As I have posted before, it is more and more evident that the sinking of South Korean Corvette Cheonan was the result of a torpedo attack by a North Korean submarine. A new article in the Associated Press reviews the situation, and the fact that this is getting wider publicity means that the evidence is becoming stronger with each day. The real question now becomes “What will be South Korea’s Response?” The two Koreas are still at war, and the United Nations are still listed as siding with South Korea.
By ERIC TALMADGE (AP) – 9 hours ago
Evidence collected so far indicates a torpedo hit the Cheonan, killing 46 sailors, and suspicion is growing that it was launched from a small North Korean submarine. That scenario would make it the most serious attack on the South Korean military since the peninsula’s war ended in a truce in 1953.
“While the North Korean submarine force reflects dated technology by Western standards, North Korean submarines during wartime would present significant challenges, particularly in coastal areas,” according to the Arlington, Virginia-based Global Security think tank. “North Korea has placed high priority on submarine construction programs, which are ongoing despite its economic hardships.”
Article is here
AW1 Tim, among many others, has lamented for years the reduction in both ASW assets and training for our fleet. There was a time when these United States were a world leader in that field. Now? Lets let the following paragraph from this article speak for itself:
“It shows that both the South Korean and U.S. surveillance and reconnaissance missions either failed or were not in operation in the area where the incident took place,” Tong Kim, a visiting professor at Korea University in Seoul, said. “Apparently there was no signal or geospatial intelligence on the movement of a North Korea submarine, if it was involved in the incident. The Cheonan’s submarine detector must have failed.”
This is further backed up by an article in the NYT
Forensic experts investigating the wreckage of a South Korean warship that sank near the sea border with North Korea have found traces of an explosive component commonly used in torpedoes and mines, South Korea’s defense minister said on Monday.
There is a chapter regarding our diminishing ASW skills in “Lessons Not Learned” by Roger Thompson. If you get the chance to read the book, it’s worth your time.