U.S.-South Korea Joint Military Exercises

August 19, 2003

The following article is reprinted from the Korean Central News Agency, August 7, 2003.

A spokesman for the DPRK Foreign Ministry today issued a statement on the joint military exercises "Ulji Focus Lens" scheduled to be staged by the U.S. imperialists with the south Korean bellicose forces from August 18 to 29.

The spokesman says: With regard to the exercises, the U.S. is trying to cover up their provocative nature, claiming that "all the exercises will be held through a computer simulation without troop deployment."

The exercises staged by the U.S. every year in south Korea, however, are entirely targeted against the DPRK as is the case with other military rehearsals. It is well known a fact to the world that the U.S. forces deployed in and around south Korea are largely escalating their threatening military actions according to the "operation plan 5030" directed against the DPRK.

The scheduled joint military exercises are war rehearsals to "totally examine" the U.S. preparations of a war against the DPRK and nothing can conceal their aggressive nature. The adventurous war game is aimed at steadily intensifying tensions on the Korean peninsula and, eventually, making a preemptive attack on the DPRK and attaining sinister strategic goal of the U.S. in Northeast Asia.

The U.S., remaining as it was, is going to stage such a war drill when the six-party talks for settling the nuclear issue on the Korean peninsula is on the order of the day thanks to the DPRK's active efforts and bold initiative.

This leaves us skeptical about the U.S. willingness to discard its hostile policy toward the DPRK and make a policy switchover. The United States should behave itself with discretion, pondering over the consequences of its reckless moves getting on the nerves of its dialogue counterpart.