Russia, US warn North Korea over missile launch

posted at 12:11 pm on April 10, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

North Korea plans to launch a satellite into space sometime this week … if you believe their state-run media.  The DPRK’s neighbors believe that the military wants to run another test of its failure-plagued ballistic missile system, and in any case, the launch will violate a UN Security Council resolution that bars Pyongyang from any launch of its missiles.  The new regime of Kim Jong-un says it will proceed nonetheless:

Isolated and impoverished North Koreasaid on Tuesday it was ready to go ahead with its proposed long-range rocket launch, an announcement that sparked immediate condemnation from South Korea and Russia and a plea from China, its main ally, for calm. …

North Korea defended the launch as a sovereign right.

“The weight of our satellite is 100 kg. If it was a weapon, a 100 kg payload wouldn’t have much of an effect… Our launching tower is built on an open site,” said Ryu Kum-chol, vice director of the space development department of the Korean Central Space Committee.

Ryu said that the rocket assembly would be complete on Tuesday.

The US has already warned North Korea over the violation of the UNSC resolution.  Today, Russia added another warning:

“We consider Pyongyang’s decision to conduct a launch of a satellite an example of disregard forU.N. Security Council decisions,” state-run news agency RIA quoted Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich as saying.

“It is necessary to seek a way out of the situation on the political-diplomatic track,” he said.

Regional powers have said that what North Korea has described as the launch of a weather satellite, months after Kim Jong-un succeeded his father as the leader of the reclusive state, is a disguised test of a long-range ballistic missile.

Russia, which shares a short border with North Korea – Moscow’s client in the Soviet era – had urged Pyongyang last month to refrain from the launch, expressing serious concern and calling for restraint from all sides.

Japan, which would be the DPRK’s prime target in hostilities, has already taken steps to demonstrate that it won’t sit passively as Pyongyang tests out weapons meant for Tokyo:

Japan on Monday completed deployment of interceptor missiles to shoot down the North Korean rocket if it violated the country’s air space, the Defense Ministry said.

Japan’s Self-Defense Force (SDF) has installed ground-based Patriot Advanced Capability-3 interceptors on Okinawa, Ishigaki and Miyako islands and in Tokyo ahead of the North’s plan to launch a rocket to put a satellite into orbit between April 12 and 16. It has also sent Aegis destroyers to the East China Sea to deal with any situation.

The launch of the Kwangmyongsong-3 satellite using a long-range rocket from the country’s northwest has raised strong fears and unease in Japan and South Korea which allege that the rocket launch was aimed at testing the Communist State’s ballistic missile technology.

Well, that’s better than the US response to a previous missile test in 2009, when our best missile-defense asset sat in Pearl Harbor.  We didn’t want to annoy Kim Jong-il at the time.  Look how well that worked out!

Still, if Japan successfully shoots down the missile while flying over its territory, expect a great deal of … tension.  Japan will have the right to respond to such a provocation, especially since the UN has already forbidden such launches, which the UN has enforced by, well, demanding that North Korea comply with its resolution, and not much else.  That could provoke Pyongyang into retaliation either towards Japan or South Korea, either of which would involve the US in a shooting war with the North again — and could eventually bring China and Russia into the conflict, too.  On the other hand, given the DPRK’s track record on missile launches, Japan might just wait and let the rocket fall into the ocean on its own.

I’d guess that the Kim Jong-un just wants to engage in some brinksmanship to get more concessions in negotiations, but his father was crazy enough to launch several times, with no real consequences.  Until those consequences bite, don’t expect Pyongyang to do anything differently.


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Give ‘em hell Barry!

GhoulAid on April 10, 2012 at 12:13 PM

Dude needs a new barber.

Ward Cleaver on April 10, 2012 at 12:14 PM

Threaten, we cave and give them whatever they need to stay in power.

wash rinse, repeat.

It’s almost criminal the way we’ve enabled them.

WitchDoctor on April 10, 2012 at 12:15 PM

Things are going the wrong way when Russia has a better chance of dissuading China (the hammer on North Korea) than the US does.

I wouldn’t bet against Moscow getting this thing blocked, at least for the time being.

But if the launch does go off, it’ll be worth it to have Japan shoot the thing down.

