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Print 50 comment(s) - last by rippleyaliens.. on Apr 10 at 11:36 PM

Pentagon says interceptor deployment is "just in case" type rollout

In recent months an increasingly bellicose North Korea has defiantly tested intercontinental ballistic missilesblew up trial nuclear warheadsscrapped a sixty-year-old armistice with the U.S. and its southern neighbor, and -- most recently -- restarted a mothballed nuclear reactor used in production of material for nuclear weapons.

As the threats from North Korea increase, the U.S. has deployed a truck-based, radar-driven interceptor missile system to Guam.  According to the U.S. Department of Defense, the system will protect the island territory of the U.S. if North Korea attempts to attack it with a ballistic missile, as threatened.  The Terminal High Altitude Area Defense System (THAADS) fires on a target rocket when it's in its terminal descent phase, plunging towards the defended territory.

The THAADS system is produced by top defense contractor Lockheed Martin Corp. (LMT).

THAADS
The U.S. has deployed the THAADS interceptor trucks to Guam. 
[Image Source: Lockheed Martin]

While U.S. defense experts doubt North Korea would be able to hit the U.S. mainland with a nuclear missile, Guam -- 2,000 away from the hostile Asian dictatorship -- might be a slightly more feasible target.  Both South Korea and Japan have extensive interceptor systems, which are likely on high alert.

U.S. ally Israel provided the most impressive real-world demonstration of a missile-interception system to date.  Its "Iron Dome" system shot down approximately 9 out of 10 missiles that were headed towards a populated region.  Past interceptor systems used in the Persian Gulf conflicts by the U.S. had lower success rates.

Ballistic missile interception is a more unproven art.  Ballistic missiles are bigger (and hence a bigger target), but are also generally faster than the kind of small rockets Iron Dome or Patriot-missile (U.S.) interceptor systems target. Israel has an interceptor system of its own dubbed Arrow, which the U.S. co-founded and shares technology from.  Fortunately, that system has never been called upon in a real war scenario.

Source: U.S. Department of Defense



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9 out of 10 ?
By Justin Time on 4/3/2013 7:30:55 PM , Rating: 1
If they are nuclear armed, then that may still be a pyrrhic victory.




RE: 9 out of 10 ?
By inighthawki on 4/3/2013 9:16:49 PM , Rating: 3
Is 0/10 better?


RE: 9 out of 10 ?
By Samus on 4/3/2013 10:45:47 PM , Rating: 5
North Korea will be lucky to get one ICBM with a warhead launched accurately toward its target. So a 90% success rate is pretty good when you only need to worry about one missile.

However, I'm willing to bet the missile will fail, fall to the ground, and detonate. They are that incompetent.


RE: 9 out of 10 ?
By Justin Time on 4/4/2013 12:19:52 AM , Rating: 4
Actually, 90% FAILURE rate is what is being referred to - i.e. USA managing to shoot down 9 out of 10 missiles - even if comparable, one nuclear strike is still one too many.

North Korea may be a rogue state with a warped ideology, but they have no shortage of educated people who are every bit as capable as any other in the world.

They may have many limitations in access to technology, but have nevertheless detonated nuclear devices and successfully launched missiles, so to dismiss them as too incompetent to combine the two, is totally unrealistic.


RE: 9 out of 10 ?
By PrinceGaz on 4/4/2013 7:19:21 AM , Rating: 3
So long as we are talking missiles with nuclear warheads, North Korea probably has less than ten viable nuclear devices today, and whether they can successfully combine the device with one of its missiles to produce a working nuclear missile is unclear (and we won't know unless they test fire a nuclear missile, hopefully at an unpopulated target perhaps in the middle of the Sea of Japan where it won't harm anyone - give or take a bit of irradiation to the fish).

Anyway the worst case scenario sees them having a maximum of 48 nuclear devices by 2016, which if an average of 90% could be shot down, only leaves between about three and six nuclear missiles actually hitting targets. We'd only be talking devices with a similar power to that used on Hiroshima; devastating nearby but a couple of miles down the road and the main effect will be injuries from broken windows provided the population is then evacuated a safe distance soon afterwards.

In retaliation, North Korea would cease to exist as the country it is today and the government there knows that it would be the end for them. We know that, and they know that we know that. That's why they'll never actually carry out a nuclear attack on South Korea or anywhere else, regardless of all the threats.


