Throughout my military career, I took pride in knowing that I served as a light, Airborne Sapper in units such as the 82nd Airborne and 10th Mountain Divisions. As a combat soldier, we pride ourselves on being referred to as the President’s personal 911 call. From 2002–2003 I found myself serving in South Korea in the 2nd Infantry Division where Kim Jung II fired rockets over the country and rattled his saber often.
North Korea has been ruled by leaders who have secluded their citizens and have ingrained the mentality that everything in this world that is evil comes from the Americans. One only needs to pay a visit to the DMZ and stand a few feet away from a North Korean soldier to see the hatred in his eyes.
Today, we have yet another madman at the wheel in North Korea and his actions seem to be on par with surpassing the evil that his father and grandfather inflicted.
Diplomacy must always be the first tactic but when diplomacy fails, strict sanctions must be established. When those do not work, our focus must be on protecting our troops and our allies in the area. China, Japan and South Korea are trying to convince Kim Jong Un to stand down but when those words fall on deaf ears, we reserve the right to take action.
Today, we have the strongest and most technologically advanced military the world has ever known. Our leaders in uniform have nearly two decades of continuous combat operations. Every Soldier, Sailor, Airman and Marine are combat tested. We have the know how and the capability to deal with any situation but we must also allow our military to do what they do best without being hampered by political red tape.
This doesn’t mean that the military should be unsupervised. This means that the military should not be politicized and taken advantage of for political gain. When our government turns conflict into a partisan battle, we limit our military’s effectiveness and prolong military efforts at a great cost to our country.
Allowing a madman to continue threatening the region while building combat power only strengthens his capabilities to do more harm.
Currently, strict sanctions have been applied. I fear that sanctions may not work and one day there will come a time when punches are thrown. Other world leaders who still have the ear of Kim Jong Un need to work to convince him to stand down or risk life as he knows it. His build up of capability must stop and his threats must cease.
It is my fear that although China is beginning to place increased pressure on North Korea, that Kim Jong Un’s hatred for America runs too deep and is too consuming for him to cave under the pressure.
As a retired US Army officer with four combat deployments, I know the cost of war. I bare the names of brothers I have served with over the years who never made it home. I gave the Eulogy at a military funeral in Arlington for one of the best leaders I ever had the privilege to serve with.
Every soldier prays for peace, but we know if we must fight, allow us to do what we have been trained to do.
If we do find ourselves at war with North Korea, political agendas need to be put away and we need to allow the professionals to execute the mission. It’s been quite a long time since we have really allowed that to happen. When was that you may ask? It was during Desert Storm. Combat troops in the Army and Marines are lethal when combat operations occur, but when we actually allow the Air Force and our Navy to do their job…we win every time.