First off–I would like to thank all my friends from IST that have come here to follow my new attempt at blogging…..I cannot thank you enough….chuq
It began when North Korea fired off its fist nuke and continued through the many missile tests that have been conducted.
We Americans hear about the sad condition of the country with people near starvation….and the poor living conditions…..
The Op-Ed I will ask some questions that have been bothering me for a few months.
First there is the North Korean economy….by all Western accounts the country is in deep trouble….the people are near starvation and there is poverty everywhere….
Then a report from the Bank of Korea throws some cold water on the reports….
The 3.9 percent figure was, for most observers, unexpected. In the previous half decade, the North managed only an average of about one percent growth. It appears, therefore, that last year the regime managed to break out of a long period of stagnation.
The surprisingly strong result will lead some to suspect the Bank of Korea’s figure. Observers, however, have relied on the bank’s estimates since the early 1990s because Pyongyang stopped reporting data in the 1960s after the regime began to fail to meet its publicly announced development goals. The bank’s estimates have their obvious limitations because of the opaqueness of the North Korean system, but they show trends.
That is not bad growth.
Then there are the starving people……so far the reports that we get on the news the people do not appear to be starving. I am not saying that they are not just that the ones seen on the evening news look pretty damn healthy. And why if things are as bad as we hear why are not more people defecting?
I mean surely a bullet is more preferable than a slow starvation death.
Now on to the missiles…….
The big news is the latest test from NK illustrates that their missile could reach as far inland as Chicago.
the second flight test of an intercontinental ballistic missile demonstrated his country can hit the US mainland, hours after the launch left analysts concluding that a wide swath of the United States, including Los Angeles and Chicago, is now in range of North Korean weapons. The Korean Central News Agency said that Kim expressed “great satisfaction” after the Hwasong-14 missile, which the country first launched on July 4, reached a maximum height of 2,314 miles and traveled 620 miles from the launch point before landing in waters near Japan.
A physicist and co-director of the global security program at the Union of Concerned Scientists tells the AP that if reports of the missile’s maximum altitude and flight time are correct, it would have a theoretical range of at least 6,500 miles
The equation that it could hit as far inland as Chicago is by taking the launch and flattening the trajectory out…..to give them the Chicago target.
The same could have been used when the US test a rocket….or France…..our Japan
For decades the allies of America have been silently enabling the Kim regimes…..
I am not saying that all the information given to us is wrong….only that some of it is adjusted to fit the paradigm that certain sectors are pushing.
We can speculate all we like but nothing will be known as accurate until he finally acts.
Personally, I do not think that the US would be his first choice for a strike….if that indeed is his desire.
If one puts aside prejudices and look at what has happening on the Korean Peninsula in the past decades then you could start understanding the position the country is taking….
Paranoia is indeed contagious.