US Korea Institute

Wednesday May 24th 2017
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WMD

The realities of North Korea’s WMD ambitions are complex but so are the technological developments that make its programs possible. We will help our readers understand both.

A Quick Technical Analysis of the Hwasong-12

A Quick Technical Analysis of the Hwasong-12

Summary On May 14, North Korea flight-tested a new ballistic missile, the Hwasong-12. This missile was first revealed during the April 15 military parade commemorating Kim Il Sung’s 105th birthday, and has since been the subject of much scrutiny as North Korea watchers try to assess its dimensions and capabilities, as well as what it [...]

A North Korean Nuclear EMP Attack? … Unlikely

A North Korean Nuclear EMP Attack? … Unlikely

Recent press articles warn about the possibility of the North Koreans launching an electromagnetic pulse (EMP) attack on the United States, and there are even suggestions that the recent missile test failures may represent a thinly veiled EMP threat. However, such an attack from North Korea is unlikely, as it would require the North to have much [...]

New Developments in North Korea’s Ballistic Missile Infrastructure—What Does it Mean for the Future?

New Developments in North Korea’s Ballistic Missile Infrastructure—What Does it Mean for the Future?

A 38 North exclusive with analysis by Joseph S. Bermudez Jr. The massive military parades in Pyongyang provide great opportunities to gain insight into North Korea’s ballistic missile aspirations, but they are often used to disseminate propaganda and dissemble about its real aspirations and program direction. Rather than parades, [...]

A Paradigm Shift in North Korea’s Ballistic Missile Development?

A Paradigm Shift in North Korea’s Ballistic Missile Development?

In Kim Jong Un’s 2017 New Year’s speech, he announced that North Korea is in the final stage of preparations to test launch an inter-continental ballistic missile (ICBM). Since then, North Korean media has repeatedly threatened that the launch will occur at a time and place of the North Korean leader’s choosing. On February 12, following [...]

How to Hack and Not Hack a Missile

How to Hack and Not Hack a Missile

With a shortage of good options on the table for dealing with North Korea’s strategic weapons, there is an understandable temptation to look for unconventional alternatives. So-called “cyberwarfare” is definitely unconventional and the appeal is obvious. Whether one wants to meddle in an election, stop an offensive movie release or derail a [...]

Continued Activity at Key Plutonium Production Facilities at North Korea’s Yongbyon Nuclear Complex; Purpose Unclear

Continued Activity at Key Plutonium Production Facilities at North Korea’s Yongbyon Nuclear Complex; Purpose Unclear

A 38 North exclusive with analysis by Joseph S. Bermudez, Jr. Recent commercial satellite imagery of the Yongbyon Nuclear Scientific Research Center indicates activities are taking place at a number of key facilities directly related to the production of fissile material for nuclear weapons. These include: The arrival of specialized [...]

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Credit for photo of young North Korean girl: T.M. All rights reserved, used with permission.