Drudge has the siren up but a banner on CNN says it’s not the long-range jammy everyone’s been worried about. Stand by for details.
Thanks to Stop the ACLU for the the heads up.
Update: No wonder.
Update: CNN says there were two missiles, one of which is definitely short-range. ABC also says there were two. According to CBS, one of them landed in the Sea of Japan.
CNN thinks the second missile was also short-range. Fox says it, too, landed in the Sea of Japan. One of the experts on CNN thinks we may yet see the long-range missile launched before the day is out.
Update: Major provocation: CNN hears from the State Department that they’ve launched the third missile — the Taepodong ICBM, capable of reaching America. Apparently there was some mechanical problem and it failed in mid-air; no details yet. The UN Security Council may convene tonight.
Update: This BBC graphic illustrates the range of NK’s various missiles.
Update: CNN has the scoop:
The senior State Department official said the launches were timed to coincide with the launch of the space shuttle Discovery from Florida, calling it “a provocative act designed to get attention.”…
Two senior State Department officials said Tuesday that fuel trucks had departed the site where the Taepodong-2 sat on a launch paid, indicating that a test may have been near.
Update: Fox is hearing from U.S. intel officials that the NorKs “attempted” to fire the long-range missile and it failed. CNN says it got off the ground but then something went wrong. Now Fox is quoting the AP as saying four mid-range missiles were fired; it’s not clear yet whether that means CNN mistook a smaller missile for the Taepodong or whether four missiles in addition to the Taepodong were fired.
Update: Fox reports that the Taepodong failed 40 seconds after launch and that John Bolton is “urgently consulting” with UNSC members.
Update: According to the Pentagon via Fox, there were only three missiles: the two Scuds and the Taepodong. Tony Snow told ABC News the same thing.
Update: Barbara Starr on CNN notes that of the two shorter-range missiles, one landed closer to Japan and one closer to — Russia. The military isn’t sure how to read that yet, but they’re leaning towards assuming that even that shorter-range missiles aren’t landing where the NorKs want them to.
Update: CNN says the White House has detected no less than six missile launches, four of which are certainly short-range. ABC has it, too. Did they actually fire a second Taepodong after the first one flamed out? How’d they get it fueled and in position to go so quickly?
Update: CNN has corrected the previous report: according to NSA Stephen Hadley, the actual number is five. Let the conspiracy theories about the missing sixth missile.
Update: ABC breaks it down:
The first two missiles launched appeared to be short- or mid-range missiles — a Scud and a Nodong — and both fell into the Sea of Japan. The third — which broke up less than a minute after it launched — was the longer range missile, sources said. The fourth missile launched was another Scud, and after that another Nodong, which has a range that could include Japan.
Update: Looks like we’re back to six. God only knows how many more are coming, or what’ll happen if one of them hits Japan.
Update: The Security Council will meet tomorrow at 10 a.m., at Japan’s request.