percent against the dollar on May 25, the biggest one-day drop since March 30, 2009.
The South responded by resuming radio broadcasts into North Korea that it called the “voice of freedom.” The won was little changed yesterday at 1,252.28.
South Korea’s broadcasting of propaganda into North Korea was “a deliberate and premeditated provocation” aimed at pushing the peninsula “to the brink of war,”
North Korea’s state-run Korean Central News Agency said yesterday.
In response to the sinking, the U.S. military is preparing exercises with South Korea in anti-submarine maneuvers and interdicting vessels.
The U.S. has about 28,500 troops in South Korea, a legacy of its Korean War involvement in the 1950s.
“China is doing the thing that best suits China’s interests and everyone’s interest,” Shen said.
“China is not pushing the envelope either on the North Korean side to be aggressive or on the South Korean to punish North Korea with warfare.”
--Michael Forsythe. With assistance from Bomi Lim and Nicole Gaouette in Seoul. Editors: Ben Richardson, Mark Williams.
To contact the reporter on this story: Michael Forsythe in Beijing at email@example.com
Last Updated: May 27, 2010 02:58 EDT
The Big WAR LIE they are selling youThe Big WAR LIE they are selling you
May 27, 2010 Thursday
What Really Happened
What can I say; here we go again!
I hardly need to go down the list of lies used to start US wars. We have been though that over and over again.
Nor do I need to elucidate on the many reasons why the US Government is in desperate need for yet another war with which to
scare the American people into acceptance of more takes and fewer rights and freedoms.
Anyone with half a brain realizes that the US Government, unable to gain support for an invasion of Iran,
has changed gears and decided that North Korea will be the next step towards World War III.
Here is the big lie
Let us start with a cloned copy of the official South Korean website detailing the sinking of the Cheosan.
The torpedo recovered from the ocean where the Cheosan was sunk is not the North Korean torpedo shown in the blueprints.
From that website we get the following picture of the remains of a torpedo dredged from the bottom of the ocean.
The official claim that North Korea fired this torpedo at a South Korean warship is based on the following blueprint of a North Korean torpedo claimed to be the weapon recovered from the ocean floor.
There are several differences between the torpedo plans and the actual torpedo recovered from the floor of the ocean. But I am going to focus on just one.
Take a close look where the tail cone assembly (indicated by the bulkhead at the leading edge of the fins) attaches to the torpedo main hull.
A major component of all modern torpedoes are the fin actuators. These are the small motors that adjust the rudder and dive planes of the torpedo in order to maintain the intended depth and course to target.
Note that the blueprints of the North Korean torpedo show these actuators forward of the tail cone assembly, that is to say in front of the bulkhead that marks where the fin assembly attaches to the torpedo.
Now let us look at the torpedo actually recovered from the bottom of the ocean near where the Cheosan was attacked.
Note that the recovered torpedo these actuators are built INSIDE the tail cone assembly, that is to say to the REAR of the bulkhead that marks where the fin assembly attaches to the torpedo.
In short, the torpedo recovered from the ocean where Cheosan was attacked is NOT the same torpedo shown in the North Korean plans.
As I stated above, there are additional differences as well between the blueprints and the actual torpedo, but the actuators are the clincher.
Many photos on this link - and reader comments
NKorea fires on SKorea Nov 23, 2010
I suspect China is behind this, as US warships are in Yellow Sea
Nov 8 China launced missile near US west coast, 4 pages