DONALD Trump ‘is to order a military strike against North Korea within a year’ after Kim Jong-un’s military boasted it had fired a ballistic missile capable of hitting the US.
Senior military sources in Washington have reportedly claimed Pentagon officials have laid out plans to obliterate a nuclear weapons facility operating deep within a mountain range inside the rogue state.
The news comes hours after the US flew two supersonic bombers over the Korean Peninsula in a show of force against North Korea.
The B-1 bombers were escorted by South Korean fighter jets as they performed a low-pass over an air base near the South Korean capital of Seoul before returning to the Andersen Air Force Base in Guam.
The US Air Force said the mission was a response to consecutive ICBM tests by Kim this month.
Analysts say flight data from the second test conducted Friday night showed that a broader part of mainland America, including Los Angeles and Chicago, is now in range of Pyongyang’s weapons.
“North Korea remains the most urgent threat to regional stability,” said Gen. Terrence J. O’Shaughnessy, Pacific Air Forces commander.
“Diplomacy remains the lead. However, we have a responsibility to our allies and our nation to showcase our unwavering commitment while planning for the worst-case scenario.”
He added: ” If called upon, we are ready to respond with rapid, lethal, and overwhelming force at a time and place of our choosing.”
The United States often sends powerful warplanes in times of heightened animosities with North Korea.
B-1 bombers have been sent to South Korea for flyovers several times this year in response to North Korea’s banned missile tests, and also following the death of a US college student after he was released by North Korean in a coma.
The Hwasong-14 ICBM, which the North first tested on July 4, is the highlight of several new weapons systems Pyongyang launched this year.
They include an intermediate range missile the North says is capable of hitting Alaska and Hawaii and a solid-fuel midrange missile, which analysts say can be fired faster and more secretly than liquid-fuel missiles.
Any future military action by Trump, which could spark retaliation attacks from dictator Kim, would be a major step towards all-out war to stop North Korea from developing nuclear weapons, reports the Mail on Sunday.
President Trump has vowed to ‘take all necessary steps’ to ensure the security of the US and its allies.
And a top military expert has revealed exactly how the US military will ‘take out’ North Korea’s nukes if Donald Trump gives the green light for deadly strikes.
Trump reportedly sees North Korea and its despotic leader as his number one overseas challenge – and it is one he has pledged to tackle head-on.
Now a senior analyst from Stratfor – which provides strategic analysis to the US government – has told Business Insider exactly how Trump’s military could potentially carry out crippling strikes against the hermit kingdom.
The US would have to choose between a full-scale destruction of North Korea’s nuclear facilities and ground forces or a quicker attack on only the most important nuclear facilities.
As a full-scale attack could lead to “mission creep that could pull the US into a longterm conflict in East Asia,” according to Tack, it will focus on a surgical strike that would wipe out the bulk of North Korea’s nuclear forces.
The US is likely to use stealth aircraft like the F-22 and B-2 bomber for the pinpoint attack, he said.
In the run up to any attack, the US would position nuclear submarines, naval ships, and stealth aircraft at bases near North Korea.
“Suddenly you’d read on the news that the US has conducted these airstrikes,” said Tack.
While the F-22 and F-35 would certainly do work over North Korea missile production sites, it really a job for the B-2.
As a long-range bomber the B-2 could drop massive, 30,000lb bombs on deep underground bunkers setting off from bases as far away as Guam or the continental United States.
The initial targets would include nuclear reactors, missile production facilities, and launching pads for ICBMs, according to Tack.
Cruise missiles would be fired from the sea, F-22s would take out North Korea’s archaic air defences and B-2s would pound every known missile site.