North Korea Puts Army Into "Combat Mode"

It's been at least 24 hours since any further sabers were rattled between China, US, South Korea, and North Korea (oh and Japan), but it according to DailyNK.com, Kim Jong Un has ordered the entire North Korean army into "combat mode" to tighten security and consolidate sentiment in response to military drills conducted by South Korea and the US, which began in early March.

A source in South Pyongan Province told Daily NK that following the order from Kim Jong Un, every last soldier-- even if away on business, on leave, off-base for training, or even those with a recent death in the family--were ordered back to their units. The authorities have ordered the military police in each region to summon all soldiers back to their bases.

"The 1st Corps was ordered to fully prepare for combat. In particular, they were instructed to move mechanized combat equipment to strategic areas, including artillery pieces and tanks that were housed underground,” he said.

 

"The Civilian Affairs Administrative Police Unit comprises soldiers located in the Panmunjom area and along the border with South Korea. With the new orders, they must stay in battle uniform at all times, and all cadres below the rank of the commander are prohibited from commuting from their homes. The atmosphere is very tense as the soldiers on watch-keeping duty are replaced by officers of higher ranks," a source in North Pyongan Province said.

 

"The authorities have told the troops to be ‘impervious to enemy provocation’ and the forward units are currently under a system of monitoring that requires immediate reporting. The Local Reserve Forces and the Worker-Peasant Red Guard (the largest civil defense force in North Korea) have been ordered to create fake base camps and cannons and deploy them in order to confuse satellite surveillance and complicate air strikes.

For now, it seems North Korea, the chaotic South Korea, and Washington are unwilling to follow China's advice to ratchet down the rhetoric.

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