J.E. Dyer on April 10, 2012 at 12:18 PM

Just take it out while it’s on the launch pad and tell Kim Jong un or whatever his name is the next cruise missile will have his name on it. I know, pure fantasy…

major dad on April 10, 2012 at 12:19 PM

Watched some documentary recently about NK, the people have know clue. They are truley in the dark about anything outside of what the regime tells them. Sad, poor and hungry is no way to go through life. The regime must fall and then someday reconcilliation with the south might bring the people there out of the hellish poverty that they had no hand in creating.

D-fusit on April 10, 2012 at 12:21 PM

J.E. Dyer on April 10, 2012 at 12:18 PM

It makes one wonder what China is doing. Or, has been doing for months.

It won’t be very good if Japan misses.

Betcha’ they are having some lively discussions about shooting.

cozmo on April 10, 2012 at 12:22 PM

Looking at it from Kim Jong-un’s viewpoint, this makes total sense. He knows full well that if he launches this thing the food aid will be cut. However he needs a grand gesture to convince his military that he has the big brass ones his Kim Jung-il had.

If he doesn’t do SOMETHING major that slaps the international community in the face he risks a coup. So his options are starve his people a lot and save face, or starve his people a little and risk assassination.

This is purely a butt-covering measure at the expense of the NK people. This is what a dictator does.

Meric1837 on April 10, 2012 at 12:22 PM

I’d guess that the Kim Jong-un just wants to engage in some brinksmanship to get more concessions in negotiations, but his father was crazy enough to launch several times, with no real consequences. Until those consequences bite, don’t expect Pyongyang to do anything differently.

“And we will write you a letter, telling you how angry we are!”

Bitter Clinger on April 10, 2012 at 12:24 PM

Those North Korean Commies just don’t get it. They’re supposed to listen to the American Commie, in the White House, and quit being so provocative.

Don’t they want change, at all?

OhEssYouCowboys on April 10, 2012 at 12:26 PM

“THIS TIME WE REALLY MEAN IT, GOSHGOLLYDARNITALL!!”

Jeddite on April 10, 2012 at 12:34 PM

Juvinile JugEars will give them a stern warning and tell Japan to be careful.

KOOLAID2 on April 10, 2012 at 12:35 PM

It makes one wonder what China is doing. Or, has been doing for months.

It won’t be very good if Japan misses.

Betcha’ they are having some lively discussions about shooting.

cozmo on April 10, 2012 at 12:22 PM

North Korea is a strategic convenience for China. The Western myth that Beijing is buffaloed by Pyongyang’s shenanigans is just that: a myth. If the Chinese leadership thinks it’s in their interest to string everyone along with the threat of a Kim-boy missile launch, that’s what they’ll do. They don’t view North Korea as a problem for peace and security, but as a bargaining chip for China.

I don’t think Japan will miss. The weapon system is good, and so are the Japanese controllers.

J.E. Dyer on April 10, 2012 at 12:36 PM

This is purely a butt-covering measure at the expense of the NK people. This is what a dictator does.

Meric1837 on April 10, 2012 at 12:22 PM

I agree. Would it be on the launchpad if he didn’t intend to use it?

dogsoldier on April 10, 2012 at 12:37 PM

Obama and his itty bitty buddy in Russia are about to give Kim a big “double dog dare ya”.

rplat on April 10, 2012 at 12:37 PM

Nice to have Russia on our side. If the defecation hits the ventilation with the DPRKers, US + Russia + Japan + South Korea would be a hell of an alliance, even if Russia only sticks with us for as long as DPRK remains a threat.

Mr. Prodigy on April 10, 2012 at 12:39 PM

And, I thought the Palestinians had the worst/dumbest leadership in the world. North Koreans are dying of hunger while the leadership of North Korea acts insanely.

SC.Charlie on April 10, 2012 at 12:42 PM

Ovommit will not do anything even if it was not an election year. What should happen if launched, EVERY nation should launch missiles to shoot the damn thing down period.

Brushjumper on April 10, 2012 at 12:44 PM

Countries like N. Korea and Iran know they only have until January 2013 to piss on the U.S.

Roy Rogers on April 10, 2012 at 12:44 PM

The schmuck in the pic isn’t in charge, the military complex in No Ko are, firing up a big candlestick at the risk of armed conflict is a benefit to them.

At most risk? Seoul.

Speakup on April 10, 2012 at 12:45 PM

J.E. Dyer on April 10, 2012 at 12:36 PM

That’s why I keep wondering what China is doing.

