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North Korea threatens nuke test if UN doesn't apologise


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Author Topic: North Korea threatens nuke test if UN doesn't apologise  (Read 267 times)
Lovelee
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« on: April 30, 2009, 06:35:51 pm »

North Korea has warned Wednesday it will fire an intercontinental ballistic missile - or even carry out another nuclear test - unless the UN apologises for condemning the regime's April 5 rocket launch.

By flaunting its rogue nuclear and missile programs, Pyongyang has raised the stakes in the escalating diplomatic tit for tat with the outside world. North Korea also said it would start generating nuclear fuel - an indication the regime will begin enriching uranium, another material used to make an atomic bomb.

North Korea is known for its use of brinksmanship and harsh rhetoric to force the West to react, but the threat of a nuclear test is significant.

Pyongyang conducted its first atomic test in 2006, and is thought to have enough plutonium to make at least half a dozen nuclear bombs. There are no indications, however, that scientists in the North have mastered the technology needed to make a nuclear warhead small enough to fit onto a missile.

Still, North Korea's April 5 rocket launch drew widespread international concern. Pyongyang claims the liftoff was a peaceful bid to send a communications satellite into space, but the US, Japan and others saw it as a furtive test of a delivery system capable of sending a long-range missile within striking range of Alaska.

The UN Council denounced the launch as a violation of 2006 resolutions barring the North from missile-related activity, and later imposed new sanctions on three North Korean firms.

http://www.3news.co.nz/North-Korea-threatens-nuke-test-if-UN-doesnt-apologise/tabid/209/articleID/101863/cat/61/Default.aspx?ArticleID=101863
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Lovelee
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« Reply #1 on: June 13, 2009, 10:17:33 pm »

North Korea said it would start a uranium enrichment programme and vowed to weaponise all of its plutonium in response to UN punishment for its nuclear test.


Pyongyang also threatened military action if the United States and its allies tried to isolate it.


The Security Council approved a resolution on Friday which banned all weapons exports from North Korea and most arms imports into the state. It authorised UN member states to inspect North Korean sea, air and land cargo, requiring them to seize and destroy goods shipped that violate the sanctions.


"We'll take firm military action if the United States and its allies try to isolate us," KCNA news agency quoted an unnamed Foreign Ministry spokesman as saying in a statement.

http://tvnz.co.nz/world-news/n-korea-threatens-nuclear-action-2782530
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« Reply #2 on: June 14, 2009, 11:54:20 am »

Someone needs to practise a nuke on NK.
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DazzaMc
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« Reply #3 on: June 14, 2009, 12:25:44 pm »

Someone needs to practise a nuke on NK.





Either that or just take out the sick buggers running the place... the whole family and govt structure.
Problem is - they have a very large ground army don't they?

Perhaps a bomb would be best...
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« Reply #4 on: June 14, 2009, 12:34:26 pm »

Nah - I dont want to see the innocents in NK harmed in that way.  Thats just sick.
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« Reply #5 on: June 14, 2009, 05:02:49 pm »

Nah - I dont want to see the innocents in NK harmed in that way.  Thats just sick.

Agree

There has to be some way that the people of North Korea can be empowered to get rid of the current leadership.

But, then again, maybe they like it that way. The North Korean regime bears a striking similarity to KTJ's Railway Union in the way it deals with those who have the ability to think for themselves.
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« Reply #6 on: June 14, 2009, 07:39:00 pm »

Nah - I dont want to see the innocents in NK harmed in that way.  Thats just sick.

Agree

There has to be some way that the people of North Korea can be empowered to get rid of the current leadership.

But, then again, maybe they like it that way. The North Korean regime bears a striking similarity to KTJ's Railway Union in the way it deals with those who have the ability to think for themselves.

First of all they have to be educated - but how do you reach them when they are locked up like they are?

You would need to remove the powers that be first wouldn't you?
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« Reply #7 on: June 14, 2009, 08:22:55 pm »

Yeh true - but nuking him isnt imo the way to go - we need to send James Bond in  Grin  at least someone who can pick him off and get out leaving no trace - just like they do in the movies.
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« Reply #8 on: June 20, 2009, 11:31:08 am »

The United States has deployed anti-missile defences around Hawaii amid reports that North Korea may fire its most advanced ballistic missile towards the US islands next month, adding to already high tensions in the region.A report in a Japanese newspaper said Pyongyang might test-fire its Taepodong-2 towards Hawaii around the US holiday of Independence Day.

North Korea test-fired a similar long-range missile on July 4 three years ago, but it failed seconds after liftoff.

US Defence Secretary Robert Gates said the extra defences around Hawaii consisted of a ground-based mobile missile system and a radar system nearby. Together they could shoot an incoming missile in midair.

"Without telegraphing what we will do, I would just say ... we are in a good position should it become necessary, to protect Americans and American territory," Gates said in Washington yesterday.

A new missile launch - though not expected to reach US territory - would be a brazen slap in the face of the international community, which punished North Korea with new United Nations sanctions for conducting a second nuclear test on May 25 in defiance of a UN ban.

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=10579637&ref=rss



I was day dreaming the other day - thinking about all the bombings that have gone off throughout the world since 9/11.  Sometimes we read about bomb making equipment found in Britain - and the world heaves a sigh of relief.  All over the world baddies are making preparations - except in the USA  Shocked  We do not hear of anything even resembling an attempt to bomb something there - always - always the baddies are caught before they do any harm.  Im getting too cynical now and find I hardly believe those news items.

