Sinking another nation’s ship and killing 46 of its sailors is by any definition a provocation to war. But this is a tough one.
“SEOUL — South Korea said Thursday that an international investigation has found overwhelming evidence that one of its warships was sunk by a torpedo made in North Korea and that the weapon was fired by a North Korean submarine.
“There is no other plausible explanation” for the sinking of the Cheonan on March 26 near a disputed sea border between the two Koreas, said the report. It was based on the findings of 50 experts from South Korea who worked with 24 investigators from the United States, Australia, Britain and Sweden.
After the results of the investigation were released, South Korean President Lee Myung-bak said his country “will take resolute countermeasures against North Korea and make it admit its wrongdoing through strong international cooperation.”
…. North Korea immediately denounced the investigation as a “sheer fabrication” and accused the South of “pointing a dirty finger at us like a thief.” It added that if there is any retaliation or punishment of the North, it will respond with “various forms of tough measures including all-out war.”
…. The exploded torpedo was fired by a midget submarine, equipped with night-vision technology, that approached the Cheonan from international waters to ensure “the covertness” of the attack, South Korean Rear Adm. Hwang Won-dong said Thursday. Speaking at a news conference held to elaborate on the findings, he said the midget submarine fled the scene following the same route.”