Is North Korea a legitimate threat to the United States? It seems that it has made smaller, more undetectable nuclear warheads which, when coupled with an unhinged leader, would make them a major ballistics threat.
North Korea said it has hit the button on its fifth and potentially most powerful nuclear test Friday morning, claiming to have successfully tested a nuclear warhead.
State media said the warhead could be mounted on ballistic rockets and would enable North Korea to produce “a variety of smaller, lighter and diversified nuclear warheads of higher strike power.”
“It’s hard for us to verify their claim. My deep fear is that they will launch a live nuclear weapon on one of their missiles, but that would be extremely dangerous as that could trigger a war,” said Melissa Hanham, a senior research associate at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies.
South Korea, Japan and China condemned the test, saying it was a clear violation of the UN Security Council resolution.
South Korean President Park Geun-hye called Kim Jong Un’s regime “fanatically reckless.”
“The only thing that Kim Jong Un regime can gain from the nuclear tests is stronger sanctions from the international community and its isolation. Such provocation will eventually hasten its path to self-destruction,” she said in a statement.
National security adviser Susan Rice briefed President Barack Obama about the situation, White House press secretary Josh Earnest told pool reporters aboard Air Force One on the US leader’s return trip from Asia.