What A War With North Korea Would Probably Look Like

Tyler Durden's picture

Authored by Brandon Smith via Alt-Market.com,

Back in 2013 during the last major flare up between the U.S. and North Korea I wrote an extensive analysis on the North Korean wild card and how it could be used by globalists as a catalyst for international economic instability titled 'Will Globalists Use North Korea To Trigger Catastrophe?' As I have warned consistently over the years, like Syria, North Korea is a longstanding chaos box; a big red button that the elites can press any time they wish to instigate a chain of greater geopolitical tensions. The question has always been, will they actually use it?

Well, it appears that under the Trump administration the establishment might go for broke. I have not seen U.S. war rhetoric so intense since the second invasion of Iraq, and all over missile tests which have been standard fare for North Korea for many years. With whispers by Trump aides of a possible 50,000 boots on the ground in Syria, and open discussion of preemptive strikes in North Korea, this time kinetic conflict is highly likely.

Yes, we have seen such military pressures before, but this time feels different. Why is an aimless quagmire war with massive potential global financial repercussions more likely under Trump? Because Trump ran under a nationalist conservative banner, and he will forever be labeled a nationalist conservative even if his behavior appears to be more globalist in nature. Rhetoric is often more psychologically powerful in the minds of the masses than action. Therefore, EVERYTHING Trump does from now on will also be labeled a product of the “nationalist conservative” ideology; including all of his screw-ups. And, with Trump in office the establishment is perfectly happy to pursue actions once considered taboo, because demonizing conservatives and liberty proponents is one of their primary objectives.

When the real insanity starts, liberty movement activists will gnash their teeth and scream at the top of their lungs that Trump is “not acting like a conservative,” so how can conservative thinking be blamed by extension? But these people just don’t grasp the thought processes of the human mind. No matter how much we try to separate ourselves from the Trump-train if (or when) he goes full-bore globalist, our efforts will be futile. The mainstream media has spent considerable time and effort making sure that all of us are lumped in with the so-called “alt-right.”  Remember, I tried to warn the movement about this long before Trump won the election.

Currently, there are questions as to whether or not a naval task force is en route to North Korea.  I would not trust the latest reports that all units are headed to Australia when Vice President Mike Pence is in Japan yesterday saying "the sword stands ready".  Could this be more posturing or a precursor to a strike scenario? I am reminded of the U.S.S. Maddox which was sent to patrol the waters off of Vietnam, the same destroyer that reported an attack by North Vietnamese torpedo boats which was used as justification for the initiation of the Vietnam War. As it turned out, no such attack actually occurred.

The presence of a U.S. fleet off North Korea could only be intended to instigate further aggression, not defuse the situation.

So, if war with North Korea is inevitable given the circumstances, what would such a war look like? Here are some elements I think are most important; elements that make the war almost unwinnable, if winning is even the purpose

North Korean Air Defense

The North Koreans spent the better part of the last war with the U.S. being heavily battered by air bombardments. They have had plenty of time since then to consider this problem and prepare. Even the most gung-ho American military minds are forced to admit that using only air based attacks in North Korea is not practical. And where we have been spoiled by steady video streams of laser guided hell dropped on Iraqi and Afghani targets in the past, don’t expect things to go so easily in North Korea.

While North Korea is still rife with economic problems (like every other communist and socialist nation), they still have an industrial base and produce many of their own arms. This includes and extensive missile net backed by a maze of radar systems. Their air force is by all accounts obsolete, but as I have mentioned in the past, advanced missile defense is the wave of the future. It’s cheaper and can render expensive enemy air force and naval units impotent.

North Korea uses an indigenous built surface-to-air missile (SAM) system called the KN-06 which is as capable as some Russian SAM systems. They also field huge numbers of MANPAD (man-portable air defense) units against planes and helicopters attempting to dodge radar defenses at low altitudes. This is layered on top of a vast array of anti-aircraft artillery. And, most of this anti-air apparatus is either mobile or based underground.

What this means is, a ground invasion is the ONLY way to attack North Korea effectively and make room for air units to strike interior targets.

