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Post Would a Naval Blockade of N Korea be Possible?
Created by John Eipper on 09/09/17 7:32 AM

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Would a Naval Blockade of N Korea be Possible? (Timothy Brown, USA, 09/09/17 7:32 am)

In response to David Fleischer (8 September), naval blockades only work where ships can sail. North Korea has about 880 miles of land border with China on the Yalu River and a short land border with Russia.

Cuba worked: Korea might not. During the Korean War, MacArthur was under orders not to approach the China-North Korea Yalu River border, apparently because China had told us it would react if we did. When he violated that order, two things happened:  China invaded Korea, greatly prolonging the war, and Truman fired MacArthur.

Blockading North Korea's two coastlines might cut off its ocean accesses. But it wouldn't cut it off from China or Russia.  Moreover, a naval blockade that reached right up to its borders with China and Russia would both risk confrontations with those countries and greatly strengthen Korea's dependencies on China. It seems to me that we would not know in advance whether China would use its augmented influence to rein in North Korea or to push us back.

JE comments:  Isn't North Korea already dependent on China, more or less totally?  And what can Tim Brown or anyone else tell us about the NK-Russian border?  It's only 11 miles (17 KM) long.  Is it completely fortified?  Somewhat open?  Is there any meaningful commerce or travel between the two nations?

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