North Korea Is Finally Getting The Attention It’s Always Wanted

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Having found itself alongside Bashar Al-Assad, Vladimir Putin, and ISIS on President Donald Trump’s ever-growing shit list, North Korea is seizing the opportunity to let the world know that it’s ready to throw down.


A Pyongyang official told the Associated Press on April 14 that the Hermit Kingdom is prepared to launch a preemptive strike of its own if the U.S. shows any signs of “reckless” military aggression.

North Korea’s vice foreign minister, Han Song Ryol, told the Associated Press that Pyongyang will keep building up its nuclear arsenal, despite stern warnings from the U.S. Ryol added that Pyongyang is ready to go war if provoked by the Trump administration, which it sees as “more vicious and more aggressive” than that of Barack Obama. Which is something Americans supportive of either administration probably agree on.

On April 13, several anonymous American officials told NBC News that the U.S. is prepared to execute a preemptive strike against North Korea “should officials become convinced that North Korea is about to follow through with a nuclear weapons test.” In addition to bombs, the U.S. strike could also include special operations troops on the ground in North Korea, the officials said.

The reports surfaced while the biggest ever joint military exercises between the U.S. and South Korea are still ongoing. Pyongyang has always viewed the annual drills as a rehearsal for an invasion.  

“North Korea is a problem,” Trump said April 13. “The problem will be taken care of.”

That same day, the U.S. Air Force dropped a GBU-43 Massive Ordnance Air Blast bomb, or MOAB — the most powerful conventional bomb in its arsenal, according to The New York Times — on an Islamic State cave complex in Afghanistan, reportedly killing 36 militants. It was the first time the MOAB has ever been used in combat — but it might not be the last.

North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un has repeatedly threatened strikes against South Korea, Japan, United States, and the West in general. In March, Pyongyang announced that it had conducted a successful ground test of a rocket engine that could be used on an intercontinental ballistic missile. Many experts believe North Korea is on track to develop the technology necessary to launch an ICBM equipped with a nuclear warhead within the next few years, the AP reports.

Last year, North Korea conducted two nuclear tests. It now appears determined to conduct another. Ryol, the vice foreign minister, told the AP that North Korea’s nuclear arsenal will grow in both “quality” and “quantity.” Saturday marks the birthday of the country’s founder, Kim Il-sung — a national holiday called Day of the Sun — and experts believe Pyongyang may use the occasion to carry out a missile launch or nuclear test, according to The Guardian.      

Meanwhile, North Korea’s staunchest ally, China, is freaking out. During a press conference in Beijing on Friday, the Chinese foreign minister, Wang Yi, pleaded for Washington and Pyongyang to “refrain from provoking and threatening each other, whether in words or actions, and not to let the situation get to an irreversible and unmanageable stage.”   

Trump has urged China to step up measures to prevent North Korea from carrying out more nuclear and weapons tests, and threatened U.S. intervention if Beijing-Pyongyang talks falter.

“Once a war rally happens, the result will be nothing but multiple-loss. No one can become a winner,” Wang said. “No matter who it is, if [a country] wants to make war or trouble on the Korean Peninsula, it must take the historical responsibility and pay the due price.”

Screen grab via YouTube

On Nov, 10, 2004, Army Staff Sgt. David Bellavia knew that he stood a good chance of dying as he tried to save his squad.

Bellavia survived the intense enemy fire and went on to single-handedly kill five insurgents as he cleared a three-story house in Fallujah during the iconic battle for the city. For his bravery that day, President Trump will present Bellavia with the Medal of Honor on Tuesday, making him the first living Iraq war veteran to receive the award.

In an interview with Task & Purpose, Bellavia recalled that the house where he fought insurgents was dark and filled with putrid water that flowed from broken pipes. The battle itself was an assault on his senses: The stench from the water, the darkness inside the home, and the sounds of footsteps that seemed to envelope him.

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(U.S. Army/Pvt. Stephen Peters)

With the Imperial Japanese Army hot on his heels, Oscar Leonard says he barely slipped away from getting caught in the grueling Bataan Death March in 1942 by jumping into a choppy bay in the dark of the night, clinging to a log and paddling to the Allied-fortified island of Corregidor.

After many weeks of fighting there and at Mindanao, he was finally captured by the Japanese and spent the next several years languishing under brutal conditions in Filipino and Japanese World War II POW camps.

Now, having just turned 100 years old, the Antioch resident has been recognized for his 42-month ordeal as a prisoner of war, thanks to the efforts of his friends at the Brentwood VFW Post #10789 and Congressman Jerry McNerney.

McNerney, Brentwood VFW Commander Steve Todd and Junior Vice Commander John Bradley helped obtain a POW award after doing research and requesting records to surprise Leonard during a birthday party last month.

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(U.S. Marine Corps/Staff Sgt. Andrew Ochoa)

Editor's Note: This article by Gina Harkins originally appeared on Military.com, a leading source of news for the military and veteran community.

Hundreds of Marines will join their British counterparts at a massive urban training center this summer that will test the leathernecks' ability to fight a tech-savvy enemy in a crowded city filled with innocent civilians.

The North Carolina-based Kilo Company, 3rd Battalion, 8th Marines, will test drones, robots and other high-tech equipment at Muscatatuck Urban Training Center near Butlerville, Indiana, in August.

They'll spend weeks weaving through underground tunnels and simulating fires in a mock packed downtown city center. They'll also face off against their peers, who will be equipped with off-the-shelf drones and other gadgets the enemy is now easily able to bring to the fight.

It's the start of a four-year effort, known as Project Metropolis, that leaders say will transform the way Marines train for urban battles. The effort is being led by the Marine Corps Warfighting Laboratory, based in Quantico, Virginia. It comes after service leaders identified a troubling problem following nearly two decades of war in the Middle East: adversaries have been studying their tactics and weaknesses, and now they know how to exploit them.

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(Reuters/Carlos Barria)

WASHINGTON/RIYADH (Reuters) - President Donald Trump imposed new U.S. sanctions onIran on Monday following Tehran's downing of an unmanned American drone and said the measures would target Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

Trump told reporters he was signing an executive order for the sanctions amid tensions between the United States and Iran that have grown since May, when Washington ordered all countries to halt imports of Iranian oil.

Trump also said the sanctions would have been imposed regardless of the incident over the drone. He said the supreme leaders was ultimately responsible for what Trump called "the hostile conduct of the regime."

"Sanctions imposed through the executive order ... will deny the Supreme Leader and the Supreme Leader's office, and those closely affiliated with him and the office, access to key financial resources and support," Trump said.

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