Underground Facilities

The Pentagon estimates at least 6,000 to 8,000 underground military facilities in North Korea. New bases are being discovered all the time.  While “bunker buster” bombs can possibly damage these facilities, it is unlikely that they would be completely destroyed or rendered ineffective. There is also an estimated 84 large tunnels through mountains on the southern border which would allow an immediate invasion by North Korean ground forces into South Korea. Only four of these tunnels exits have been found and blocked by South Korea.

It is important to remember that underground infrastructure has always been the bane of the modern western military. These facilities will not be taken by air. They will have to be taken the hard way — with ground troops.

North Korean Infantry

In 2013 the Department of Defense reported North Korean ground forces at around 950,000. This, of course, does not count their nearly 8 million infantry reserves. They also boast over 200,000 highly trained paramilitary soldiers. North Korea has no means whatsoever to project these forces overseas against the U.S. or anyone else other than South Korea. The only way they can do damage to U.S. forces is if we show up on their doorstep.

Since a ground invasion is the only way to proceed with what will obviously be “regime change” in North Korea, U.S. forces will be facing an endless mire of mountain warfare worse than Afghanistan with limited air support options. If it comes down to a war of attrition rather than superior technology, victory will be impossible in North Korea.

The Nuclear Option

The consensus view among military analysts is that North Korea will never attempt to use nukes offensively because the resulting retaliation by the U.S. would be devastating.  But you often do not hear much discussion about NK using nukes defensively, and what that would mean for an invading army.

I agree that though the mainstream media is bombarding us constantly with images of a psychotic dictatorship, North Korea is not insane enough to use nukes against the U.S. or its allies outright. If such an event did occur, I would immediately suspect the possibility of a false flag because there would be zero gain for North Korea. That said, in the event of a ground invasion into North Korea, the use of nuclear weapons becomes highly advantageous for Pyongyang.

Consider this, with vast numbers of U.S. ground forces operating in the region, nuclear retaliation by the U.S. is simply not going to happen.  A pullout of most troops would have to take place. North Korea needs only one nuke strike to destroy a U.S. fleet or hit a large civilian target in South Korea killing potential millions or hit a U.S. troop base in South Korea killing tens of thousands of American soldiers.

Once we commit ground troops into the region, we make a nuclear attack USEFUL to North Korea, when it never would have been useful before. This is why the preemptive strike rhetoric based on a rational of stopping a “more nuclear capable” North Korea is either pure stupidity or an engineered crisis in the making.

The Chinese Question

Is China’s strange shift in support of tougher actions against North Korea legitimate? Well, if it is, then I think this would support my longtime assertion that China is NOT anti-globalist at all, but just another branch of the globalist cabal. Perhaps Trump’s refusal to label them currency manipulators is also evidence of this. That is a discussion for another time, though.

China’s sudden softening of stance against U.S. pressures on North Korea seems to me to be the most blatant signal that an actual war is coming. If China refuses to present military or economic repercussions to act as a deterrent to invasion, then an invasion is likely to happen.  This does not mean, though, that a future crisis between the U.S. and China is not scheduled.

In fact, an invasion by America into North Korea opens numerous doors to all kinds of crisis events the establishment can exploit. For example, how many people are naive enough to expect that U.S. air maneuvers will respect Chinese air space restrictions? I hope not many.  Having American military units in a war stance so close to the Chinese border is a recipe for disaster, and I am not necessarily referring to military disaster.

War, contrary to popular belief, is not good for the economy. In fact, war is the perfect poison for economic trade and production. The U.S. in particular is utterly dependent on the international use of the dollar as the world reserve currency. Without this status, the American economy is dead in the water. China is a central pillar in global trade and could, with the help of a few other nations, kill the dollar's reserve status very quickly.

If you are curious as to why international financiers would be interested in undermining the U.S. economy in such a way, I suggest you read my article The Economic End Game Explained. The greater point is this — a war with North Korea would have nothing to do with North Korea. It would only be a means to a greater end. There are those people out there who claim to be "conservative" that always weasel out of the woodwork in times like these to pound the war fever drum.  But if you think that forced regime change overseas is America's job or duty you are not a conservative, you are a statist.

I also cringe at the crowd of dupes that constantly bubbles to the surface claiming this time around, the invasion will be "easy", parroting the party line.  "Done in two months!", they say.  The delusion inherent in this thinking is astounding, and comes from the old-guard Republican/Neo-Con ideology.  Remember how quick and cheap they said Iraq and Afghanistan would be?  At bottom, there is little or nothing to be gained by Americans in this kind of conflagration.  So we should be asking ourselves, who actually would gain from it?

