North Korea

North Korea Launches Possible Long-Range Missile, Possibly Fails


A country that can't even power its capital city at night, nor prevent millions of its citizens from starving, may not be the threat that the doom and gloom crowd says. Exhibit infinity, according to ABC news:

North Korea's anticipated missile launch failed today after it fired the long-range test rocket, defying U.N. Security Council resolutions and an agreement with the United States.

The 90-ton rocket launched and there was a larger than anticipated flare.

U.S. officials said that the missile is believed to have crashed into the sea.

This launch, of course, is a swagger move by tubby, 20-something leader Kim Jong-Un. And predictably the international community soundly condemned the missile launch plans and suggested if the country didn't back down, sanctions, censure, and serious international scolding would commence.

But North Korea claimed that 1) this totally doesn't violate the food aid conditions and 2) this was totally not a long-range missile launch test at all and it is actually just satellite "Shining Star" launched in celebration of the anniversary of the birth of eternal-president Kim Il-Sung. But also 3) North Korea does what it wants, dammit.

Said ABC news:

The show of muscle put the region on edge, but Donald Gregg, former U.S. Ambassador to South Korea from 1989-1993 and an ABC News consultant, said he believed it was new leader Kim Jong Un's way of asserting his power.

"The main audience for this missile is internal not external," Gregg said. "This is [Kim Jong Un's] way of demonstrating to the people of North Korea he is in charge and his country is capable of high tech things. It is a manifestation of his power."


Experts did not doubt the possibility of a satellite being attached to the rocket, but feel the satellite is a cover to test a long-range missile.

Gregg says Americans should relax, however, because North Korea is crazy, but not crazy-stupid enough to attack the U.S. since they could guess the end result. Still, nuclear fears are not entirely unfounded. Adds Bloomberg:

A South Korean intelligence report warned that North Korea may follow the rocket launch with the detonation of an atomic device. Recent activity at the Punggye-ri nuclear testing site is consistent with preparations for previous detonations in 2006 and 2009, according to the intelligence report obtained April 9 by Bloomberg News.

The Obama administration has said firing the rocket would breach the February 29 food deal, which included a North Korean pledge to halt uranium enrichment at its main atomic facility in Yongbyon. North Korea has criticized that stance, calling it an overreaction "beyond the limit" in a statement from an unnamed foreign ministry official cited by KCNA last month.

Still, each time North Korea starts trying to play big and bad on the world stage, don't get nervous. Remember that North Korea spends scant resources on boondoggles like the world's biggest, most hideous hotel (that took 20 years to open) and their weirdly beautiful metro, which like most things in Pyongyang, is kind of staged for foreigners and is much weirder and shoddier than it initially appears.

Maybe not a lot of funds or know-how left for feeding people or nuking foreign countries, but there's always enough to imprison 150,000 people in sub-Gulag conditions.

Reason on North Korea.

NEXT: How and Why a Campus Cop at UC Davis Viciously Pepper-Sprayed a Group of Passive College Kids

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  1. FIST!

  2. FIST!

  3. FIST!

  4. Ah, the triple-click.

    Am I the only person in the country who doesn’t care that a sovereign nation tested a weapon?

    1. No, I don’t care either.

    2. I jut thought you liked fisting.

      1. Oh, he does.

        1. Well, come on, who doesn’t?

          1. I’m not judging.

    3. THEY DECLARED WAR ON THE SEA. We signed a treaty with the ocean dwellers. We must honor that pact.

      1. Do it for the FISHEZ!

        1. You chant my name thrice and you receive a pearl of wisdom. SAVOR IT.

          1. I am truly blessed.

            Or have I summoned Beetlejuice?

          2. and you receive a pearl of wisdom.

            I always heard if you fist three times you got a pearl…but it wasn’t one of wisdom.

            1. Gross, dude.

    4. ABC’s special report interrupted Jeopardy!, so I was pissed off.

    5. I look at it this way: North Korea is struggling to do stuff that would be on the cutting edge of technology… in 1945.

      Personally I’m not terribly impressed that they can’t even get something that is probably about as sophisticated extra large v2 rocket in the air.

      1. Apparently not so sophisticated.

  5. They’ll probably end up blowing themselves up.

    1. Like Brazil.

  6. …tubby, 20-something leader Kim Jong-Il.

    Kim Jong-un.

    He’s the Un-Supreme-Leader! Ha ha ha ha ha!

    1. It’s a funny typo because decades of misery under an inherited dictatorship means who the hell cares who is really the leader.

      Ha. Priceless.

      Fixed. Thank you.

      1. See also “long-rage missile” and “atall” in the same paragraph.

        1. It’s Thursday which is ladies night pretty much everywhere. She’s probably on her fourth $3 Long Island. Cut her some slack.

