Or just a fantasy?
“EMP is a loony idea. Once an enemy uses a nuclear weapon—for any reason—it crosses the nuclear threshold and invites a nuclear response. U.S. military commanders would not say ‘Well, it was only an airburst. We should just respond in kind.’ They would answer with an overwhelming, devastating nuclear counter attack. And our nuclear weapons and command and control are designed to operate in a nuclear war environment, not just some puny EMP blast.”
If a war were to breakout on the Korean peninsula over Pyongyang’s development of long-range intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) and its thermonuclear weapons development efforts, the resulting conflict would be catastrophic even if it remained purely conventional. Worse still would be if nuclear weapons were used—which could ultimately escalate into Armageddon.
While the devastation that nuclear weapons can wrought on to cities and other population centers is obvious, the use of tactical nuclear weapons is often overlooked. In the case of Pyongyang using tactical nuclear weapons to defeat a U.S.-led military intervention, American and allied forces might suffer more damage than many might expect—particularly from the effects of electromagnetic pulses (EMPs) generated by such weapons. EMPs can do serious damage of electrical systems that are not specifically hardened to withstand such events. Indeed, U.S. forces are particularly vulnerable due to America’s reliance on networks and advanced sensor system—many of which were developed after the end of the Cold War.