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Raffie's picture

I'm sure a movie of this would be amusing.

Art Van Delay's picture


One can't make this shit up !


Xatos's picture

This war would be over in a matter of 2-3 days. People always live in the past when it comes to war. This isn't Vietnam, and Obama/Bush aren't the President. Couple of those MOAB's dropped in unison on day 1 will pretty much squelch them at once. A nice tactical EMP would render any response as not fucking happening. A nice NATO coalition of 2,000 troops to clean up the trash.


It's over. 

Dyler_Turden's picture

So let me get this straight

There wasn't any nuke testing, so the rumor that we somehow managed to hack the N Koreans and stop them testing was just that.. rumor.

Damn, by the end of these 4 years Trump WILL definitely look like a clown. 


TheLastTrump's picture

So let me get this straight




You're fucking dyslexic.


I knew it.


Dyler_Turden's picture

Keep it up boi, you just got in the waiting line for a ban.

TheLastTrump's picture

Oooohhhh what a threat you stupid miserable FUCK.


I've been in the waiting line for a ban since I got here.


Tell me somethjing ELSE I don't know you common trash.


AVmaster's picture

There's more to it than what this article states:

North Koreas army is also it's food generator. The soldiers pull double duty as both soldier and farmer. This essentially means that if war was to start, the entire population would starve within a month as north korea neither has the capacity nor the reserve for food generating in a time of war.

Or, if war does start, they would only throw a limited amount of troops to fight, keeping the rest in the farming/reserve role.


The Air defense situation is laughable. manpads are only good for low level altitudes, which means helicopters would have an issue. However, apaches can handle it, as seen during gulf war 1. High altitude defense is handled by what appears to be a S-300 clone...

However, as was also shown during the gulf war 1, the soviet style equipment isn't the problem... It's the soviet style command and control that causes air defenses to break like glass... As was shown during gulf war 1.


NK nukes are a flip of the coin... They have shown that they don't have it down pat yet, and deploying a nuke under combat conditions has a high chance of failure due to their bombs being unreliable at best...

NK doesn't have any gas. They could probably do a week with tanks/troop carriers/etc until that shit will grind to a halt... Air force is the same, but worse. Their pilots are not trained at all...

OverTheHedge's picture

Phew! It will all be over by Christmas?



Korean War (remember that one? Have a look here:https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Korean_War, and this one rather proves my point:https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Home-by-Christmas_Offensive)


Afghanistan (any time, with any belligerent you like)

Iraq (The first one was over in a week, true, but then.....)

I'm bored now, but I hope you get the point. All of the above were going to be over quickly - in 1914 it was actually  propaganda theme, possibly on both sides. Mike Tyson has a theory about what went wrong, and I think it might apply to your comment, too. Have a look at the appalling actions of the west in the first Korean War and understand that people can survive a lot longer, on a lot less, than you believe with your comfy western lifestyle.


runningman18's picture

You're not thinking this through.  Even if what you say is true, which it's not, food "generation" (lol, a word used by someone who has never farmed), takes time, but not constant tending by an entire military.  Maybe planting and harvesting takes that many people, but that is done in a few days time no matter the scale.  The North Korean military is not tied up with farming, trust me.  

I've read many military papers on the North's air defense and all of them say it is no cakewalk.  You should try reading those papers too, from people who know what they are talking about.  

Also, there's no evidence that their nukes are unreliable, only that certain delivery systems are unreliable.  But a nuke can be delivered in a suitcase, soooo.....

Plus, from National Interest, 2015 - Could North Korea Be The Next Energy Superpower?  


They have large petroleum and gas reserves.  The oil industry has been whispering about it for a long time.  LOL!  You were wrong on all counts.   

losses mount's picture

I don't understand why nobody seems to think that a genuinely mad leader couldn't order a biological attack on an enemy. The technology is available to weaponize a host of diseases with close to one hundred percent kill rates.

Think twelve monkeys where everyone's a loser.

In my opinion, the human race is in fact mad, and is hell bent on it's own destruction.

EddieLomax's picture

Yep, the key is the high altitude SAM cover, once that is gone then everything else on the battlefield just get blown up at US leisure.

