Dangerous Idiot Category: "It’s Time to Bomb North Korea"

Edward Luttwak, an armchair foreign policy idiot, proposes bombing North Korea.

It’s Time to Bomb North Korea says Edward Luttwak, idiot of the day for Foreign Policy Magazine.

Check out his rationale:

It’s true that North Korea could retaliate for any attack by using its conventional rocket artillery against the South Korean capital of Seoul and its surroundings, where almost 20 million inhabitants live within 35 miles of the armistice line. U.S. military officers have cited the fear of a “sea of fire” to justify inaction. But this vulnerability should not paralyze U.S. policy for one simple reason: It is very largely self-inflicted.

OK so let's not worry about 20 million people, disruption in trade, or the threat of starting WWII involving Russia or China for the very simply reason that if the US starts the war it will be "largely self inflicted."

Luttwak's Predictions

Wikipedia has an interesting list of Luttwak's Predictions.

  • In 1983, Luttwak pronounced the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan a success.
  • Luttwak thought it likely that the Soviet Union would launch a limited war against China, especially if the West increased its military power (as it did in the 1980s, under President Ronald Reagan).
  • Just a few months before the Berlin Wall came down, Luttwak was worrying that Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev’s policies of glasnost and perestroika would augment the military power of the Soviet Union. Instead, those policies precipitated the end of the Cold War and the dissolution of the Soviet Union".
  • Luttwak predicted, shortly before the first Persian Gulf War, that Iraqi President Saddam Hussein would evacuate Kuwait "after a week or two of bombing (the bombing continued for six weeks without inducing him to do so).
  • Luttwak warned that the use of ground forces ‘could make Desert Storm a bloody, grinding combat with thousands of (U.S.) casualties.’ On August 23, 1990, in a Reuters article, Luttwak told reporter Jim Wolf: "Don't think that your precision weapons and your gadgets and your gizmos and your stealth fighters are going to make it possible to reconquer Kuwait without many thousands of casualties." The ground fighting lasted only four days, rather than the minimum of two weeks that Luttwak predicted, and U.S. casualties were minimal.
  • Most recently, Luttwak assessed the results of a Donald Trump presidency in an op-ed for the Wall Street Journal arguing that "his foreign policies are unlikely to deviate from standard conservative norms," withdrawing troops from Afghanistan and Iraq, avoiding involvement in Syria and Libya, eschewing trade wars, and modestly reducing spending.

People listen to that guy?

Despite not getting anything right, Luttwak, a Romanian, served as a consultant to the Office of the Secretary of Defense, the National Security Council, the United States Department of State, the United States Navy, United States Army, United States Air Force, and several NATO defense ministries.

Open Secrets

Finally, please consider an excellent article by Major Danny Sjursen, a US Army strategist and former history instructor at West Point: American Warfare’s Giant Open Secret

Sjursen served tours with reconnaissance units in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Unlike Luttwak, Sjursen knows what he is talking about.

Foreign Policy magazine brutally disgraced itself publishing Luttwak's article.

Mike "Mish" Shedlock

I read a similar story that Donald Trump wants to do this very thing but the Generals are against it saying there's no way to know for sure how North Korea would react, some giving the odds as high as 10% that North Korea would retaliate with nukes.

I'm more scared to think that Donald Trump really wants to do this, than reading about Luttwack. Additional problems are not knowing how China would react to a U.S. military strike. And if Trump is warming to this idea, it speaks to the different risk tolerance of someone who is more entrepreneurial like Trump versus the U.S. military or even a CEO at a fortune 500 company

I'd prefer we withdraw all of our troops from Korean and SELL nuclear weapon systems to Japan & South Korean. Just the threat of that might make China remove their proxy.

@El_Ted0 , I'm interested in a 3rd option. Attempting to shoot down the next missile North Korea launches. It's provocative, but no less provocative than what North Korea is doing.

@Sechel , Even better would be hacking the missile and dropping it back at the launch site.


@Sechel, Even better would be removing our troops from the Korean peninsula and opening up trade with North Korea similar to what we did with China. North Korea isn't a threat to anyone anyway.

Edward Luttwak-job. Dangerous idiot indeed.

Why not try backing off and letting the two Koreas work it out? Military action is no solution. Hell, it was already tried decades ago, killing vast numbers of North Koreans and 50,000 + Americans and tens of thousands of South Koreans and resulting in the standoff we see today at the 38th parallel.

@AWC a diplomatic solution would be the best solution, but diplomacy without leverage is just begging. what's wrong now is not the threat of military force but the incessant sabre rattling and claims of who has the bigger button

Sweet irony, that Trump thinks his button is bigger. Launching a preemptive nuclear attack on North Korean while Chinese submarines are off our coast? Hey folks study the year 1950 if you want to know what China will do. And at some point a disabling EMP will be set off just to get US to cool down, however Trumps button is a toy button and you should hear that conversation should it occur.

@Sechel, Gunboat Deplomacy generally leads to chaos. Economic incentive, as in win-win negotiations is always preferable to military action. And certainly, preferable to US Police action (MIC?) meddling.

In sum, this whole thing could be surmised as competition between the US (ROC?) and China (NORK?) to see who gets to exploit the substantial low cost labor pool in North Korea. In the end, with a bit of luck, North and South could be reunited, ala East and West Germany, if the Dogs of War can be held at bay long enough.

The above said, Rocket Man is a temporary obstacle, as is Trump.

Why do we care what NK does? We can't police the entire world, so why even try?

more stoner logic from mish, try to get out more

"more stoner logic from mish, try to get out more" - LOL You have to be braindead or stoned to think putting 20 million people at risk of nuclear annihilation is a good idea.

Interesting to tally the countries with private central banks and how it has changed with the list of countries where USA has messed with and invaded. Seems to be a pattern.

Let’s zoom out a little? Perhaps more important than LuttWack’s NeoCon viewpoint are the words “Foreign Policy Magazine”. If James Corbett is correct with his reporting on the concept of “predictive programming”; articles like that, in a publication like FP or The Economist are no accident. They are the direction that the Owners of the CFR, Trilaterals, Bilderbergers, Club of Rome, and Committee of 300 want to “lead” (or push) the world into. If 21 “mainstream” publications call Trump “Dark” at the same time, the herd thinks Trump is sinister! If the owners of those same “mainstream” publications all propagate LuttWack’s message at the same time, South Korea and Japan are in grave danger, and plenty of profitable reconstruction contracts may be issued to the insiders’ stakeholders to clean up the ruins and divide up the newly available (NK) mineral resources. Big picture: does this article fit the emerging paradigm that Brave New World and 1984 weren’t entertainment, but instruction manuals?