Part II - Katchi kapshida - Joint Korean US Readiness
“With the Department of Defense’s rebalance to the Pacific, the readiness of our forces on the Korean Peninsula is paramount,” added Lt. Col. Joseph Scrocca, chief of the 2nd Infantry Division Public Affairs. “The success of Warpath III demonstrates the U.S. Army’s unwavering commitment to the RoK-U.S. Alliance by ensuring our soldiers as well as our RoK Army counterparts and partner units from the U.S. are trained to ‘Fight Tonight’ to provide options to respond to any contingency.”
The training came on the heels of an announcement December 1st by the (North) Korean Committee for Space Technology of a proposed satellite launch sometime between December 10th and 22nd, according to the Korean Central News Agency.
The Unha-3 rocket will be launched from the Sohae Space Center in North Phyongan Province and put what the state-run media agency referred to as a "working satellite" into orbit.
However, the announcement of the launch has drawn suspicion from many countries in the region and in the United States that it will be a cover-up for a ballistic missile test.
U.S. officials view a North Korean satellite launch using ballistic missile technology highly provocative and a threat to peace and security in the region.
Such a launch would also be a direct violation of recent United Nations Security Council Resolutions 1718 and 1874, which strongly condemned a previous launch on April 13th.
To counter balance this threat, the 2nd ID is the last remaining forward-stationed division in the Republic of Korea today and is widely thought to have the most highly-trained soldiers and most modern, lethal weaponry in the world.
“Since the RoK—U.S. Alliance is an equal partnership committed to the strong defense of the peninsula, this training is crucial in building trust in partner capability and interoperability,” Maj. Jeffrey stressed. “The RoK-U.S. Alliance forged during the Korean War has been honed and sharpened over the last 60 years. Everything we do builds on that relationship.”
Maj. Jeffrey called the exercise “essential in a bi-lateral defense relationship, such as the relationship the 2nd ID shares with its RoK partners, to ensure interoperability and readiness of our combined forces. This training helped prepare the alliance to respond to any potential contingencies and to defend the Republic of Korea,” Jeffrey said.
“`Katchi Kapshida’ is more than a motto to us. At every opportunity, we will put these words into action and show how closely `we go together.’”
Go back to Part 1.
Bio of Marc Yablonka
Marc Yablonka is a military journalist. His work has appeared in the Stars and Stripes, Army Times, American Veteran, Vietnam magazine, Military Heritage and many other publications. His first book, Distant War: Recollections of Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia was recently published by Navigator Books. Between 2001 and 2008, Marc served as a public affairs officer, CWO-2, with the 40th Infantry Division Support Brigade, California State Military Reserve at the Joint Forces Training Base in Los Alamitos, Calif. You can see more of Marc's work in and out of uniform at his web site: www.marcpyablonka.com.