Is their radar sophisticated enough to resist modern jammers?  Are there enough radar seeking missiles in the US armoury to defeat all the radars out there.  To me the North Korean defence mentioned above has one big huge flaw, its all a defense, there is no capability (beyond devestating Seoul) for th North Koreans to take the initiative, effectively they're plan is Maginot line v2, their economy is so weakened by socialism that they lack the ability to generate the logistical support to move their armed forces around far enough.

I'd be shocked if China allowed it, but if they did then the US and allies could roll the North Koreans over, unlike Saddam Hussein the NK's are more WW2 than 1970's soviet, once the front line forces are defeated I reckon their armed forces would peel apart due to lack of support and lack of motivation to fight to the death for a fat man.  The soviet citizens were the same, now we know that after the iron curtain came down the majority of the population there were extremely skeptical of their leaders and knew exactly how badly they were being screwed over, I guess the NK civilians know the same.

China is the key, and I think they would only step aside if NK deployed a nuke, can't think of another scenario that makes sense. 

Lower Tones's picture

To me the North Korean defence mentioned above has one big huge flaw, its all a defense...

Which begs the question, why don't we just leave them alone? No threat to anyone, "...beyond devestating (sic) Seoul...", a poor weak economy due to socialism (?), so why spill our son's blood for a farthing?

Secret Weapon's picture

Same analysis as on Juse 24,1950.  Of course, no mention of China in your equation.

leavelawbehind's picture

How about preemptive nuclear strike? The article did not discuss this possibility

TheLastTrump's picture

I fucking LIKE the way you think dude.

Snípéir_Ag_Obair's picture

You are absolutely adorable.

Tell us how 20 Marines could free Crimea from Russian Literal Hitler's clutches over a weekend using nothing but their haircuts and Forest Gump-like approach to flanking maneuvers in hilly terrain.


Helix6's picture

Really?  Remind me again: how'd things work out the last time we tangled with those fuckers?

caconhma's picture

Xatos, you are an idiot.

During Korea's war 1, over million Chinese "volunteers" crossed to Korea fighting America. Don't be crazy assuming that China will not join N. Korea during 2nd Korea war.

For stupid idiots, I will repeat one time more:

  • Remember  the Cuban missile crisis? The USA had ~3,000 nukes and Soviets had just ~300
  • JFK has backed down by removing US missiles from Italy and Turkey and pledged never invade Cuba and Soviet removed their nukes from Cuba
  • N. Korean dictator has nothing to lose (Saddam and Qaddafi are good examples)
  • Dropping just one "dirty" (a nuclear device inside a cobalt container) highly radioactive nuke on California will kill most of it population and will make it Chernobyl-Like for the nest 200-300 years. The devise can be delivered by a sub or by any commercial barge/ship, etc.,
  • The Korean fat boy does not need accuracy for his nukes. Hitting LA, San Francisco, and LA will be "just fine". Do you think American oligarchy can accept and/or survive such catastrophe?
  • Finally, during the last week Trump has bluffed and lost. His zionist masters will not take that much risk. Remember semitic state Carthage and its history?



not dead yet's picture

After the USSR removed the missiles from Cuba the US went back on it's word and put missiles back in Turkey. Clinton did a food for nukes with NK and help with their electric nuke program and the US reniged on the deal. NK went back to their war nukes. The US gave Iraq safe passage from Kuwait and the US went back on it's word and Iraq got the "Highway of Death". Everyone on the planet wants nukes because the US cannot be trusted. Qaddafi who was a great partner with the US in the war on terror and with Europe by keeping a lid on the boat people found out the hard way. Everytime NK and SK get friendly the US throws a wrench in the works. Huge anti American sentiment in SK.

The Norks cannot win a war with the US but they can cause huge damage. With their tunnels into the south they could have nukes prepositioned under the south. Or those tunnels filled with soldiers breaking out into the south under an all out artillery barrage that would turn Seoul into a heap of wreakage like the US did to most of the NK cities. You can bet the South is on the hotline to the US screaming bloody murder for Trump to mind his own business as the US can walk away with the loss of troops and material while SK is turned into smoking rubble with millions dead.

