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Kim’s Missiles


The North Korean missile threat is old news. Check out this National Intelligence Estimate on ballistic missiles from December 2001: “The multiple-stage Taepo Dong-2—capable of reaching parts of the United States with a nuclear weapon-sized payload—may be ready for flight-testing. The North probably also is working on improvements to its current design. The Taepo Dong-2 in a two-stage ballistic missile configuration could deliver a several-hundred-kg payload up to 10,000 km—sufficient to strike Alaska, Hawaii, and parts of the continental United States. If the North uses a third stage similar to the one used on the Taepo Dong-1 in 1998 in a ballistic missile configuration, then the Taepo Dong-2 could deliver a several-hundred-kg payload up to 15,000 km—sufficient to strike all of North America. A Taepo Dong-2 flight test probably would be conducted as an SLV with a third stage to place a small payload into the same orbit the North Koreans tried to achieve in 1998.”


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