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7 mai 2013 2 07 /05 /mai /2013 17:35
Missiles montés sur des camions lors d'un défilé militaire nord-coréen (Photo: Archives/KCNA)

Missiles montés sur des camions lors d'un défilé militaire nord-coréen (Photo: Archives/KCNA)

07/05/2013 par Jacques N. Godbout – 45eNord.ca

 

Après des mois de menaces et d’invectives, comme si elle ne pouvait plus aller plus loin, la Corée du Nord a baissé son niveau d’alerte et retiré deux de ses missiles de leur site de lancement sur la côte est du pays, rapporte l’agence Yonhap.

Une source gouvernementale a déclaré ce mardi 7 mai, que «le Commandement suprême nord-coréen semble avoir levé autour du 30 avril son alerte de niveau 1 concernant ses troupes de missiles stratégiques et ses artilleries à longue portée, qui avait été déclenchée le 26 mars dernier».

La Corée du Nord aurait aussi procédé au retrait total des missiles balistiques Musudan de moyenne portée déployés dans la région est du Nord vers une autre région, ce déplacement intervenant dans le cadre de la levée de l’alerte au combat de niveau 1.

«Les deux missiles Musudan n’ont pas pu être identifiés dans la région où ils avaient été déployés. Il semble qu’ils ont été déplacés vers un autre lieu et les autorités chargées du renseignement de la Corée du Sud et des États-Unis cherchent actuellement à retrouver leurs traces», aurait expliqué une source gouvernementale à l’agence sud-coréenne.

Les missiles Musudan ont une portée de plus de 5 500 km, qui permettrait à la Corée du Nord d’atteindre le continent américain. Toutefois, Pyongyang ne les a jamais testés en conditions réelles.

Par contre, la Corée du Nord dispose de plusieurs centaines de missiles de moyenne portée, pouvant atteindre le Japon et la Corée du Sud.

Soulagement, mais trop tôt pour crier victoire

La chaîne d’information continue américaine CNN a elle aussi rapporté que, selon un responsable gouvernemental s’exprimant sous le couvert de l’anonymat, deux missiles Musudan auraient été retirés des plateformes d’où ils étaient prêts à être lancé pour être plutôt rangés dans des hangars.

Une fois les missiles ainsi «remisés» dans des hangars, les Nord-Coréens devraient refaire de nombreuses préparations s’ils voulaient procéder au lancement des missiles, ce qui, logiquement, diminuerait pour le moment l’imminence du danger.

Tout cela survient la veille de la visite mardi à la Maison-Blanche de la présidente sud-coréenne, Park Geun-hye, qui doit notamment s’entretenir avec le président Obama de la demande de Séoul pour le droit de recycler le combustible nucléaire et l’amélioration de l’alliance entre les deux pays.

Selon le porte-parole du Pentagone George Little, la «pause dans les provocations» de Pyongyang est un développement positif, mais Daniel Russel, chargé des affaires de l’Asie au Conseil national de sécurité des États-Unis, a affirmé pour sa part que la situation n’était pas encore résolue malgré l’accalmie des provocations nord-coréenne.

Russel a indiqué qu’il était trop tôt pour évaluer «le cycle de provocations nord-coréennes» et se féliciter.

Russel a aussi exprimé sa conviction que la rencontre de mardi de la présidente Park et du président Obama est reconfirmera la politique et la volonté commune de dissuasion envers la Corée du Nord.

À lire aussi:

Corée du Nord: deux lanceurs de missiles Scud déployés sur la côte orientale >>

La Corée du Nord positionne un missile capable de frapper le Japon ou la Corée du sud >>

Pyongyang met ses unités de fusées en état d’alerte >>

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7 mai 2013 2 07 /05 /mai /2013 17:35
Boeing, others investing in South Korea

SEOUL, May 7 (UPI)

 

Boeing and six other U.S. companies have reportedly promised to invest $380 million in South Korea.

 

The pledges of direct foreign investment were made Monday to South Korean government officials visiting the United States along with South Korean President Park Geun-hye.

 

"The decisions of the seven U.S. corporations demonstrate their trust in the South Korean economy without regard to various uncertainties in the country," Minister of Trade, Industry and Energy Yoon Sang-jick said.

 

"Based on the new administration's resolute diplomatic and security policies, we will make active and strategic efforts to attract foreign direct investment."

 

The Korea Times newspaper reported that Boeing will invest $120 million to establish a maintenance, repair and overhaul center for F-15K Slam Eagle avionics components in South Gyeongsang province. The facility will be the first Boeing MRO facility in Asia.

 

U.S. company Curtiss-Wright will invest $30 million in South Korea to shore up its capacity in nuclear reactor valves, while Almost Heroes, an animation studio, will make a $20 million investment for creation of products to will be screened in the United States.

 

The newspaper quoted the minister as saying the other U.S. companies would invest in solar cells, leisure facilities and logistics centers.

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7 mai 2013 2 07 /05 /mai /2013 16:35
FA-50 lightweight fighter (KAI photo)

FA-50 lightweight fighter (KAI photo)

Korea Aerospace has won a second Korean air force production order worth about $1 billion for an unspecified number of FA-50 lightweight fighters. (KAI photo)

May 7, 2013 defense-aerospace.com

(Source: Korea Aerospace Industries; issued May 7, 2013)

 

KAI Contract for Mass Producing the FA-50

 

KAI announced on May 6th that the company concluded the contract for mass producing the FA-50, amounting to approximately 1.1 trillion won with The Defense Acquisition Program Administration ("DAPA"). In accordance with the contract, subsequent to the first mass production contract which was signed on 2011, KAI plans to deploy the aircraft (first production portion) for preparing for the actual battle beginning in August and seek its entire force integration until 2016.

 

The FA-50 is a light combat aircraft which was developed based on the T-50, a supersonic advanced trainer in order to replace the military's superannuated fighters, like the F-5E/Fs and A-37s. The FA-50 combat aircraft is able to load up to 4.5 tons of weapons including the basic weapons like air-to-air/air-to-surface missiles and machine guns as well as precision guidance bombers such as JDAMs, or joint direct attack munitions and multi-purpose precision guidance CBUs (or cluster bomb units). Also, the FA-50 fighter, complete with a night vision apparatus, has a mission capability both in the daytime and in the night time and boasts its improved self-protection ability for the aircraft itself.

 

“The FA-50 aircraft is excellent in performance compared with the price. Through the operation of the home-grown airplane which is high in terms of operation ratio and is low in terms of maintenance cost, the Korean military's self-reliance defense potential will be doubled," an official at the military said. KAI won the order for the FA-50 PBL, or Performance Based Logistics project in November last year and is in charge of the development and production, stepping forward the subsequent support of the airplane.

 

KAI told, "Through the Korean military's operation ability for the actual battle and KAI's thorough logistics support, the confidence in the performance, safety and follow-up ability of the aircraft are further enhanced, which will accelerate the exports of the home-grown airplanes including the FA-50."

 

In October last year, the FA-50 airplane was verified in terms of a flight safety test of about 1,300 items and acquired the Korea's Type Certification for the first time in the Korea's fighter-class aircraft, securing a bridgehead for exports. KAI, which set a goal for exporting more than 1,000 T-50 series airplanes forecasts positively the exports of the FA-50 and makes effort to export the T-50 series airplanes to other nations, like the Philippines, Iraq and Chile.

 

Thanks to the fact which the worldwide replacement demand for the old and superannuated F-5 and A-37 airplanes is on the increase more and more but the light attack aircraft which is able to substitute those planes is only the FA-50 model or something like it, KAI makes a positive evaluation on exporting the FA-50. The air forces of the nations in the world operate both the high-intensity mission fighters and low-intensity mission fighters at the same time, depending on their operation purpose.

 

In the meanwhile, KAI has won the orders for the FA-50, amounting to approximately 3 trillion won, including the contract thus far and is sailing smoothly to achieve the goal of 6.2 trillion won which the company set this year. "Thanks to the successful large-scale export contracts in the first half of this year, including the order amounting to 1.2 trillion won with Boeing in April in succession to the deal for fuselage parts worthy of approximately 460 billion won with Airbus in March, KAI predicts that its goal set for 2013 will be achieved without difficulty," told KAI.

