Defence of Canada
Date: Monday, June 14 2004
BC & the Yukon border Alaska - Canadians should be concerned about this potential threat to our sovereignty. *******
North Korea missile test 'brings US within range'
By Richard Spencer in Beijing
North Korea has tested an intercontinental ballistic missile engine capable of hitting the United States, according to a South Korean report.
The potential range of the missile was established by American intelligence from scorch marks and other traces of the engine test, the newspaper Joongang Ilbo said, citing diplomatic sources.
It could reach up to 3,700 miles, enough to hit Alaska.
North Korea is developing a family of long-range missiles called the Taepodong. Taepodong 1 was test-fired over Japan in 1998. It caused consternation, not least because of the determination of the North Korean leader, Kim Jong-il, to pursue a nuclear weapons programme.
The engine test for Taepodong 2 was carried out last month, Joongang Ilbo said. A full missile test - which would cause a diplomatic crisis - would be the next step.
America has been diverted from its attempts to force North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons by the war in Iraq but the possibility of nuclear-armed missiles being aimed at it would provide a new spur to action.