South Korea and the U.S. kicked off largely computer-based command post training on Monday in preparation for any full-scale war with North Korea.
The exercise will last for nine days and take various new factors into account like the coronavirus pandemic and the changing power dynamics of the region, the Joint Chiefs of Staff here said Sunday.
But the exercise involves no field training and is mostly a computer simulation, the JCS added. In advance, the two countries conducted four days of crisis management staff training on April 12-15.
This is the last "war game" of the Moon Jae-in administration, which has been criticized for failing to keep troops shipshape on the ground, at sea or in the air in an attempt to appease North Korea.
The South Korean military has carried out no joint naval drills with a U.S. aircraft carrier strike group in four years and five months. Even though the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln is in the East Sea, it will not be joined by South Korean naval forces. Instead, it and its fleet conducted joint training with Aegis destroyers of Japan's Maritime Self-Defense Forces.
The drill coincides with the 90th anniversary of the North Korean Army on April 25, when the regime will hold a massive military parade.