North Korea 'ready for nuclear attack' amid show of force

Jerome Frank
April 19, 2017

The suspension comes in the wake of rising tensions in the peninsula.

Boris Johnson, the Foreign Secretary, appealed for calm, pointing out that North Korea had threatened a military escalation on previous occasions. The anniversary is the country's most important holiday.

A mass dance event follows the celebration in Pyongyang.

Rows of military bands and columns of troops marched into Pyongyang's main Kim Il-sung square in the heart of the city.

For outside military analysts, though, the highlight is the weaponry that the North puts on display. The General Staff of the Korean People's Army promised to take the most decisive measures in response to provocative actions by the USA and its allies.

He said Japan's government has routinely coordinated with representatives of tens of thousands of Japanese residents in South Korea on contingency plans.

North Korea displayed what appeared to be new long-range and submarine-based missiles at an anniversary parade in Pyongyang on Saturday, in another characteristic show of strength. Despite Beijing's key role in propping up North Korea, the Kim Jong-Un regime has repeatedly ignored warnings and sanctions from its powerful ally.

However, Associated Press quoted USA officials as saying that the Trump administration was focusing more on raising pressure on North Korea with the help of China rather than using military force.

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Weapons analysts said there also appeared to be two new types of intercontinental ballistic missiles in canister launchers, but it remains unclear whether they have been tested. Also on display was a powerful midrange missile, which outside analysts call "Musudan", and which can potentially reach US air bases in Guam.

Choe Ryong Hae said that President Trump was guilty of "creating a war situation" on the Korean Peninsula by dispatching US forces to the region.

On Friday, China's Foreign Minister Wang Yi discouraged the USA and North Korea from engaging in "tit for tat" behavior between the two countries after media reports claimed that the Trump administration was positioned to launch a preemptive strike if North Korea appeared to be launching such a test.

One of Kim's top officials, Choe Ryong Hae, today vowed North Korea would "beat down enemies with the power of nuclear justice". A South Korean military source said the new missile mounted on a wheeled vehicle seems to be longer than the existing KN-08 or KN-14 missiles.

"We're totally floored right now", Dave Schmerler, a research associate at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies in Monterey, California, told the Wall Street Journal.

Although DefCon doubts missiles from North Korea could hit United States mainland - others are not so sure.

North Korea exhibited its ballistic missiles and other military weaponry during a huge parade on Saturday to celebrate its founder's birthday.

The parade may feature some of the country's most valuable military hardware, such as its prototype intercontinental ballistic missiles. It was the first time North Korea had shown the missiles, which have a range of over 1,000km, at a military parade.

Other reports by Guamnewswatch

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