The US Department of Defense said it is coordinating measures to preserve readiness with the ROK side for the annual US-Korea combined military exercise scheduled to be held next month. Former ROK-US Combined Commander Brooks said it was important to minimize the visibility of training. Reporter Kim Dong-hyun covered it
US Defense Department spokesman John Kirby said on the 22nd, “The US is taking very seriously about its security alliance and dedication with South Korea, which is a key axis in the region.
Spokesman Kirby said at a briefing that day, when asked about the annual US-ROK combined exercises expected to take place next month, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said all appropriate to ensure that ROK-US Combined Commander Robert Abrams works with the ROK to maintain readiness to the maximum possible level. He said he believed in taking action.
[Recording: Spokesperson Kirby] “We’re confident that general Abrams understands those responsibilities and is working in lockstep with his counterparts in South Korea to make sure that that readiness is preserved and training is conducted and that the Alliance is as strong as ever. ”
Kirby also said the Pentagon believes that Commander Abrams understands the responsibilities involved, and is working to keep pace with the ROK side to preserve readiness and conduct training so that the alliance is stronger than ever. Revealed.
It is observed that only the command post training (CPX) will be conducted this year’s combined US-Korea training scheduled for early next month.
Former Commander Brooks “Minimize visibility in consideration of the situation on the Korean Peninsula”
“It is important for the public and political leaders to note that the combined US-Korea training is not a show unlike Pyongyang’s feverish ceremony,” said Vincent Brooks, chairman of the USFK Combat Association (KDVA), who served as the commander of the ROK-US Combined Forces. Do it”.
[Record: Former Commander Brooks] “I think it is important for the public and political leadership to keep in mind that the exercises for the ROK-US Alliance, unlike the parades in Pyongyang, are not a show. They are not for show. Readiness can be gained without commentary. And while I know there’s a lot of curiosity in the public and a lot of pressure for people to talk about the exercise, my advice, as it was when I was leaving command, is that in the current situation in North-South and North Korea -US relations, it is wiser to be silent about the exercises. To turn off the communication volume or turn it very low. And so I’m concerned about how much chatter there is already about an exercise that should be quiet.”
Former Commander Brooks said he was well aware of the public’s interest in the exercise, but said readiness could be gained without special mention.
He said he would advise that it is wise to remain silent about the training given the current inter-Korean relations and US-North Korea relations.
“North Korea’s purpose is to pressure the US-Korea alliance… Don’t give me an excuse”
Former Commander Brooks said North Korea does not appear to be paying much attention to the training itself, with the FTX component being excluded from training.
[Recording: Former Commander Brooks] “It’s not impossible to be quiet about the exercise. North Korea, in my opinion, does not care very much about the exercises, especially when there’s not a field training exercise component, as there is not in this case… And so North Korea cares about the exercises only for the purpose of putting pressure on the ROK-US Alliance and I don’t think that the Alliance should give them that satisfaction. So silent exercise with the purpose of readiness is what I believe needs to happen here.”
As North Korea is interested in coalition training for the purpose of putting pressure on the US-Korea alliance, it is explained that there is no need to provide excitement to North Korea by making it sound.
Former Commander Brooks stressed that whether to conduct a Full Operational Capability Assessment (FOC) in conjunction with the OPCON transition is a very comprehensive and deliberate matter for alliance leadership.
Former Commander Brooks emphasized that the U.S. recognizes all training as a stage of verification of readiness for OPCON transition and that it is important to understand combined training as a stepping stone, not the final point of OPCON transition. .
David Maxwell “The key to maintaining CPX training readiness”
David Maxwell, a former ROK-US CFC operation chief, said command post training (CPX) is more important than peacetime tactical training at the field level, and is a key function in maintaining overall readiness.
[Recording: Senior Researcher Maxwell] “It is the most important readiness function because our tactical forces remain well trained for the most part, but this is the PhD level of war. That is executing a campaign plan. That is an extremely complex defense of South Korea based on North Korea’s Attack of the South. So I want to emphasize this is a defensive, computer driven command post training exercise that is designed to prepare the senior leaders in the components of the Combined Forces Command to defend South Korea… ”
Senior Researcher Maxwell said that the CPX training does not mobilize actual units, but that the CFC and its subsidiary commands focus on how to implement a complex defense strategy on the Korean Peninsula.
Senior researcher Maxwell said it was very wrong and irresponsible for the South Korean defense minister to talk to North Korea on the issue of resumption of US-ROK combined exercises.
[Recording: Senior Researcher Maxwell] “By not conducting exercises is not going to change their behavior. It only reinforces their belief that their strategy is being successful. That’s why we must conduct exercises and not be afraid to do so. Because by not conducting the exercises, we are appeasing North Korea and they will double down on their blackmail diplomacy and provocation strategies.”
It is argued that if they accept the demand not to conduct joint exercises, North Korea will determine that its strategy has been successful and will further increase its intimidating diplomacy and provocation strategies.
Former Assistant Secretary Gregson “CPX training, virus risk logic difficult to establish”
Wallace Gregson, former deputy assistant secretary of defense for Asia and the Pacific, said that the view of coalition exercises as provocative for North Korea must be overcome.
[Recording: Former Assistant Secretary Gregson] “We have to get past our worries about this being somehow provocative to North Korea. It’s like saying having fire departments in downtown Seoul is somehow provocative to fire. The North Korea, should be given no credibility complaining about any exercises we do that are thoroughly defensive in nature…Well, obviously, that can be a very convenient political cover for not doing the exercise that we’re worried about the virus. But we’re talking about a command post exercise and we’ve got precautions in place to protect service members”
Former Assistant Secretary Gregson said some views that the training may be difficult due to the aftermath of the novel coronavirus may be based on political convenience, and that command post training has many options that can be conducted while protecting troops.
This is VOA News, Donghyun Kim.