The threat of war looms closer than ever this weekend, as joint US & South Korea wargames are about to commence in the region.
The Vigilant Ace 18 exercise involves up to 12,000 US and South Korean troops, and some 230 aircraft, including state-of-the-art stealth F-22 Raptors.
Vigilant’s purpose is to ‘improve the effectiveness’ of armed co-operation between the allies in a potential conflict against North Korea.
The Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor is a single-seat, twin-engine, multi-role aircraft. Its stealth capabilities make the aircraft a prime asset for a first strike, as air defence grids would be quickly neutralized by a surprise attack. This has not gone unnoticed by North Korea, and the country has responded by upping its bellicose rhetoric, stating that “It is an open, all-out provocation against the DPRK, which may lead to a nuclear war any moment”.