The United States must not dismiss Kim Jong-un’s threats as mere bluster.
This article written by Ambassador R. James Woolsey and Dr. Peter Vincent Pry was originally published by the Washington Times on March 26, 2017. A portion has been re-published with the permission of the Washington Times, and the article in its entirety can be found on their website.
In 2015 the Intelligence Community declassified The 1983 Soviet “War Scare” — the definitive report by the president’s Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board on how and why the USSR nearly launched a preemptive nuclear strike during the NATO theater nuclear exercise ABLE ARCHER-83, held in November 1983.
For months prior to ABLE ARCHER-83, Moscow warned vociferously that deploying U.S. missiles to European NATO would result in World War III.
Washington dismissed Soviet threats as “bluster” to frighten NATO into non-deployment of these first theater nuclear missiles with range to reach Moscow. After all, Soviet SS-20 missiles posed a far greater threat to NATO.
We did not know it then, but subsequent analysis proved Moscow misconstrued ABLE ARCHER-83 as cover for a surprise nuclear attack. The USSR prepared a surprise of their own — a preemptive nuclear strike, which they very nearly launched, and almost certainly would have done so if the exercise continued another 24 hours.
Many analysts regard the 1983 Soviet war scare as more dangerous than the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis.
Now the U.S. and South Korea are conducting a routine military exercise FOAL EAGLE-17 mobilizing thousands of troops. For the first time, the U.S. has deployed THAAD missile defenses to protect South Korea from North Korean nuclear strikes. B-52 nuclear bombers will be flown into South Korea.
The focus of the war game is preemptive warfare to prevent North Korea from launching nuclear missiles, including by U.S. nuclear first strikes against North Korean forces and leadership.
North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un is threatening preemptive nuclear war.
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