United States flies strategic bombers over Korean peninsula

Thursday, 12 Oct, 2017

President Trump hosted a discussion on options to respond to any North Korean aggression, or, if necessary, to prevent Pyongyang from threatening the USA and its allies with nuclear weapons, the White House said in a statement.

-South Korean wartime "decapitation strike" plans against the North Korean leadership.

Chris Doman, a security researcher at AlienVault, said: "The recent North Korea cyber hack may relate to the reported August 2016 compromise of the South Korean ministry of defence". Such flights by the powerful aircraft based in Guam incense the North, which claims they are preparation for war; Pyongyang has threatened to send missiles into the waters around Guam.

If confirmed, such a hack would be a major blow for South Korea at a time when its relations with North Korea are at a low point.

Visits by USA warships and bombers along with regular joint exercises with the South infuriate North Korea, which considers them a sign of aggression and a rehearsal for an invasion.

The exercises came hours after a South Korean lawmaker claimed North Korean hackers had stolen a large cache of military documents from his country, "including a plan to assassinate North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un, and wartime contingency plans drawn up by the US and South Korea", reports the BBC. Neither Lee nor Defense Ministry officials responded to attempts late Tuesday to confirm the stories.

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The South Korean military said this was part of a regular exercise to bolster military defenses and also to display the alliance between the United States and South Korea.

(Korean Central News Agency) In this handout photo released by the South Korean Defense Ministry, South Korea's Hyunmu-2 ballistic missile is fired during an exercise aimed to counter North Korea's nuclear test on September 4, 2017 in East Coast, South Korea. Some military experts believe that power supply problems make it hard for North Korea to turn on its air defense radars for 24 hours a day and also that the systems might struggle to effectively track advanced warplanes such as B-1Bs, which have low radar-cross sections.

The U.S. Air Force bombers and the South Korean fighters then conducted a second firing exercise over the Yellow Sea, according to the South Korean Joint Chiefs of Staff.

"There is an urgent need for the military to change and update parts that were stolen by North Korea", Lee said. Given that set of circumstances, the Kim regime would likely chose to use its nuclear weapons.

Information on South Korea's special forces was also reportedly accessed, as well as important details on significant power plants and military facilities in the South.

Seoul says North Korea has repeatedly staged cyberattacks on South Korean business and government websites. North Korean hackers were the prime suspects in the attack, the impact of which may have been exaggerated for propaganda purposes.