North Korea Launches Rocket

Discussion in 'Land Forces' started by Singh, Apr 5, 2009.

  1. Singh

    Singh Phat Cat Administrator

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    SEOUL -- North Korea launched a multistage rocket Sunday in defiance of international pressure. The rocket passed safely over Japan and the Pacific Ocean but it wasn't immediately clear whether it reached space as North Korea said it intended -- or was a long-range missile as other countries feared.

    About four hours after the launch, North Korea's state-run news agency formally announced that the rocket had put a satellite, called the Kwangmyongsong-2, into orbit and said it was "rotating normally." There was no outside confirmation of that, though.

    Officials in Japan, South Korea and the U.S. swiftly condemned the action. Just 90 minutes after the launch, the United Nations Security Council announced it would meet in emergency session in New York Sunday afternoon to discuss penalizing North Korea for violating sanctions with the launch.

    In a statement, U.S. President Barack Obama said, "With this provocative act, North Korea has ignored its international obligations, rejected unequivocal calls for restraint, and further isolated itself from the community of nations."

    The rocket lifted off shortly after 11:30 a.m. local time from a military site in a rural area called Musudan-ri, near the town of Hwadae, on the country's northeast coast, then arced over the Sea of Japan and Pacific Ocean.

    The rocket is the newest step in a program of advanced-weapons development that North Korea's authoritarian government uses to maintain power and force payments from other countries.

    While North Korea said the rocket was designed to take a satellite to space, outside analysts believe it uses the same technology as a long-range missile Pyongyang has been trying to build for years -- and failed to launch successfully in two previous attempts.

    The long-range missile is designed to go far enough to reach the west coast of the U.S. or parts of western Europe from North Korea. North Korea isn't believed to have reached the capability to arm such a missile, however. Even so, military analysts believe the country sought to develop the long-range missile to sell it to other countries as well as use it itself.

    North Korea waited for four hours to announce the launch, but authorities in Japan provided virtually a real-time description of it. Its first stage fell into the sea between North Korea and Japan seven minutes after the launch. Its second stage fell into the Pacific Ocean on the other side of Japan about six minutes later.

    For the U.S., the launch presents Mr. Obama's new administration with its first test of whether it can rally the international community to punish a rogue regime. The North's neighbors Japan and South Korea quickly criticized the launch, but China -- its biggest trade partner and political benefactor -- urged "calm and restraint" afterward.

    North Korea's state-run media has warned that if the U.N. penalizes the launch with new sanctions, Pyongyang would withdraw from the so-called six-party talks, the U.S.'s preferred forum to negotiate the scrapping of North Korea's weapons program.

    A Japanese foreign ministry spokesman called the launch "extremely regrettable" and immediately pushed for new U.N. sanctions. In his statement, Mr. Obama added, "I urge North Korea to abide fully by the resolutions of the U.N. Security Council and to refrain from further provocative actions."

    China didn't oppose U.N. sanctions imposed after North Korea's last missile launch in 2006. But events since then have caused China to rethink its policy, says Yan Xuetong, head of the Institute of International Relations at Tsinghua University. North Korea responded to the sanctions with an underground nuclear test and turned to Russia for support.

    "China now sees that economic sanctions will only undermine its influence on North Korea, not strengthen it," says Mr. Yan. "China has readjusted its policy and I don't think it will support sanctions."

    South Korea's foreign ministry, in a reaction statement, noted that the impoverished North "spent an enormous amount of money that could resolve North's chronic food shortage" on the rocket. Some analysts estimate the rocket cost $500 million to develop.

    Outside military and intelligence officials in mid-January first observed preparations at North Korea's launch site via satellite photography. Since mid February, North Korea said it was preparing to launch a communications satellite and it later announced a launch plan for the April 4-8 period.

    In contrast to the North's previous launches of long-range missiles in 1998 and 2006, missile-defense systems in the U.S. and Japan have improved to the level where they could credibly respond by shooting down the North Korean rocket.

