North Korea uses Facebook to hack private computers, analyst says

by Wade Massey July 21, 2016, 8:20

The drill rehearsed "making preemptive strikes at ports and airfields in the operational theater in south Korea, where the USA imperialists nuclear war hardware is to be hurled", the North's official Korean Central News Agency said Wednesday.

The test firing was seen as an angry reaction to the deployment of U.S. missile defence system in South Korea under which about 30,000 USA troops are permanently posted in South Korea.

Last week, South Korea said the THAAD system, created to intercept ballistic missiles flying at high altitudes inside and outside the atmosphere, will be deployed in Seongju County, North Gyeongsang Province.

KCNA said the drill was carried out by the Hwasong artillery units of the North Korean army's Strategic Force, which is in charge of striking US military bases in South Korea.

South Korea's foreign ministry strongly denounced North Korea's defiant ballistic missile launches on Tuesday, vowing to take the necessary diplomatic actions to tighten the screws on the communist country, South Korea's News Agency (Yonhap) reported.

The missiles fired this morning are presumed to be Scud-class or intermediate-range Rodong missiles.

Han Min-koo, South Korea's defense minister, believes that this missile launch constitutes a "sort of protest" against the planned deployment of the USA terminal high-altitude area defense (THAAD) network in South Korea. There are still about 28,500 American troops stationed in the southern part of the Korean peninsula as a result of the 1950-1953 Korean War. Washington has deployed a network of land and sea-based radars, interceptors, and command centers to protect its bases in the Pacific from potential missile attacks from North Korea, Russia or China.

The THAAD system can intercept incoming missiles much higher up, which gives Seoul an added layer of protection compared to its current Patriot batteries that can only hit rockets closer to the ground.

South Korean officials also believe the North is preparing to conduct a fifth underground test of a nuclear weapon.

Lee Chun-geun, a scientist at South Korea's Science and Technology Policy Institute, said that the North Korean missiles were believed to be carrying warheads, which contain trigger devices but not plutonium or uranium, to see whether those warheads could detonate properly.

The North's leader, Kim Jong-un supervised the exercise that successfully tested the simulated detonation of nuclear warheads mounted on missiles, its official KCNA news agency reported. He made clear that the THAAD to be employed in South Korea will not be sharing information with the wider MD network.

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