Makes me even more convinced that 9/11 was a deliberate move by the US to enable them to become involved in the 'terrorist war' - just like Pearl Harbour.  Why havent they been hit again -- and again -- I do not believe its their Homeland Security.  Other countries have just as good if not better Homeland Security and still suffer terrorism bombings.

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« Reply #9 on: June 20, 2009, 01:53:14 pm »

This could prove interesting - cos NK cant reach Hawaii -should be good target practice for the yanks though.

At the last minute the missile might turn in another direction  Grin  or - without the US being aware they could have missiles that will reach US land and territories.

This must be pissing Mr Hussein Obama off - he wants to bring peace to the world - fat chance!
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« Reply #10 on: June 22, 2009, 10:52:00 am »

Report: North Korea ship suspected of carrying missiles
Mon, 22 Jun 2009 7:26a.m.


A US Navy destroyer is tailing a North Korean ship suspected of carrying illicit weapons toward Myanmar in what could be the first test of new UN sanctions against the North over its recent nuclear test, a leading TV network said.

The South Korean news network YTN, citing an unidentified intelligence source in the South, said the US suspects the cargo ship Kang Nam is carrying missiles and related parts. Myanmar's military government, which faces an arms embargo from the United States and the European Union, has reportedly bought weapons from North Korea.

YTN said the US has deployed a destroyer and is using satellites to track the ship, which was expected to travel to Myanmar via Singapore.

South Korea's Defence Ministry, Unification Ministry and National Intelligence Service said they could not confirm the report. Calls to the US military command in Seoul were not answered late Sunday.

The ship is reportedly the first North Korean vessel to be tracked under the new UN sanctions.

Two US officials said Thursday that the US military had begun tracking the ship, which left a North Korean port Wednesday and was travelling off the coast of China.

One of the officials said it was uncertain what the Kang Nam was carrying, but that it had been involved in weapons proliferation before. Both spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss intelligence.
http://www.3news.co.nz/Report-North-Korea-ship-suspected-of-carrying-missiles/tabid/209/articleID/109459/cat/61/Default.aspx?ArticleID=109459



Is this going to be another case of unfound WMD??
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« Reply #11 on: June 22, 2009, 11:58:14 am »

I reckon it's a decoy while they slip the real cargo through the back door (Myanmar and China are neighbors).

Seems dumb for China to send anything to Myanmar via boat...
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« Reply #12 on: June 22, 2009, 02:42:25 pm »

N Korea fears nuclear attack

North Korea has accused the US of plotting atomic war, saying President Obama's recent reaffirmation of nuclear protection of S Korea, exposed his government's intention to attack.

In what would be the first test for the new UN sanctions against the North, South Korean media also reported on Sunday that a North Korean ship sailing toward Myanmar via Singapore was being shadowed by the US military, over suspicion that it may be carrying illicit weapons.

US officials said on Thursday that the US military had begun tracking the ship, Kang Nam, which left a North Korean port on Wednesday.

South Korean television network YTN, citing an unidentified intelligence source in the South, reported that the US suspected the 2,000-tonne-class ship was carrying missiles and other related weapons towards Myanmar - which has faced an arms embargo from the United States and the European Union and has reportedly bought weapons from North Korea.

The report said the US had also deployed a navy destroyer and had been using satellites to track the ship.

South Korea's Defence Ministry, Unification Ministry and the National Intelligence Service said they could not confirm the report.

Tension on the Korean peninsula has spiked since the North defiantly conducted its second nuclear test on May 25.

North Korea later declared it would bolster its atomic bomb-making program and threatened war in protest at UN sanctions for its test.

Obama reaffirmed Washington's security commitment to South Korea, including through US nuclear protection, after a meeting on Tuesday in Washington with South Korean President Lee Myung-bak.

Obama also said the UN sanctions would be aggressively enforced.

In its first response to the summit, North Korea's government-run weekly Tongil Sinbo said that Obama's comments only revealed a US plot to invade the North with nuclear weapons.

"It's not a coincidence at all for the US to have brought numerous nuclear weapons into South Korea and other adjacent sites, staging various massive war drills opposing North Korea every day and watching for a chance for an invasion
," said the commentary published on Saturday.

The weekly also said the North will also "surely judge" the Lee government for participating in a US-led international campaign to "stifle" the North.

North Korea says its nuclear program is a deterrent against the US, which it routinely accuses of plotting to topple its communist regime.

Washington, which has 28,500 troops in South Korea, has repeatedly said it has no such intention and has no nuclear weapons deployed there.

On Saturday, a South Korean Foreign Ministry official said Seoul had proposed five-way talks with the US, China, Russia and Japan to find a new way to deal with the North's threats.

The US and Japan have agreed to participate, while China and Russia have yet to respond, the official said.

North Korea and the five countries began negotiating under the so-called "six-party talks" in 2003 with the aim of giving the communist regime economic aid and other concessions in exchange for dismantling its nuclear program.

In April, however, the North said it was pulling out of the talks in response to international criticism of its controversial April 5 long-range rocket launch.

http://www.stuff.co.nz/world/asia/2523275/N-Korea-fears-nuclear-attack



The NK leaders are sick in the head.

There's just no other way to describe it!
 Huh
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« Reply #13 on: January 06, 2016, 04:34:30 pm »


from The Washington Post....

Signs of possible nuclear test in North Korea

By ANNA FIFIELD | 10:15PM EST - Tuesay, January 05, 2016

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. — Photograph: Associated Press.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. — Photograph: Associated Press.