    The U.S. ruled out shooting down the projectile several weeks ago, however. Japanese officials said they would shoot if the rocket or debris from it started to fall on its territory. But no attempt to shoot down the North's rocket was made on Sunday.

    On Saturday, the first day of that launch period, North Korea's state media issued a statement saying a launch was imminent. But the day passed with no activity and officials in other countries speculated bad weather hampered the launch.

    China didn't oppose U.N. sanctions imposed after North Korea's last missile launch in 2006. But events since then have caused China to rethink its policy, says Yan Xuetong, head of the Institute of International Relations at Tsinghua University. North Korea responded to the sanctions with an underground nuclear test and turned to Russia for support.

    "China now sees that economic sanctions will only undermine its influence on North Korea, not strengthen it," says Mr. Yan. "China has readjusted its policy and I don't think it will support sanctions."

    South Korea's foreign ministry, in a reaction statement, noted that the impoverished North "spent an enormous amount of money that could resolve North's chronic food shortage" on the rocket. Some analysts estimate the rocket cost $500 million to develop.

    Outside military and intelligence officials in mid-January first observed preparations at North Korea's launch site via satellite photography. Since mid February, North Korea said it was preparing to launch a communications satellite and it later announced a launch plan for the April 4-8 period.

    In contrast to the North's previous launches of long-range missiles in 1998 and 2006, missile-defense systems in the U.S. and Japan have improved to the level where they could credibly respond by shooting down the North Korean rocket.

    The U.S. ruled out shooting down the projectile several weeks ago, however. Japanese officials said they would shoot if the rocket or debris from it started to fall on its territory. But no attempt to shoot down the North's rocket was made on Sunday.

    On Saturday, the first day of that launch period, North Korea's state media issued a statement saying a launch was imminent. But the day passed with no activity and officials in other countries speculated bad weather hampered the launch.

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123889854918290025.html?mod=googlenews_wsj
     
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  3. Singh

    Singh Phat Cat Administrator

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    Barack Obama leads condemnation as North Korea launches rocket

    President Obama has led international condemnation of North Korea this morning after it launched an intercontinental rocket over Japan, defying weeks of warnings from world leaders and risking new sanctions and high level denunciation in the UN Security Council.

    Mr Obama called the launch "provocative" and a clear violation of UN Security Council rules.

    “The launch today of a Taepodong-2 missile was a clear violation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1718, which expressly prohibits North Korea from conducting ballistic missile-related activities of any kind,” the US President said in a statement.

    “With this provocative act, North Korea has ignored its international obligations, rejected unequivocal calls for restraint, and further isolated itself from the community of nations.”

    The US joined Japan in requesting an emergency session of the UN Security Council. The meeting has been called for later today to discuss the implications of the launch which was described as regrettable by UN chief Ban Ki-Moon.

    "Given the volatility in the region, as well as a stalemate in interaction among the concerned parties, such a launch is not conducive to efforts to promote dialogue, regional peace and stability," Mr Ban said.

    The three-stage rocket was fired at 11.30am (02.30GMT) from the Musudan-ri launch site in the north-east of North Korea. It safely cleared northern Japan where batteries of Patriot missile interceptors and nervous local authorities were on standby in case of a misfiring or falling missile fragments.

    “The projectile launched from North Korea today appears to have passed over towards the Pacific,” the office the Japanese prime minister, Taro Aso, said in a statement. Japanese media reported that the first stage of the rocket had fallen as planned into the Sea of Japan of the country’s north-west coast and that the second stage had fallen into the Pacific Ocean far to the east.

    There was no immediate indication whether the rocket had launched a communications satellite, as Pyongyang claims, or whether it was a disguised test for a long range Taepodong 2 ballistic missile, with a range which could threaten the western reaches of the United States.

    However North Korea later released a statement saying it had succeeded in sending a satellite into space.