The anti-missile system is good, the controllers are good…but this is the first time the action will be for real.

cozmo on April 10, 2012 at 12:45 PM

Russia, US warn North Korea over missile launch

Boy…I bet that’s got ‘em worried!

Blaise on April 10, 2012 at 12:45 PM

Seven Percent Solution on April 10, 2012 at 12:42 PM

I’ve always gotten a kick out of that. Talk about hyperbolic propaganda.

Bitter Clinger on April 10, 2012 at 12:45 PM

Nice to have Russia on our side. If the defecation hits the ventilation with the DPRKers, US + Russia + Japan + South Korea would be a hell of an alliance, even if Russia only sticks with us for as long as DPRK remains a threat.

Mr. Prodigy on April 10, 2012 at 12:39 PM

Nonsense. Russia is not on “our side” and will only use the U. S. until its utility is gone.

rplat on April 10, 2012 at 12:50 PM

North Korea is a strategic convenience for China. … They don’t view North Korea as a problem for peace and security, but as a bargaining chip for China.

I don’t think Japan will miss. The weapon system is good, and so are the Japanese controllers.

J.E. Dyer on April 10, 2012 at 12:36 PM

That’s why I keep wondering what China is doing.

The anti-missile system is good, the controllers are good…but this is the first time the action will be for real.

cozmo on April 10, 2012 at 12:45 PM

Perhaps China wants to see just how well Japan can use those defense missles. What better way to find out than have the DPKR stick up their heads to see if anyone is shooting.

IrishEyes on April 10, 2012 at 12:58 PM

Kim Jong-unbelieavable.

steebo77 on April 10, 2012 at 1:06 PM

Japan, which would be the DPRK’s prime target in hostilities…

Not South Korea?

Yakko77 on April 10, 2012 at 1:07 PM

Is there anyone in North Korea can tax?

Because that’s really all that’s in his wheelhouse, especially since they can’t understand his tired speeches.

NoDonkey on April 10, 2012 at 1:08 PM

Hot Air:
Now 6 days NBC edit-gate free.

(And ,of course,anything even remotely or tangentially related to the Trayvon Martin case)

I take it this is the cowardly result of “Kilgore Trout” syndrome.

Dr. Carlo Lombardi on April 10, 2012 at 1:09 PM

“How about a nice game of chess?”

tomg51 on April 10, 2012 at 1:14 PM

I’ve always gotten a kick out of that. Talk about hyperbolic propaganda.

Bitter Clinger on April 10, 2012 at 12:45 PM

I have no doubt Obowma has taken notice…

/

Seven Percent Solution on April 10, 2012 at 1:18 PM

Still, if Japan successfully shoots down the missile while flying over its territory, expect a great deal of … tension. Japan will have the right to respond to such a provocation, especially since the UN has already forbidden such launches, which the UN has enforced by, well, demanding that North Korea comply with its resolution, and not much else. That could provoke Pyongyang into retaliation either towards Japan or South Korea, either of which would involve the US in a shooting war with the North again — and could eventually bring China and Russia into the conflict, too. On the other hand, given the DPRK’s track record on missile launches, Japan might just wait and let the rocket fall into the ocean on its own.

The Norks probably don’t have missiles capable of reaching the United States, but they already have shot missiles over Japan, which splashed into the ocean on the other side.

If a North Korean missile does cross into Japan’s airspace, Japan probably SHOULD shoot it down, even if its trajectory takes it into the ocean. Tokyo is an extremely busy airport for international passenger flights, and a hostile missile over Japan would be a danger to innocent airline passengers. If the Japanese did shoot down the missile, it would show North Korea that they are not a credible threat to Japan, but North Korea could not justify any further aggression toward Japan over what would be, for Japan, self defense.

Steve Z on April 10, 2012 at 1:18 PM

I’d guess that the Kim Jong-un just wants to engage in some brinksmanship to get more concessions in negotiations

I disagree and dont think this punk knows jack shit about anything except what he sees on ESPN and reads on the back of a cereal box.

He hasnt made his bones, and guys in the Nork crew who have their button are wondering why theyre having to take orders from such a little milquetoast.

Methinks, but me not know for sure, that this is some behind-the-scenes generals trying to stir the kimchee.

Sacramento on April 10, 2012 at 1:22 PM

Stop…or we’ll say “stop” again: O’Bumbles.