TOKYO — There were signs of unusual seismic activity around North Korea's main nuclear test site Wednesday morning, sparking fears that Pyongyang ordered the detonation of another atomic device two days before Kim Jong Un's birthday.

North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency said it would make a special announcement at noon Pyongyang time (10:30 p.m. EST).

This came after earthquake agencies in China, Japan and the United States all recorded unusual seismic activity in the northeastern corner of North Korea at about 10:30 a.m. local time Wednesday.

The U.S. Geological Survey recorded a shallow 5.1-magnitude quake about 20 miles from the facility at Punggye-ri,where North Korea has carried out its three previous nuclear tests. Japan's Meteorological Agency said that it appeared to be some kind of artificial explosion and that the waveform was very similar to the ones detected at the nuclear tests in the past, public broadcaster NHK reported.




In both Seoul and Tokyo, the government's called emergency national security meetings to discuss the possibility of a nuclear test.

Joel Wit, a former American diplomat who runs the 38 North website that specializes in North Korea's weapons systems, said that while it was too soon be definitive, the location of the earthquake was “highly suspicious.”

“If this was the fourth North Korean nuclear test, its exact purpose — whether to develop smaller nuclear warheads for missiles or higher-yield bombs — remains unclear,” Wit said. “What is clear is that North Korea is moving forward with its nuclear weapons program and that the United States, China and the international community need to come up with more effective ways to deal with this growing threat.”

North Korea has conducted three nuclear tests since 2006 but only one during Kim Jong Un's reign, in February 2013.

Many analysts have been surprised that such a long period has passed without another test, since it is by testing that North Korea can advance its program.

Still, with typical North Korean bluster, Kim has repeatedly boasted of North Korea's increased nuclear capacity. He has declared that his regime has been able to make a device small enough to fit on a missile, and that it has the capability to make a hydrogen bomb, a device that is exponentially more powerful than an atomic one.


• Anna Fifield is The Washington Post's bureau chief in Tokyo, focusing on Japan and the Koreas. She previously reported for the Financial Times from Washington DC, Seoul, Sydney, London and from across the Middle East.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/signs-of-possible-nuclear-test-in-north-korea/2016/01/05/d8f300e7-995d-40de-a082-3171f0cc0ea9_story.html
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« Reply #14 on: January 06, 2016, 04:52:00 pm »

...mmmm..a need for political reform there.....perhaps a little persuasion is required Tongue
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« Reply #15 on: January 06, 2016, 05:36:16 pm »

...mmmm..a need for political reform there.....perhaps a little persuasion is required Tongue


Here is a good idea: YOU fly off to North Korea and tell the customs officers when you arrive that you “desire an audience with Kim Jong Un because he is a retarded, demented fuckwit and you wish to tell him that to his face!” Go on....be brave....you could go down in history for your courage.
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Kiwithrottlejockey
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« Reply #16 on: January 06, 2016, 05:36:30 pm »


from The Washington Post....

North Korea says it conducted successful hydrogen bomb test

By FOSTER KLUG and KIM TONG-HYUNG - Associated Press | 11:08PM EST - Tuesday, January 05, 2016

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un gives a New Year's address for 2016 in Pyongyang, in this photo released January 1st. — Photograph: Kyodo/Reuters.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un gives a New Year's address for 2016 in Pyongyang, in this photo released on January 1st.
 — Photograph: Kyodo/Reuters.


SEOUL, South Korea — North Korea said on Wednesday (local time) it had conducted a hydrogen bomb test, a defiant and surprising move that, if confirmed, would put Pyongyang a big step closer toward improving its still-limited nuclear arsenal.

A television anchor read a typically propaganda-heavy statement on state TV that said North Korea had tested a “miniaturized” hydrogen bomb, elevating the country's “nuclear might to the next level” and providing it with a weapon to defend against the United States and its other enemies.

The statement said the test was a “perfect success.”

The test, if confirmed by outside experts, will lead to a strong push for new, tougher sanctions at the United Nations and further worsen already abysmal relations between Pyongyang and its neighbors.

North Korean nuclear tests worry Washington and others because each new blast is seen as pushing North Korea’s scientists and engineers closer to their goal of an arsenal of nuclear-tipped missiles that can reach the United States.

While a hydrogen bomb is much more powerful than an atomic bomb, it is also much harder to make. In a hydrogen bomb, radiation from a nuclear fission explosion sets off a fusion reaction responsible for a powerful blast and radioactivity.

North Korea is thought to have a handful of rudimentary nuclear bombs and has spent decades trying to perfect a multistage, long-range missile to eventually carry smaller versions of those bombs. After several failures, it put its first satellite into space with a long-range rocket launched in December 2012.

Experts say that ballistic missiles and rockets in satellite launches share similar bodies, engines and other technology. The U.N. called the 2012 launch a banned test of ballistic missile technology.

Some analysts say the North hasn't likely achieved the technology needed to manufacture a miniaturized warhead that could fit on a long-range missile capable of hitting the U.S. But there is a growing debate on just how far the North has advanced in its secretive nuclear and missile programs.

In the first indication of a possible test, the U.S. Geological Survey measured an earthquake Wednesday morning with a magnitude of 5.1. An official from the Korea Metrological Administration, South Korea’s weather agency, said the agency believed the earthquake was caused artificially based on an analysis of the seismic waves and because it originated 49 kilometers (30 miles) north of Kilju, the northeastern area where North Korea's main nuclear test site is located. The country conducted all three previous atomic detonations there.