    The state-run Korean Central News Agency said that the Kwangmyongsong-2 satellite is currently in orbit after it was sent into space aboard a three-stage space launch vehicle.

    But foreign governments say that even a satellite launch would allow the North Koreans to improve a technology which, by its nature, can be readily adapted to military use.

    Japan's chief cabinet secretary Takeo Kawamura, said: “It is extremely regrettable that North Korea went ahead with the launch ... and we protest strongly.” Within an hour of the launch, Japan had requested an emergency session of the UN Security Council with the aim of issuing a condemnation of the North, although a formal condemnation is likely to be opposed by North Korea’s former allies, Russia and China.

    Within minutes, governments around the world were condemning the firing of the rocket.

    Lee Dong Kwan, a spokesman for the South Korean president, Lee Myung Bak, said: “The government cannot but express disappointment and regret over North Korea's reckless act of firing a long-range rocket, which poses a serious threat to security on the Korean peninsula and the world. The government will deal firmly and resolutely with North Korea's provocative act.”

    British Foreign Secretary David Miliband said earlier today that he "strongly" condemned North Korea's launch of a rocket and urged it to "cease immediately all further missile-related activity".

    The European Union called on Pyongyang to suspend its ballistic missile and nuclear programmes.

    "These actions place additional strains on regional stability at a time when the unresolved nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula requires mutual confidence-building," the Czech EU presidency said in a statement today.

    It called on Korea to "immediately suspend all activities related to its ballistic missile programme and abandon all nuclear weapons and existing nuclear programmes in a complete, verifiable and irreversible manner".

    North Korea's rocket launch coincided with a visit to the Czech Republic by President Obama, who is due to call for the elimination of all nuclear weapons across the globe in a speech in Prague today.

    The build up to the launch of the rocket illustrated the extent to which a small, isolated and impoverished country can command the helpless attention of the world. The launch had been expected yesterday after satellite images revealed that the rocket had been fuelled the day before and Japan was on tenterhooks on Saturday after the country’s armed forces raised two false alarms that the missile had been fired.

    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/asia/article6037889.ece
     
  4. Daredevil

    Daredevil On Vacation! Administrator

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    North Korean regime is just stupid. They are starving their people at the expense of massaging their egos. It will now face more isolation.
     
  5. Singh

    Singh Phat Cat Administrator

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    North Korean rocket 'failed to send satellite into space'

    [​IMG]
    This satellite image was taken March 26, 2009 at aproximately 11.00 am. It shows the location of the vehicle assembly building (L, pale blue) and launch pad (R, thin black shadow) at the North Korean missile facility at Musudan-Ri. Photo: DIGITALGLOBE - AFP/GETTY

    The launch of the missile at 02.30 GMT (11.30am local time) from a coastal site in the country’s northeast provoked international condemnation amid suggestions it was a disguised test of a ballistic missile.

    However North Korean officials quickly reported that the three-stage rocket had sucessfuly placed into orbit a satellite broadcasting revolutionary songs.

    A state media report described the launch as a "proud achievement made out of our battle to upgrade our country's space scientific technology."

    Seoul, which is planning its own satellite launch later this year, responded by saying the rocket and any payload had fallen into the sea, a claim supported by the US.

    The only previous test of a Taepodong-2 missile, in July 2006 ended in failure after the missile blew apart 40 seconds after lift-off.

    The launch came after weeks of escalating tensions in which North Korean has threatened to pull out permanently from the stalled Six-Party nuclear disarmament talks if any country attempted to interfere with its missile test.

    The US immediately announced it would take steps to show the regime of Kim Jong-il know that it could not threaten the security of other nations with impunity.

    President Barack Obama said in a statement that North Korea, which tested a nuclear device in 2006, had violated U.N. resolutions and increased its own isolation.

    "With this provocative act, North Korea has ignored its international obligations, rejected unequivocal calls for restraint, and further isolated itself from the community of nations," said Mr Obama.

