ehhhh i guess if we go to war, we go to war nothing i can really do about it. but ya if we do i see america getting owned by china, since they allready pretty much own us, have a way bigger military, and have pretty much the same weapons so ya should be fun.
South Korea alone could easliy take the North considering its current armament. They have F-16s, F-15s, tanks that are equivalent to the Abrams, etc. The North knows that any real war will result in a complete take over of the country in just a few days without any real help from others. The main detterent for any war is the close proximity of Seoul to the border and the ease in which it can be completely obliterated by simple artillery strikes from the north. It is now known through the diplimatic leaks through wikileaks that China has no problems with a take over of the north by the south so as long as the south and the US are peaceful in their relations to China. If a take over occurs I believe that Asia will have a major collapse and that will ripple throughout the world. The recovery of the combined Korea will be far worse, more difficult and longer than the recovery of the combined Germany.
Very interesting read, and well said Chris -- but it is much, much more complex than that, and your stats are consistent with data that was gathered several years ago. First of all, the very latest reports show that Kim Jong-il has drastically ramped up his numbers in both troops and equipment. He knows he has to be prepared for the inevitable backlash over all that he has started. His army and weapons now far outnumber the South. The only thing that the South has more of, is fighter jets. Also, as you mentioned, he has created a massive artillery station with over 10,000 rockets, shells, and missiles -- all of which are pointed at Seoul. Experts say he could level the city of Seoul, which is home to over one million people and 20,000+ US troops, in hours. And Seoul is only fifty miles away from the DMZ area. Of course there is always the unknown factors such as the training and skill level of the armies from both sides, and the number of paramilitary and reserve troops that will either be forced into service or volunteer. And there is always the very real possibility that Jong-il (and/or his successor) could lose patience and decide to nuke the South. If this happened, or even if he severely bombed Seoul with conventional arms, the US would be forced to jump in, and in turn force China to step in to defend their allies in the North. This could trigger an escalation that could be catastrophic.
Let's hope none of this happens. Besides, most military analysts say that our very first order of business now, is Iran, which opens a whole nother can of worms.
Here are the latest numbers on the North Korean and South Korean military forces and arms:
The North may have a greater number of troops and military hardware but you can't deny that army would b woefully prepared to have any war over a couple days. The country has no food and that little food that is in the country goes mostly to feed the elite and the rest to the troops. It is a known fact that the average South Korean soldier is like 3-4" taller and 50lbs heavier. I don't know if those are the hard numbers but I think the concept still stands that the North is not really prepared to have any sort of war for any great length of time. The North is using quantity over quality more so than Saddam did in Iraq although Saddam had an army that was actually fed. China will not help the north in any case of an invasion or take over by the south. That was clearly stated in a cable from the foreign minister of China to the US diplomats. The only interest China has in this matter is to prevent a massive migration of North Korean refugees across the Yalu River. With the extreme secrecy of the North it is really hard to have any ideas how and what they will react with. I don't even know if Kim Jong-Un would be an improvement over his father's crazy style of running the country. It would be great if there could be peace and eventual reunification but right now that seems a far away dream.