With the recent memorials on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and the wall-to-wall melodrama over North Korean nuclear nut-flexing, it’s no wonder we are all transfixed by images of mushroom clouds in the news.
Recently, SECDEF Mattis was quoted as saying that North Korea needs to stop making decisions that will “lead to the end of its regime and destruction of its people.” Yeah. That.
SECDEF also reminded everyone that there was not a snowball’s chance in hell of North Korea being able to best the United States at any element of conflict or warfare. Which is a true statement. We’ve already discussed how the Korean Twins are gonna melt each other in the first, say…20 minutes of any real conflict, once the kettle goes off. By that time, US and allied FOF (Follow On Forces; the “second shift”) will just have to MOPP* up and mop up. (Mission Oriented Protective Posture consists of different level of protection ranging from gas masks to chemical suits and gloves. To don the gear is to MOPP up).
Any analyst anywhere knows this. Including North Korean ones. Which is why I’ve been saying, since this first hit the news, that it’s all farcical. Not saying it’s a lie; they’re launching shit, and trying to break stuff–they just know they ain’t actually gonna be able to do any of that… and not die.
Non-analysts in your media outlets need to go on ahead and do everyone a favor, and catch up.
This leads me to the shit you *aren’t* watching because the bandwidth is cyclic with all this “the sky is falling” North Korea stuff: India and China.
Four very important things to understand at this point:
- China already has nukes, and is a UN Security Council member.
- India already has nukes (and ain’t on no security council).
- These two cats have been at each other since the 60s.
- By comparison, who gives a shit about North Korea.
China popped its first nuke in 1964 (named “596”), two years after a very serious military engagement with India over the Aksai Chin area, way out West in the Himalayas. India popped its first nuke 10 years later, in ’74 (that one was called “Smiling Buddha”; that’s not creepy at all).
China’s bringing 270 nukes to the table this week, to India’s ~120. Like those numbers even matter, really. And they are both reasonably vocal about having them to bring into play against each other.
Even if they don’t bring nukes to the fight, two of the largest countries on the planet–in both size and population–are literally locking and loading across the border from each other, waiting. Troops on both sides have already passed the WARNO stage and OPORDs (or their derivation thereof) have already been given and acted upon.
Mofos are screaming WWIII about some podunk Northeast Asian shitshack blowing money they don’t have, on shit they ain’t gonna use. And two countries that make up damn near *HALF* of the population of humans in the Known Universe are talking about cutting those numbers cataclysmically, and the news wires are flatlined.
Background. The Doklam Plateau–known to the Chinese as Donglang–belongs to Bhutan (nice place). Bhutan is friends with India. China is now claiming this Doklam place.
Doklam means “rocky path.” I’ll give you two guesses why, and your first doesn’t count. The place doesn’t hold any high value targets, key terrain, or… cities of gold. Nothin’. But China wants it, precious…
In 1966 China and Bhutan had some disputes that more or less got worked out. Doklam was not part of those.
You look at a fair map of Asia, and China’s got a shit ton of dotted lines. That means, they’re sticking their fingers in a lot o’ pies in their neighborhood. Sound familiar? They’ve been doing the same shit in Southeast Asia and off the PI. And in Japan and Japanese waters.
(Don’t worry, China. We know you’re not out stealing up other people’s land because your country is so shitty. 😉 )
In this case, China is trying to foment regional influence over an area known as the Siliguri Corridor. Also called the Chicken’s Neck. (That’s the bit of land that connects India proper to that other northeastern bit that everyone but the Burmese and Bangladeshi forget is Indian.) And are doing so by running a road into Doklam in order to transport troops and gear there.
So, Bhutan gets pissed, and files some papers. India steps in and drops their own troops and gear… that was already there, because there are tons of dudes in Sikkim just waiting for this kinda shit to happen. (There are other “dotted lines” out in this neck of the woods.)
Sidebar: If you’re a tea drinker, unlike myself, you may already note that Darjeeling is located in Sikkim. Probably not related, but you never know.
Today, India amped up the alert level for their troops in the region. More troops are shifting that way. Both countries consistently employ nuke verbiage when dealing with each other.
So, whether or not things get as hot as these two nuking each other, the two nations are moving their DEFCON meters to the appropriate levels. And unless the two either work the shit out (which ain’t likely to happen because…China), or remember what Vizzini said, China and India may be kicking back with a frosty Miller High Life and watching the shit escalate.
But wait! There’s North Korea!
Editorial cartoon courtesy of Robert L. Lang