    Yu Myung-Hwan, foreign minister of South Korea called the launch a “reckless” act. “Regardless of any North Korean claims, this is provocative activity which threatens stability and peace on the Korean peninsula and in Northeast Asia,” he added.

    Japan, which last week had threatened to intercept the missile if it fell towards Japanese territory also condemned the launch as a provocative action.

    “It is extremely regrettable that North Korea went ahead with the launch ... and we protest strongly,” said Japan's Chief Cabinet Secretary Takeo Kawamura.

    However despite having international opprobrium heaped upon it, analysts said the launch will be used as a major propaganda tool for Kim Jong-il’s regime which draws its strength at home from defying international opinion.

    Analysts added that the US and other nations would have to tread a fine line between ‘punishing’ the North for its irresponsible actions and driving it further into international isolation and a possible resumption of uranium enrichment for its nuclear weapons programme.

    The UN Security Council will meet in New York later today to discuss the launch, but diplomats have hinted that fresh sanctions against the North are unlikely as they would be opposed by China and Russia as counterproductive.

    More likely are discussions on how to apply existing sanctions more thoroughly, the unnamed added.

    Analysts also say that the response to Pyongyang’s decision to ignore pleas not to launch the missile would also be a test of China’s willingness to support international nuclear non-proliferation efforts.

    A united diplomatic response to the test is also made more difficult by legal disputes over whether a 2006 UN resolution banning the North from ballistic missile testing would cover a satellite test.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/wor...cket-failed-to-send-satellite-into-space.html
     
  6. Pintu

    Pintu New Member

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    For a country which wants to go space exploration needs many things to do, first make a space research organisation. Then it has to test sounding rocket to test its launching capabilities. After that different version of launchers depending upon the capacity is developed. Each and every nation followed it. USA, Russia,Japan, EU, China, India and even Iran did this. I can n't find any logic to throw a satellite at a very first attempt using a failed Ballistic Missile as its launcher.
     
  7. thakur_ritesh

    thakur_ritesh Administrator Administrator

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    i think the bigger question is what happened to the US in the last minute, why did they chicken out. this missile landed 280kms off the coast of japan and it violated the airspace of japan and where did all the bravado talk of shooting down of this missile fizzle out. is the lone superpower loosing its control, are they weakening from inside. i would agree partly it was a decision of choosing between the devil and the deep blue sea and with recession around the war machine US insisted on continuing with its focus on taliban which is seen as a bigger destabilising factor than the dprk, but this sends wrong signals right across the globe right from iran which would now be tempted to and would have that much more reasons to continue with its quest on laying its hands on and developing the nuke tech to be carried as a war head on a missile to prc which has its preying eyes on taiwan and the bigger question comes to mind is what happens to the military umbrella of sorts that they have given to their allies in case they were to be threatened, would they again chicken out yet again.


    recession has proved a lot of neocons fears come true and i dare say some of them would be having sleepless nights. the world power order are changing quickly, non existent are surfacing, existent are loosing out, just a handful of them are moving to a position of dominance, the dominants are draining out, west has lost to the east but still the transition would not be all that smooth, i am sure the west would be up to some tricks and do its best to out smart the east. above all obama is seen as someone who is trying to find a way of all this by way of negotiations and i am sure it will not take long for the american public to lambaste obama as one of the weakest presidents they have ever had, sadly the story of a negro boy making it big in the land of opportunities could be looked down upon in times to come and probably bush jr be hailed.


    if US doesnot want to be seen as a dying force then they have to contemplate things militarily and surely think beyond the UNSC and sanctions of various sorts. iran has showed to the world they can live with the sanctions and so has dprk and it makes little difference to the communist regime there for they least care about their people, US quite clearly has to weigh its options, in case they resist any military strikes then the dominance they have had is in for a challenge and if they attack then they might just drain out financially which would lead to serious internal security problems with the growing number of jobless people taking to the streets.


    i might just add, russians would be having the last laugh with a glass of vodka sitting in their cozy rooms.
     
