[credit provider=”Wikipedia Commons”]
North Korea’s attempting to launch a long range missile again this year and after refusing to comment on the effort, we can hold back no longer.The media seems to think that Pyongyang’s inglorious prior launch somehow dictates future failure, but that’s disingenuous and BI Military & defence is going to predict DPRK success this year.
Maybe it’s a reaction to the lazy media response surrounding the North’s recent decision to halt the current launch, pull the rocket apart, and make adjustments as a laughable indication of the failure to come.
But there are reasons why this year’s launch may have a better chance of success than the one’s that came before.
First, the proof that North Korea understands its technological limitations and seeks to fill its lack of understanding was confirmed in July of this year when two DPRK agents were arrested in Dnipropetrovsk, Ukraine.
Ukraine is the former Soviet country where 70 per cent of all the Kremlin’s Cold War ballistic missile production took place. Dnipropetrovsk, specifically, is the heart of that effort and was closed off to the outside world from World War II to 1991. In Dnipropetrovsk is a massive solid-fuel missile plant called Yuzmash, along with scholars and students exercising some of the sharpest aerospace engineering minds in the world.
The North Koreans were caught photographing some of these students PhD dissertations marked “Secret” that held “progressive technologies in building rocket systems, spacecraft, liquid-fuel engines, rocket fuel supply systems, and other know how,” according to the Kiev Post.
If two DPRK agents were caught it seems safe to assume there were a handful of others that were not caught and returned to Pyongyang with the information they sought.
Even if there weren’t, and the only two spies sent to glean needed missile tech were busted by the Ukraine Security Service, Iran is reportedly on hand for this year’s launch.
Iran has enjoyed the fruits of Chinese ballistic missile research since at least the mid-90s and there’s little reason to imagine Tehran would not do what it could to help the North with this launch.
Reuters reported the Iranians were on site December 2, but only as the launch date was extended and the rocket brought down has Tehran denied a presence on the ground.
Regardless, delaying a rocket launch rather than plowing forth unaware of impending problems could reveal a sophistication and understanding that was not a part of North Korea’s previous long range ballistic missile launches.
And even if the delay is just the correction of an obvious problem, the care it implies suggests this launch might have a better chance of success than those before it.