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6 mai 2013 1 06 /05 /mai /2013 12:35
Les géants américains de la défense profitent des tensions en Corée

 

06/05 Yann Rousseau Correspondant à Tokyo - Les Echos

 

Raytheon, Boeing ou encore Northrop Grumman enchaînent les contrats avec Séoul. L'appel d'offres pour les prochains avions de combat se jouera entre Boeing et Lockheed Martin.

 

Fin avril, les troupes américaines et sud-coréennes ont mis fin aux gigantesques exercices militaires « Foal Eagle » qu'elles avaient lancé le 1 er mars au large de la péninsule. Organisées régulièrement, ces manoeuvres communes impliquant plus de 20.000 soldats ont été particulièrement suivies par les grandes capitales de la zone car leur ampleur a semblé contribuer à la spectaculaire montée des tensions dans la région. Accusant Washington et Séoul de préparer une attaque, les autorités nord-coréennes ont enchaîné les provocations depuis début mars, allant jusqu'à enclencher la fermeture du complexe industriel nord-coréen de Kaesong.

 

Si ce durcissement mobilise les diplomates, il est aussi mis à profit par les grands industriels américains de l'armement. Pour eux, l'agressivité de Pyongyang et le rapprochement entre les états-majors américain et sud-coréen constituent une occasion unique de pousser leurs produits auprès de leurs clients de la péninsule. En quelques semaines, ils ont d'ailleurs sécurisé plusieurs commandes importantes.

US Army combat helicopter – AH-64E.

US Army combat helicopter – AH-64E.

Négociations

 

Mi-avril, Séoul a ainsi annoncé l'achat de 36 hélicoptères de combat Apache construits par Boeing pour 1,6 milliard de dollars, afin d'améliorer ses capacités de réaction face à la menace nord-coréenne. Une semaine plus tôt, Raytheon a révélé que son radar à antenne active RACR a été sélectionné dans le cadre du programme de modernisation des avions de combat F-16 du pays. Le montant de la vente n'a pas été divulgué mais les experts l'estiment à plusieurs centaines de millions de dollars.

Les géants américains de la défense profitent des tensions en Corée

Même si aucun contrat n'est encore entériné, la presse sud-coréenne table sur l'acquisition prochaine d'au moins quatre exemplaires du plus imposant drone jamais conçu par les industriels américains. Presque aussi grand qu'un avion de ligne et facturé 215 millions de dollars pièce, le RQ-4 Global Hawk de Northrop Grumman pourrait compléter le réseau d'informations mis en place par les Américains et leurs alliés pour surveiller la Corée du Nord mais également la Chine. Début avril, Reuters assurait que les négociations avaient commencé avec Séoul mais aussi Tokyo.

Les géants américains de la défense profitent des tensions en Corée

Avant la fin de l'été, Séoul devrait aussi dévoiler le nom de la société qui lui fournira sa nouvelle génération d'avions de combat. Ce programme, estimé à près de 8 milliards de dollars, doit permettre le remplacement, à partir de 2017, des anciens F-4 « Phantom ». Officiellement trois appareils restent en lice, le F-35 de Lockheed Martin, le F-15 Silent Eagle de Boeing, et l'Eurofighter Typhoon porté, dans ces négociations, par Cassidian, la filiale défense d'EADS.

 

La semaine dernière, le consortium européen a annoncé qu'il était prêt à délocaliser en Corée du Sud chez Korea Aerospace Industries la production d'au moins 48 des 60 appareils qui seraient commandés. Il a aussi laissé entendre qu'il était prêt à de plus importants transferts de technologies que ses concurrents américains dont les exportations sont strictement encadrées par Washington.

 

Malgré tout, les chances de l'Eurofighter sont bien maigres dans un pays qui fait office de pré carré américain (Dassault en sait quelque chose). En pleine période d'exercice militaires communs, les lobbies pro-américains ont pu activer tous leurs réseaux sur place et le contrat ne devrait pas leur échapper.

 

Au début du mois, Dave Scott, le responsable des ventes du F-35 chez Lockheed Martin, est longuement venu expliquer à Séoul que son avion de combat était le plus efficace face à la menace nord-coréenne. A condition de s'armer de patience car le programme, plombé par des problèmes techniques, affiche des années de retard.

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6 mai 2013 1 06 /05 /mai /2013 07:35
Exercices militaires américano-sud-coréens en mer Jaune (agence)

 

SEOUL, 6 mai - RIA Novosti

 

La Corée du Sud et les Etats-Unis ont entamé en mer Jaune, entre la Chine et la péninsule coréenne, des exercices militaires visant à lutter contre les sous-marins, a annoncé lundi l'agence Yonhap.

 

Organisés chaque année, les exercices visent à préparer la Marine à lutter contre une infiltration non autorisée de l'adversaire", a indiqué un porte-parole du ministère sud-coréen de la Défense.

 

Selon lui, un sous-marin nucléaire de classe Los-Angeles, des destroyers dotés de systèmes de missiles Aegis et des avions de patrouille maritime R-3C américains, ainsi que des navires de guerre sud-coréens prennent part aux exercices qui prendront fin vendredi prochain.

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26 avril 2013 5 26 /04 /avril /2013 11:35
Korea : The South Offers China A Deal

 

April 25, 2013: Strategy Page

 

Six weeks of aggressive threats to start a war have come to nothing for North Korea. None of this bluster has produced any needed aid (as in free food or fuel) or offers to reduce the sanctions. No one shows any sign of giving in to this latest barrage of threats. This is a major disappointment for the northern leadership. For over half a century you could always get something useful if you ranted and threatened long enough. The north cannot risk making good on these threats and starting an actual war, as they would lose big. North Korean military planners were taught the “correlation of forces” by their Russian mentors and have calculated the growing strength of the south and the decline of the north. All those smart bombs and combat-proven new tech the south and their allies have would make a mess of the north. But maybe another nuclear or long-range missile test will help.

 

In the last few days North Korean troops have been seen building fortifications near border crossings. This is unusual because for decades it was assumed any war between north and south would begin with a North Korean invasion of the south. The new fortifications indicate that the north is recognizing the power balance shift and that it is more likely South Korean troops will be moving north if it comes to war.

 

South Korea has offered to negotiate with North Korea over the recently closed (by North Korea) Kaesong Industrial Complex in North Korea. This put over 50,000 North Koreans out of work and is costing the South Korean companies millions of dollars. The South Korean government has said it will provide help with these losses and wants to see what the North Koreans have to say about putting 50,000 of their own people out of good jobs and making future investment from South Korea less likely because of this nonsense. South Korean who work at the Kaesong Industrial Complex have long been a good source of intel on the north and apparently these sources indicate that it’s not just unemployed workers in Kaesong who are unhappy with their government’s antics. By asking for talks the south is indicating it wants to make it easy for the north to back down and get the Kaesong Industrial Complex and its employees working again.

 

The out-of-work Kaesong employees say their complaints about their government are not unique to the well-off (relatively speaking) workers at the special economic zone, but are common throughout the north. People are tired of all the propaganda, which is another tool the government uses to get everyone to ignore all the hungry, ill-housed and underemployed people up north. Its bad enough northerners have to hear it all the time, but many are ordered out to perform in public demonstrations of “popular anger at the enemy”. This is annoying and time consuming. It used to be you got a little food for attending these “voluntary” exercises, but the food situation has gotten so bad that the government reserves have been depleted. Everyone was reminded of this during the recent evacuation exercises, when city dwellers moved to rural dispersal sites as they would in wartime to avoid bombing attacks on the cities. The evacuees found that there was no food available for them and as a result the evacuation exercise fell apart as people simply walked away to find food. Only the senior leadership, most of who live in the cities, always has enough food. In the capital (Pyongyang) the government gave most residents several days of food in early April (to celebrate the birthday of founder Kim Il Sung). A few other cities got such distributions but most of the population did not, which only increases the resentment against those pampered government lackeys in the cities (especially the capital). In most of the country, hunger, or the threat of it, is a constant worry. Many of the North Korean soldiers the propaganda declares are “ready for war” are actually, and quite visibly, out helping plant the new crops (as they do every year).