  8. Yusuf

    Yusuf GUARDIAN Administrator

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    Guys put yourself in the NKs shoes. The only way it can stop and attack from the US ala Iraq style is by having these weapons. Agreed its a rogue state, but then it has realized that if it has all these deadly weapons, the US will not attack it.
    Would the US have attacked Iraq if Saddam had long range missiles and nukes on them? I dont think so.
     
  9. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    you are absolutely right yusuf to survive in this hostile world you need nukes no matter what other nations feel.
     
  10. EnlightenedMonk

    EnlightenedMonk Member of The Month JULY 2009 Senior Member

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    Nukes become passe with Missile Defence systems in place these days... I see the era of nukes coming to an end in atleast the developed world... I don't mean to say they will be destroyed, but they will increasingly take a back seat to Missile defence...
     
  11. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    good thing this ended the way it did, it could have escalated into a real mess that Obama could not handle.
     
  12. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    after nukes there will be fusion energy and possibly fusion bombs than the race will start all over again.
     
  13. EnlightenedMonk

    EnlightenedMonk Member of The Month JULY 2009 Senior Member

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    There will certainly be a big race to acquire the newer fusion bombs, if they are practically viable, but IMHO they will still take a back seat to BMD and possibly CMD as well... the new competition IMO will be in that field and not about filling ones coffers with as many bombs as possible to try and scare the other party....
     
  14. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    N Korea test: India walks the thin line

    http://www.ndtv.com/convergence/ndtv/story.aspx?id=NEWEN20090089794


    N Korea test: India walks the thin line
    Nidhi Razdan
    Sunday, April 05, 2009, (New Delhi)
    Top countries of the world have reacted to North Korea's launch of a rocket with alarm because the technology could well be used as a long-range missile.

    So why is India not condemning it outright? Sources say that India is not comfortable with the UN having the mandate to decide on a country's right to conduct a missile test.

    In fact Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee spoke of the nuclear non-proliferation treaty (NPT), and not the rocket or missile itself.

    Sources also say that that India is walking a fine line because New Delhi is also concerned about the general proliferation threat North Korea pose.


    let's discuss condemning pakistani nuclear proliferation first
     
  15. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    the first few countries to get them will definetly intimidate everyone else.
     
  16. EnlightenedMonk

    EnlightenedMonk Member of The Month JULY 2009 Senior Member

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    Yes, true initially for the first 5 odd years... but they will most probably only be used to supplment and complement the existing stockpile of conventional nuclear bombs (non fusion)... and the focus will be increasingly on missile defence from the advanced and even developing nations like ours...

    Eventually, we'll reach an equilibrium, but much quicker than we did in the cold war... because people will already have experience in how to deal with such a situation...
     
  17. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    if nations focused on space exploration with this kind of passion we would have advanced humanity as a whole.
     
  18. Soham

    Soham DFI TEAM Senior Member

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    So they managed it all right...
    Whatever the view on N.Korea might be, you have to admit that they have the balls to play a risky bluff.

    I don't understand how that country is still running...
     
  19. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    it has the backing of China for many decades.
     
  20. EnlightenedMonk

    EnlightenedMonk Member of The Month JULY 2009 Senior Member

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    Agreed, but its a Utopian vision... the basic human trait of trying to conquer others and make others his "slaves" will unfortunately never disappear until we find the gene for that and delete it from our DNA...

    Until then, there will also be the haves and the have nots, the aspirants and the people who have power... and also all sorts of shades inbetween...
     
  21. EnlightenedMonk

    EnlightenedMonk Member of The Month JULY 2009 Senior Member

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    NK is just another string of pearls in the Chinese foreign policy... its just the Rogue part of China that does everything FOR China...
     

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