With war on the Korean peninsula growing ever nearer, with South Korea and the USA preparing to defend themselves and with a vast array of weapons at their disposal, Vidello Productions is taking an extensive look at 25 Ways North Korea Could Wipe Out South Korea with their claimed “sea of fire”
25 – Korean People’s Navy
Established on June 5, 1946, the Korean People’s Navy is divided into the East Sea with 10 squadrons, and the West Sea fleets with 6 squadrons that combine total manpower of 148,000 personnel.
North Korea’s fleet consists of approximately 630 combat vessels including Patrol craft, guided missile boats, torpedo boats, fire support craft, destroyers, frigates, corvettes, and three cruisers.
Its thought that 340 support craft can back these ships up, however small patrol-size craft are unable to operate over 50 nautical miles from the coast.
The NKN’s most capable weapons systems are their approximately 43 guided-missile patrol boats equipped with anti-ship missiles that carry radar or infrared homing seekers.
The Korean Peoples Navy has access to a large selection of Submarines but stays tuned for more info on those later.
24 – People’s Air Force
Thought to contain an estimated 110,000 people, this is the second largest branch of the Korean People’s Army.
It possesses 940 aircraft of different types; mostly of old Soviet and Chinese origin and these include 40 Mig 29’s, 18 Su-7 fighter bombers and even an Antonov An-24 cargo plane.
They are thought to have around 80 Ilyushin Il-28 bombers, 106 Shenyang F-5 fighter jets, and 35 Su-25 Russian built attack jets.
The People’s Air Force also has access to some helicopters, however, keep watching as we delve deeper into those later in our list.
23 – Border Artillery
Something that has been a worry to South Korea of late, the North’s strategically placed Mobile Artillery is a force to be reckoned with.
Many of these armored units are dug in along the Demilitarized Zone and are well hidden from the air.
North Korea built up its Artillery Divisions during the cold war and many of the older guns are soviet bought.
Its thought that the country itself has 12,000 pieces of tube artillery and 2,300 pieces of multiple launch rocket artillery.
The whole artillery operation comes under the Artillery Comand, which is tied to the Fourth Department of the General Staff’s Department’s Operations Bureau.
Its thought the North has key plans to use the artillery as part of an invasion on the south including hitting the capital Seoul from the Border.
In 2010 the world witnessed the full force of the North’s Artillery when they attacked several South Korean Islands near the border, killing 2 civilians and 2 ROK marines.
22 – The Young Red Guards
Currently the largest civil defense force in the country, The Young Red Guards is a paramilitary organization that was established on January 14, 1959, by Kim Il-sung.
The militia is organized on a provincial/town/city/ village level, and structured on a brigade, battalion, company, and platoon basis.
The militia maintains infantry small arms, with some mortars, field guns, and anti-aircraft guns and even modernized older equipment such as multiple rocket launchers like the BM-13.
The estimated numbers in this force are said to be anywhere up to 5 million people.
21 – People’s Ground Force
The Korean People’s Army Ground Force is the main branch of the Korean People’s Army responsible for land-based military operations.
This part of the military arm features what has been described as the 1 million man army, that is made up of conscripts that are forced to join the military at an early age.
The forces are also made up of 4,200 tanks, 2,200 armored vehicles, 8,600 artillery guns, and over 4,800 multiple rocket launchers.
The Ground Forces have a mix of domestic and imported equipment in their inventory and most of these are from the former soviet union.
20 – People’s Strategic Rocket Forces
Also known as the Missile Guidance Bureau, this is one major arm that South Korea would be worried about should war ever break out.
The PSRF is a major division of the Korean People’s Army that controls North Korea’s nuclear and conventional strategic missiles.
The main missile made up of surface-to-surface missiles of Soviet and Chinese design, as well as locally developed long-range missiles.
The decision is thought to hold around 1000 in their arsenal and we take a look at some of the more dangerous missiles later in the list.
19 – Ministry of State Security
Another brutal arm of the law in North Korea, it’s the thought that a small force from this division will be key to keeping order during an invasion on the South.
Acting as a sort of FSB or KGB, it is reputed to be one of the most brutal police forces in the world and has been involved in numerous human rights abuses.
It is one of two agencies that provides security and protection to North Korean officials alongside the Supreme Guard Command.
During an invasion, it will be this force that is responsible for the welfare of prisoners of war and any Prisons that are captured or set-up.
18 – Secret Tunnels
While many of the secret tunnels in the DMZ have been discovered, for everyone that is its thought there are 3 still undiscovered.
The tunnels were dug some time ago, possibly during the rule of Kim Jong-il and were designed to let DPRK ground forces slip under the DMZ un-noticed.
One such discovery was nicknamed the Third Tunnel of Aggression and was discovered only 44 km from the Southern Capital Seoul.
According to visitor information in the tunnel, accommodate 30,000 men per hour along with light weaponry and was one of 4 tunnels discovered along the border.
A large tourist site was later set up on one of the larger tunnels and people can visit the site either by catching a train down to the tunnel or walking down a long passage.
17 – Chemical Weapons
North Korea is thought to have stockpiled a significant amount of chemical or biological weapons.