 

The last six weeks have made it clear to the North Korean leadership that they have lost control of information. News of how the outside world is reacting to all the threats, and how those threats look to the rest of the world, is quickly getting to most North Koreans. The secret police (who monitor public attitudes) are reporting that people have a low opinion of their government and the current threats of war have not changed that. The secret police also point out that a lot of North Korean propaganda, especially the stuff insisting that North Koreans have it better than people of other countries (like China, South Korea and Japan) is considered a bad joke by most North Koreans, and a growing number of them are openly mocking the mandatory lectures and demonstrations they must attend. This is ominous, the fact that the people are losing their fear of retaliation. This is what happened in Eastern Europe in 1989 when all the communist governments there collapsed in a few months. North Korean leaders studied that event carefully and concluded that they had their people under control, that the people still feared their leaders. The decline in fear is scary news indeed because North Korea is basically a police state and without lots of fear that sort of government does not work.

 

The north is buzzing with talk of the April 14th collapse of a large mosaic wall honoring Kim Il Sung in Musan. It was quickly deduced that the mosaic came down because someone had sold off some of the construction materials and the wall was not as strong as it was supposed to be. When a strong enough wind came along, the wall came down. This is the first time a monument to the two previous rulers of North Korea (Kim Il Sung and his son Kim Jong Il) was subject to obvious corruption. There are 35,000 statues and monuments like this in North Korea and these representations of the two deceased rulers are considered sacred. It is a big deal that these monuments are now considered fair game by corrupt officials. For true-believers in the North Korean leadership this is a shocking event. For most North Koreans it is kind of expected. The old value system, inculcated by decades of relentless Kim-worshipping propaganda, is collapsing. The government will take action over this. There was a similar collapse of a lesser monument (honoring a lesser hero) in 2005, apparently due to poor design, not corruption. Still, those responsible for that collapse were punished. That will happen this time as well and there will be an official story that does not mention corruption. Since Kim Jong Un came to power he has had over 400 monuments built to honor his father and grandfather. Most of these have been mosaics and there will be inspections to find out if others were built by corrupt officials and are in danger of collapse. Omens like this must be avoided at all costs.

 

The current crisis (not enough food, fuel or hard currency) has led North Korea to put more pressure on its diplomats to come up with scams to raise cash. North Korean diplomats in Pakistan have, for example, made quite a business selling liquor in a country where sale of alcoholic beverages is very restricted and highly taxed. The North Koreans import name brand stuff and bring it in via diplomatic pouch and sell it freely to anyone who will pay (a price lower than the official price). This is a highly profitable arrangement and the Pakistani government eventually found out. The North Korean diplomats deny everything and keep selling the booze.

 

The U.S. has told North Korea that it will only resume food aid if the north will allow American officials to monitor the distribution. Food aid was halted in 2009 when North Korea expelled these observers. North Korea had been increasingly selling food aid to raise cash for imports (of weapons and luxury goods for the leadership). The north cannot do this with observers present and refuses to back off on this policy.

 

April 24, 2013: South Korea and China have established a hot line to handle any crisis in North Korea that would require action by the two countries (war or collapse of the government up there). Despite the huge cost of unification to South Koreans (who have only become affluent in the last 30 years) the idea of uniting Korea is still popular in South Korea. China has reservations about this and the South Korean have been trying to work out an understanding to get China to approve unification. Such a deal is not unprecedented. In the 1950s Austria ended its post-World War II occupation and partition (into allies and Soviet zones) by promising the Russians that it would remain neutral forever (or, as it turned out, until the Soviet Union disappeared) if Soviet troops left. A similar deal is apparently attractive to the Chinese, or at least they are willing to quietly talk about it. South Korea is a major trading partner and any deal that solved the North Korean mess and got U.S. troops out of Korea appeals to many Chinese.

 

April 23, 2013: North Korea demanded that it receive official recognition as a country equipped with nuclear weapons. The U.S., and most of the rest of the world, dismissed that claim out of hand. As far as anyone can tell North Korean nuclear weapons are crude and, for all practical purposes have not completed development into real weapons. At the same time North Korea has denounced a treaty it signed in 2005 where it agreed to halt nuclear weapons development in return for economic aid. The North Koreans apparently never had any intention of abiding by that deal and now say they will never give up their nukes.

 

April 21, 2013: North Korea has appealed to Mongolia for food aid. Even before DNA analysis became possible Koreans knew they had links to Mongols and Turks and were quite proud of. The Korean language is related to those of Central Asia (the Ural-Altaic family of languages) not the Han family (Chinese, Tibetan and many others in East Asia). Subsequent DNA studies have confirmed these ethnic links and North Korea is hoping for a handout from Mongolia (which North Korea has long had good relations with).

 

Iran confirmed that it is in negotiations to sell North Korea oil. This may be just to grab some media attention but the North Koreans may also be looking for some potential alternative source if their only current oil supplier (China) cuts them off or reduces shipments. The Chinese are not happy with North Korea’s self-destructive policies, especially their nuclear and ballistic missile programs. This oil import deal would never be allowed (by the West) to go forward because the North Koreans are broke and the one thing they do have to sell is a workable atomic bomb design. That could pay for a lot of oil, if Iran could deliver it.  

 

April 19, 2013: The U.S. reminded everyone (especially North Korea) that support for its ally South Korea includes the use, if necessary, of nuclear weapons.

 

April 18, 2013: North Korea said that it will even start negotiations to defuse tensions in Korea until the world lifted all the sanctions imposed on them. The rest of the world told North Korea that the sanctions won’t be lifted until the north stops its nuclear weapons development program.

 

April 17, 2013: South Korea has ordered 36 American AH-64 helicopter gunships

 

April 16, 2013: North Korea threatened to retaliate militarily against South Korea if the South Korean government did not ban anti-North Korean demonstrations in the south. This threat led to more anti-North Korea demonstrations and no reaction from South Korean officials.

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24 avril 2013 3 24 /04 /avril /2013 17:35
Le dirigeant Kim Jong-Un lors d’une visite d’une installation militaire, le 20 mars 2013 (Photo: Archives/KCNA)

Le dirigeant Kim Jong-Un lors d’une visite d’une installation militaire, le 20 mars 2013 (Photo: Archives/KCNA)

 

 

24/04/2013 par Nicolas Laffont – 45eNord.ca

 

Le régime du leader nord-coréen Kim Jong-un a lancé la construction d’obstacles antichars à sa frontière avec le Sud, ont rapporté mercredi matin plusieurs médias chinois.

 

 

La chaîne Beijing TV a ainsi diffusé une vidéo montrant des militaires nord-coréens en train de mettre en place de grands blocs en béton à la frontière avec le Sud. Selon les informations de la télévision chinoise, ces obstacles sont destinés à empêcher le passage de chars et d’autres véhicules militaires sud-coréen en cas de conflit ouvert.

 

Des experts chinois estiment qu’il s’agit là d’une mesure «inhabituelle» pour le régime nord-coréen, ce qui laisserait supposer que Pyongyang se prépare bel et bien à la guerre.

 

La péninsule coréenne connaît un net regain de tension ces dernières semaines.

 

Depuis le succès du troisième essai nucléaire du pays, les sanctions des Nations Unies ont ravivé la colère du régime qui a menacé les États-Unis, la Corée du Sud et le Japon d’une guerre thermonucléaire. De son côté, la Corée du Sud a annoncé la mise au point d’un plan de frappe préventive en cas de menace directe pour sa sécurité.

 

Début mars, Pyongyang, en signe de protestation contre les exercices conjoints entre la Corée du Sud et les Etats-Unis, a résilié tous les accords de non-agression et de dénucléarisation conclus avec Séoul et a annoncé l’annulation de l’armistice conclu à l’issue de la guerre de Corée de 1950-1953.

 

 

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8 avril 2013 1 08 /04 /avril /2013 16:35

rtn11 ids jlens img1

 

April 8, 2013 defense-aerospace.com

(Source: Lexington Institute; issued April 5, 2013)

 

It takes a crisis to concentrate the mind. Faced with unusually bellicose rhetoric from the regime in Pyongyang, the Obama Administration reversed course on National Missile Defense (NMD) and is rapidly bolstering its theater air and missile defenses in the region. The Department of Defense will add 14 ground based interceptor missiles to 30 currently in place at Fort Greeley, Alaska. Two Aegis missile defense capable destroyers have been sent to waters off the Korean peninsula.