The test is a surprise, both in its purported type and its timing.

North Korea hadn't conducted an atomic explosion since early 2013, and leader Kim Jong Un did not mention the country's nuclear weapons in his New Year's speech. Outside analysts speculated that Kim was worried about deteriorating ties with China, the North's last major ally, which has shown signs of greater frustration at provocations and a possible willingness to allow strong U.N. sanctions.

The size of Wednesday's quake is bigger than seismic activity reported in previous atomic bomb tests. Yonhap news agency reported that quake monitoring agencies detected magnitudes of seismic activity of 3.7 in 2006; 4.5 in 2009 and 4.9 in 2013.

After the North's third atomic test, in February 2013, Pyongyang launched a campaign of bellicose rhetoric that included threats to launch a nuclear attack on the United States and Seoul. North Korea claimed in 2013 that it had scrapped the 1953 armistice that ended fighting in the Korean War. Pyongyang has also restarted a plutonium nuclear reactor shuttered after a 2007 nuclear deal that later fell apart.

Since the elevation of young leader Kim Jong Un in 2011, North Korea has ramped up angry rhetoric against the leaders of allies Washington and Seoul and the U.S.-South Korean annual military drills it considers invasion preparation.


Associated Press writer Hyung-jin Kim contributed to this story from Seoul.

__________________________________________________________________________

More on this topic:

 • GRAPHIC: Eight countries. 2,054 nuclear tests. 70 years.


https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/asia_pacific/earthquake-detected-in-north-korea-not-clear-if-nuke-test/2016/01/05/31ddb454-b41a-11e5-8abc-d09392edc612_story.html
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« Reply #17 on: January 06, 2016, 05:42:27 pm »

...good idea...a coalition of which NZ plays a minor role....let's wait to see what Hillary says Wink
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« Reply #18 on: January 06, 2016, 10:48:46 pm »


from The Washington Post....

North Korea’s claims of testing its first hydrogen bomb draws skepticism, condemnations

By ANNA FIFIELD | 2:04AM EST - Wednesday, January 06, 2016

People watch a television news program showing North Korea's announcement, at the Seoul Railway Station in Seoul, South Korea. — Photograph: Ahn Young-Joon/Associated Press.
People watch a television news program showing North Korea's announcement, at the Seoul Railway Station in Seoul, South Korea.
 — Photograph: Ahn Young-Joon/Associated Press.


TOKYO — North Korea claimed on Wednesday that it had successfully tested a hydrogen bomb, a claim that, if true, would mark a huge step forward in its nuclear capability.

“The first H-bomb test was successfully conducted,” the official Korean Central News Agency said in a statement issued shortly after a special announcement was broadcast on state-run television.

Calling the device an “H-bomb of justice,” North Korea said it needed the weapon for defense against the United States, which it described as “the chieftain of aggression, watching for a chance for attack on it with huge nukes of various types.”

“Nothing is more foolish than dropping a hunting gun before herds of ferocious wolves,” the statement said in North Korea's trademark colorful prose.

But there was some skepticism about the claim, with nuclear experts noting that the yield appeared to be similar to North Korea's three previous atomic tests, rather than the “enormous” yield that would be expected if it had been a thermonuclear explosion.

In Washington, the State Department said it was monitoring the situation.

“While we cannot confirm these claims at this time, we condemn any violation of UN Security Council Resolutions and again call on North Korea to abide by its international obligations and commitments,” said John Kirby, the State Department spokesman. “We have consistently made clear that we will not accept it as a nuclear state. We will continue to protect and defend our allies in the region, including [South] Korea, and will respond appropriately to any and all North Korean provocations.”

Either way, Pyongyang's provocative action will present a new challenge to the outside world, which has struggled to find ways to bring about an end to North Korea's nuclear defiance.

“North Korea's fourth test — in the context of repeated statements by U.S., Chinese, and South Korean leaders — throws down the gauntlet to the international community to go beyond paper resolutions and find a way to impose real costs on North Korea for pursuing this course of action,” said Scott Snyder, a Korea expert at the Council on Foreign Relations.

Kim Jong Un's regime hinted in December that it had built a hydrogen bomb to “defend its sovereignty and the dignity of the nation.” Some analysts were doubtful, saying the young leader appeared primarily concerned with trying to bolster his legitimacy.

Hydrogen, or thermonuclear, bombs are exponentially more powerful and destructive than atomic devices. An atomic bomb uses fission to break up the atomic nucleus and release energy, while a hydrogen or thermonuclear bomb uses fusion to add to the nucleus. This leads to an enormous explosion resulting from an uncontrolled, self-sustaining chain reaction.

Kim has repeatedly asserted North Korea's status as a nuclear-armed country and has resolutely refused to return to multilateral talks aimed at persuading it to abandon its nuclear weapons program.

North Korea had conducted three nuclear tests since 2006 but only one during Kim's reign, in February 2013.To the surprise of many analysts, there had been no fourth test.

Then, there were signs of unusual seismic activity around North Korea’s main nuclear test site Wednesday morning, sparking fears that Pyongyang had ordered the detonation of another atomic device two days before Kim's birthday.

Earthquake agencies in China, Japan and the United States all recorded unusual seismic activity in the northeastern corner of North Korea at 10 a.m. local time. The U.S. Geological Survey recorded a 5.1-magnitude quake at ground level about 20 miles from the facility at Punggye-ri, where North Korea has carried out its three previous nuclear tests.

