U.S. Trumpets Stealth Bomber Training Run Over Korean Peninsula | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

NPR : News

Filed Under:

U.S. Trumpets Stealth Bomber Training Run Over Korean Peninsula

The U.S. military is making no secret about a training flight by a pair of nuclear-capable B-2 stealth bombers from a base in the American Midwest to the Korean Peninsula — what's being described as an "extended deterrence mission."

The flight of the two radar-evading bombers "demonstrates the United States' ability to conduct long range, precision strikes quickly and at will," the United States Forces Korea said in a press release Thursday.

The strategic bombers belonging to the 509th Bomb Wing took off Thursday from a base at Whiteman Air Force Base in Missouri and flew "more than 6,500 miles to the Korean Peninsula, dropping inert munitions on the Jik Do Range [in South Korea], and returning to the continental U.S. in a single, continuous mission," USFK said.

It said the United States is "steadfast in its alliance commitment that the defense of the Republic of Korea, to deterring aggression, and to ensuring peace and stability in the region."

The B-2 bomber is a vital element in that deterrence, according to the USFK release.

The Associated Press says it's "unclear whether America's stealth bombers were used in past annual drills with South Korea, but this is the first time the military has announced their use."

Drawing attention to the stealthy (and normally quiet) training mission is clearly meant as a signal to North Korea. It comes amid ongoing joint exercises between the U.S. and ally South Korea, and as Pyongyang has stepped up rhetoric — warning of a "simmering nuclear war" on the peninsula.

According to The New York Times, North Korea is particularly sensitive about U.S. bombers in the region:

"It keeps most of its key military installations underground and its war cries typically reach a frenetic pitch when American bombers fly over South Korea during military exercises. The resulting fear and anti-American sentiment is used by the regime to make its people rally behind Pyongyang's 'military-first' leadership."

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

Single-Named Singers From The Present And Past

Every answer is the name of a famous, one-named singer like Madonna or Beyoncé. Identify each one from its anagram, to which one extra letter is added. The singers are a mix of past and present.
NPR

How Dangerous Is Powdered Alcohol?

Last month, the U.S. Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau approved a powdered alcohol product, making both parents and lawmakers nervous. Some states have already banned powdered alcohol. NPR's Arun Rath speaks with Brent Roth of Wired, who made his own powdered concoction and put it to the test.
NPR

Senate Blocks Measures To Extend NSA Data Collection

The Senate worked late into the night but was not able to figure out what to do about expiring provisions in the Patriot Act that authorize the NSA's bulk collection of Americans' phone records.
NPR

The Future Of Cardiology Will Be Shown In 3-D

The Living Heart Project aims to create a detailed simulation of the human heart that doctors and engineers can use to test experimental treatments and interventions.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.