 

Equipped with the Standard Missile 3 IA, these ships can provide defense against short to medium range ballistic missiles as well as advanced cueing for the NMD system. In addition, the Army is deploying a THAAD battery to Guam, an obvious potential target for a North Korean missile. In addition, the U.S. has deployed B-2 bombers and F-22 fighters to South Korea as shows of force.

 

Without appearing bellicose, there are additional capabilities that the U.S. could and should send to the region that would provide important intelligence collection and defensive capabilities. One of these is the Joint Land Attack Cruise Missile Defense Elevated Netted Sensor System (JLENS). This is a long-range surveillance system based on two large aerostats that carry radars, one for surveillance and the second to provide very precise intercept data. The aerostats can stay airborne for weeks at a time. Because it operates at a relatively high altitude and carries long-range sensors, JLENS can look out to about 550 km and track hundreds of targets at one time. We are not just talking about ballistic missiles or aircraft.

 

JLENS can track low flying cruise missiles, small boats and even ground vehicles all at the same time. In recent tests, JLENS demonstrated its ability to detect and track simultaneously-launched multiple ballistic missiles during their boost phase and also accurately locate their launch points. This last capability may be particularly important in finding North Korean mobile missile launchers. As a joint program, JLENS was designed from the start to support the missile and air defense operations of all the services. It carries a full array of communications capabilities allowing it to feed data to Army, Navy and Air Force units and platforms.

 

The on again/off again threat from North Korea is not the only danger U.S. and allied forces in the region face. On February 26, a Russian TU-22M Backfire bomber conducted a simulated cruise missile attack on a U.S. destroyer. The next day another practice attack was conducted against a missile defense site on Japanese soil. This is but one of dozens of such “exercises” in which Russian bombers simulate attacks on targets in Japan, NATO and even the continental U.S., on occasion penetrating into national airspace and having to be escorted out by armed fighters. It is beginning to look a lot like the bad old days of the Cold War.

 

Then there is the growing Chinese air and offensive missile threat. This includes hundreds of dual capable medium and intermediate range and ballistic and cruise missiles as well as the new DF-21 anti-ship ballistic missile intended to attack U.S. aircraft carriers. In addition, the PLA Air Force has deployed or has on order around 500 modern fourth-generation fighters and at least two fifth-generation fighters (approximately the equivalent of the F-22 and F-35) under development.

 

It is ironic that the Army is searching so intensely for a role in an Asian-centric U.S. national security strategy. As demonstrated by the decision to accelerate the planned deployment of a THAAD battery to Guam, the Army could have a major role in regional air and missile defense. Deploying JLENS to Guam would be a good first step and purely defensive. If deployed on the Korean Peninsula, JLENS could provide real-time warning and targeting information on the whole array of North Korean offensive threats from small boats to shorter-range ballistic missiles and very early cueing for the U.S. NMD. Also, JLENs is rapidly deployable and very mobile, which should be highly prized by an Army increasingly concerned about executing strategic maneuvers. The Army needs to invest in JLENS as part of a suite of advanced air and missile defense capabilities.

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14 février 2013 4 14 /02 /février /2013 13:48

Nuclear north korea

 

February 14, 2013: Strategy Page

 

The newly elected South Korean president made it clear that she would take a hard line against North Korea, not encourage friendlier relations. This includes the new threat of a pre-emptive attack on North Korea if there was any suspicion that the north was going to use nukes. South Korea also confirmed that it had deployed a new cruise missile that can reach targets anywhere in North Korea. This was no surprise as last year it was announced that South Korea would purchase and deploy over a thousand new ballistic and cruise missiles over the next five years. These would be aimed at specific North Korean missile launchers and artillery positions. In the event of a war, the South Korean missiles would be quickly launched and every North Korean missile or artillery weapon eliminated would mean less destruction in South Korean territory. The North Korea plan had always been to start any future war with an enormous bombardment by shells, rockets, and missiles. Most would be aimed at the South Korean capital, and largest city, Seoul.

 

In the last year the government revealed the existence of more of these locally developed missiles. A year ago South Korea made public the fact that it had a new cruise missile (apparently the Hyunmoo 3) and ballistic missile ready for service. South Korea is usually secretive about its battlefield missiles. Four years ago South Korean media reported that a new cruise missile, with a range of 1,000 kilometers, had secretly entered production in 2008. Called Hyunmoo 3, it has since been superseded by the Hyunmoo 3C missile, which has a range of 1,500 kilometers and is being deployed along the North Korean border, aimed at ballistic missiles, nuclear weapons, and other strategic targets to the north. This is apparently the new cruise missile announced today.

 

Despite the U.S. refusal to help, South Korea developed a 180 kilometer range ballistic missile (Hyunmoo 1) and a 300 kilometer one (Hyunmoo 2) in the 1980s. Both are about 13 meters (40 feet) long and weigh 4-5 tons. Both of these were based on the design of the U.S. Nike-Hercules anti-aircraft missile, which South Korea used for many years.  Cruise missiles are simpler technology, and apparently the Hyunmoo 3 is made entirely with South Korean developed components. Like the Tomahawk, Hyunmoo 3 appears to be about 6 meters (19 feet) long, weighs 1.5 tons, has a half ton warhead, and is launched from hidden (in the hills facing North Korea), and probably fortified, containers. North Korea has about 600 ballistic missiles aimed at South Korea.  The longer range of the Hyunmoo 3C enables it to hit any target in North Korea and is apparently intended to knock out transportation and supply targets deep inside North Korea. With a range of 1,500 kilometers the missile could also hit targets in China and Russia.

 

Two years ago South Korea moved some of its U.S. built ATACMS (Army Tactical Missile Systems) guided missiles close to the North Korean border. ATACMS is a 610mm rocket that fits in the same size container that normally holds six 227mm MLRS rockets. The ATACMS version in South Korean service has a range of 165 kilometers. That makes it capable of reaching many targets in North Korea but not the capital (Pyongyang, which is 220 kilometers north of the DMZ). There is a version of ATACMS with a range of 300 kilometers but South Korea does not have any. ATACMS is fired from the American MLRS rocket launcher. South Korea only has 220 ATACMS missiles. All of them have cluster bomb warheads. Half of them are unguided and have a range of 128 kilometers. The others have smaller warheads, GPS guidance, and a range of 165 kilometers. This is apparently the version moved close to the border, in order to make the North Koreans nervous. South Korea originally bought ATACMS in 1998, to have a weapon that could go after distant North Korean artillery and large concentrations of tanks.

 

North Korea desperately needs operational nuclear weapons because its conventional forces have been falling apart since 1991 when the Soviet Union collapsed and military and economic aid from Russia ceased. There was not enough money (even though over 30 percent of GDP goes for the military) to maintain and upgrade the million man armed forces. Over the last few years the troops have been getting less food, something unheard of in the past. There is much less fuel for training, which leaves pilots and ship crews inexperienced and much less effective than their South Korean counterparts. Equipment is largely Cold War era stuff, much of it 30-40 years old. Thus the conventional military threat to South Korea (which has greatly modernized its forces in the last two decades) is going, going and now gone. Nuclear weapons restore the North Korean threat to its neighbors. This enables North Korea to demand free food, fuel and other aid. This makes it possible for the North Korea leadership to survive, because at the moment the population is becoming more unruly and hostile to their rulers.

 

The third North Korean nuclear test was condemned by all (except the usual suspects, like Iran) and especially by China. While always opposed to North Korean nukes, China has never done anything about it. But this time the Chinese publically warned North Korea that if there was another test there would be serious consequences. Cutting off Chinese aid and trade would be catastrophic for the north because China is the major (and practically only) trading partner. North Korea’s illegal exports (weapons, drugs and so on) get out via China. Closing the door on North Korean aid and trade would doom the North Korean government and lead to chaos. The other option is to stage a coup and put pro-China and pro-economic reform people in charge. China has been recruiting a network of pro-China officials in North Korea for years. This is done in secret, and the North Korean leaders have been increasingly active in retiring, demoting or firing anyone who is suspected to be part of this group. Well, not anyone, as that would eliminate a third or more of the ruling class, including many people in the secret police and technical organizations with critical skills. China is expected to support new international sanctions against North Korea. In the past China has not enforced these sanctions. The new ones would be directed at more individual North Koreans, making the sanctions rather more personal.

