The National  Memo Logo

Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.

Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

Seoul (AFP) — South Korea and the United States on Monday launched an annual military drill, Seoul’s defense ministry said, despite condemnation by North Korea which has threatened a “merciless” retaliatory strike.

The beginning of the “Ulchi Freedom Guardian” exercise, which will last until August 29, came as Pope Francis led a mass for inter-reconciliation in Seoul at the end of the five-day trip to South Korea.

Although largely played out on computers, the drill involves tens of thousands of South Korean and U.S. soldiers and is aimed at testing combat readiness for a North Korean invasion.

According to the South Korean Defense Ministry, this year’s drill will, for the first time, simulate the response to a nuclear attack threat, using a strategy of “tailored” deterrence developed last year at annual South Korea-US defense talks.

North Korea has repeatedly called for the exercise to be cancelled, and last week its military joint chiefs of staff threatened to “mercilessly open the strongest… pre-emptive strike” if it goes ahead.

South Korean officials said its military would be on a heightened state of alert during the exercise.

“If the North commits a provocative act, we would retaliate strongly,” a high-ranking military official told journalists.

AFP Photo/Jung Yeon-Je

Interested in world news? Sign up for our daily email newsletter!

Start your day with National Memo Newsletter

Know first.

The opinions that matter. Delivered to your inbox every morning

McCarthy Admits 65 House Republicans Are Unvaccinated

Screenshot form C-SPAN

Reprinted with permission from American Independent

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy on Wednesday railed against the new mask rule from Congress' attending physician, Dr. Brian Monahan, who on Tuesday ordered that all members of the House — vaccinated or not — return to wearing a "well-fitted, medical grade, filtration face mask" while at the Capitol complex.

Keep reading... Show less

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy

Screenshot from C-SPAN

Reprinted with permission from Alternet

"The storm" is a term that the far-right conspiracy theorists of QAnon are fond of using, and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy used that term during a July 29 press conference when he was criticizing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's support of a mask mandate for the U.S. House of Representatives.

Keep reading... Show less
x

Close