A new special forces brigade dubbed Spartan 3000 has been designed by the South Korean Defense Ministry to “make Kim Jong-un fear for his life,” a retired South Korean general said this week.
“The best deterrence we can have,” retired three star general Shin Won-sik told the New York Times, “next to having our own nukes, is to make Kim Jong-un fear for his life."
Special forces teams have been targeting Kim’s psyche for a while and with some degree of effectiveness. Sputnik reported June 16 that Kim has been so worried about an assassination attempt he has significantly scaled back his number of public appearances, stopped driving his preferred car – a Mercedes Benz – to throw off would be killers, and ordered senior North Korean military and intelligence officers to investigate potential “decapitation operations.”
"Kim is engrossed with collecting information about the 'decapitation operation' through his intelligence agencies," South Korean legislator Lee Cheol-woo told reporters upon exiting a briefing with the National Intelligence Service.
South Korean ruling Democratic Party leader Choo Mi-ae said Monday she opposed bringing US tactical nukes to the region. "It is undesirable for us to be seen as having no will to resolve [the standoff] politically and diplomatically any more, amid this dispute over nuclear armament," Choo said.
On Monday, the UN Security Council voted unanimously to impose yet another round of sanctions on the North Korean economy targeting Pyongyang’s energy and textile sectors.
The Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu has held talks with the Syrian President Bashar Assad during his visit to Damascus. The two sides discussed military cooperation and joint actions against jihadists in Syria.
“During the meeting, the two sides discussed the military and military-technical cooperation between [Russia and Syria] in view of the successful operations of Syrian government troops supported by the Russian Air Force aimed at defeating Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL),” the Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement.
The Russian defense minister and the Syrian leader also touched on issues relating to the general stabilization of the situation in Syria, as well as to the functioning of the de-escalation zones and providing humanitarian assistance to the Syrian people, the statement added.
Shoigu's working trip to Syria was on the orders of Russian President Vladimir Putin.
The visit comes just days after Russia's Defense Ministry said the Syrian Army seized control of around 85 percent of the country’s territory from insurgent terrorists.
Lieutenant General Aleksandr Lapin, Russia's chief of staff in Syria, told reporters at the Khmeimim Air Base that Syria's forces will now have to liberate the remaining 15 percent, around 27,000 square kilometers.
Meanwhile, Syrian government forces continue their operation aimed at completely freeing the eastern Syrian city of Deir ez-Zor from Islamic State. The blockade of Deir ez-Zor was broken on September 5 by Syrian forces after three years of IS control.