RE: 9 out of 10 ?
By othercents on 4/4/2013 8:13:43 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
In retaliation, North Korea would cease to exist as the country it is today and the government there knows that it would be the end for them. We know that, and they know that we know that. That's why they'll never actually carry out a nuclear attack on South Korea or anywhere else, regardless of all the threats.


The only issue with this is the leader doesn't seam to be level headed. He wants us to back down, so he can say to his people he won, but in reality it is his people that will lose.


RE: 9 out of 10 ?
By PrinceGaz on 4/4/2013 1:41:56 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The only issue with this is the leader doesn't seam to be level headed. He wants us to back down, so he can say to his people he won, but in reality it is his people that will lose.


He's got advisers who know the game that they're playing, as they've played it often enough before. If Kim Jong-un doesn't follow the rules this time (which involves some sort of symbolic agreement brokered by China, which is quite meaningless in reality but allows him to claim some sort of victory to his people) then his generals will likely remove him from power, before Kim Jong-un does something stupid which will remove them all from power permanently.


RE: 9 out of 10 ?
By Techslave on 4/5/2013 11:27:32 AM , Rating: 3
Kim has run multiple simulations on the Atari 2600. The missiles destroyed all 6 cities each time.


RE: 9 out of 10 ?
By Stuka on 4/5/2013 11:55:24 AM , Rating: 2
The whole things is dumb. His country is embargoed and isolated and everything is filtered before entering the country. Why can't he just tell his people "I was all like, 'Bitch please', and the US was all like, 'Sorry bro.'" They will believe him 'cos he is a god, and he never has to involve the rest of the world. No one will ever know.


RE: 9 out of 10 ?
By rippleyaliens on 4/10/2013 10:35:09 PM , Rating: 2
I dug your comment.. BUT you speak of only hirishoma level bombs.. If 1 were to hit say, TOKYO.. Well we have 20 Million Dead.. The Bomb, those tiny ones, only had a 2mil diamater kill zone.. with 16,000 tons of tnt. That is a Crater 2 Miles wide. Not deep, but sinze will be airburts.. which makes it kinda worse..

Even 1 Miss, out of 99= Devastation. WAR.. Matters not, will happen. Even if we dont srike.. they Sneak one someplace.. Remember this is a rogue state.. If 1 blew up. World Economic FAILURE, within 10 years. If the USA took a financial hit, from Mortgages.. One could only imagine something hitting like South Korea's Main City.. OR Japan's Tokyo.. How could any Foreign Market survive this. Insurance payements alone would Devestate our Country. AID.. Whatever.. What people fail to remember, all it takes is 1.. 3000 people, 2 BIGGG Buildings, and boom.. Economy took a HIT!! I cant imagine anything bigger..

The worst case scenario is MUCH Worse.. What i wrote above, was BEST CASE..
Worst Case.. Well 1 sub alone, can eliminate North Korea.. 1 Salvo.. Infact only 1 Missile, each armed with 9 Mirvs, with total 300 Megatons.. 1 HIT= China, getting funky,.. They have to.. the Fall out alone..
Markets getting worse.. Money\Suplies \ FOOD.. boom.. Thats how easy it can start.


RE: 9 out of 10 ?
By nafhan on 4/4/2013 10:36:21 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
have nevertheless detonated nuclear devices and successfully launched missiles, so to dismiss them as too incompetent to combine the two, is totally unrealistic.
Actually, this is pretty difficult. Considering that NK's efforts in both areas have (by all accounts) produced unreliable results (i.e. trouble getting a nuke to detonate), I'd be surprised if they have one small enough to fit on a long range missile. If they do, it looks like there's probably something like a 9/10 chance that missile would break apart in flight - without any outside help.


RE: 9 out of 10 ?
By rippleyaliens on 4/10/2013 11:36:00 PM , Rating: 2
But time goes tick\tock.. For them, IT's not WHEN, but how long will it take them. We did it relatively fast, considering.. North Korea is not re-inventing the wheel, BUT merely copy\paste.. Trial\error.. Will be an interesting next 20 years..


RE: 9 out of 10 ?
By thurston2 on 4/4/13, Rating: 0
RE: 9 out of 10 ?
By ianweck on 4/6/2013 12:33:12 AM , Rating: 2
Come on, you can do better than that.


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