The identified stockpile is between 2,500 and 5,000 metric tons and has been revealed to be one of the worlds largest.
It’s been revealed that North Korean forces are prepared to operate in a contaminated environment and they train regularly in chemical defense operations.
Its thought that old pesticide factories are used to cover up the production of the weapons which have also been used on the countries own citizens.
16 – Assault Rifles
The main type of Assault rifle currently in use by the army of the DPRK is a revised version of the AK-47.
The country also has access to many other types of handheld guns including shotguns, submachine guns, and sniper rifles.
Some special forces have access to only the best weaponry including the Sterling submachine gun of British design and the United States built M16A1.
Many of North Korean small arms are showcased in many war museums throughout South Korea and any invading army would effectively be loaded to the teeth.
15 – Nuclear Warheads
Quite possibly one of the Major factors concerning the current crisis, it now believed that North Korea has the ability to miniaturize Nuclear weapons and place them on top of missiles.
Once complete this type of Nuke makes the country an official designated nuclear weapon state however they are not expected to re-join the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty which they left in 2003 due to their hatred of the USA.
The North has conducted several Nuclear tests since beginning its Nuclear program and these took place in 2006, 2009 and 2013.
Its currently thought that North Korea may Possess up to 60 Miniaturized Nuclear warheads.
14 – Sarin Nerve gas
Sarin Nerve Agent is a colorless, odorless liquid that is highly toxic even in smaller doses and death can occur within one to ten minutes after direct inhalation of a lethal dose, due to suffocation from lung muscle paralysis.
People who absorb a non-lethal dose, but do not receive immediate medical treatment, may suffer permanent neurological damage and this is why Sarin is considered a weapon of mass destruction.
Sarin in its purest form is estimated to be 26 times more deadly than cyanide and its thought that the North Korean’s may hold up to 5000 barrels of the agent.
13 – Submarines
The DPRK’s attack submarine inventory is estimated to include 4 former Soviet Whiskey-class submarine, 22 Chinese ROMEO Class submarines, and DPRK-built ROMEO Class submarines.
The WHISKEY class subs we’re acquired in the 1960s and can carry 12 torpedoes or 24 mines while the ROMEOs are well equipped, have improved sonar and can carry 14 torpedoes or 28 mines.
It’s now believed that the North is not far away from being able to launch a Nuclear ICBM from is submarines and they have already proven that they can launch missiles from beneath the water.
The DPRK is also thought to have access to 70 midget submarines including the Yono-class submarines and Sang-O-class submarines.
12 – Jet Aircraft
Another worry for South Korea would be the extremely old but also extremely close Soviet aircraft that the North Koreans possess.
North Korea operates the basic variant of the Mig17-F, armed with 1 x 37 mm cannon and 2 x 23 mm cannons, with a total round supply of 200 rounds.
The Shenyang F-6B is a Chinese clear-weather, day fighter version of the Soviet MiG-19 that has a supersonic capability, and is armed with two AA-2 Atoll missiles as well as three 30 mm automatic cannons.
North Korea also operates a large number of MiG-21PFMs, which are the country’s most numerous fighter that is armed with a GSh-23 cannon with 200 rounds, two AA-2 Atoll missiles, and has a provision for a Kh-66 missile.
Overall most of the North Korean Airforce is severely out-dated, however, this does not mean that they could not cause severe devastation on short notice in the south.
11 – Helicopters
North Korea has over 4 different types of helicopters, ranging from civilian transport to several attack types.
Some of the helicopters include Mi-2 which is a Light transport and light combat helicopter armed with 7 mm rocket pods and is able to provide close air support.
Another Helicopter in the Arsenal is the Mi-14 which is thought to have advanced anti-submarine technology and the Mi-24 Hind which is a very feasible gunship with troop-transport capabilities.
Much of how many helicopters the DPRK currently possesses is unknown due to them curbing sanctions preventing them from acquiring the technology, however, if war broke out they would be instrumental in any invasion.
10 – VX Nerve Gas
Possibly one of the most deadly weapons in the arsenal of North Korea, short of their Nuclear weapons capabilities, VX Nerve gas was recently used in the assassination of the Half-Brother of Kim Jong-un, Kim Jong Nam.
Considered a weapon of mass destruction, it is banned under the 1993 chemical weapons convention.
It was first developed in the UK in the 1950s as a chemical warfare agent and is an oily liquid, amber in color, odorless and tasteless.
Like all nerve agents, VX stops a vital enzyme from working which eventually leads to the body tiring and no longer being able to breathe
Large doses can cause convulsions, loss of consciousness, paralysis, and death, because of respiratory failure.
There are antidotes for VX exposure available and they are most effective when administered immediately.
9 – Mustard Gas
North Korea also has mustard gas, a blister agent, which irritates skin and mucus-production areas, such as the eyes and nose.
Mustard gas, also known as Sulfur mustard, is a very powerful form of chemical weapon used to bring down large numbers of enemy troops.
It has extremely powerful effects on its victims and In addition, it is strongly mutagenic and carcinogenic.
