South Korean "Decapitation Plan" In Trouble Following Detente With North

  • Our Bureau
  • 02:18 PM, May 21, 2018
  • 2095
South Korean
U.S. and South Korean soldiers during a river crossing exercise in South Korea (Image: Public Radio International)

An ambitious and brazen plan to "decapitate" North Korea's leadership in the event of an imminent threat of a nuclear attack by Pyong Yang could be in trouble following last month's historic visit to Seoul by the North's Dictator Kim Jong-un and the inter-Korean detente that followed it.

The "decapitation plan" was part of comprehensive defence reforms which the South's Defense Minister Song Young-moo briefed about the scheme to President Moon Jae-in on May 11. The reforms plan has not been made public and the silence is fueling speculations over whether the Moon government is so preoccupied with improving ties with North Korea that it is seeking to scale down the scope of the reform.

South Korean media speculated that potential down-scaling of the reform could possibly impact an upcoming military drill with the U.S. to be held in August. While U.S. officials have said the drill would go on on as planned, the South is concerned that Pyongyang would view it as a hostile act.

The “decapitation plan” is an unofficial concept included in the “Korea Massive Punishment and Retaliation” scheme, which is designed to demolish Pyongyang’s leadership with ballistic and cruise missiles in the event of an imminent nuclear attack, Korea Herald reported Monday.

The US, South Korea and Japan agreed this week to shift a planned flight of at least two nuclear-capable B-52 bombers so they would not fly over the Korean Peninsula, CNN reported quoting unnamed US defense officials as saying Saturday.

The decision was made in the wake of North Korea's objection to US military exercises in the region and a suggestion from Pyongyang that the upcoming summit between Kim Jong Un and President Donald Trump could be at risk.

North Korean news agency reported last week that North Korea would cancel the planned summit scheduled for June 12 in Singapore. US should carefully consider the fate of the upcoming meeting, in view of what it calls ‘provocative military disturbances with South Korea,’ the agency reported.

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