Gen. Myers: North Koreans threats "rhetoric and posturing"

(CBS News) The new president of South Korea Park Geun-hye issued a warning Monday, reiterating to North Korea that there will be a strong and swift military response to any attack.

The United States deployed F-22 stealth fighter jets in South Korea over the weekend as part of an annual joint military drill. On Sunday, a top North Korean decision-making body issued a foreboding warning, saying that nuclear weapons are "the nation's life."

Former Chairman of the Joints Chiefs of Staff and CBS News contributor Gen. Richard Myers said Monday that while North Korea has a "very large standing army" of more than 1 million men, their equipment is "pretty antiquated." The main defense concern about North Korea's military capabilities is that "they have lots of missiles," Myers said.

"They have hundreds of missiles that could be armed with biological or chemical weapons that could range to some of our allies there in Asia Pacific and some of our bases."

However, Myers explained that North Korea's escalating threats in recent weeks are likely mere "rhetoric and posturing," possibly designed to solidify Kim Jong-Un's new role as leader.

"There are lots of indications and warnings that are followed by our forces over there, that [we] could see if they're preparing for an attack because it would take a lot of preparation," Myers said. "My guess is since we haven't heard anything about that, we don't see them preparing for an attack."

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Speaking to specific threats against the U.S. regarding long-range missile technology, Myers diminished North Korean bluster. "I don't think anybody gives them much credibility for having mature technology that could reach the United States," he said. "It's possible but I think unlikely ... [and] we would have plenty of warnings and lots of options."

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