Author`s name Dmitriy Sudakov

North Korea has something bigger than nuclear bomb

According to the Nodong Sinmun newspaper, in case of a violent conflict with the Americans, the DPRK will most likely win. The publication is sure that the republic that has been able to single-handedly create attack weapons will certainly win the war.

Does North Korea have this weapon and for what purpose? Pravda.Ru asked this question to the head of the Centre for Korean Studies of the Institute of the Far East of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Alexander Zhebin.

"North Korea has obtained something that can put an end to American dictatorship and arbitrariness on the international arena. First off, even according to Western media, the reactor that raises such serious concerns with the United States, which produced plutonium, was taken from the IAEA. The radiochemical laboratory was also taken from open sources, because the Koreans used to be members of the IAEA. Russia and the US started their nuclear programs literally from scratch, and the North Koreans could get involved when the process was already underway. There were many open sources of information.

"Afterwards, they obtained specialists who were trained in peaceful areas of nuclear energy, but then were retrained to work in the defence industry. Plus, there was intelligence information. The North Koreans could concentrate on their work. In fact, any country that has political will and financial resources can make such a bomb. This depends on the political decision of the administration and how it views threats to their national security.

The North Koreans publicly said why they took up the nuclear program. They started working on it after events in Iraq and in Libya, and even earlier - in Yugoslavia and Eastern Europe. They did not want to repeat the fate of those countries and their leaders, who were all literally destroyed. Gaddafi gave up his peaceful nuclear program and was lynched, whereas his country was torn apart. The North Korean administration, in light of all this, mobilised all resources that they had to solve this problem.

North Korea could not compete with the United States, Japan and South Korea in the field of conventional weapons, because they get upgraded fairly often and are quite expensive. The North Koreans had raw materials under their feet: the country has rich uranium ore reserves - around 15,000 tons.

Plus, the North Koreans do not really have large reserves of energy. There is no coal, no natural gas, so the development of nuclear power for them was quite natural. They wanted to develop it given the fact that there are 25 reactors in South Korea. The Koreans - the North and the South - always look at each other and compete. If the South does something, the North wants to do it as well. This competition lasts for ages.

The DPRK, of course, took the ban on space launches with the use of ballistic technologies very painfully. Any launch, any missile, including a satellite, is launched with the use of ballistic technology. North Korea knows that India, Pakistan, Israel can have nuclear weapons. India and Pakistan regularly test nuclear ballistic missiles capable of carrying nuclear warheads, but no one makes a fuss about it at all, even though India and Pakistan have a very complicated relationship and have always found themselves on the brink of nuclear war.

"Interestingly, many in South Korea believe that the two Koreas, if they unite someday, should not abandon their nuclear weapons to be able to stand up for itself, including in its relations with Japan, its long-time historical adversary.

"North Korea started investing more in its nuclear missile program to convince its adversaries that any attempt to change power in the DPRK will lead to tremendous consequences for those who dare to make such an attempt. All the lunches and tests that the DPRK has made during the days of the Trump administration in the USA showed that North Korea was about to build a combat-ready intercontinental ballistic missile and a warhead for it.

"An intercontinental ballistic missile flies for at least 5,500 kilometres to deliver its warhead to a particular target on a very limited territory. The North Koreans have not conducted such a test yet. The longest distance that a North Korean missile has flown so far was 3,700 kilometres. This is not an intercontinental missile, but the DPRK can build such a missile, if they have not done it yet. Both the military and politicians proceed from the worst scenario assuming that the DRPK already has such a weapon, and they build their practical policy on this assumption."

"The United States has been very nervous lately, because they believe that North Korea is about to demonstrate a weapon that could deliver a warhead to the US territory. After WWII, the Americans have invaded many countries, changed many regimes, and interfered in internal affairs of other countries. Now they can see a small and seemingly defenceless country building powerful nuclear weapons. The DPRK has thus become a role model to many other countries that are fed up with the supremacy and exceptionalism of the United States. The US can not let other countries follow the example of the DPRK as it would put an end to the global leadership of the United States. This is what they fear most in Washington."

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