PICTURED: US military drills plotting North Korea invasion to DESTROY nuclear weapons

Photos shared by the US military on Facebook show hundreds of troops taking part in the drill, known as “Warrior Strike”, with South Korea at the start of the month.

The images shared online show soldiers wearing night-vision equipment and gas masks as they practice plans to invade the hermit state.

US Defence Secretary James Mattis has previously suggested a “ground invasion” is required in order to stop the threat posed by Kim Jong-un’s corrupt regime.

In a letter to military chiefs he said: “The only way to locate and destroy – with complete certainty – all components of North Korea’s nuclear weapons programmes is through a ground invasion.”

The pictures reveal the two nations working together in the snow as they partake in the war game exercises.

The US has been conducting a number of military exercises in the South in preparation for all-out war with its neighbour if a nuclear strike is launched.

Although they cannot be seen in the images, it is believed high ranking officials, including general Jung Kyung-doo, chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff, and Vincent K. Brooks, commander of US Forces Korea, oversaw the drills.

John Bolton, former US ambassador to the United Nations, has warned that these military exercises are necessary for being prepared for the need to enter North Korea.

The ex-diplomat believes a land attack on Pyongyang is the only way to reduce the threat Kim Jong-un possesses.

He said: “We’re either going to have to kind of play it using military force, or accept that North Korea will be the nuclear arms sale center of the world – to Iran, to terrorist groups, to other third-world countries that have nuclear aspirations.”

The US Government estimates North Korea spends roughly a quarter of its GDP on military spending, while the British based International Institute for Strategic Studies believe Kim Jong-un has the fourth largest army in the world with more than 1million soldiers.

There are concerns that war could soon break out after North Korea hinted over the weekend that they were gearing up to launch another missile strike.

The Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington DC have warned a test is likely to take place soon.

They said there was an “elevated chance of provocations” this month, with a “ballistic missile test expected” to take place to honour the death of North Korea’s ex-leader, and Kim Jong-un’s father, Kim Jong-il.

The rogue nation’s dictator added to speculation that there could be another missile strike when he used his father’s anniversary to re-affirm his commitment to “fight more unflinchingly” than ever to lead the country to be “independent in politics, self-supporting in the economy and self-reliant in defence”.