Many analysts have been surprised that such a long period has passed without another test, because it is by testing that North Korea can advance its program.

“I think they have a technological path in mind,” said Jeffrey Lewis, a nuclear expert at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey, California.

In December, Lewis noted that satellite pictures showed North Korea appeared to be building a new tunnel at its nuclear test site, warning that the Pyongyang regime might be preparing to conduct a fourth atomic test. “There is a lot of tunneling at the test site, which could mean they have a bunch of tests planned,” he said.

Although analysts were still awaiting more data, Lewis said that Wednesday's explosion looked very similar to past tests and was not enormous, suggesting it was not a hydrogen bomb.

Joel Wit, a former U.S. diplomat who runs the 38 North website dedicated to North Korea, added that the purpose of the test remained unclear.

“What is clear is that North Korea is moving forward with its nuclear weapons program and that the United States, China and the international community need to come up with more effective ways to deal with this growing threat,” he said.

Previous nuclear tests have been met with international condemnation, including resolutions from the U.N. Security Council, but have done nothing to deter Pyongyang. The Security Council Wednesday scheduled an emergency meeting to discuss the test.

In Seoul and Tokyo, the governments called emergency national security meetings. “This nuclear test by North Korea is a major threat to our country's security, and I absolutely cannot accept it,” Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told reporters. “Also, it is clearly a violation of United Nations Security Council resolutions so … we will take strong measures, including steps within the U.N. Security Council.”

South Korean President Park Geun-hye said North Korea would pay the price for the test, which she called a “grave provocation.”

“Now, the government should closely cooperate with the international community to make sure that North Korea pays the corresponding price for the nuclear test,” Park said in a national security council meeting, according to the Yonhap News Agency.

China, North Korea's closest ally and a veto-wielding permanent member of the security council, also condemned the test.

“Today the DPRK ignored the general objection from the international community and conducted a nuclear test once again. As to this matter, China strongly opposes,” Hua Chunying, a Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman told reporters in Beijing Wednesday.

“China will resolutely promote the goal of denuclearization on the peninsula, and stick to solving the peninsula nuclear issues through the six party talk framework,” she said, referring to long-defunct multilateral talks aimed at convincing North Korea to give up its nuclear ambitions.

She said China knew nothing in advance about the nuclear test.

“China will keep fulfilling its international obligations that it should fulfill, and make efforts together with the international community to realize the denuclearization of the peninsula,” she told reporters.

“China strongly opposes North Korea's nuclear test and will summon North Korean high officials, ambassador, to lodge our solemn representations,” she said.

Although China remains North Korea's biggest patron, relations have been severely strained since Kim took power and detonated a nuclear device a month before Xi Jinping took over as president of China.

In Russia, which has bolstered its ties with North Korea in recent years, one senior official condemned the detonation.

“Any action of the DPRK in this area directly affects the national security of our country,” wrote Konstantin Kosachev, the head of the foreign affairs committee of Russia's upper house of parliament, on Facebook.

But turning the focus on Russia's conflict with the west, Kosachev complained that the United States had not ratified the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty. He said that the failure to do so had emboldened North Korea to do as it pleased.


Simon Denyer in Beijing, Michael Birnbaum in Moscow, Yoonjung Seo in Seoul and Yuki Oda in Tokyo contributed to this report.

• Anna Fifield is The Washington Post's bureau chief in Tokyo, focusing on Japan and the Koreas. She previously reported for the Financial Times from Washington DC, Seoul, Sydney, London and from across the Middle East.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/north-korea-says-it-has-conducted-a-successful-hydrogen-bomb-test/2016/01/06/9add0e52-b436-11e5-a76a-0b5145e8679a_story.html



from The Washington Post....

Q&A: Why is North Korea’s hydrogen bomb test such a big deal?

By ANNA FIFIELD | 3:10AM EST - Wednesday, January 06, 2016

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un claps his hands during a photo session with participants of the Fourth National Conference of War Veterans in front of the Fatherland Liberation War Martyrs Cemetery in this undated photo released by North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) on July 30th, 2015.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un claps his hands during a photo session with participants of the Fourth National Conference
of War Veterans in front of the Fatherland Liberation War Martyrs Cemetery in this undated photo released by North Korea's
Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) on July 30th, 2015.


NORTH KOREA's claim on Wednesday that it had tested a hydrogen bomb alarmed Pyongyang's Asian neighbors — and the rest of the world. We take a look at what's behind this new North Korean claim.

Is this a big deal? We already knew they had nukes, right?

It's a big deal because a hydrogen, or thermonuclear, bomb is much, much more powerful.

The “Little Boy” atomic bomb that the United States dropped on the Japanese city of Hiroshima in 1945 had a yield of 15 kilotons, while the “Fat Man” dropped on Nagasaki a few days later had a yield of 20 kilotons. By comparison, the dry fuel hydrogen bomb that the U.S. tested at Bikini Atoll in 1954 had a yield of 15 megatons — making it more than 1,000 times as powerful as the Hiroshima bomb.

Here's how Kim Du-yeon of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace explains it:

It's basically a difference in the technical process by which an explosion is obtained and in the explosive power (measured in yield). An atomic bomb uses fission and an H-bomb uses fusion.  An H-bomb (thermonuclear bomb) has an exponentially greater yield (thousands of times more powerful). It includes an atomic bomb inside its core that acts as a trigger.


Was this a surprise?

