The U.S. Army has been working quietly over the past several months to speed development and deployment of weapons and networking systems specifically aimed at blunting a North Korean army ground invasion.
“We have been looking at Korean peninsula ops,” says Col. John Lanier Ward, Rapid Equipping Force director.
One goal of the program is to equip and train U.S. soldiers to better enable them to operate underground in tunnel complexes and in dense urban environments.
As might be expected, this threat scenario has a particular impact upon Army units such as the REF – who exist to identify pressing soldier combat needs, quickly create requirements and work closely with industry and Army program developers to identify quick-turn, often interim technologies able to have an immediate impact.
Preparing for tunnel and urban combat against North Korea is, without question, not something to be seen as entirely new or recent. However, while specifics of military options for North Korea are naturally not being discussed by Pentagon war planners, many observers, analysts and experts are talking about various threat contingencies, combat scenarios and military strike possibilities.
Analyst comment: The prospect of major ground combat on the Korean peninsula has risen significantly this year, and Army leaders are taking the threat seriously enough to begin development of new technologies and strategies in preparation for such a contingency.
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