A New Study Says a War with North Korea Could Be Hell (And Start a U.S.-China War)

    Michael Peck

    Security, Asia

    And, of course, millions would die. 

    If war erupts with North Korea, then the U.S. military will have problems, according to a series of wargames conducted by the RAND Corporation.

    Invading North Korea to capture or destroy Kim Jong-un’s nuclear arsenal, or to knock out artillery batteries threatening Seoul, would overstretch and deplete American and South Korean forces. More ominously, this could also trigger Chinese military intervention.

    RAND focused on the ability of the U.S. military—and especially the U.S. Army, which sponsored the research—to respond to three potential issues: the threat of North Korea’s nuclear weapons, the ability of North Korean conventional artillery to devastate Seoul, and the military and diplomatic challenges of securing Pyongyang’s nuclear arsenal should the Communist regime collapse and North Korea degenerate into civil war.

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    “We simply don’t have enough troops to search North Korea for loose nukes and perform all the other missions of a post-conflict or collapse scenario, and we can’t get them into North Korea nearly quickly enough to avoid leakage,” RAND researcher Michael Mazarr told the National Interest.

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