Not really. North Korea had hinted that this might be coming. In December, Kim Jong Un said his country was “a powerful nuclear weapons state ready to detonate self-reliant A-bomb and H-bomb to reliably defend its sovereignty and the dignity of the nation.” And before that, the North Korean ambassador to London had said in a speech that North Korea had weapons that were “ten times as powerful” as the nuclear devices it had previously detonated.

It sounds like the end is nigh. Is it really?

Hold on there. There's still a considerable degree of skepticism about whether this really was a hydrogen bomb that was tested today. Jeffrey Lewis, a nuclear expert at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies, says a few words of caution are in order.

Here's what he wrote on 38 North after Kim’s claim in December:

Building a staged thermonuclear weapon — one in which the radiation from a fission primary compresses a secondary stage of thermonuclear fuel — seems to be a bit of a stretch for the North Koreans. That is the sort of device one normally thinks about when someone says “H-bomb”. Thermonuclear weapons are tricky; making one work requires a bit of test experience. While the North Koreans finally conducted an unambiguously successful nuclear test in 2013, the 2006 and 2009 tests were less so.

South Korean lawmakers on the parliamentary intelligence committee told local reporters that the supposed hydrogen bomb that North Korea tested Wednesday had a yield of about 6 kilotons — making it about the same size as North Korea's 2013 atomic test and a much smaller explosion than usually associated with hydrogen.


Why now?

It's Kim Jong Un's birthday on Friday — probably his 33rd, although it could be his 32nd, such is the paucity of our knowledge about the “Great Successor” — so the launch could be an early gift for him. The leaders' birthdays are always celebrated with a lot of fanfare in North Korea, although this is more true of Kim Il Sung, the founding president and the current leader's grandfather, and of Kim Jong Il, the second in the dynasty.

More likely this is all about preparing for the much-awaited Seventh Congress of the Korean Workers' Party in May this year, the first in 36 years.

As Toshimitsu Shigemura, a North Korea specialist at Waseda University in Tokyo, puts it:  “Kim Jong Un needs great results before the party congress in May. His father didn't test a hydrogen bomb but now he can say that he has. That's a very great result for him.”


So what happens now?

Regardless of whether the explosion was atomic or thermonuclear, it was a brazen provocation and a clear defiance of international treaties. So get ready for lots of international condemnation and some stern words at the United Nations. Already North Korea's neighbors — South Korea, Japan and China — have sternly criticized the test, and the the United States is getting ready to do so, once it's confirmed. The U.N. Security Council is set to hold an emergency meeting.

The question is: will the Security Council be able to pass a resolution with teeth?

The Security Council has adopted four major resolutions since North Korea's first nuclear test in 2006 — one after each of the 2006, 2009 and 2013 tests, and another after a satellite launch in December 2012. All have imposed sanctions on North Korea and sought to both stop it from getting the equipment it needs to develop its nuclear weapons program and to convince it to give up the pursuit of nuclear capability. Clearly, none of these have had much, if any, impact.


Will this time be different?

Well, it really depends how mad China is. In 2013, China — North Korea's closest ally and a veto-wielding permanent member of the council — was so angry with Pyongyang that it did support a resolution that expanded the sanctions regime, notably by making it more difficult for North Korea to transfer money.

But as mad as Beijing gets, it still has its eye on the bigger picture: it doesn't want North Korea to collapse and send millions of hungry refugees over China's north-eastern border, and nor does it want the American troops currently in South Korea up on that border. So China's primary interest is stability. But don't expect Xi Jinping to be at the Congress in May.


• Anna Fifield is The Washington Post's bureau chief in Tokyo, focusing on Japan and the Koreas. She previously reported for the Financial Times from Washington DC, Seoul, Sydney, London and from across the Middle East.

__________________________________________________________________________

Read more on this topic:

 • China ‘firmly opposes’ North Korea’s claimed bomb test

 • The Latest: Australia, France, China condemn nuke test


https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/worldviews/wp/2016/01/06/qa-why-is-north-koreas-hydrogen-bomb-test-such-a-big-deal
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« Reply #19 on: January 07, 2016, 01:57:35 pm »



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« Reply #20 on: January 08, 2016, 08:04:35 pm »


from The Washington Post....

Kim Jong Un celebrates his birthday with a bang as he seeks to cement rule

By ANNA FIFIELD | 12:34PM EST - Thursday, January 07, 2016



TOKYO — Kim Jong Un turns 33 on Friday, and from the North Korean leader's perspective, he has plenty to celebrate: Everyone's talking about him again.

After several years of being overshadowed by the more imminent threat of the Islamic State and jockeying with Iran for the title of scariest nuclear regime, North Korea is back on the international agenda.

Governments around the world rushed to condemn Wednesday's nuclear test — regardless of whether it involved a hydrogen bomb, as Pyongyang claimed, or an atomic device in line with its three previous tests — and the U.N. Security Council called an emergency meeting. In the United States, presidential hopefuls piled on with denunciations of Kim. Hillary Clinton called him a “bully”, Marco Rubio said he was a “lunatic”, and Ted Cruz dubbed him a “megalomaniacal maniac”.

Kim, like his father, Kim Jong Il, is often viewed as a caricature: a rotund man with a bad haircut and a worse standard outfit who spews invective at the outside world and watches basketball games in his luxurious palaces.

But with this week's test, Kim has shown that he is no joke. He is playing the cards he has and is exactly where he wants to be, said Michael Madden, who runs the North Korea Leadership Watch website.