Moose Drool on April 10, 2012 at 1:22 PM

I’d guess that the Kim Jong-un just wants to engage in some brinksmanship to get more concessions in negotiations, but his father was crazy enough to launch several times, with no real consequences. Until those consequences bite, don’t expect Pyongyang to do anything differently.

Obama will tell Medvedev: “Hey, I’ll have more flexibility on this missile issue after the election.”

Mevdedev: “I understand completely. I will transmit this information to Jong-un.”

Outlander on April 10, 2012 at 1:23 PM

Why should missile launches from this one Chinese province be treated differently from any other?

logis on April 10, 2012 at 1:28 PM

The White House has told NK to use weather.com

FTA:

The White House on Tuesday denounced secretive North Korea’s overtures to international news outlets ahead of a long-range rocket launch as “propaganda.” It also mocked the impoverished Stalinist regime’s claim that it merely aims to put a weather satellite in orbit, saying it should just “go to weather.com.”

http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/ticket/white-house-condemns-north-korea-rocket-propaganda-154427788.html

dogsoldier on April 10, 2012 at 1:29 PM

I expect obambo to do nothing more than bow to the fat little creep and suck his pyonyang since he’s a fellow communist.

It’s sad when Russia is doing more behind the scenes to stop the commie than our own president dunce. But, I expect when war breaks out and spreads wide and far, russia will ally with us against china. China may not be willing to prop up the little tinpot anymore though, the negatives with those north korean nutballs far outweigh any positives, especially when china is too busy fomenting more angst in the middle east to worry about some mongoloid holding power in a broken failed state that just sucks their coffers dry and only provides a minor irritation to the west. They just aren’t worth the trouble.

Wolfmoon on April 10, 2012 at 1:30 PM

… It also mocked the impoverished Stalinist regime’s claim that it merely aims to put a weather satellite in orbit, saying it should just “go to weather.com.”

You don’t belittle them or humiliate them, you tell them in no uncertain terms how it’s going to be. This is the kind of thing that pisses off dictators to where they do crazy things. Fools all of them.

WitchDoctor on April 10, 2012 at 1:32 PM

You don’t belittle them or humiliate them, you tell them in no uncertain terms how it’s going to be. This is the kind of thing that pisses off dictators to where they do crazy things. Fools all of them.

WitchDoctor on April 10, 2012 at 1:32 PM

You are correct. Looks like Zero wants them to launch it. Taunts are for grade schoolers.

dogsoldier on April 10, 2012 at 1:36 PM

They are learning how to use the Iran rope-a-dope diplomacy.
Agree with all demands and then do anything you want.

Kind of like how Obama governs….
;-)

albill on April 10, 2012 at 2:05 PM

Chaz Bono isn’t messing around anymore.

But rest assured liberals, the US is not going to stand in the way of North Korea having weaponized ICBMs. If they take out Los Angeles or Hawaii you can blame the vast right wing conspiracy.

CorporatePiggy on April 10, 2012 at 2:24 PM

Watched some documentary recently about NK, the people have know clue. They are truley in the dark about anything outside of what the regime tells them. Sad, poor and hungry is no way to go through life.

D-fusit on April 10, 2012 at 12:21 PM

You are absolutely correct. A HotAir reader a while back recommended this book which I immediately bought and have read three times now. I encourage anybody with an interest in N. Korea or in what true totalitarian communism is to get it and read it. It will shock you.

“Nothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea” , by Barbara Demick

Trafalgar on April 10, 2012 at 3:22 PM

Wow. I thought this guy was dead already….didn’t realize he was alive and playing with ballistic missiles. Oh well.

austinnelly on April 10, 2012 at 5:11 PM

Short read, good book, not at my local lib had to go Amazon. I recommend: “The Aquariums of Pyongyang” by Kang Chol-Hwan & Pierre Rigoulot
And I’ll shall schedule this Barbra Demick book for future reading.
(Hope my local library has it.)
Little Kim Jung Un will regret taking on the Japanese. He’s likely to poke his fist at them and pull back a bloody stump. The Japanese know how to fight, just ask the Marines.

Missilengr on April 10, 2012 at 5:32 PM

Send in Madeline Albright, Bill Clinton and most of all Jimmy Carter!

They’ll fix it and make everything right, just like they did so many times before with the NORKs.

CatchAll on April 10, 2012 at 8:38 PM