 

In the north the big crackdown on illegal cell phone use near the Chinese border has failed. People found ways to defeat the imported cell phone signal detectors (by using an earpiece and walk around or cycle in a crowded areas). Those who are caught find the special secret police personnel brought in for this duty are willing to take a bribe most of the time. So information continues to get in from China and the world. News of Chinese threats over the nuclear tests are causing great unease in the north.

 

China sent some mobile radiation monitoring teams to the area near its North Korean border to check for any radiation from the recent North Korean underground nuclear test. China already has 25 permanent automated radiation monitoring stations along the border and they showed no increase in radiation.

 

February 12, 2013: North Korea, as expected, conducted its third nuclear weapons test. This one appears to be seven kilotons and a complete detonation. The last nuclear test was a five kiloton weapon in 2009 and the first one was three years before that. Western intelligence believed that the original North Korean nuclear weapon design was flawed, as the first test was only a fraction of what it should have been (less than a kiloton equivalent in high explosives), and is called in the trade, a "fizzle." The second test was a complete detonation and apparently a much modified version of the original design. Thus North Korea needed more tests to perfect their bomb design and is still years away from a useful nuclear weapon even though the second bomb appeared to be more effective. The third test was considered overdue and that may have been because more time was spent designing and building a smaller device that could fit into a missile warhead. U.S. intelligence agencies have collected air samples (as have most other neighboring countries) from the test which can tell much about the design of the bomb. Results of that analysis may take a week or more to appear.

 

February 7, 2013: A North Korean propaganda, showing the north using nuclear weapons against the United States, was removed from YouTube because of copyright infringement. The video shows the aftermath of a nuclear strike in what appeared to be an American city. This was a video clip taken from a recent computer game (Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3) and the publisher had the video removed for that violation.

 

January 31, 2013: Google announced more data for its recently announced map of North Korea for Google Maps. North Korea does not release maps, as they are considered military secrets. The Google Maps data was acquired using crowdsourcing and services like Google Earth that constantly produces vast quantities of new data. The new North Korean map shows locations of roads, prison camps and military bases that North Korea had long considered secret information (a common practice in communist dictatorships).

 

January 30, 2013: South Korea used a locally made rocket to launch its first satellite. In December North Korea launched a satellite, which has been silent since it went up. The South Korean satellite is working perfectly.

 

North Korea ordered an increased state of military readiness in response to the latest UN sanctions. Movement across the country has been restricted and reservists have been called up. All this is theater to distract people from the fact that they are hungry and there isn’t much heat or electricity. The movement restrictions make it more difficult to move food and fuel to areas where it is most needed.

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9 janvier 2013 3 09 /01 /janvier /2013 08:35

China Carrier (Liaoning)

 

January 8, 2013 china-defense-mashup.com

 

1. China’s first aircraft carrier, the “Liaoning” ship, was officially delivered to PLA Navy.

 

After the construction, test and trial navigation were completed as scheduled, China’s first aircraft carrier was formally delivered to the Navy of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) on September 25, 2012.

 

Approved by the Central Military Commission (CMC), it was named the “Liaoning” ship of the PLA Navy with a designated hull number of “16″. Related scientific experiments and military trainings continued following the official delivery and commissioning of the “Liaoning” ship.

 

On November 25, Chinese Navy’s first batch of carrier-borne aircraft pilots successfully flew the home-made J-15 fighters to accomplish the arrested deck landing and ski-jump takeoff on the “Liaoning” ship.

 

2. The U.S. announced new military strategy.

 

US President Barack Obama announced a new military strategy on January 5, 2012 to shift U.S. focus to the Asia-Pacific region. According to the strategy, the U.S. will slim down its army’s scale, reduce its military presence in Europe and strengthen its military presence to the Asia-Pacific region.

 

The US Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta expounded the “rebalance strategy in Asia-Pacific region” at the Shangri-La Dialogue on June 2, 2012 and stated that the U.S. would deploy 60% of its warships in the Pacific Ocean by 2020.

 

3. Russia’s first fifth-generation strategic missile corps established

 

The Russian Ministry of Defense announced the establishment of its first fully-equipped missile corps of the fifth-generation guided missiles, namely “Yars” and “Aspen-M”, on September 20 in the State of Ivanovo near Moscow. After the fifth-generation guided missile system is equipped, Russia further enhanced its capability to break through the anti-missile system.

 

Prior to that, the NATO announced the official launch of the European anti-missile system on May 20.

 

4. “RIMPAC 2012 exercise held

 

The world’s largest multi-national maritime military joint exercise, namely the “Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) 2012″ led by the U.S. was held in Hawaii and its surrounding waters on June 29 with the participation of 42 warships, 6 submarines, 200-plus aircraft and 25,000 soldiers from 22 countries. Russia and India participated in the exercise for the first time.

 

The contents of this exercise included the offense-defense combat of aircraft carriers, beach landing drills and others aiming to test the coordinated operation capability between the U.S. fleet and the allied fleets in the Asia-Pacific region.

 

5. Israel took “Defense Pillar” military action against Gaza.

 

The number of rockets fired into Israel by armed personnel of Palestinians saw sudden increase in Gaza Strip starting from November 10. Israel’s Defense Forces initiated a large-scale military operation, code-named “Defense Pillar”, against Gaza from November 14 to 21.

 

This action led to the death of 162 Palestinians, including Jabari, the No. 2 leader of the Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) and leader of the Qassam Brigade, together with the destruction of a great number of infrastructures in Gaza. This was the most intense fire exchange between Israel and Hamas in recent years.

 

6. Syrian civil war upgraded

 

The Syrian government forces and the main opposition armed forces successively expressed their willingness on October 25 to accept the proposal made by Brahimi, the special representative of the UN-Arab League’s envoy for the Syrian crisis, to cease fire during the Eid al-Adha period.

 

However, on the first day of the ceasefire, also the first day of Eid al-Adha festival, a car bomb exploded in the south of Damascus, capital of Syria, killing 5 and injuring 32, and nullified the agreement of the Eid al-Adha ceasefire. Under the support from exterior forces, the Syrian opposition armed forces gained rapid growth in their strength and more places kept falling into their control.

 

7. DPRK successfully launched “Light Star III” satellite.

 

The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) used the Galaxy III carrier rocket and successfully launched the second “Light Star” satellite into the pre-selected orbit on December 12.

 

The U.S. and its allies held that DPRK’s usage of the satellite launch to test its ballistic missile technology posed a threat against the peace and security in the region, and committed a provocative act to undermine the global non-proliferation system.

 

8. Indian test-fire of intermediate-range ballistic missile “Agni-5 successful

 

India successfully launched the “Agni-5″ intermediate-range ballistic missile on April 19 for the first time. With a range of 5,000-plus kilometers, the missile is capable of carrying multiple nuclear warheads. To date, it is India’s farthest-reaching missiles, covering the entire Asian continent, half of Europe and most of the Indian Ocean.

 

9. U.S. and its allies held “Schriever-2012 joint military exercise.

 

The U.S., the United Kingdom, Canada, Denmark, France, Australia and other countries held the “Schriever – 2012″ international military exercise from April 19 to 26 at the Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada. Through the use of network to simulate military operations in outer space, the operations of aerospace and cyberspace were closely integrated with the cooperation between the U.S. and its allies being greatly promoted in the fields of aerospace and cyberspace.

 

10. UN Security Council decided to deploy Africa-led Support Mission in Mali.

 

Both Mali of the West Africa and Somalia of the East Africa and their nearby areas have witnessed an aggravated threat of terrorism in 2012. The United Nations Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution on December 20 to deploy an African-led international support mission in Mali (African-led Support Mission).

 

In a statement made by the Economic Community of Western African States (ECOWAS) in Abuja on November 12, a total of 3,300 soldiers will be dispatched to Mali in order to help Mali fight against the armed organizations in the north.

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25 juin 2012 1 25 /06 /juin /2012 16:45
South Korean Air Force could delay F-X Fighter programme

 

25 June 2012 airforce-technology.com

 

The selection of winner in the Republic of Korea Air Force's (ROKAF) multi-billion dollar F-X Fighter programme could be postponed at any time if in the national interest, the country's arms procurement agency's head has revealed.