“It's less than a month before the Iowa caucuses, and he's trying to put North Korea at the top of the debate and the discussion among U.S. presidential candidates,” Madden said. “All of the people running for the position of commander in chief now have to talk about North Korea.”

The Kims have a habit of using their weapons program as a bargaining chip, launching missiles and detonating nuclear devices to try to extract rewards from the international community for not doing so again. North Korea has repeated this pattern for more than 20 years.

Analysts are split on whether this week's test is a sign that Pyongyang wants to return to negotiations, despite its repeated assertions that the world must accept it as a nuclear state, or an indication that it has given up on the prospect of talks.

“North Korea had come to a fork in the road where it could either pursue diplomacy or brinksmanship,” said Ken Gause, a leadership expert at CNA, a research company in Arlington, Virginia.

There were intermittent attempts last year to bring representatives of the United States and North Korea to the table, but those efforts went nowhere.

“Kim Jong Un came to the conclusion that the diplomatic strategy was not showing progress, so he made the decision to double down on the nuclear side,” Gause said.


A picture released by KCNA showing a document attributed to Kim Jong Un authorizing the country's first hydrogen bomb test. — Picture: Kns/AFP/Getty Images.
A picture released by KCNA showing a document attributed to Kim Jong Un authorizing
the country's first hydrogen bomb test. — Picture: Kns/AFP/Getty Images.


North Korea said that the “Great Successor” himself ordered Wednesday's explosion.

“Respected Kim Jong Un … issued an order on conducting a test of the first hydrogen bomb of [North] Korea,” the state-run Korean Central Television station said in a broadcast this week, showing pictures of Kim sitting at his desk and shots of handwritten instructions bearing Kim's name.




Indeed, as much as Kim apparently wants to work his way into the international spotlight, this week's test also served an important purpose at home.

Kim is presenting himself as a strong leader who is taking his country forward in the face of “hostile policies” from a “gang of cruel robbers”, as the North's state media characterized the United States this week.

“North Korea is extremely careful about timing,” said Sue Mi Terry, a former CIA analyst who is now at the business consultancy Bower Group Asia. “Now it's time to show that he's a strong, powerful, legitimate leader. And it's his birthday. So why not?”

The bigger reason for Kim to flex his nuclear muscles now, after almost three years without a test, is the May congress of the Korean Workers' Party, the backbone of the communist state. Such a gathering has not been held in 36 years, since Kim Jong Il was announced as heir to his father, founding president Kim Il Sung, in 1980.

Just a week ago, Kim — wearing new glasses that served to make him look even more like his grandfather — delivered a New Year's address in which he said the congress would “unfold an ambitious blueprint for hastening final victory for our revolution.”

Some analysts expect the regime to revise the party charter, the organizing document of North Korea's political system, at the congress and enshrine Kim's two-track “byungjin” policy — the idea that North Korea can develop its economy and its nuclear program simultaneously. “Instead of being just some new flowery language in an otherwise boring political document, they will be able to hold up a tangible accomplishment to that effect,” Madden said.

Being able to claim that he is presiding over advances in the economic and the nuclear spheres will help Kim to bolster his legitimacy. Although it has been four years since he inherited the world’s only communist dynasty, Kim lacks the mythological aura that attended his father and grandfather.

Kim Il Sung was heralded as a brave, anti-imperialist revolutionary, and Kim Jong Il was said to have been born on Korea's sacred mountain under a bright star. But because of the suddenness of Kim Jong Il's death, there was no time to manufacture a story for Kim Jong Un, who was educated partly in Switzerland, and to similarly deify him in the propaganda.

This, plus the fact that he is so young in a society that prizes seniority, continues to prompt questions about the legitimacy of his leadership and the strength of his grip on power.

The critical messages assaulting his legitimacy that were broadcast into the North from South Korea during the summer were thought to be a driving factor behind Pyongyang's eagerness to strike a deal with Seoul. After the North agreed to express regret for severely wounding two South Korean soldiers, Seoul agreed to turn off the speakers.

But in response to the “grave provocation” of this week's nuclear test, South Korea's government said on Thursday it would resume the broadcasts at noon local time Friday.

The questions about the legitimacy of his rule have made the consolidation of power Kim's top priority.

Claiming to have overseen the development of a hydrogen bomb — and North Korea's cloistered populace will not hear the skepticism about this claim that now abounds outside — will help him further stake his claim.

As Gause puts it: “He wants to be able to say: ‘My father developed the nuclear capability. Now I'm taking it to the next level’.”


• Anna Fifield is The Washington Post's bureau chief in Tokyo, focusing on Japan and the Koreas. She previously reported for the Financial Times from Washington DC, Seoul, Sydney, London and from across the Middle East.

__________________________________________________________________________

Read more on this topic:

 • Global powers condemn North Korea's nuclear weapons test

 • The slow death of the nuclear deal with North Korea

 • Who Will Succeed Kim Jong Il?

 • Why is North Korea’s ‘hydrogen bomb’ test such a big deal?

 • North's latest test also tests limit of its ties with China

 • North Korea's growing economy — and U.S. misconceptions about it


https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/asia_pacific/kim-jong-un-celebrates-his-birthday-with-a-bang-as-he-seeks-to-cement-rule/2016/01/07/c454f522-b492-11e5-8abc-d09392edc612_story.html
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« Reply #21 on: January 10, 2016, 03:10:31 pm »


from The Washington Post....

North Korea is a joke. And that's the problem.

