North Korea violated sanctions imposed by launching a test flight of a newly produced offensive guided missile on Thursday.
It was North Korea’s first ballistic missile launch in a year, as well as the first aggression of the Biden presidency, leading President Joe Biden to risk responses if problems on the Korean Peninsula intensify further.
Table of Contents
- US Tries To Convince North Korea To Abandon Nuclear Program
- Kim Jong Un’s New Missiles Can Transport Nuclear Pay Loads
- North Korea Mines It’s Own Plutonium
- North Korea Made Major Weapon Capability Advances in 2017
- Ultra Modern Offensive Nuclear Missiles On North Korea Upgrade List
- New Weaponry Includes Solid Fuel Missile Systems
- New Missile Capable Submarines In Development
Ri Pyong Chol, a senior North Korean official, responded defiantly on Saturday, threatening that if the US continues to make thoughtless comments without consideration of the implications, it might face anything that is not pleasant.
US Tries To Convince North Korea To Abandon Nuclear Program
The US has attempted to convince North Korea to abandon its nuclear arms programmes through both restrictions and diplomacy.
Neither of these approaches has been effective.
Instead, under Kim Jong Un, the country’s youthful king, North Korea has quickly increased its nuclear arsenal and revamped its missile fleet. The arsenal’s growth presents an increasing challenge to the United States and its international allies. The following is a list of what’s included.
Kim Jong Un’s New Missiles Can Transport Nuclear Pay Loads
North Korea’s ballistic missiles are capable of transporting nuclear warheads, and between 2006 and 2017, the nation performed six highly complex clandestine nuclear tests. The last four took place when Kim was in control.
North Korea is reported to have exploded a thermonuclear, or hydrogen, device in the most recent and most successful nuclear explosion, which took place in September 2017. The explosive strength of the system was estimated to be between 50 and 300 kilotons.
The test would be six times more effective than the weapon dropped on Hiroshima in 1945 if just 100 kilotons were used.
North Korea Mines It’s Own Plutonium
North Korea has mined plutonium, an atomic weapon material, from its reactor core in Yongbyon, north of Pyongyang, which was planned by the Soviet Union. It also operates centrifuges for the production of weapons-grade uranium ore, which is used as a bomb material.
According to an estimation by the Arms Control Association, North Korea had 30 to 40 ballistic missiles as of January 2020 and could manufacture enough nuclear fuel for six or seven bombs a year.
While the world’s interest is centered on North Korea’s nuclear arsenal, the nation already has massive quantities of biological and chemical weapons agents on site, which it can carry with its rockets. In the assassination of Kim Jong Nam, Kim’s estranged half brother, in Kuala Lumpur in 2017, North Korea used the globally outlawed VX nerve agent.
North Korea Made Major Weapon Capability Advances in 2017
In the same year, North Korea released its Hwasong-12 intermediate-range nuclear warhead over Japan, attempting an “enveloping” attack on the US territory of Guam. The country’s first intercontinental missiles, the Hwasong-14 and Hwasong-15, were also tested.
By the close of the year, Kim believed that his nation was capable of launching a nuclear attack against the United States’ continental territory.
Kim began researching nuclear bombs and long-range missiles in 2017, but when negotiations with President Donald Trump broke down in 2019, he threatened to lift his moratorium.
Last October, North Korea showed a new, unproven ICBM that seemed to be larger than all of the previous ones during an overnight military parade.
Ultra Modern Offensive Nuclear Missiles On North Korea Upgrade List
Kim upped the ante on his nuclear arsenal buildup at a party congress in January, announcing a laundry list of missiles he claimed he intended to produce. Multi-warhead ballistic warheads, hypersonic missiles, solid-fuel ICBMs fired from land and submarines, and ultramodern offensive nuclear bombs were among them.
It’s also uncertain if North Korea has perfected the technologies necessary to propel a transcontinental nuclear warhead into orbit and then direct it back to its intended target via the earth’s atmosphere. North Korea has yet to show that its nuclear warhead can withstand the extreme heat and resistance of reentry.
Following the failure of the Kim-Trump talks in 2019, North Korea continued missile testing in 2019. The tests included three experimental missiles, code-named KN-23, KN-24, and KN-25 by international observers.
Every one represented a significant step forward in North Korea’s short-range nuclear and missile programs.
New Weaponry Includes Solid Fuel Missile Systems
Unlike the company’s previous missiles, which used liquid hydrogen, the latest missiles use solid fuel. The latest solid-fuel guns, which are installed on portable launchers, are simpler to carry and conceal, and they need less preparation time. At least two of them, the KN-23 and KN-24, are capable of low-altitude maneuvers, rendering them more difficult to intercept.
North Korea unveiled what seemed to be a larger, updated variant of the KN-23 at a victory parade earlier in early 2020. That appears to be the arm tested Thursday, according to photos published by North Korean media.
The latest missile was designed to be heavier than the KN-23 so that it could hold a larger nuclear device and more power.
In January, Kim stated that his nation will also construct a nuclear-powered sub in order to develop the capability to carry nuclear missiles to enemies more covertly.
Since 2015, North Korea has been performing tests of its Pukguksong submarine launched missile systems.
New Missile Capable Submarines In Development
North Korea demonstrated what seemed to be two upgraded variants of its Pukguksong submarine launched missile systems during military parades conducted earlier this year. The nation currently has only one ballistic missile-capable submarine, although it claims to be developing a new one with greater specifications.
With more than 1 million troops, North Korea has one of the world’s biggest standing armies. However, most of the military’s infrastructure is outdated, and gasoline and replacement parts are in short supply.
North Korea has managed to cover for its vulnerabilities by creating nuclear missiles.
Kim defends his family’s dynastic control over North Korea by claiming that the country’s nuclear arsenal is a detterent that keeps North Koreans secure from foreign aggression. He informs his citizens that they are constantly under siege by the United States.
Kim said at his party’s January congress that his weapons policy never prevents diplomacy but guarantees its effectiveness. He has also stated that he would not engage in dialogue until Washington presents an offer that is acceptable to his government.
Analysts believe Kim’s resolve was mirrored in the experiment this week.
According to Kim Dong-yub, a professor in the Department of North Korean Studies in Seoul, it demonstrated that North Korea was going forward with the preparations laid out by Kim during the party meeting. As it had previously said, North Korea had no intent to make a compromise or making a suggestion first.