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Still Waters

N. Korea Prepares 'Space Launch'

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North Korea has placed a three-stage rocket on the launch pad at a new, more sophisticated facility facing the Yellow Sea. It plans to launch what it calls an earth observation satellite as early as Thursday.There are also indications the reclusive and impoverished country is preparing for a third nuclear weapons test, as well.

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I feel badly for those imprisoned souls. Their lives could be so much richer and fulfilling if the lunatics could be removed. To help them would require killing hundreds of thousands of people though. So they continue in misery with no end in sight.

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Posted (edited)

Interview with James Oberg that was part of the select few to be invited to see the control room.

I feel badly for those imprisoned souls. Their lives could be so much richer and fulfilling if the lunatics could be removed. To help them would require killing hundreds of thousands of people though. So they continue in misery with no end in sight.

Horrible place...if there ever was a hell on Earth, it would be looking towards North Korea to learn.

Cheers,

Badeskov

Edited by badeskov

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I have to wonder if this would be happening,if Kim Jong Il were still alive.

Is it the son that's an even bigger threat than his dad was ?

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Interview with James Oberg that was part of the select few to be invited to see the control room.

Horrible place...if there ever was a hell on Earth, it would be looking towards North Korea to learn.

Cheers,

Badeskov

Well It launched ,It Failed,It could of been a real test to See what we would actually do ? Im of the train of thought that we need to seel Korea some Jamba Juice laced wit some of Bade`s special K to Help them outta there mini-series !

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Well It launched ,It Failed,It could of been a real test to See what we would actually do ? Im of the train of thought that we need to seel Korea some Jamba Juice laced wit some of Bade`s special K to Help them outta there mini-series !

It is always a test, unfortunately. For all intents and purposes, the goal could really have been to send a satellite into orbit. But if you are able to position a satellite correctly in orbit, then are also able to deliver a warhead almost anywhere on the globe (CEP irregardless). But I agree, lets serve 'em some Jamba Juice laced with the special sauce ;)

Cheers,

Badeskov

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I have to wonder if this would be happening,if Kim Jong Il were still alive.

Is it the son that's an even bigger threat than his dad was ?

Oh, it would. Remember Kim Jong Il already launched a missile/rocket flying provocatively over Japan, performed nuclear tests, shelled a South Korean Island and sank one of their patrol boats just to mention a few incidents.....those NK characters, apparently no matter who is in power, are totally unpredictable.

Cheers,

Badeskov

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Failed in less than 80 seconds my wife told me. I haven't confirmed it.

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Failed in less than 80 seconds my wife told me. I haven't confirmed it.

Something like that, yeah...broke up in flight before even leaving the atmosphere.

Cheers,

Badeskov

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Oh, it would. Remember Kim Jong Il already launched a missile/rocket flying provocatively over Japan, performed nuclear tests, shelled a South Korean Island and sank one of their patrol boats just to mention a few incidents.....those NK characters, apparently no matter who is in power, are totally unpredictable.

Cheers,

Badeskov

I know.Theyve been doing this for years,but I've never seen Japan set up anti nuke stations all over Tokyo.

It was like this one was so much more of a threat,and got press I've never seen before.

Hnnnn....

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It is always a test, unfortunately. For all intents and purposes, the goal could really have been to send a satellite into orbit.

I think you've hit the nail on the head here. Whilst one side argues that it was an attempt to launch a peaceful satellite into orbit and the other claims that it was a ballistic missile test the truth is that it was probably both.

This rocket, in its current form, is pretty useless ad a weapon. It takes 5 days to erect, prepare and launch, is labour intensive and requires large facilities on the ground. This renders it impractical as either a first strike or a retaliatory weapon. Worse still North Korean nuclear weapons are in their infancy, meaning they are likely to be large and heavy and beyond the payload capacity of the Unha-3 launch vehicle.

Placing a satellite in orbit would be a propaganda coup for North Korea. They want to portray themselves (not least to their own citizens) as an advanced country. Joining the small elite of nations with space capabilities would help. It would also be a bit of one-upmanship on South Korea, which also has a space programme but which has also suffered failures in its attempt to place a satellite in orbit.

There is also a diplomatic reason to launch a satellite. The 1967 Outer Space Treaty states that,

The treaty also states that the exploration of outer space shall be done to benefit all countries and shall be free for exploration and use by all the States.

If the West then tried to prevent future launches North Korea would be able to claim that those nations were aggressors, interfering in its legal rights to access space.

So having made the argument for this being an attempted satellite launch, and that the Unha-3 is a fairly useless missile does that mean I don't think we should be worried? Far from it. As has been pointed out, what you can learn from a civilian launch can be applied to a military launcher.

It is worth pointing out that the Russians still launch Soyuz spacecraft using a derivative of the R7 rocket used to launch Sputnik 1 in 1957. It was originally designed as an ICBM, but (appart from payload capability) suffered many of the problems I have highlighted for the Unha-3. It too needed large ground facilities and took too long to erect, fuel and launch. So great were its problems as an ICBM that very few (I believe as little as 4) were ever deployed. However the lessons learned enabled the Soviet Union to design and build some of the most advanced missiles on the planet. North Korea does not have the finances or facilities of the Soviets, but they will have learned much, even from a failure such as this.

The North Koreans have left the rest of the world with a dilemma, they are banned from ballistic missile tests, but have a legal right to explore and use space. If they continue to launch rockets in the guise of space exploration what can be done?

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Failed in less than 80 seconds my wife told me. I haven't confirmed it.

