In a lightining quick escalation, we have news about the first components of the hugely controversial US built THAAD missile defense system arriving in South Korea. The move is designed to mitigate/discourage the perceived threat of North Korea’s ballistic missiles program and its erratic communist leaders who are lately threatening the peace in the region.
The THAAD missile defense system was deployed in South Korea on Monday night at the Osan Air Base. Monday’s announcement about the deployment of a state of the art missile defense system comes just 24 hours after North Korea launched ballistic missiles in the Free Economic Zone of the Sea of Japan, aka the East Sea and hours after North Korean government warned that the world is on the brink of a nuclear war due to the maneuvers/joint exercises between the South Korean military and the US.
THAAD stands for Terminal High Altitude Area Defense and the US deploying this system in South Korea angered both the ChiComs and the ruskies. China’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lu Kang stated:
“We think the US-South Korean decision to deploy the THAAD missile defense system has seriously threatened China’s security interest. For the region, it will also break the strategic balance. So it’s completely understandable to see countries in the region firmly oppose this decision. China and other countries have to address our own legitimate security concerns and take necessary measures to safeguard our security interest.”
According to TASS, the Russian state run news agency quoting a Russian government official:
“Deployment of US missile defense systems in South Korea clearly goes beyond the tasks of deterring ‘the North Korean threat,’“
Admiral Harry Harris who is a Commander in the US Pacific Command released a statement saying that:
“Continued provocative actions by North Korea, to include yesterday’s launch of multiple missiles, only confirm the prudence of our alliance decision last year to deploy THAAD to South Korea,”
THAAD is a defensive system by nature aimed at preventing missiles from hitting civilian/military targets and killing people. The Russians and the Chinese are especially concerned about THAAD’s long range X band radar capabilities which can be used as an early warning system, exposing missile activity on sea/land from both China and Russia.