World War 3: Does North Korea Have Nuclear Weapons?
It is believed by the Congressional Research Service that North Korea has enough kilos of separated plutonium for at least 8 nuclear weapons, while a Y 2014 report from the Institute for Science and International Security estimated North Korea could build up to 16 nuclear weapons, that is not a Yes.
North Korea has been suspected of maintaining a clandestine nuclear weapons development program since the early 1980s, when it constructed a plutonium-producing Magnox nuclear reactor at Yongbyon. Various diplomatic means have been used by the international community to attempt to limit North Korea’s nuclear program to peaceful power generation and to encourage North Korea to participate in international treaties.
The government of North Korea conducted a nuclear detonation on 9 September 2016, the fifth since 2006, at the Punggye-ri Nuclear Test Site, approximately 50 kilometres (30 miles) northwest of Kilju City in Kilju County.
More Big Q’s with the A’s, as follows:
- How far can North Korea’s missiles travel? A. North Korea possesses intermediate-range missiles that have traveling power of up to 2,000 miles, but the tests the nation has conducted using these missiles have not shown the missiles to travel that far. America believes North Korea is secretly working to develop longer range missiles.
- Can North Korean missiles reach the United States? A. No. As far as public knowledge provides, North Korea’s missiles are unable to reach Hawaii or Alaska, the countries closest to the Korean peninsula.
- Does North Korea have an ICBM? A. North Korean leader Kim Jong Un claimed in early January that the nation was close to testing an ICBM. There have been no public indications, though, of such a launch taking place.
- Is the United States able to defend itself against a North Korea attack? A. Yes, America has a strong missile defense system that is built to track and intercept North Korean missile launches. Note: The operational ability of American interceptors remains questionable, given they were put into practice almost a full decade ago.
Notably, the goal of The Trump Administration is to have a peaceful de-nuclearization of North Korea using diplomacy and diplomatic options. Deployment of missile defenses in South Korea is a critical part of that.
The US, Japan, South Korea and China are ready for North Korea.
North Korea’s state media published a rare criticism of China on Wednesday, saying Chinese state media commentaries calling for tougher sanctions over Pyongyang’s nuclear program were undermining relations with Beijing and worsening tensions.
A commentary carried by the official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) referred to recent commentaries in China’s People’s Daily and Global Times newspapers. “A string of absurd and reckless remarks are now heard from China every day only to render the present bad situation tenser,” it said.
“China had better ponder over the grave consequences to be entailed by its reckless act of chopping down the pillar of the DPRK-China relations,” the commentary said.