NK is not the wide open deserts of the ME. Lots of mountains and vegetation. Perfect for hiding troops and war material and their movements. A cakewalk it won't be. NK does not have the missiles to reach the US but they could have sub just off the US coast with a nuke on board and a crew willing to die for their country. As the US has screwed over NK over the years and many of their families killed by US bombs and bullets volunteers would be easy to find.

risk.averse's picture

Remember semitic state Carthage and its history?

wow...going all the way back to the Carthaginians. Kudos! Don't understand why you made this reference. Is it because the Carthaginians were semitic?

Carthage was threatened by rising Roman expansionism so Hannibal was sent to take the war right up to the doors of Rome. Almost worked. At Cannae, the Roman slaughter was massive and not equaled in Europe until WW1, more than 2,000 years later. Hannibal decided to rest his troops instead of pressing home the advantage. Many scholars believe Rome would have ceased to exist -- in 2nd century BC -- then and there if Hannibal had marched on Rome that day. He didn't and Rome regrouped and reinforced.


Zorba's idea's picture

Ahhh hell Bobby Jo, all us Rebs will be home by Christmas...so says massah Trump

Zero Point's picture

EMP? On a country that shows up as a massive black spot from space at night? What a fucking retard.

HoserF16's picture

XATOS: You watch too many movies. Stalone and Norris are way too old to conquer NK.

Ace Ventura's picture

ROTFLMAO. Spoken like a true REMF who probably only knows combat from what he's read in coffee-table books, or experienced in video games.

Here's just one small tater-tot-sized nugget for you to try and chew on:

What are you going to do when the Norks open up with the 9-10 thousand long-distance artillery pieces they have aimed at South Korea the second this recreational war goes hot?

TheLastTrump's picture






philipat's picture

He somehow overlooked mentioning that Seoul, about 35 miles south of the DMZ, would cease to exist as a City and the South Korean economy which ranks 11 in the world in nominal GDP terms. This would, of course, have Global repercussioins for the Global financial system, which again seems to have been overlooked.


runningman18's picture

I think that is covered by the "nuclear option" section of the article...no need for him to go into every single scenario of suckage...

jeff montanye's picture

actually much of seoul is within conventional artillery range of north korea.  how much damage that would entail seems to depend on how much you would like a war: popular mechanics not that big a deal, l a times, a trainwreck.

SixIsNinE's picture

i knew the norks were under dictatorship - but i didn't realize how weird it is, and likely a construct by the combined ruling elites of China/USA/Vatican :




and for some levity, the US/Russian bonds of friendship in Outer Space!   

our asstronots actually claim to drink Russian piss, after their urine recycling machine does its magic : https://youtu.be/f9BkEnBj7ww


maybe the fakestream wouldn't be so hard on the Russkies if they had the opportunity to imbibe the Russian Piss also ?


blast from the past !  Nork Military March Mashup from 7 years ago : 


tmosley's picture


Actually, you can.

TheLastTrump's picture


Stuck on Zero's picture

The Author of this piece understands that war is stupid but he doesns't understand modern warfare.  Basically within 20 minutes not a single military installation in NK would be functioning. Drones, B2s, Harpoons, and HARMs would take out all the power, RADARs, airfields, command and control structures, anti-aircraft facilities, and roads. Next would come the JDAMs launched from 100s of kms away to take away every last trace of infrastructure.  Next would come psyops and the people would rebel against their leadership.  Someone would soon rise to power and capitulate to the West.  Finally, the U.S. would then spend trillions to fix up the mess, get their industries modernized, and then lose big-time on trade.

TheLastTrump's picture



This guy is fucking KRYPTONITE to you paid leftist shill motherfuckers.

Snípéir_Ag_Obair's picture

You fool - Mattis would be dropped into Pyonyang and conpletely decimate the NK military in its entirety using MOABs, EMPs, and quotes from Clint Eastwood movies.

NK barely has a military - barely has any means of retaliation, and China would bring Mattis tea and handjobs.

over in ten minutes.

We should put McCain in charge of a carrier.

He is both beautiful and brave.

Joyo Bliss's picture

... and quotes from Clint Eastwood movies. Great line.

Zorba's idea's picture

Ms Lady Lyndsey must be creaming her panties by now. 

Ace Ventura's picture

-Do you feel lucky? Well...do ya, punk?!

-Get off my lawn!

-Well, he should have armed himself.

