Failure to launch!
(Updates placed at the end of the post.)
US military officials are reporting that North Korea attempt to launch a missile along its east coast, but it blew up almost immediately.
…It’s unclear why it failed. The missile was launched from Sinpo, on its east coast.
The Yonhap news agency in South Korea first reported the failed launch, citing the South Korean military.
“The North attempted to launch an unidentified missile from near the Sinpo region this morning but it is suspected to have
failed,” the South’s Office of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a statement
I have been following the news from this region all weekend, especially the videos of the military parades in the North Korean capital to celebrate the birth of Kim Il-sung, the country’s founding father and grandfather to current leader Kim Jong-un. Experts watching the same footage have made some troubling assessments.
North Korea on Saturday unveiled what appears to be its new intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), staging a large-scale military parade in Pyongyang amid increased military tensions on the peninsula.
A huge truck carrying the missile-shaped objective rolled through the main square of the capital in front of leader Kim Jong-un and other top officials of the communist regime, showed TV footage.
South Korean military officials said they regard it as a new type of ICBM.
“It’s presumed to be a new ICBM. It seems longer than the existing KN-08 or KN-14 ICBMs, an official said.
Meanwhile, Vice President Mike Pence is poised to begin a highly-anticipated trip to Asia, which includes stops in South Korea and Japan.
The stop in South Korea, where Pence will spend Easter Sunday with American and South Korean troops and hold a bilateral meeting with Acting President Hwang Kyo-ahn, comes as North Korea celebrates the 105th birthday of founder Kim Il Sung, the grandfather of the country’s current leader Kim Jong Un.
Pence will “reaffirm” the United States’ commitment to the “ironclad” U.S.-South Korean alliance, a senior administration official told reporters ahead of the trip.
… While Pence will discuss regional security at other stops in Japan, Indonesia and Australia, he will also focus on trade and economic issues, and meet with business leaders throughout the trip.
In Japan, Pence will kick off economic talks first announced by Trump and Japanese President Shinzo Abe after their February summit.
Pence’s visit to Australia, a close U.S. ally, comes after Trump criticized an Obama-era deal between the two countries to resettle refugees.
Hopefully Pence, our troops, and the rest of the world will have a safe and missile-free Easter.
UPDATE 1: President Trump was at Mar-a-Lago when informed of the failure.
President Trump, who is spending the holiday weekend at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida, was briefed on the attempted launch and also spoke by phone with Pence.
“The president and his military team are aware of North Korea’s most recent unsuccessful missile launch. The president has no further comment,” Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis said in a statement.