What does Korea gain from this missile test?

So Korea is testing a missile with the capability to strike Alaska. Yeah, whoopty-doo, but the insinuation is that they can now strike U.S., European as well as Asian soil with a rocket launch.
The linked story indicates that North Korea isn’t happy with the position at which it has arrived since the nuclear non-proliferation talks began. This obviously doesn’t improve the international standing of North Korea, so what does this government have to gain? We’ve got the capability to launch on you, so back off?
It seems unwise. Does anyone have some (preferably) more enlightened thoughts than mine?

Do you mean that nobody will like them any better? I’m sure that’s true. But I doubt “liked” is what they’re going for. I think it comes down to bargaining position and/or deterrance.

What Marley23 said. Either that, or the nightmare scenario; they think they’re going down, and want to take some of us with them out of sheer nastiness and/or craziness.

North Korea is the most human rights unfriendly country on earth and they seem to approach diplomacy with a hostage taker mentality. “Give me what I want and don’t try to do anything to harm me or I’ll start killing innocent people” seems to explain alot of their foreign policy. As it stands they have endless military weapons aimed at Seoul with a population of 10 million and they could cause millions of deaths in a day. They also have about 200,000 commandos to do suicide missions in other countries in case war breaks out, mostly in Japan & South Korea.

N. Korea also has an extensive underground bunker system (at least in Pyongyang) in case war does break out. From what I’ve read on the subject their goal is to hold out in bunkers while causing as much pain and damage as possible so that the invaders sue for peace. The potential to hit the US with chem/bio/nuclear weapons fits into that military strategy.

So this is just a way for them to say ‘we can hurt you badly if you do something we don’t like’.

N. Korea doesn’t really strike me as a country that cares or wants to care about international consensus. Their motivating philosophy of “juche” implies independence from the outside world. And they have resisted attempts at promoting human rights from virtually every developed nation on earth. If they really cared what others thought they would’ve instituted reforms during the famine of the 90s or improved their human rights situation.

Good thing that our current administration as been primarily focusing on North Korea for the past 5 years instead of invading a country with no WMD because it might possess them at some distant point in the future, cause that would be really, really stupid. :rolleyes:

What’s the point in that when it’s Democratically superior ally in the South can do the work for them? :rolleyes:

What’s the good of having a big missile if you don’t fire it off once in a while? :smiley:

Currently, South Korea cannot handle its own defense. Their government is working towards that aim and would dearly love to have the ability to single-handedly repel a million-man army attacking from the North.

Another problem is that if the US were to attack the North, China would probably have no problem with coming into the fray as they did before. North Korea is still, after all, one of their allies.

The real reason nobody’s attacking the North, IMHO, is that it’s just not worth the risk for the benefits to be gained. The South is gaining some economic benefit from its tourism and manufacturing deals with the North. The North is also gaining economic benefit from those deals, not to mention that the South is providing the technology for the construction, etc. The North is gaining food, in reality at no cost, for their people (well, for the military and the higher government echelons–there’s corruption in the North also) and the South gains brownie points for providing the food. There are some other things involved, but you should get the gist of it now.


Another problem is that if the US were to attack the North, China would probably have no problem with coming into the fray as they did before. North Korea is still, after all, one of their allies.
It’s kinda too bad we can’t work a deal with the Chinese to have kinda like what happened with Russia during WWII. We move north from the South Korea-North Korea border and the Chinese move south from the China-North Korea border. Of course, even China would have to see North Korea as a threat and I bet China wouldn’t give up the territory it captured any more than the Soviets did.

Besides, that’s way out there. It’s up there with imagining an American-Russian-Indian-Chinese alliance against the Muslim parts of the world.

Seriously, would China really come in? What would she have to gain?



(If the US was Machiavellian enough, with many investments in China, I fear and wonder if Taiwan will be the sacrificed pawn (not necessarily in a violent invasion) in exchange for China not getting involved in North Korea if NK goes for War)

Don’t we also have investments in Taiwan?

When push comes to shove, the amount of investments in Taiwan will prove to be not as important as the ones in China.

(Once again, talking like a Machiavellian, in reality I would not approve; but looking at the possibilities, I would prefer a united and capitalistic Korea and tell Taiwan: good luck…)

The NY Times had an article on them a couple of years back. The basic thought line in the article was that the N. Koreans are on the verge of starving their entire population to death. There was a satellite photo taken at night of N. Korea and one of S. Korea. N. Korea has virtually no power, no factoires, no productive capacity of any type. The conclusion of the article was that there is a very real possibility that N. Korea may just fire off all it’s weapons for the hell of it. Kind of a Solomon pulling down the temple around him move.

This country scares me a whole lot more than most Middle Eastern countries.

You mean Samson pulling the temple down
[/pedant mode]

Didn’t Solomon kind of dig a hole around him? Like a mine shaft?

Yup, you’re right. Guess I’ve got my head up my S today. :smack:

Well, I see this evening that N. Korea could score a knockout propaganda blow against the US by firing their little rocket:
U.S. weighs shootdown of N. Korea missile

Snerk! :smiley:
If we try that, is there anyone who thinks the interceptor stands a better chance than a nitrocellulose cat in hell?
Space Command fucking stopped testing the missile because it refused to leave the launch pad!
Making noises like the US is El Nino itself, will only increase our embarrassment when the intercept fails.

Skeptic & CDI Think-Tank member Phil Coyle wasn’t really snerking, and gave the opinion “they might miss their target” prior to pointing out the US “hasn’t had a successful test in 4 years”.

Two Things:

  1. They want to extort money , oil, and food from the USA (they played this one on Clinton and he gave in to them).
  2. They want to export their missiles-possibly to Iran, and maybe Pakistan. To do this , they need a test launch.
    The US is quite right to refust talks…unless the Russians, Chinese, Japan also participate. :smack:

You might prefer a united and capitalistic Korea, but China would not. China prefers the current arrangment, as dysfunctional as it is.