The latest chapter in the never-ending saga of Kim Jong-un has a disturbing twist. The latest launch has clearly shown that North Korea has the ability to fire a missile capable of reaching the American military based in Guam. And they’ve angered their Pacific neighbors, too, by launching the missile over the islands of Japan.
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Kim Jong-un called the launch a “shining victory in the standoff with the United States.” If launching missiles ever-longer distances marks moments of victory in this conflict, the United States may not have gotten the message. While Jong-un continues to posture, the U.S. is taking diplomatic steps to cut off funding for the rogue nation.
While there is clearly a message for the American military in this launch, the most direct threats came to Japan. As the missile’s trajectory was tracked, the country of Japan was again put on alert.
The missile flew over f Hokkaido and landed 1,240 miles off the cape of Erimo. The flight lasted 19 minutes and flew more than 2,300 miles. Guam is only 2,100 miles from the launch site.
Pyongyang’s propoganda machine immediately went into action. The state run news agencies claimed that “people from across the world have expressed admiration at the DPRK’s bold pluck and great potentiality.”
“Media of many countries are zealously reporting about the DPRK’s nuclear attack capability,” they claimed, “which has reached the high level able to ensure the accuracy and freely control the striking power according to targeted object and purpose, and about the failure of the U.S. policy toward the DPRK.”
“Now no one can disregard the immense national strength and potentiality of the DPRK and deny its strategic position as a responsible nuclear weapons state with a great clout.”
“The U.S. has tightened sanctions and blockade by mobilizing its vassal forces to stifle the DPRK. But it could not check the advance of the army and people of the DPRK.”
“The U.S., styling itself as a superpower while boasting of its strength before other big powers, is in mortal fear of the DPRK. It is always seized with phobia of nuclear disaster.”
“No one in the world can block the advance of Juche Korea and its heroic people dashing ahead for bright future under the banner of the line of simultaneously developing the two fronts raised by the great Party.”
The reality was less celebratory. Japan’s defense minister is trying to reassure his people by talking of North Korea’s possible rational. “We cannot assume North Korea’s intention, but given what it has said, I think it has Guam in mind,” be said.
Even Russia has expressed concern. “In Russia we are deeply concerned about these provocative launches which are further stoking tensions. Clearly demonstrating that our position is that such launches are unacceptable is the most tangible thing we can do right now,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said.
“We can never tolerate that North Korea trampled on the international community’s strong, united resolve toward peace that has been shown in UN resolutions and went ahead again with this outrageous act,” Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said. “If North Korea continues to walk down this path, it has no bright future. We must make North Korea understand this.”