Mustard agent vapor easily penetrates clothing fabrics such as wool or cotton, so it is not only the exposed skin of victims that get burned.
If the victim’s eyes were exposed then they become sore, starting with conjunctivitis after which the eyelids swell, resulting in temporary blindness.
Depending on the level of contamination, mustard agent burns can vary between first and second-degree burns, though they can also be every bit as severe, disfiguring and dangerous as third-degree burns.
8 – Anthrax
North Korea is thought to have one of the worlds largest supplies of Anthrax with stocks of the banned substance being produced in secret pesticide factories.
Symptoms for those who come into physical contact with anthrax through the skin usually start within seven days and can include itchy sores that form blisters and swelling with 20 percent of those who touch anthrax succumbing to the effects if it spreads to their blood.
When inhaled, the victim can suffer a range of mild effects, to begin with and these include fever, headache, cough, shortness of breath and chest pain with over 90% of inhalation cases becoming fatal.
It thought Anthrax could be one of the main chemical weapons used in any invasion attempt on the south.
7 – Allies
During a time of conflict, its thought North Korea may call on some of its allies for help in defeating its enemies.
The North’s main friend is considered to be China, however, its thought that if the war was to break out, several other states may support them during the conflict.
Iran is a staunch enemy of the US and could help the North by supplying it with weapons and missiles during the conflict.
North Korea shares a narrow north-eastern border with Russia, and the two nations have been close allies since the Cold War, while Vladamir Putin does not exactly like the US.
North Korea made an alliance with Bulgaria when it was under communist rule in 1948, a signed a bilateral cooperation agreement in 1970 and Bulgaria is now Kim’s only ally in Europe, although they are fast splitting ties with the Kim Regime.
6 – Hydrogen Bomb
Another fail-safe for the North is there much talked about the ability to deliver a Hydrogen Bomb on the back of a missile.
It was originally thought that the regime did not have access to this type of weapon before 2016, however, an apparent test of a makeshift device proved the world wrong.
It’s currently not clear if the North has managed to miniaturize a Hydrogen Bomb as they have with some of their Nuclear Warheads, however, even the potential of owning one of these devices makes for serious concern.
On the 30 October, 1961 The Russian Federation detonated the largest ever Hydrogen Bomb nicknamed the Tzar Bomba, a 220 megaton device, it holds the record as the largest man-made explosion ever.
5 – Spies
North Korean spies are thought to be present across many countries throughout the world including the United States, South Korea, and the United Kingdom.
The spies act mainly by funneling information back to the Kim Jong Un regime however they are occasionally called upon to carry out acts of espionage or sabotage.
They are also occasionally used to capture defectors and people required by the Kim Regime to carry out work in the country, usually by force.
Many kidnappings have been recorded including one where a husband and wife were taken to North Korea to work for Kim Jong-il on several film sets.
They later escaped and told their harrowing story to the world.
4 – Guerrilla Warfare
One of the more dangerous tactics that have been drilled into the Korean people’s army is the ability to fight a ground war using Guerilla tactics.
One example of this style of fighting was during the Vietnam War when the Vietcong used the same style of fighting on the US ground forces in various battles.
Not only did the US lose the war against the Vietnam forces, but the guerrilla tactics also went on to be one of the main reasons why the US suffered so many casualties.
Guerilla warfare usually involves a small group of combatants, such as paramilitary personnel, armed civilians, or irregulars, using military tactics that include ambushes, sabotage, raids, petty warfare, hit-and-run tactics.
3 – Scud Missiles
North Korea is thought to possess more Scud missiles than many countries on the planet and many of these weapons are located very close to the DMZ.
One such scud missile was launched from the east of the country on the 29th May 2017 and is thought to have landed in the Sea of Japan with the US and South Korean response to hold war games and initiate bomber flights.
The longer ranged scud missiles are capable of flying 4500 kilometers and could allow North Korea to conduct precise attacks against military targets on both sea and land.
It’s now thought that the North also has access to advanced missile technology that would allow their scud missiles to breach the earth’s atmosphere and survive a successful re-entry.
2 – Medium Range Missiles
The North Koreans have a series of medium-range missiles, all of which work pretty well and have been tested on many occasions throughout the last decade.
The medium-range missiles include the Hawsong 5 with a range of 1000km, The Pukgukson with a range of 1000km, The Nodong Missile with a range of 1300km and the Musudan with a range of 3500km.
Many of these missiles are based in the North of the country close to the border with China.
Another development came in August 2016 when North Korea announced it had tested a submarine-based surface-to-surface, medium-to-long-range ballistic missile.
1 – ICBM’s
Considered to be the final stop when it comes to the power-play of war, holding the keys to these types of weapons gives the country a great or equal advantage over their enemy, depending on who they are fighting.
ICBM’s or Inter-Continental Ballistic Missiles have the ability to deliver chemical, Biological or Nuclear weapons over great distances and are considered the be all or end all of modern warfare.
All ICBMs are designed along similar lines with multi-stage rockets powered by solid or liquid fuel, that carry their weapon or payload out of the atmosphere into space.
They then re-enter the atmosphere and strike either a single or multiple targets with decoys designed to confuse missile defense systems.