The joint exercise Freedom Shield among Kim Jong-un's missiles

(To Antonino Lombardi)

South Korean and US militaries are carrying out one of the largest joint exercises in years as Kim Jong-un fires missiles again, this time in protest at exercises he sees as a test of invasion.

La “Freedom Shield” it is underway in a training area close to the demilitarized zone on the border between the two Koreas. The exercise aims to ensure the joint crisis management capabilities of the two countries to deter war and defuse any security threats by applying realistic scenarios reflecting threats from North Korea and to test the efficiency of the reserve forces on the basis of lessons learned from the ongoing war in Ukraine.

The exercise lasted 11 consecutive days, from 13 to 23 March, precisely to reflect the continuity of a real combat situation.
The main forces in the field are made up of the III Marine Expeditionary Forces (MEF) of Okinawa and the The MEFs of Camp Pendleton, Calif. American aircraft are also employed cross branch including AH-64 attack helicopters Apache and F-35B. The exercise saw the participation of strategic bombers B-1B US, stealth fighters F-35A of the South Korean Air Force and fighters F-16 of U.S. Air Force.

The US has established a Combined Marine Component Command (CMCC) with the South Korean (ROK) Marines in order to enhance joint readiness and allow for proper integration of forces by allowing quick and decisive action to be taken at a moment's notice. of crisis.

The exercise includes training for amphibious landings, live fire exercises, and the important integration of US and South Korean forces.

In addition to “Freedom Shield”, the allies will carry out several combined field exercises called collectively “Warrior Shield FTX”. The III MEF described them as follows: “The purpose of Warrior Shield FTX training is to further enhance cooperation between the ROK and the US military across air, land, sea, space, cyber and special operations operations and improve tactics, techniques and procedures. The ROK-US alliance remains to a high level of readiness and continues to maintain a solid combined defense posture. Freedom Shield 23 is the latest example of training and uncompromising commitment to upholding and defending the sovereignty of the Republic of Korea against any threat or adversary."1.

Meanwhile, North Korea announces that 1.400.000 citizens would volunteer to join or enlist in the nation's army to fight against the United States. "The growing enthusiasm of young people to join the army is a demonstration of the unshakable will of the younger generation to ruthlessly wipe out the war maniacs who are making last-ditch efforts to eliminate our precious socialist country and achieve the great cause of national reunification without fail and a clear manifestation of their ardent patriotism", reports the newspaper Rodong Sinmun (official journal of the central committee of the Workers' Party of Korea, editor's note).

At the "Freedom Shield”, which the North Korean leader says is increasing tensions, also participate in the field i Royal Marines British and, as observers, soldiers from France, Australia and the Philippines.


Photo: South Korean Army