World War 3: North Korea Submarines a Concern
The United States has detected evidence that North Korea conducted yet another ejection test for a submarine-launched ballistic missile just a couple of days after carrying out its second intercontinental ballistic missile test, dramatically heightening the risk of World War 3.
The North’s SLBM capability, if fully developed, would pose a serious threat because of its mobile nature, along with the country’s rapidly progressing development of an intercontinental ballistic missile capable of striking the U.S. with nuclear weapons.
The ejection test, carried out Sunday, is the third this month and fourth this year, CNN reported, citing an unidentified defense official. That shows the communist nation is working hard to make progress in its SLBM development.
CNN said that land-based and submarine-based missiles are considered two-thirds of what is known as the “Strategic Triad,” a theory that a state must have land, air and sea-based nuclear attack capabilities to successfully deter an enemy from trying to attack it.
An ejection test is designed to see whether a missile can be ejected by high pressure steam out of the launch canister in a submarine and into the air before its engine ignites and takes flight. Sunday’s test took place at the Sinpo shipyard, the North’s main submarine development center, CNN said.
But the current U.S. assessment is that the North’s SLBM program remains in the very early stages, it said.
Earlier this month, CNN also reported citing multiple military officials that the North had sent a diesel-powered Romeo Class sub on an unprecedented patrol and had been outfitting its Gorae Sub with a possible missile launch demonstration tube.
North Korea is likely to conduct an additional ballistic missile launch and its sixth nuclear test following its latest launch of an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), South Korea’s defense ministry said Monday.
“There is a possibility that North Korea is likely to test its nuclear warhead and missile capabilities through a nuclear test with more explosive power,” the Ministry of National Defense said in a report to the National Assembly.
The ministry added that the North is ready to carry out another nuclear test at any time at its nuclear explosion site in the northeastern province.
The assessment came as the North claimed the successful launch of another ICBM late Friday following its similar test in early July. Pyongyang insisted that the whole U.S. mainland is within its striking range.
Defense Minister Song Young-moo told lawmakers that it is hard to judge that the North has completed technology to make a nuclear warhead small enough to be mounted on a ballistic missile even if it was a missile with intercontinental range.
“It is too early to say that the latest test was to assess its atmospheric re-entry capability,” he said.
The North claimed that Friday’s test confirmed that the missile has the capacity to guide a warhead into accurately hitting a target with mastered re-entry technology.