US Korea Institute

Tuesday May 23rd 2017
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Analysis of North Korea’s military policy and capabilities.

North Korea’s Latest Missile Test: Advancing towards an Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) While Avoiding US Military Action

North Korea’s Latest Missile Test: Advancing towards an Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) While Avoiding US Military Action

North Korea’s latest successful missile test represents a level of performance never before seen from a North Korean missile. The missile would have flown a distance of some 4,5oo kilometers if launched on a maximum trajectory. It appears to have not only demonstrated an intermediate-range ballistic missile (IRBM) that might enable them to [...]

North Korea’s “Carrier-Killer” May Be No Such Thing

North Korea’s “Carrier-Killer” May Be No Such Thing

The missile rumored to be KN-17 is displayed during a military parade in Pyongyang on April 18 (Photo: Reuters) Details are still scarce on last Friday’s missile test, but it appears to have been the missile provisionally named “KN-17” and described in sensational press reports as a “Carrier-Killer.” We have seen this missile before, [...]

Much Ado About Nothing: DPRK’s Latest Missile Test Reveals No New Capabilities

Much Ado About Nothing: DPRK’s Latest Missile Test Reveals No New Capabilities

(Photo: Rodong Sinmun) As the United States and South Korea began their annual “Foal Eagle” joint training exercise this past week, North Korea conducted an exercise of its own. Four medium-range ballistic missiles were fired from North Korea’s west coast in a simultaneous volley, and three of them ultimately landed just inside Japan’s [...]

The Pukguksong-2: A Higher Degree of Mobility, Survivability and Responsiveness

The Pukguksong-2: A Higher Degree of Mobility, Survivability and Responsiveness

Sources in the United States, South Korea and Japan reported that North Korea launched a ballistic missile over the weekend. North Korea has been hinting at an intercontinental ballistic missile test since the beginning of the year, but this was no ICBM. Reports indicate that this missile reached a height of 550 kilometers before impacting in the [...]

Musudan Could Be Operational Sooner Than Expected

Musudan Could Be Operational Sooner Than Expected

North Korea seems to have tested its Musudan missile seven times this year, with only a single clear success to show for it. But the North Koreans aren’t simply repeating old failures.  And they aren’t taking the slow path to developing a reliable system, with a year or so between each test to analyze the data and make improvements. That has [...]

North Korea-Iran Missile Cooperation

North Korea-Iran Missile Cooperation

North Korea’s ground test of a powerful, liquid-fueled engine on September 20, and the launch of three modified-Scud missiles earlier this month renewed allegations that Pyongyang and Tehran are collaborating on ballistic-missile development. The accusations are mostly speculative, based largely on the apparent similarities of ballistic missiles [...]

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