World Intelligence analysts study size and type of detonation by North Korea

01:02  04 september  2017
01:02  04 september  2017 Source:   MSN

Pentagon: Latest North Korea missile launch 'a threat'

  Pentagon: Latest North Korea missile launch 'a threat' The Pentagon on Monday called North Korea's launch of three short-range ballistic missiles on Saturday a “threat,” though the missiles did not put the U.S. in harm’s way."You're still firing missiles, so that's a threat," Pentagon spokesman Col. Robert Manning told reporters at the Pentagon.

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While more than a decade has passed since North Korea ’s first nuclear detonation , many analysts Determining the precise makeup of North Korea ’s nuclear arsenal has long been a difficult challenge for intelligence professionals because of the regime’s culture of extreme secrecy and insularity.

Lee Mi-Seon, a Monotoring director of the National Earthquake and Volcano Center, shows seismic waves taking place in North Korea on a screen at the Korea Meteorological Administration center on September 3, 2017 in Seoul, South Korea. South Korea, Japan and the U.S. detected an artificial earthquake from Kilju in the northern Hamgyong Province of North Korea. The Japanese government has confirmed they believe it was North Korea's sixth nuclear test.© (Photo by Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images) Lee Mi-Seon, a Monotoring director of the National Earthquake and Volcano Center, shows seismic waves taking place in North Korea on a screen at the Korea Meteorological Administration center on September 3, 2017 in Seoul, South Korea. South Korea, Japan and the U.S. detected an artificial earthquake from Kilju in the northern Hamgyong Province of North Korea. The Japanese government has confirmed they believe it was North Korea's sixth nuclear test. WASHINGTON — U.S. and international intelligence analysts will pore over all aspects of North Korea's Sunday weapon test, including sampling air for radioactive particles and studying seismic shock waves, to determine if it did detonate a hydrogen bomb.

North Korea seen moving ICBM-grade rocket towards west coast - media

  North Korea seen moving ICBM-grade rocket towards west coast - media North Korea has been observed moving what appeared to be an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) towards its west coast, South Korea's Asia Business Daily reported on Tuesday, citing an unidentified intelligence source. The rocket started moving on Monday, a day after North Korea's sixth nuclear test, and was spotted moving at night to avoid surveillance, the report said. North Korea has launch facilities for its missile programme on its west coast.South Korea's defence ministry said they were unable to confirm the contents of the report.

The counter is that the administration isn’t willing to wait till North Korea has the operational capability to nuke an American city like Seattle or Honolulu. This concern recently has been reinforced by a little-publicized study released in May 2011, titled “In the Dark: Military Planning for a Catastrophic

While more than a decade has passed since North Korea ’s first nuclear detonation , many analysts Determining the precise makeup of North Korea ’s nuclear arsenal has long been a difficult challenge for intelligence professionals because of the regime’s culture of extreme secrecy and insularity.

The analysis, which is likely to take weeks, seeks to confirm the size of the detonation, the weapon design and the radioactive fuel used.

Discovering the size of the weapon takes on increased importance since North Korea successfully launched two intercontinental ballistic missiles — weapons in theory capable of striking the U.S. mainland — in July.

Although North Korea has developed and tested nuclear weapons before, it is not clear that the nation has developed a nuclear warhead small enough to fit atop a long-range missile or robust enough to survive the missile's fiery re-entry into the atmosphere.

But the series of underground nuclear tests and increasingly sophisticated missile flights have led to concerns that North Korea can now strike the U.S. mainland.

S. Korea preps for possible weekend N. Korea missile test

  S. Korea preps for possible weekend N. Korea missile test <p>South Korea is expecting the potential launch of an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) by North Korea on Saturday to celebrate the anniversary of the reclusive nation's founding, The Associated Press reports.</p>The launches may keep with the North's tradition of conducting missile tests on significant dates or holidays, according to a South Korean official from Seoul's Unification Ministry.

While more than a decade has passed since North Korea 's first nuclear detonation , many analysts Determining the precise makeup of North Korea 's nuclear arsenal has long been a difficult challenge for intelligence professionals because of the regime's culture of extreme secrecy and insularity.

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An analysis by the U.S. Geological Survey fixed the coordinates of the detonation in the northeast sector of North Korea, an isolated and heavily forested area about 6,000 feet in elevation. The nearest city or town is 14 miles away.

The blast registered on seismographs at about 6.3 in magnitude, which is more powerful than the 5.1 registered in North Korea's last test in September and earlier in 2013.

The Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization, a multinational group that monitors nuclear testing worldwide, said more than 100 of its land-based monitoring stations detected the explosion, and the early analysis confirmed the event was larger than last year's nuclear test.

"It constitutes yet another breach of the universally accepted norm against nuclear testing; a norm that has been respected by all countries but one since 1996," Lassina Zerbo, head of the Vienna-based organization, said Sunday in a statement.

"It also underlines yet again the urgent need for the international community to act on putting in place a legally binding ban on nuclear testing once and for all."

The Air Force Technical Applications Center at Patrick Air Force Base, Fla., is responsible for analyzing captured data for the U.S. military. Analysts with the center pore over seismology and launch a so-called nuclear sniffer plane, WC-135 Constant Phoenix, to detect radioactivity.

North Korea has fired 21 missiles during 14 tests since February, including one last Monday that flew over northern Japan. If confirmed, the weekend test would be the sixth nuclear test.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has repeatedly threatened the U.S. territory of Guam, which is home to U.S. Navy and Air Force bases and thousands of troops.

S. Korea conducts cruise missile drill amid N. Korea threats .
South Korea said Wednesday it had conducted its first live-fire drill for an advanced air-launched cruise missile that would strengthen its pre-emptive strike capability against North Korea.South Korea's military said the Taurus missile fired from an F-15 fighter jet traveled through obstacles at low altitudes before hitting a target off the country's western coast during drills Tuesday.

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