[Translation: Merciless punishment for the American imperialists!]
This shouting from North Korea comes two days after a UN Security Council resolution condemned Pyongyang’s recent rocket launch, but North Koreans are having none of it. Yesterday the North Korea’s National Defence Commission (NKDC) released the statement. And what a statement:
We do not hide that the various satellites and long-range rockets we will continue to launch, as well as the high-level nuclear test we will proceed ith, are aimed at our arch-enemy, the United States . . . Settling accounts with the US needs to be done with force, not with words.
Yoh. They sound serious. The NKDC gave no time frame for the tests. Recent reports from South Korea and US bodies which monitor North Korea’s nuclear test sites have said North Korea could be preparing for a third nuclear test. The two previous nuclear tests were in 2006 and 2009.
The US and South Korea are not pleased. Glyn Davies, the US special envoy on North Korea policy who is currently visiting Seoul said
We hope they don’t do it, we call on them not to do it. It will be a mistake and a missed opportunity if they were to do it.This is not a moment to increase tensions on the Korean Peninsula.
Apart from the geopoltical consequences and nuclear muscle flexing, this could just be about a son trying to fill his father’s shoes. If this test goes ahead, it would be the first nuclear test under Kim Jong-un, who took over the leadership after the death of his father Kim Jong-il in December 2011. A first nuclear test is a big milestone in the career of a dictator.
According to the BBC it is believed that “North Korea is not yet able to make a nuclear device small enough to mount on a long-range missile, although the US believes that is Pyongyang’s ultimate goal.”
If the their skills match up to their self-belief, the world should worry. An example of this self belief can be seen in this extract from a previous press release from the DPRK Foreign Ministry:
The DPRK will continuously launch satellites for peaceful purposes to conquer space and become a world-level space power.
A North Korean space power. Bless.
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