The New York Analysis of Policy and Government presents a two-part review of the Iranian-North Korean nuclear, missile, and foreign policy alliance .
As North Korea rapidly progresses towards the capability of conducting a nuclear strike on the American mainland, analysts are confronting another horrifying reality.
It may not be sufficient to engage North Korea alone to prevent an attack from a secondary power. Atomic threats, in concert with the Pyongyang government, may simultaneously arise from a wholly different portion of the globe, as well as possibly within our own shores, from both national actors as well as terrorist organizations. Adding to that troublesome scenario is the after-effects of the extraordinarily poor decision making during the Obama Administration, which severely reduced the ability of the United States to confront anything more than a single-region threat.
The necessity of pre-emptive action against North Korea is growing sharply. As noted in a Breitbart analysis, experts are deeply concerned that the Pyongyang regime has developed the capability of an electromagnetic pulse (EMP) attack that could devastate the U.S. mainland. “Dr. Peter Vincent Pry…executive director of the Task Force on National and Homeland Security and…the chief of staff of the Congressional EMP Commission..pointed to two North Korean satellites that are currently orbiting the U.S. at trajectories…are optimized for a surprised EMP attack.”
If it becomes necessary to strike at North Korea to prevent an atomic assault on the United States, Iran can be expected to strike against U.S. interests and allies in the Middle East with its own forces, and perhaps worldwide—even within America itself– through its staunch support of terrorist forces such as Hezbollah.
When Tehran does make a move against the U.S. in response to an American self-defense response to North Korea, the Pentagon will have a difficult time meeting the two-front challenge.
Apparently oblivious to the growing danger from the rising strength of superpowers such as Russia and China and belligerent states North Korea and Iran, the Obama Administration decided to slash military spending during its tenure. A significant aspect of that decision was to downgrade the Pentagon’s resources to the point where it could no longer protect American interests in two areas during the same time span.
In 2010, the Obama Defense Department announced that “The model used to determine the appropriate size of the United States military is being replaced following the Quadrennial Defense Review process…the theory that U.S. forces should be sized based on the need to fight two major wars simultaneously no longer is appropriate.” The ability to “defeat two regional aggressors” was considered part of a replaced “Old planning program.”
Writing in CNN’s Security Blog, Chris Lawrence noted “The military would not maintain its ability to wage two large conflicts at the same time, such as it did in Iraq and Afghanistan…”
The fallacy of that revision was obvious. North Korea and Iran, two very likely opponents, have a close military and diplomatic relationship. Indeed, it is difficult to distinguish where the military technology of one ends and the other begins.
A Joint Hearing before the Subcommittee on Terrorism, Nonproliferation, and Trade Subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific and the Subcommittee on the Middle East and North Africa of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, noted that:
“The long history of secret cooperation between Iran and North Korea in violation of international law stretches back for decades. North Korea first sold Iran ballistic missiles during the 1980s during Iran’s war with Iraq. By the end of the 1980s, North Korea and China were supplying Iran with about 70 percent of its arms. Move to the 1990s, and Iran and North Korea had moved onto working together to develop long-range ballistic missiles. North Korean long-range ballistic missiles became the basis for the Iranian Shahab missile series, which currently threatens Israel, our other Middle East allies, and even Central Europe. In fact, the intelligence community has said that missile cooperation between Iran and North Korea has provided Iran with an increase in its military capabilities. By the beginning of the 2000s, the Iranians were giving North Korea sensitive data from their own missile tests to improve the North Korean missile systems. In fact, Iranian officials have been present at nearly every major North Korean missile test.”
The Report concludes tomorrow