What Trump’s War With North Korea Would Look Like: U.S. Smart Bomb Shortage Could Make Conflict With Kim Jong Un Longer, Bloodier

As the U.S. military considers plans for a possible war with North Korea, Pentagon officials and their congressional overseers are facing a stark battlefield reality: If combat broke out between the two countries, American commanders in the Pacific would very quickly exhaust their stockpiles of smart bombs and missiles, possibly within a week, sources tell Newsweek.

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These sources, speaking on the condition of anonymity to discuss such sensitive matters, say U.S. warplanes would then resort to dropping crude gravity bombs on their targets, guaranteeing a longer and bloodier conflict for both sides. Dropping such unguided ordnance would require pilots to approach their targets at lower altitudes, exposing them to enemy surface-to-air missiles. And after more than a decade flying unchallenged over Afghanistan and Iraq, most American pilots won’t have much experience evading a North Korean anti-aircraft missile, increasing the likelihood they’d get shot down. Their unguided gravity bombs would be notoriously inaccurate, increasing the probability they’d miss their targets and cause collateral damage. Meanwhile, it could take as long as a year before stocks of smart bombs and missiles could be replenished, prolonging the fighting.

What Trump’s War With North Korea Would Look Like: U.S. Smart Bomb Shortage Could Make Conflict With Kim Jong Un Longer, Bloodier