          1. I bet Lucy drinks draft Yuengling down at The Moose.

            1. Bottle Yuengling at Howler’s was actually more my scene. Good guess, though!

              1. I love their Black n Tan.

              2. Never heard of it ’til now. I googled it and it kinda looks like an East End Moose. Different music crowd maybe?

                What do I know though. I’m just an old drunk who used to down cheap pitchers of Michael Shea’s at Dee’s. Back in the golden days before the college punks discovered the South Side.

              3. Bottle Yuengling

                All respect lost.

                I could deal with one or the other. But both? Unacceptable.

            2. Looks like a cool place. I’ll have to drive to Pittsburgh for a Pirates game some Saturday and check it out.

              1. Pittsburgh for all of its faults is not lacking in good bars to go to.

                If you’re gonna come to town put word out; I’m sure the Reason p-burgh crew would be up for a drunken city tour.

                1. Sweet:) We have a brand new bar down the street. One of the owners just moved here from Pittsburg to open it. Was in the bar business there. Not sure exactly where though. I’ll have to ask him.

                  1. Next time you go in ask the owner if they know “General Butt Naked from Pittsburgh”.

                    He won’t, but it’ll be funny.

                    1. It will be funny if he doesn’t cut me off:) He’s a cool guy. He seems like he should own a bar. They have pretty good beer selection 90+, good bar food, cute girls, 70″ tvs. Less than a mile from my house. Great new spot for me:)

                2. Am I invited?

                  1. If you’re in Pittsburgh then you’re part of the p-burgh Reason crew. We roll deep.

                    NOBODY fucks wit the H&R mob boyeee!

                    1. I will be in town for the first GT@Pitt football game after Pitt finally gets around to joining the ACC.

  7. Experts did not doubt the possibility of a satellite being attached to the rocket, but feel the satellite is a cover to test a long-range missile.

    This aspect of the reporting of this story has irritated me to no end.

    It can be both, you know. I doubt there’s a Chinese wall between the rocket scientists doing orbital trajectories and the rocket scientists doing ballistic trajectories. And if you can accomplish the former, you can accomplish the latter.

    1. Chinese wall? These are Koreans. Come on, dude. So all Asians look alike to you?

      1. Sorry. Please change “Chinese wall” to “Yalu River”.

    2. Yes, but why would you go to the expense of developing satellite tech and hardware if you’re just trying to find out if your match lights?
      I know the NK government starves the public for PR efforts, but that still doesn’t leave a lot of slack.

      1. It just has to look like a satellite.

      2. It’s a 2003 Blackberry. They’re going to call it in a few days and if it doesn’t go straight to voicemail, Success! Best Korea’s first satellite launch!

  8. The Adventures of Kim Jong Un.…

    1. wow. I never knew Kim Jong Un was all that.

  9. Looks like RP is on Stossel tonight.

    …and Palin of all people.

    1. And The Jacket and Kennedy.

      1. Maybe Palin and Kennedy make out?

    1. “Because Aleynikov did not ‘assume physical control’ over anything when he took the source code, and because he did not thereby ‘deprive [Goldman] of its use,’ Aleynikov did not violate the [National Stolen Property Act],”

      In addition, the Appeals Court struck down charges against Aleynikov of violating the Electronic Espionage Act since the software was never destined for foreign markets. Specifically, the judges wrote, “Because the HFT system was not designed to enter or pass in commerce, or to make something that does, Aleynikov’s theft of source code relating to that system was not an offense under the EEA.”

      Someone please explain to me how this is regulating activity, since Aleynikov apparently did not intend to sell the source code he did not steal (the article does not specify one way or the other about selling). Therefore, no commerce to place. Aleynikov is, essentially, inactive.

      Moreover, isn’t this decision in violation of Wickard somehow, since Filburn never intended to sell his personal wheat?

      I realize the crux of the case is violation of EEA, but why is there a conflation with commerce here?

      1. No idea. But if I had to guess, I’d say that a ruling was made at some point invoking the commerce clause to extend the reach of the EEA. Which would put it in good company with a whole shit-load of other laws.

        1. There really is no limit to the Commerce Clause, is there?

          1. Not since some chick in a lake rose from the water and handed FDR it’s new definition.

            1. You can’t expect to wield supreme power just ’cause some watery tart threw a sword at you!

              1. That took 4 whole minutes? Man, this place has really gone downhill since Postrel left.

      2. It’s nice to see a court that thinks that commerce is, you know commerce, at least in a criminal context.

  10. More like a Wrong-range missile.

    /not lacist

  11. Can someone explain why Reasonable makes some comments highlight in pink? I hope it is not trying to out people…again.

    1. I believe it does that for comments that are new since you refreshed last.

    2. Pink = those who responded since your last reload.

      …or they are gay.