By JEFFREY LEWIS | 2:49PM EST - Friday, January 08, 2016

U.S. intelligence officials speculated that Pyongyang's nuclear test may have been prompted by China's treatment of North Korean pop band Moranbong, pictured here. — Photograph: Charles Dharapak/Associated Press.
U.S. intelligence officials speculated that Pyongyang's nuclear test may have been prompted by China's treatment of North Korean
pop band Moranbong, pictured here. — Photograph: Charles Dharapak/Associated Press.


NORTH KOREA sometimes seems less of a place than an idea or an absurdist fantasy. The latest New Yorker depicts Kim Jong Un on its cover as a child playing with toy missiles. What other world leader gets this treatment? What other country is so alien, so downright weird, that it celebrates the anniversary of its independence by creating its own time zone? What other country could prompt U.S. intelligence officials to seriously speculate that a nuclear test was retaliation for disrespecting a state-run all-female pop group? What other country has a state-run all-female pop group?

The North Koreans don't think they are absurd. The country continually touts its scientific, technological and industrial developments to show that it is a modern, dynamic world power. Nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles have a starring role in this narrative. “The spectacular success made by the DPRK in the H-bomb test this time is a great deed of history, a historic event of the national significance as it surely guarantees the eternal future of the nation,” the Korean Central News Agency stated this past week, trying a bit too hard. North Korea is threatening our security, sure, but it really wants to threaten our notion of where it fits in the world — or, rather, our notion that it does not.

It wasn't that long ago that North Korea merely aspired to the nuclear club. When the Soviet Union collapsed, North Korea was left in a bad way. It seemed plausible, back then, that the North might bargain away its nascent nuclear program in exchange for an end to international isolation and assistance from the outside. Unlike, for example, the recent nuclear deal reached with Iran, the 1994 Agreed Framework between the United States and North Korea explicitly exchanged nuclear capabilities for better relations with the United States. North Korea wanted to be seen as normal and for the Kims to be treated as legitimate world leaders. And the United States was happy to pat the Kims on the head for a while, presuming that their regime would collapse sooner rather than later.

Yet here we are, 20 years later. The Kims have held on, even while much of their country has starved. After the Agreed Framework collapsed in 2003, North Korea was left to develop its nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles. North Korea’s leader, a grandson of founder Kim Il Sung, welcomed 2016 “with the thrilling explosion of our first hydrogen bomb.”

While the explosion on Wednesday was too small to be caused by what we normally think of as a thermonuclear weapon — a two-staged device with megatons of nuclear yield — the more likely possibilities are not comforting. What North Korea probably did was test a “boosted” device that uses a gas of deuterium and tritium, two hydrogen isotopes. This is an essential technology for reducing the size and weight of nuclear weapons. If North Korea is going to fit nuclear warheads on the long-range missiles it has paraded through Pyongyang, boosting is a significant step.

Would North Korea still trade away its nuclear technology for legitimacy? From time to time, it's looked like Pyongyang might be open to making concessions and cutting another deal. When North Korea kidnapped two American journalists in 2009, it was willing to release them in exchange for a meeting with former president Bill Clinton. It is bizarre to use a kidnapping to force a high-level meeting for the sake of appearing normal, but that's North Korea for you.

Not long after that, however, North Korea released a film that turns the Clinton story on its head. It is called The Country I Saw, and the title is instructive: This is a (terrible) movie dramatizing how North Koreans want others to see them. Like any good piece of propaganda, it has long scenes dedicated to didactic dialogue in which characters explain the message in the most painfully earnest way. The movie ends with Clinton visiting North Korea — this time to pay tribute to the country's leaders, who have humiliated the United States and Japan by conducting successful tests of ballistic missiles and nuclear weapons . A country that produces that sort of storyline doesn't seem like a country ready to bargain away its nuclear weapons.

Indeed, North Korea's announcement of a hydrogen bomb seems to rule out disarmament except under conditions that might as well include gracing Kim's ample posterior with a gentle peck. The North Koreans also have denigrated the nuclear deal with Iran and ascribed the fall of Libya's Moammar Gaddafi to his disarmament agreement with the United States. It seems inconceivable now that this North Korean government would abandon the nuclear weapons programs it has developed at such a great cost.

It is understandable that we would want to deny the North Korean regime any legitimacy. It is an ugly government that does ugly things to its own people and its neighbors.

Yet we should be honest with ourselves about what our revulsion entails. We are refusing to deal with the North Koreans — whether we justify it, as President George W. Bush did, by comparing them to children who throw their food on the floor or whether we hide behind meaningless policy catchphrases, like the Obama administration's “strategic patience”. We are forgoing any meaningful opportunity to slow or constrain their nuclear development. We are not making any effort to open their appalling system; in fact, we are helping close it off.

Perhaps one day we'll stop laughing and notice that a brutal, nuclear-armed North Korea that terrorizes its citizens and its neighbors isn't all that funny. They'd like that.


Jeffrey Lewis is the director of the East Asia nonproliferation program at the Center for Nonproliferation Studies.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/north-korea-is-a-joke-and-thats-the-problem/2016/01/08/b9c7c278-b55b-11e5-9388-466021d971de_story.html
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« Reply #22 on: January 10, 2016, 06:18:26 pm »

Yes..I agree..North Korea has some good looking women.... Grin
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« Reply #23 on: January 11, 2016, 12:01:46 am »

Yes..I agree..North Korea has some good looking women.... Grin
Sexist pig.
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« Reply #24 on: January 11, 2016, 06:33:56 am »

Yes....he is that also Wink
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