This is like watching two kids pushing each other in a school yard even after the teacher has told them to stop.
What the news story ignored:
Yes, the US and Russia agreed on an independant Korea, but the 38th was supposed to be whee the two armies met, not a nationl border. The problem was the Russians had already groomed Kim Il Sung to be the leader of the new nation,just as we had done the same with Rhee. When they met, the two outside nations refused to back off, so Korea has the distincton of beinjg the only nation not part of the war (Beyond having been subject to the Japanese) that was divided by fiat.
As for surprise...
In Decembe of 1949, the American Secretary of State, at a press banquet drew a line across the Pacific coast, labeling any nations we considered vital at that time to our nation's interests. These included Singapore, Taiwan, the Phillipines, and Japan. Notice the one nation not
lised. This was duly
reported by the Press.
At that time, the North Koreans had been armed up to the standards of the Warsaw Pact. South Korea on the other hand, had not. We were too worried about Rhee deciding on his own reunification plans, so they were armed only up to the standards of a defensive force, little artillery, and no tanks larger than the M26 light tank. The US forces there were well armed, but this was a peacetime army under a Secretary of Defense who had cut military spending literally to the bone, so while well armed, training had been cut back due to expense. Picture a US army unit from 1936 when you had trucks marked 'tank' because you didn't have the fuel or ammunition for real live fire exercises.
Add to this the fact that few aircraft were assigned to Korea itself, most stationed in Japan instead, and we had no heavy tanks even there because American tanks were too heavy to cross the bridges in Japan. They were in Subic Bay and Manila. So our air force is in the position of Germany during the Blitz; having to waste half their flight time going to and from the front, and any tanks capable of taking on a T34 weeks away.
The only reason it took seven months to attack was because it took that long for NK to do the preparations for it.
The story also ignores that when the war started and the Air Force was asked what they could do, the answer was 'Nuke 'em into ther stone age'. We were the only country in 1950 with both nukes and a delivery sysem.
This time around? NK has two
nuclear neighbors. China does not
want a possible nuclear war on their border, so they aren't going to back NK, just as they have not tried to stop sanctions.
So if Kim wants to slaughter off his entire nation, he has a lot of people ready to beat him to a pulp. That's why I said it won't be just US warheads hitting him.