 

Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) commissioner, Noh Dae-Rae, said: ''Our plan to make a decision by the end of October is not a deadline, but a target."

 

DAPA has already received proposals from three aircraft manufacturers, which included US companies such as Boeing, Lockheed Martin and European EADS Consortium, for the KRW8 tn ($6.9bn) fighter jet contract on 18 June.

 

Boeing had proposed F-15 Silent Eagle, while Lockheed and Eurofighter offered F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) and the Typhoon, respectively, for the competition.

 

In accordance with the original plans, the test flights were scheduled for September, followed by announcement of the winner in October 2012; however, the bidding was cancelled by DAPA, citing errors in the relevant documents.

 

DAPA had set a new deadline of 5 July 2012 for the submission of bids.

 

The process ran into controversy after Lockheed refused real test flights by ROKAF's pilots, to assess the performance of aircraft and rather stressed for evaluation by using simulators, saying the fighter is still being developed.

 

The ROKAF is planning to acquire a total of 60 advanced fighter jets as part of the contract, with aim for deployment from 2016.

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15 mai 2012 2 15 /05 /mai /2012 18:22

asia-pacific source harvard.edu

 

15/05/2012 Par Juliette Morillot - Jeuneafrique.com

 

De l'Inde à la péninsule coréenne, tous les pays, ou presque, redoutent la montée en puissance militaire de la Chine. Du coup, ils accroissent fébrilement leurs arsenaux. Et comptent sur le soutien des États-Unis.

 

« Asia is getting hot », a estimé Hillary Clinton, la secrétaire d'État américaine, le 13 avril en marge du G8 des ministres des Affaires étrangères, à Washington. Une semaine plus tard, le 19 avril, comme pour illustrer la réalité de la course effrénée aux armements à laquelle se livrent les principaux pays de cette région du monde, l'Inde a annoncé le lancement de son premier missile à longue portée, l'Agni-V, capable d'atteindre des cibles distantes de 5 500 km - ce qui met l'ensemble du territoire chinois à portée de frappe nucléaire. Une avancée majeure pour la troisième puissance économique asiatique, qui fait ainsi son entrée dans le club très fermé des pays détenteurs de missiles balistiques à longue portée aux côtés de la Chine, de la Russie, de la France, des États-Unis, du Royaume-Uni et d'Israël.

 

Le 25 avril, le Pakistan a procédé à son tour au lancement d'un missile balistique de moyenne portée, le Shaheen-1A, capable de frapper, comme d'ailleurs le reste de l'arsenal pakistanais, les grandes villes indiennes. Ce test réussi a été pris comme un avertissement par New Delhi, qui, en dépit des récentes tentatives de rapprochement économique, entretient des rapports tendus avec Islamabad (trois guerres ont opposé les deux pays depuis 1947). Côté indien, si les premiers missiles Agni visaient le Pakistan, le surnom des dernières séries IV et V, China Killers, ne laisse aucun doute sur leur objectif. L'Inde en effet n'a pas l'intention de se laisser dépasser par la Chine, dont la puissance militaire et économique inquiète plus que jamais toute la zone Asie-Pacifique.

 

La République populaire affirme régulièrement la nature strictement « pacifique » de sa montée en puissance militaire et soutient que la modernisation de son armée n'est destinée qu'à « défendre » le pays. Il n'empêche : l'augmentation de ses capacités de frappe et la modernisation de son appareil militaire (missiles DF-21D terre-mer anti-porte-avions guidés par satellite, porte-avions, avions furtifs J-20) font trembler les états-majors asiatiques. Tandis que les États-Unis et les puissances européennes désarment depuis des années, le budget chinois de la défense augmente depuis deux décennies au rythme de plus de 10 % par an. Il devrait même doubler d'ici à trois ans. En 2011, la Chine a dépensé 143 milliards de dollars* (108 milliards d'euros) pour sa défense, soit 100 milliards de plus que son rival indien.

 

Bras de fer militaire

 

Parallèlement, un bras de fer militaire plus conventionnel se joue en mer de Chine, où Pékin revendique un grand nombre d'archipels et d'îlots que convoitent également huit pays riverains : Taiwan, les Philippines, la Malaisie, Brunei, l'Indonésie, la Thaïlande, le Cambodge et le Vietnam. Cette zone située entre l'extrémité de la péninsule malaise et le détroit de Taiwan constitue une artère vitale pour le commerce international et l'approvisionnement en pétrole entre l'Asie orientale, le Moyen-Orient et l'Europe. Traversée annuellement par plus de 50 000 navires, soit le triple du trafic du canal de Panamá et le double de celui du canal de Suez, elle recèle en outre d'abondantes richesses offshore - halieutiques, métallurgiques, mais surtout gazières et pétrolières - que la Chine considère comme sa chasse gardée.

 

En 2009, cette dernière avait déjà réussi à dissuader la filiale anglaise de BP de s'installer au Vietnam. Aujourd'hui, elle juge « illégale » la signature, le 5 mars, d'un contrat entre le géant russe Gazprom et la compagnie d'État PetroVietnam en vue de l'exploitation des réserves d'hydrocarbures offshore du bassin de Nam Con Son.

 

 

La mer de Chine devient donc une véritable poudrière que certains spécialistes n'hésitent pas à comparer aux Balkans avant le déclenchement de la Première Guerre mondiale. Le Pentagone lui-même, qui a dévoilé au mois de janvier sa nouvelle stratégie, semble avoir pris conscience, après dix années d'errements en Irak et en Afghanistan, de l'importance cruciale de la région Asie-Pacifique pour la paix et la sécurité. D'où l'urgence d'y accroître la présence militaire américaine afin de lutter contre la prolifération nucléaire (notamment en Corée du Nord) et de garantir la « libre circulation sur les voies de navigation et de commerce ». Et ce par trois moyens principaux : le renforcement de l'armement, le redéploiement des troupes et la multiplication des exercices militaires conjoints avec des pays comme les Philippines, la Corée du Sud ou l'Australie.

 

Les manoeuvres américano-philippines du mois dernier en mer de Chine témoignent de cette nouvelle stratégie. Elles ont eu lieu au lendemain d'un incident naval entre navires philippins et chinois au large du banc de Scarborough, zone maritime que se disputent les deux pays. Ce n'est certes pas le premier incident de ce type - beaucoup d'autres ont eu lieu au large des Philippines, mais aussi du Vietnam et de Taiwan -, mais, en raison de sa durée (plus de trois semaines au moment où ces lignes sont écrites), il prend valeur de test. Les autres nations d'Asie du Sud-Est observent avec attention la capacité des Philippines, seules ou avec l'aide des États-Unis, à tenir tête à Pékin.

 

Si une guerre venait à éclater, les Philippines ne pourraient en effet opposer aux forces navales chinoises qu'une bien maigre flotte : un ancien vaisseau de guerre américain datant de la guerre du Vietnam, quelques patrouilleurs achetés au Royaume-Uni et à la Corée du Sud, une dizaine de navires rescapés de la Seconde Guerre mondiale... C'est bien peu.

 

Même chose dans les airs. Dépourvue d'avions modernes capables de rivaliser avec les appareils chinois basés sur l'île de Hainan, la Navy Air Force philippine cherche à se doter de nouveaux trainer jets sud-coréens. Mais ce qui fait le plus cruellement défaut aux Philippins, ce sont des sous-marins. Car depuis 2005 la Chine s'est dotée de submersibles diesels électriques ultraperfectionnés. Et particulièrement silencieux.

 

"L'enjeu majeur des soixante prochaines années"

 

Même basiques, les sous-marins demeurent en effet difficiles à détecter et à détruire. En 2010, les submersibles nord-coréens avaient démontré leur capacité de nuisance en coulant la corvette sud-coréenne Cheonan (46 victimes). Tous les pays asiatiques ont compris la nécessité d'en acquérir. D'ici à 2015, le Vietnam va acheter quatre submersibles russes ; la Malaisie, deux Scorpène français ; et Singapour, deux Archer et quatre Challenger de la marine suédoise. La Thaïlande négocierait pour sa part avec l'Allemagne l'acquisition d'au moins deux sous-marins. Et l'Indonésie vient de recevoir le premier des quatre qu'elle a commandés à la Corée du Sud.

