As missiles and insults fly between Washington and Pyongyang, the world seems to be teetering dangerously close to resumption of the Korean War (which, technically, never ended). There has been a lot of analysis about what that war would look like from nuclear detonations to EMPs (electromagnetic pulses) to over 8,000 artillery pieces that target over 25 million residents in Seoul (which is over half the entire country’s population).

While we need to understand the expensive, bloody cost of another Korean War, we also need to understand the equally expensive: the staggering cost of victory.

Let’s say we win, which most experts agree would happen. Let’s say the combined U.S.-South Korean forces ultimately smash the DPRK’s antiquated war machine. Let’s say one of the North’s casualties is Kim Jong Un, either killed in combat or in a post-war, Nuremberg-style tribunal. Mission accomplished. Unfurl the banners. Then what?

Read the full piece at The Hill.


Max Brooks is an author, public speaker, MWI non-resident fellow, and senior resident fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Art of Future Warfare project. He is the author of World War Z and The Harlem Hellfighters.

The views expressed are those of the author and not necessarily those of West Point, the Department of the Army, the Department of Defense, or any agency of the US government.


Image credit: Uri Tours