The nation’s top marine told a Washington think tank yesterday that planning is underway for possible war with North Korea. “I think the biggest thing everybody’s done is just look at, get familiar with the geography, get familiar with the plans and do some logistical preparation that’s just prudent,” General Robert Neller, commandant of the Marine Corps, said.
Neller complimented U.S. Korea Commander Army General Vincent Brooks and U.S. Pacific Commander Admiral Harry Harris with doing “a very good job” with training and rehearsing battle plan options.
Neller, a plain-spoken general, has had comments become the source of controversy recently, when he told Marines training in Norway to be ready because there is a “big-*ss fight” coming. Neller wasn’t trying to glorify a military showdown with North Korea, nor predicting one, he said, just trying to tell Marines they need to understand they need to be ready. “I go out and talk to Marines. I try to break it down for them as simple as I can,” he said.
Neller also warned that a possible conflict with North Korea would be one that should be avoided. “I believe however it turns out it will be a very, very kinetic, physical, violent fight over some really, really tough ground and everybody is going to have to be mentally prepared,” he said.
Diplomatic efforts are still underway to try to get North Korea to give up its nuclear and ballistic missile weapons programs.