-Do right by him....or I'll come back and kill aaall you sonsabitches!

or one of my personal favorites:

-Dyin' ain't much of a livin'....

Mtnoise255's picture

All those air defenses the author went on about. The MANPAD's and flak cannons, etc. If you stay above 15,000 feet you can just ignore them and focus your attention on taking out the heavy SAM's.

OverTheHedge's picture

I understand that the US has complete air superiority in Afghanistan. The country is completely subdued, the war is over, and the troops are coming home. Am I right?

not dead yet's picture

Supposedly the Norks have 20 nukes. They also have extensive underground facilities. The country is very montainous with those mountains covered in vegetation. With all the firepower you mentioned coming their way there is no way to knock out all their capabilities as they have plenty hidden. The fear is what they can do the south before they are subdued which is plenty. That's the wild card for the North, destroy the south when attacked by the US. Do we really know where their nukes are? Is there one in a container in Long Beach just waiting for the call? Or one underneath Seoul? How's that cakewalk in Afghanistan going against goat herders with crap weapons. The mess that would be created by a destroyed SK would put the world economy in a depression. Except for China as just like Iraq the US destroyed it and the Chinese got the contracts. Same to rebuild SK as they will hate the US forever for starting a war that ended up destroying the the south.

Snípéir_Ag_Obair's picture


google Israel and North Korea. Marvel at how the Israelis are involved in this as well.

>> that's why the Kushner Whitehouse has their panties in a bunch over this complete non threat to the US.

China can and should deal with Kim, and ffs - the US has nowhere near the troops to invade North Korea. the idea is Full Metal Retard.

A surgical strike on Kim might work with Chinese help.

Kim rules through fear, not love.

As such, he is someone you try to bribe, failing that, someone you blow up while meeting with top generals.

Then, let the Colonels take over for a while, wine, dine and bribe them.

But where's D-Rod these days anyway? Send him over with a case of Hennessy.

Menoetius's picture

Trump would be foolish to enter into a "general" war. Fu-getta-bout-it. While we can conduct narrowly-focused regional operations, a "general" war is out of the question? Why? The US military is in such a state of deterioration from neglect over the past 8 years, that material and human resources would be depleted in two weeks time. The US military is in a state of disrepair that it cannot conduct a lengthy war. Sixty-two percent of the Navy's F/A-18s are unfit for combat. About six of the Navy's 37 attack squadrons have insufficient aircraft ready for combat. On April 2, the Air Force Times reported that about 30 percent of the Air Force's aircraft are unready for combat. According to that report, the Air Force has only about 5,430 aircraft, which means more than 1,600 are not combat-ready. Read it and weep:




quartshort's picture

Sounds like we need spend half a trillion! Ohhh Yellen....

not dead yet's picture

So five thousand aircraft are not enough. Who knew. The military has been whining for years to get more money as they waste their cash on ships that totally break down or that F 35 fiasco. Over a trillion dollars a year spent on the military, when spending from other departments on behalf of the military are considered, and they are in a state of deterioration. Bullshit. Maybe they should quit building potential artificial reefs, I mean carriers, and get more useful stuff. Get rid of those excessive ranks of generals and admirals with their extensive perks. If the military really is in dire straits it's not due to a lack of money other than they want enough cash to fight, in their own words, 2 to 3 MAJOR wars at once. So much for world peace. A lot of those guys who fought in Iraq and Afghanistan were poorly trained and equipped National Guard. You know the guys who are supposed to guard the US while the military fought the wars. Even the military didn't want to send their best stuff to war.

Now we have troops in Somalia, Iraq, Syria, Libya, and over a hundred more places to "protect American interests and keep us safe." Places we tossed over and have to go back in to try and clean up the mess we created. Cut the military and bring the troops home. Enough of this bombing and sanctioning to get countries to bow down to US hegomony. If there is any weeping to be done it is for the victims of US aggression and the American men and women who will die in the process.

83_vf_1100_c's picture

Epic suck are your spams. Go fucking die.

TheLastTrump's picture

I'm sure a reality tv view of your life would be amusing.

thunderchief's picture

There are two things North of the 38th parallel.  Millions of expendable people the Kim regime would care less if they died, less mouths to feed, and artillery emplacements. 

Talk about pounding North Korean sand while they wipe out one of Asia's economic powerhouses,  South Korea.