Letter: Korean dangers

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Sir: Rather than the Yeltsin-proposed 'neighbour' conference I was supporting in a letter you published on 10 June, Lionel Bloch (Letters, 15 June) advocates 'taking out' North Korea's 'atomic installations by conventional missiles' and threatening 'an overwhelming nuclear response' were there any retaliation.

Presumably he has in mind something like Israel's (quite unlawful) attack on Iraq's nuclear power station in 1981, which did so much to convince Saddam Hussein that at all costs Iraq had to catch up with Israel's US-tolerated, nuclear weapons.

The South Koreans - whose approval the United States requires for military action in Korea - would certainly not agree to such an attack. South Korea has a large number of nuclear power stations not far from the border, and in any war they could only too easily become so many Chernobyls. And as well as many Asians in the fall-out zones, there are some 30,000 US troops and some 40,000 US civilians in South Korea.

Yours etc,


London, W2

15 June