 

Enfin, devenue le pivot du redéploiement stratégique américain, notamment parce que son éloignement géographique constitue un avantage face aux missiles chinois, l'Australie a resserré ses liens avec les États-Unis. Elle a notamment accepté l'installation sur son territoire de 2 500 marines qui prendront prochainement leurs quartiers à Darwin, dans le nord du pays. À Brisbane, plus au sud, une nouvelle base accueillera navires de guerre et sous-marins de l'US Navy. Quant à la base navale HMAS Stirling, à Perth, dans l'Ouest, qui accueille déjà les six sous-marins Collins australiens, elle sera mise à disposition de la marine et de l'aviation américaines. Enfin, l'archipel des Cocos (ex-îles Keeling), à près de 3 000 km de Perth et 800 km de l'île indonésienne de Java, devrait accueillir prochainement une base aérienne pour les avions de surveillance américains P-8 et les drones Global Hawk.

 

Face à ce réarmement général, les avertissements de Hillary Clinton apparaissent donc plus que fondés. Oui, la zone Asie-Pacifique sera « l'enjeu majeur des soixante prochaines années ». Mais pour les États-Unis, le défi est double. Il leur faut faire preuve de fermeté sur le plan militaire, tout en veillant à ménager les sensibilités. Car la présence de leurs troupes n'est en effet pas toujours vue d'un très bon oeil par les Asiatiques... 

* Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (Sipri).

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9 mars 2012 5 09 /03 /mars /2012 13:15
South Korea to Begin Spike-NLOS Acquisition

Spike missile launch (Photo Rafael)

 

7/3/2012 Arie Egozi - israeldefense.com

 

Future SPIKE missiles will be offered with a laser-homing head

 

Despite Seoul’s anger over Israel’s preference for an Italian training aircraft over a South Korean one, South Korea’s military will soon receive the Rafael-produced Spike-NLOS missiles.

 

South Korea sought to gain portable capability for launching long-ranged missiles, and therefore, chose to install missile launchers on Ford 550 vehicles, which carry protective solutions against small arms and shrapnel designed by Plasan. The Spike-NLOS is the long-range missile of Rafael’s SPIKE missile family. It has a range of 25 km, is extremely precise, and can be equipped with several types of warheads.

 

Rafael is anticipating additional deals for the export of Spike missiles. A demonstration of the Spike-ER missile was recently held in Israel when it was installed onboard an IAF Cobra helicopter. Representatives of foreign corps attended the demonstration of the missile, which has a range of 8 km. The advanced missile is marketed around the world as a more efficient substitute to the aging Hellfire missile, and it seems that several militaries will replace the US missile with the one produced by Rafael. Thus far, the missile has been installed on Spain’s Tiger helicopters, Italy’s I-129 helicopters, and Romania’s Puma helicopters.

 

The long-ranged missile can also be installed on helicopters, enabling a launch towards a ground target from a great distance that could be difficult to hit using ground fire.

 

Rafael’s Spike missiles are presently equipped with day and night homing heads. According to a source in Rafael, the missile will also be offered in the future with a laser homing head that will enable the missile to home in on a laser spot created by a laser marker positioned on the ground or operated from the air.

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16 janvier 2012 1 16 /01 /janvier /2012 13:30
South Korea Creates A Jet Fighter

photo KAI

January 16, 2012: STRATEGY PAGE

South Korea has ordered twenty locally made FA-50 fighter-bombers, for $30 million each. The aircraft will be equipped with South Korean, American and Israeli electronics. The single engine, single seat aircraft is intended to eventually replace South Korea's aging fleet of 150 F-5 fighters. But first, the initial twenty FA-50s will have to show what they can do in active service. The first FA-50 will be delivered next year, and the last of them the year after that.

The FA-50 is the combat version of the South Korean designed and manufactured T-50 jet trainer. This aircraft was developed over the last decade, at a cost of over two billion dollars. The first test flight of the T-50 took place in 2002. The 13 ton aircraft is actually a light fighter, and can fly at supersonic speeds. With some added equipment (radars and fire control), the T-50 becomes the FA-50, a combat aircraft. This version carries a 20mm auto-cannon and up to 4.5 tons of smart bombs and missiles. The T-50 can stay in the air about four hours per sortie and has a service life of 8,000 hours in the air. At $20 million each, the T-50 is one of the more competitive jet trainers on the market. About 100-150 of these aircraft are bought each year by the world's air forces. But it is a tough market, and so far the only export customer for the T-50 has been 16 sold to Indonesia.

Nearly a hundred T-50 type aircraft have been produced or are on order. In addition to the FA-50 variant, there is a light bomber variant (the TA-50) that costd $25 million each.

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7 janvier 2012 6 07 /01 /janvier /2012 08:10
Seoul Orders 20 FA-50 Attack Aircraft In a $600 Million Deal

TA-50 breaking formation. Photo: KAI

 

January 6, 2012 Richard_Dudley – DEFENSE UPDATE

 

With the New Year barely underway, South Korea is once again demonstrating a determination to build a formidable military force capable of dealing with potential enemies. The government has signed a $600 million deal with Korea Aerospace Industries (KIA) for 20 FA-50 fighter/attack aircraft based on the highly regarded T-50 advanced jet trainer.

 

KAI is reporting that the aircraft will be delivered between 2013 and 2014. The FA-50 is a lightweight fighter/attack aircraft incorporating the most advanced technology available in the T-50 Golden Eagle family of aircraft.

 

KAI also believes that South Korea may increase the order to as many as 60 aircraft for use as replacements for the aging 150 Northrop F-5 aircraft currently being operated.

 

The FA-50 aircraft ordered are expected to be equipped with the Link 16 tactical link, Elta Systems EL/M-2032 pulse Doppler radar, radar warning systems and a night vision imagery system. Northrop Grumman and Raytheon previously selected the FA-50 as a prime candidate for being outfitted with the same version of active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar slated for use in a United States Air Force F-16 upgrade.

 

The FA-50 is built to carry a weapon’s payload of 9,920 pounds that includes Boeing’s Joint Direct Attack Munitions and Textron’s CBU-97 Sensor Fused Weapon. In addition, the FA-50 is also fitted with a 20mm cannon and is configured to carry air-to-air missiles.

 

KAI has also included in the Golden Eagle family, along with the T-50 and the FA-50, a T-50B aerobatic aircraft and an armed TA-50. All versions of the Golden Eagle family feature a single General Electric F404 engine.

 

South Korea is expected to issue a call for bids for its F-X III project in February to select a replacement for its F-4 Phantom jets. The candidates competing for this lucrative contract include the Boeing F-15 Silent Eagle, Lockheed Martin F-35, Sukhoi PAK FA, and the Eurofighter Typhoon.

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4 janvier 2012 3 04 /01 /janvier /2012 13:40

http://www.flightglobal.com/assets/getasset.aspx?itemid=43688

photo Korea Aerospace Industries

 

January 4, 2012 By Greg Waldron – Flight Global

 

Singapore - South Korea has placed a $600 million order with Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) for 20 examples of the FA-50 attack variant of the T-50 advanced jet trainer.

 

KAI said that under the deal it will deliver the aircraft from 2013 to 2014. Seoul could acquire a total of 60 to 150 FA-50s to replace its fleet of more than 150 Northrop F-5s.

 

The FA-50 is the most advanced variant of the T-50. It will have the Link 16 tactical data link, as well as an Elta Systems EL/M-2032 pulse doppler radar.

 

Northrop Grumman and Raytheon have said the FA-50 is a candidate for their respective active electronically scanned array (AESA) radars developed for the Lockheed Martin F-16. If the FA-50 does get an AESA radar, it is likely to be the same one chosen for the eventual F-16 radar upgrade for the US Air Force and Republic of Korea Air Force.

 

The FA-50 is the most advanced variant of KAI's T-50 Golden Eagle

 

The FA-50 also has a radar warning recover and a night vision imaging system. It is capable of carrying 4,500kg (9,920lb) of weapons, including the Boeing Joint Direct Attack Munition and Textron CBU-97 Sensor Fused Weapon. Like the TA-50, it also has a 20mm cannon and can carry air-to-air missiles.