It's on today's BBC news -

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-17698438

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I know.Theyve been doing this for years,but I've never seen Japan set up anti nuke stations all over Tokyo.

It was like this one was so much more of a threat,and got press I've never seen before.

Hnnnn....

It is not nuke stations Japan is setting up in response to the NK launch. They are Patriot missile defense batteries and they are set up exactly because of Kim Jong Il's launch that happened to pass right over Japan. They were not going to put up with that again. Luckily, the North Koreans managed to bungle up the launch themselves.

Cheers,

Badeskov

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Posted (edited)

Hi Waspie,

Long time no conversing - good to see you around again :)

I think you've hit the nail on the head here. Whilst one side argues that it was an attempt to launch a peaceful satellite into orbit and the other claims that it was a ballistic missile test the truth is that it was probably both.

I think you are right and it will be hard to distinguish the two. Since both essentially use the same launch technologies (a rocket/missile) putting a satellite into orbit goes a long way of testing missile delivery systems and their technologies. What they cannot test is obviously terminal guidance systems and the like. But if you can put something into orbit you can most certainly also deliver something in a suborbital path towards a target.

This rocket, in its current form, is pretty useless ad a weapon. It takes 5 days to erect, prepare and launch, is labour intensive and requires large facilities on the ground. This renders it impractical as either a first strike or a retaliatory weapon. Worse still North Korean nuclear weapons are in their infancy, meaning they are likely to be large and heavy and beyond the payload capacity of the Unha-3 launch vehicle.

Agreed on both counts. A liquid fueled rocket is a pretty poor delivery system and they certainly do not have a nuclear device with a satisfactory yield that could be fitted on any delivery system.

Placing a satellite in orbit would be a propaganda coup for North Korea. They want to portray themselves (not least to their own citizens) as an advanced country. Joining the small elite of nations with space capabilities would help. It would also be a bit of one-upmanship on South Korea, which also has a space programme but which has also suffered failures in its attempt to place a satellite in orbit.

Precisely. It would be a huge propaganda coup for the new leadership of NK.

There is also a diplomatic reason to launch a satellite. The 1967 Outer Space Treaty states that,

If the West then tried to prevent future launches North Korea would be able to claim that those nations were aggressors, interfering in its legal rights to access space.

Yes, nobody can prevent the peaceful utilization of space, no matter what one might think of the motives behind it.

So having made the argument for this being an attempted satellite launch, and that the Unha-3 is a fairly useless missile does that mean I don't think we should be worried? Far from it. As has been pointed out, what you can learn from a civilian launch can be applied to a military launcher.

It certainly can. If they can get a satellite up using a liquid fueled rocket, they can certainly do the same with a solid fueled rocket and then suddenly the path towards an ICBM is not that that long. Then the question is one of targeting and making a warhead that is actually deliverable.

It is worth pointing out that the Russians still launch Soyuz spacecraft using a derivative of the R7 rocket used to launch Sputnik 1 in 1957. It was originally designed as an ICBM, but (appart from payload capability) suffered many of the problems I have highlighted for the Unha-3. It too needed large ground facilities and took too long to erect, fuel and launch. So great were its problems as an ICBM that very few (I believe as little as 4) were ever deployed. However the lessons learned enabled the Soviet Union to design and build some of the most advanced missiles on the planet. North Korea does not have the finances or facilities of the Soviets, but they will have learned much, even from a failure such as this.

They have certainly learned a lot, but the Soviets at the time also had some very brilliant scientists and a lot of resources to throw at the problem.

The North Koreans have left the rest of the world with a dilemma, they are banned from ballistic missile tests, but have a legal right to explore and use space. If they continue to launch rockets in the guise of space exploration what can be done?

It is a very good question. If I knew the answer I'd write a book and get rich ;)

Cheers,

Badeskov

Edited for typos.

Edited by badeskov

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Posted (edited)

It is not nuke stations Japan is setting up in response to the NK launch. They are Patriot missile defense batteries and they are set up exactly because of Kim Jong Il's launch that happened to pass right over Japan. They were not going to put up with that again. Luckily, the North Koreans managed to bungle up the launch themselves.

Also, this launch occurred from the new Sohae launch site, near Tongchang-ri, on the country's west coast. Previous "satellite" launches have occured from the Tonghae launch site on the East coast.

The new launch site negates the need to launch over Japanese territory.

Edited by Waspie_Dwarf

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According to the latest BBC World News, the problem now is how the NK leadership is going to 'keep face' with their people. There is a possibliity that the new leader will authorise an underground nuclear test.

:unsure:

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Also, this launch occurred from the new Sohae launch site, near Tongchang-ri, on the country's west coast. Previous "satellite" launches have occured from the Tonghae launch site on the East coast.

The new launch site negates the need to launch over Japanese territory.

Very true Waspie thumbsup.gif

Cheers,

Badeskov

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According to the latest BBC World News, the problem now is how the NK leadership is going to 'keep face' with their people. There is a possibliity that the new leader will authorise an underground nuclear test.

:unsure:

That is unfortunately very likely, although I have a nagging suspicion that they would have done so anyways should the launch have succeeded.

Cheers,

Badeskov

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That is unfortunately very likely, although I have a nagging suspicion that they would have done so anyways should the launch have succeeded.

Indeed, there were reports that North Korea was preparing for a nuclear test before the launch, see this Telegraph article dated 9th April 2012.

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DOD may have a different slant on that attempted launch ! Maybe we need to ask Badeskov`s about Laser targeting ? :innocent:

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