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U.S.’ B-52 bombers are deployed near Korean Peninsula

Posted June. 24, 2020 07:40,   

Updated June. 24, 2020 07:40


It was confirmed on Tuesday that the U.S. Air Force’s B-52 bombers flew over the Japanese Islands, which is close to the Korean Peninsula, on Monday when North Korea installed loudspeakers facing South Korea.

The latest deployment of the U.S.’ representative strategic assets near the Korean Peninsula came in after their deployment on last Wednesday and Friday – right after North Korea exploded the inter-Korean joint liaison office in Kaesong on June 16. It seems to be a warning message against North Korea, which has been raising the level of its provocations against South Korea and the U.S.

According to military aircraft tracking website Aircraft Spots, two B-52 bombers flew over the Pacific Ocean near the Japanese Islands to the Philippine Sea after departing from the Eielson Air Force Base in Alaska on Monday. During the flight, the B-52 bombers got as close as an one-hour fly distance from the Korean Peninsula.

It has been known that the B-52 bombers will return to Alaska following the same path after completing an operational mission with a U.S. carrier strike group in the Philippine Sea. Currently, the carrier strike group, including USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN-71) and USS Nimitz (CVN-68), is conducting sea surveillance, long-range attacks, and maneuvers in the region. Once USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76) also joins, there would be three aircraft carriers active in the U.S. Seventh Fleet’s operating area.

The forward deployment of two aircraft carriers in the Seventh Fleet’s operating area, which includes the Korean Peninsula, seems to be a measure to keep China in check and address North Korea’s recent military actions against the South. In November 2017 when the crisis on the Korean Peninsula was near a boiling point, three carriers – CVN-76, CVN-71, and CVN-68 – were deployed to the Korea Theater of Operations (KOT) in the East Sea and conducted combined training exercises with the Republic of Korea Navy.

Sang-Ho Yun ysh1005@donga.com