    3. Someone mentioned that before. I haven’t seen that and I use different computers. wierd.

      1. Then you’re gay.

        I think that’s how it works, doesn’t it? Where’s amakudari when we need him?

        1. Huh, I wonder how there software knows I’m gay and I don’t? It must be smarter than me.

      2. I see your comment is in pink.


        1. I guess that settles it than. Damn, and I like boobies so much.

          1. Maybe you were a lesbian in a previous life.

    4. It’s very interesting that the first time I saw this phenomenon was when I reloaded the thread to find the answer had been given.

  12. Meh, a third rate, rice run, commie soc Potemkin village that can’t feed its people that epic FAILS at launching a rocket, lasting all of 81 seconds. And with an untested despot at the helm. And it’s really not our problem anyway.

    I’ve seen this movie before. Wake me when it gets interesting.


      1. At least there could have been cheap Nork Tojo studios knockoffs of Gamera and Rodan.

        Now I feel cheated, Jim. Thanks.

    1. From the link:
      “There are predictable government jobs here, electricity at least a few hours a day, better-stocked stores, schools that have indoor bathrooms.”

      Folks, this is the 21st century. The description is of a place, oh, 100 miles from the capital of a nation prosperous enough for protesters to gripe about imported beef (…..n-protests )
      Now, NK isn’t Cuba; Cuba doesn’t manage to starve as many people. But the claim and system of ‘workers’ paradise’ is part and parcel of both.
      Sean Penn, fuck you.

      1. I find apologists for socialism take on the logic similar to that of the Chinese concept of the Mandate of Heaven: if it doesn’t work, then the Right People weren’t in charge.

        The system itself and its repugnant collectivist ideology will never be discredited in their eyes.

        1. Because they see it as an opportunity for power. Rouse the rabble and assume control. Charles Manson was back up for parole recently. He had a similar plan as well.

        2. Talk about apologists. Comments from the article:

          Exactly. And people are gullible.

          There are plenty of minerals in North-Korea waiting to be robbed by western countries.

          North-Korea is pretty decent compared to some African countries or Chinese outback.

          This kind of propaganda works because people usually analyze the world through their own madness. In their madness they think that they belong to some fantasy group and on the other hand, they hate some other non-existent surreal group. Neither of these groups exists in reality, but people can be manipulated by bouncing them between these groups.

          Wingnuts have very polarized feelings on these imaginary groups.

          If you were in a bus that took a wrong turn behind the US Capitol in Washington DC , you may get to see something you normally wouldn’t see on any postcard either. The Northeast and Southeast districts in DC are not exactly what the US is proud to show off.

          We also have a commenter noting that in the NK Constitution all citizens are entitled to free medical care, and notes “Better than in the USA.”

          Those who apologize for communist regimes deserve to be shipped there so they can see how awesome mass starvation and murder are.

          1. @MLG I had to go check out the comments there after reading the article in the link. What the fuck! The stupid in there was so thick my eyes are still burning. I did find this story about the only North Korean born in a prison camp known to have escaped.

            1. I still haven’t figured out the whole trick to posting links yet.

              1. Go here and click html link right under html links.

                The site also has stuff for italics, bold, strike, and other stuff you may find useful.

          2. North Korea does provide free medical care to all of their citizens!

            Unfortunately, the only medical text they have access to is a piece of notebook paper on which someone wrote down the traditional treatment for a horse with a broken leg.

    2. Sadly, that bus driver and likely his entire family are now dead or interned in a gulag. Not sure which is worse.

    3. Not nearly as bad as parts of Philly.

  13. Raunch Locket FAIR!

    1. Lacist!

      1. You are worthress Arec Barwin!

        1. Hans Brix? Oh no! Oh, herro. Great to see you again, Hans!

          1. Do you have any idea how fucking busy I am Hans Brik?

            1. Okay, I’ll show you, Hans. You ready? Stand a rittle to your reft. A rittle more. Good. There you go, Hans Brix. How you rike that, you fucking cocksucker?

  14. I wonder how many of the scientists and engineers families are in re-education camps now since the rocket failed? Or better yet how many of the former have been shot?

  15. North v South Korea provides one of the great economic experiments of all time, you cant design an experiment this well.

    Why more people havent learned a lesson from it, I dont understand.

    1. And just to add on, any Comsymp who blame the north’s problem not on their economic system but on having a dictator in power…so did the south for most of its history.

  16. “Gregg says Americans should relax, however, because North Korea is crazy, but not crazy-stupid enough to attack the U.S. since they could guess the end result”

    No kidding. What happens to a country that can’t even feed itself if they attack all their neighbors? They starve! And that’s the best case scenario.

  17. North Korea’s most impressive accomplishment is being the world’s only oppressive authoritarian country that has failed to win the sympathies of the left.

    Has anybody checked if they provide healthcare to all their citizens?

  18. lol, wow I just had to lol at that bro. Too funny.

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