 

Aside from the original T-50 and FA-50, KAI has also produced the T-50B enhanced manoeuvrability aerobatic variant and armed TA-50. All of these are powered by a single General Electric F404 engine.

 

Separately, Seoul is expected to issue a request for proposals in February for its F-X III competition to replace 60 McDonnell Douglas F-4 Phantoms. The contenders are the Boeing F-15 Silent Eagle, Eurofighter Typhoon, Lockheed Martin F-35 and Sukhoi PAK FA.

 

Industry observers have said Japan's recent selection of the F-35 for its 42 aircraft F-X fighter requirement will enhance the type's chances in South Korea as well.

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29 septembre 2011 4 29 /09 /septembre /2011 05:20

http://www.fas.org/irp/program/collect/aoa.jpg

 

September 27, 2011: STRATEGY PAGE

 

South Korean officials are alarmed after discovering that the navy has only been able to detect 30 percent of the North Korean subs they come across. Moreover, North Korea is using its submarines more frequently in training (for sneaking people into South Korea) exercises. North Korea has a fleet of over 80 mini-subs, plus about 24 older Russian type conventional boats (based on late-World War II German designs, as adapted for Russian service as the Whiskey and Romeo class). China helped North Korea set up its own submarine building operation, which included building some of the large Romeo class subs. North Korea got the idea for minisubs from Russia, which has had them for decades. North Korea has developed several mini-sub designs, most of them available to anyone with the cash to pay. The North Korean minisubs range in size from 76 to 300 tons displacement. Over a dozen of these small subs are equipped to fire torpedoes.

 

The use of a North Korea midget sub to sink a South Korean corvette in March, 2010, forced the United States, and South Korea, to seriously confront the problems involved in finding these small subs in coastal waters. This was a difficult task, because the target is small, silent (moving using battery power) and in a complex underwater landscape, that makes sonar less effective.

 

There are some potential solutions. After the Cold War ended in 1991, the U.S. recognized that these coastal operations would become more common. So, in the 1990s, the U.S. developed the Advanced Deployable System (ADS) for detecting non-nuclear submarines in coastal waters. The ADS is portable, and can quickly be flown to where it is needed. ADS is believed to be in South Korea. ADS basically adapts the popular Cold War SOSUS system (many powerful listening devices surrounding the major oceans, and analyzing the noises to locate submarines) developed by the United States.

 

ADS consists of battery powered passive (they just listen) sensors that are deployed by ship along the sea bottom in coastal waters. A fiber optic cable goes from the sensors (which look like a thick cable) back to shore, where a trailer containing computers and other electronics, and the ADS operators, runs the system. ADS has done well in tests, but it has only recently faced the North Korean mini-subs. There, it was discovered how little capability South Korea warships had to detect the North Korean submarines. Moreover, there is not enough ADS gear to cover all the coastal areas where North Korean subs operate. South Korea is hustling to improve its anti-submarine capabilities. But decades of neglect will take years to recover from.

 

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16 septembre 2011 5 16 /09 /septembre /2011 06:30
South Korea To Issue AH-X RFP In January

 

Sep 15, 2011 By Bradley Perrett - aviation week and space technology

 

Sacheon, South Korea - Forget death and taxes. Probably the surest thing in aerospace these days is that South Korea will want serious technology transfer in any major military equipment order.

 

The country’s manufacturers are increasingly confident in their ability to win manufacturing contracts without the compulsion of offsets. More and more, they and the government want the know-how behind the systems that the country buys, with the aim of making the next generation themselves.

 

In an classic example of that process, the planned Korea Attack Helicopter (KAH) might end up as an amalgam of European, South Korean and U.S. technology if Boeing, as looks likely, wins Seoul’s separate AH-X rotorcraft for 36 heavy attack rotorcraft.

 

With a request for proposals likely within months, the other competitors for the AH-X competition are expected to be Eurocopter, offering the Tiger; Bell with the AH-1Z Viper; and Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) and AgustaWestland with the T-129, a derivative of the A129 Mangusta.

 

The South Korean army wants the Apache, say local and U.S. officials in government and industry. It has been trying to buy the aircraft for more than a decade, and its keenness has only risen with the transfer of U.S. Army Apaches ­(AH-64) from the peninsula to Iraq two years ago. While the preference of the South Korean forces is not always decisive in a country that often puts industrial development first, two factors are reinforcing Boeing’s already high chances.

 

One of those is the transfer of Apache airframe manufacturing to Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI), which is shaping up as the national helicopter champion. KAI will build airframes for U.S. Army Apaches whether the country buys the aircraft or not, but South Korean orders will add to the orderbook.

 

A second factor is the definition of the indigenous Korean Attack Helicopter as an aircraft of about 5 metric ton—uncomfortably close to the gross weight of all of the AH-X competitors except for the 8-ton Apache.

 

Boeing’s approach to the offset requirement is to suggest the integration of Apache avionics on the KAH. As the U.S. government urges South Korea to put priority on interoperability with U.S. forces on the peninsula—and therefore choose the Apache—Boeing is stressing the value of the KAH being able to operate with its helicopter. Integration of U.S. weapons, such as the Lockheed Martin AGM-114 Hellfire air-to-surface missile, would also be simplified by moving systems from the Apache to the KAH.

 

Each of the other likely bidders brings important advantages. South Korea and Turkey have a developing military-industrial relationship that would be further promoted by the choice of TAI and AgustaWestland. The army already operates earlier versions of the AH-1, so that type should offer attractively low costs at entry into service. And Eurocopter, already a partner with KAI in developing the Surion transport under the Korean Utility Helicopter (KUH) program, is well positioned to link its AH-X offer to codevelopment of the KAH. Moreover, all of those manufacturers can offer aircraft designed for NATO standards, somewhat diminishing Boeing’s claimed advantage in high levels of interoperability.

 

The Defense Acquisition Program Agency is expected to issue a request for proposals in January 2012, with responses due by April, selection in July and a contract in October.

 

A key part of the mission is the destruction of North Korean special forces attempting to infiltrate coastal or land borders, says an industry executive. The KAH, replacing OH-6s and AH-1s, will perform a broader close support and reconnaissance role. Under the influence of the industry ministry, called the Ministry of Knowledge Economy, it will be designed with a cabin of up to eight seats so it can be easily transformed into a civil transport. Marketed internationally with the Surion, it would help establish a South Korean helicopter export industry.

 

A Boeing executive says the company is not interested in taking a risk-sharing role on the KAH. So even if the company wins AH-X, KAI, the selected South Korean manufacturer, will have to work with another partner, such as Eurocopter, for the airframe and dynamics of KAH.

 

The transfer of Apache structural work to KAI’s plant here is emblematic of the country’s mastery of manufacturing and helps explain its determination to move on to developing aircraft. A Boeing official says the Korean company hit quality targets almost from the beginning of its Apache program. Judged against such metrics as tolerances, finish and precision of fasteners, the helicopter bodies were delivered to an unusually high standard, he says.

 

Airframe production is due to rise to five from three a month as the remanufacturing of U.S. Army Apaches ramps up. A KAI official says the company has the workers and space for the expansion but will need new tools. It plans to design some that it expects will cut production costs.

 

So far in the program it has introduced tools for making subassemblies that are positioned vertically instead of horizontally, as before. They are easier to work with and save space, says a KAI production engineer.

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27 avril 2011 3 27 /04 /avril /2011 18:30
S Korean firm offers anti-aircraft missile to India: report

The Shingung is a man-portable surface-to-air missile.

 

Apr 27, 2011 Brahmand.com

 

SEOUL (BNS): A South Korean defence company has put forward a proposal to sell its portable anti-aircraft missile system to India, according to a news report. The LIG Nex1 Co. has offered its Shingung portable missiles to India, a defence official said. “LIG Nex1 submitted a request for a proposal early this year to the Indian government to export the Shingung portable missiles,” the unnmaned official was quoted as saying by the Yonhap news agency recently. The Shingung, meaning "new bow and arrow" in Korean, is being used by the South Korean Army since 2005. The shoulder-mounted weapon is capable of hitting targets as high as 3.5 kilometers with a speed of Mach 2.0 and a distance range of 7 km, according to the report. The surface-to-air missile is marketed internationally under the name Chiron.

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