Defense

April 1, 2013

U.S. seeks ‘peace and stability’ on Korean Peninsula

The U.S. will continue to conduct military exercises such as Foal Eagle 2013 with South Korea as part of its commitment to that nation and its desire to maintain peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula and in the region, Pentagon Press Secretary George Little said April 1.

Speaking to reporters, Little emphasized the United States’ commitment to peace and stability in the region, and discussed North Korea’s recent provocations.

“The focus of our military exercises, and what we’ve been saying publicly, is all about alliance assurance,” he said.

“It’s about showing the South Koreans that we are deeply committed to our alliance with them,” Little said. “We’re committed to their defense, committed to the defense of our forces in South Korea and we’re also committed to peace and stability in the region.”

Little noted that two F-22 Raptors, as previously planned, have deployed from Kadena Air Base, Japan, to Osan Air Base, South Korea, to participate in the two-month-long Foal Eagle exercise which began March 1.

“This exercise has been planned for some time and is part of the air component of the Foal Eagle exercise,” he said.

And as part of U.S. Pacific Command’s theater security package, Little said, deployments of U.S. Air Force fighters to the Pacific region have occurred since March 2004, allowing for a more “prudent deterrent capability and combat-ready forces.”

And the dispatch of F-22 Raptors to participate in this year’s Foal Eagle exercise in South Korea “strengthens the Pacific Command’s military interoperability with the Republic of Korea,” he said.

“We believe that this exercise has been extremely successful in shoring up our cooperation with our South Korean allies,” Little said, “and we’ll continue to engage with them closely.”

Little said exercises in South Korea “send an important signal, not only to South Korea, but to friends like Japan. So that is the focus of our recent efforts.”

Little said North Korea has a choice of continuing to “engage in provocations with bellicose, over-heated, irresponsible rhetoric,” or choosing a path of peace.

“We think it’s time for them to switch lanes,” he said. “We seek peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula. And we think that’s in the best interests of everyone in the region.”

North Korea has recently engaged in “rhetoric and recent actions that are self-defeating and isolating for the North Koreans,” Little said.

North Korea could decide to play a constructive role in the region, but it has decided to play an unconstructive role, Little said.

“And we believe that should change,” he said.

Little said he could envision “any number of scenarios” where other countries might pursue dialogue with North Korea if they changed course.

“The regrettable fact is, at this point, they have shown a propensity toward provocation, and not toward constructive behavior or words,” he said.

North Korea needs to “come into compliance with their international obligations,” Little said, including their nuclear and missile programs.

“I can envision any number of scenarios under which, if they acted constructively and abided by their obligations, that the United States would consider, at some point, talking to them about a whole range of issues, to include nuclear issues,” he said.

Little reiterated it is the United States’ goal to preserve peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula while engaging in “alliance assurance.”

“The choice is really for North Korea to make,” he said. “They can be a constructive player or they can continue to be [a] … regime that acts and speaks irresponsibly.”

 




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Air Force photograph by SSgt. Joe W. McFadden

Polish, U.S. forces improve interoperability at Lask AB

Four F-16 Fighting Falcons, two F-22 Raptors and a C-130 Hercules arrived at Lask Air Base Aug. 31. The airmen and aircraft are in Poland for separate flying training events with allies to demonstrate the countries’ share...
 
 
Air Force photograph by Ron Bradshaw

First operational F-35As arrive at Hill AFB

The Air Force ushered in a new era of combat air power Sept. 2 as Hill Air Force Base, Utah, received the service’s first two operational F-35As. Hill’s active duty 388th Fighter Wing and Reserve 419th Fighter Wing ...
 
 
Navy photograph

Air-to-air missile reaches production milestone

Featuring a “lock on after launch” capability and other advances, the joint Navy and Air Force air-intercept missile (AIM)-9X Sidewinder Block II reached the full rate production milestone Aug. 17. Sean Stackley, As...
 

 

Navy Lt. j.g. John Salguero of Palmdale, serves with the Navy Reserve

Navy photograph by PO2 Jamie Hawkins Lt. j.g. John Salguero, a 1981 Palmdale High School graduate and Palmdale, Calif., native, is a Navy Reservist serving with Naval Mobile Construction Battalion Eighteen, Detachment 2118 in Bremerton, Wash., in the U.S. Navy, which protects and defends America on the world’s oceans. The Navy Reserve is celebrating its...
 
 

MQ-1s test deployment capability in Latvia

Two MQ-1 Predator remotely piloted aircraft and approximately 70 airmen deployed to Lielvarde Air Base, Latvia, to test the unit’s ability to forward deploy, and to conduct air operations while assuring NATO allies of our commitment to regional security and stability. Airmen and aircraft from the 147th Reconnaissance Wing of the Texas Air National Guard...
 
 
Courtesy photograph

F-22 inaugural deployment to Europe

Courtesy photograph A pair of F-22 Raptors fly near the coastline of Panama City Beach, Fla. Four F-22 Raptors, one C-17 Globemaster III, and approximately 60 airmen arrived at Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, to train with allie...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>