"It Can Reach Washington, DC": Latest North Korean ICBM Can Hit Anywhere In The Continental US

Tyler Durden's picture

There was something different about today's ballistic missile test: according to a preliminary analysis from the Pentagon, the rocket was an Intercontinental Ballistic Missile, which was reported to have flown for 50 minutes, on a very high trajectory reaching 4,500 km above the earth (more than ten times higher than the orbit of Nasa’s International Space Station) before coming down nearly 1,000 km from the launch site off the west coast of Japan.

This would make it the most powerful of the three ICBM’s North Korea has tested so far. Furthermore, the mobile night launch appeared aimed at testing new capabilities and demonstrating that Pyongyang would be able to strike back to any attempt at a preventative strike against the regime.

“The missile was launched from Sain Ni, North Korea, and traveled about 1,000 km before splashing down in the Sea of Japan, within Japan’s economic exclusion zone. We are working with our interagency partners on a more detailed assessment of the launch,” Pentagon spokesman, Col Robert Manning said.

This is concerning for one big reason: according to General Mattis, the North Korean ICBM "went higher, frankly, than any previous" and "North Korea can basically threaten everywhere in the world." This was confirmed by North Korea missile analyst, Shea Cotton, who cited Allthingsnuclear author David Wright, and who told the BBC that the initial estimates of the ICBM test mean that North Korea can now reach New York and Washington DC.

How did North Korea develop such an advanced ICBM? Here, as Michael Duitsman, research associate at the center for nonproliferation studies recalls "the DPRK reportedly tested a new engine a few weeks ago, so #2 makes sense. The second stage burn time on the first two HS-14 tests was crazy long, so it could benefit from a different engine."

Other experts had similar ominous conclusions: here is Vipin Narang, polisci professor at MIT, who noted the following quick implications from the DPRK ICBM night launch: 

1. They want us to know they can hit eastern seaboard
2. Which means they probably got a higher thrust 2nd stage working


1. Night launch helps with readiness, survivability, penetration.

His conclusion: "It's real folks."

A good visual summary of the new ICBM range is showin below: as noted, its estimated range covers all of US. 10,000km (yellow) 13,000km.

Finally, here is opinion of David Wright, physicist and co-director of the UCS Global Security Program, whose insight on North Korean launches has emerged as one of the most informative over the past year.

North Korea’s Longest Missile Test Yet


After more than two months without a missile launch, North Korea did a middle-of-the-night test (3:17 am local time) today that appears to be its longest yet.


Reports are saying that the missile test was highly lofted and landed in the Sea of Japan some 960 km (600 miles) from the launch site. They are also saying the missile reached a maximum altitude of 4,500 km. This would mean that it flew for about 54 minutes, which is consistent with reports from Japan.


If these numbers are correct, then if flown on a standard trajectory rather than this lofted trajectory, this missile would have a range of more than 13,000 km (8,100 miles). This is significantly longer than North Korea’s previous long range tests, which flew on lofted trajectories for 37 minutes (July 4) and 47 minutes (July 28). Such a missile would have more than enough range to reach Washington, DC, and in fact any part of the continental United States.


We do not know how heavy a payload this missile carried, but given the increase in range it seems likely that it carried a very light mock warhead. If true, that means it would not be capable of carrying a nuclear warhead to this long distance, since such a warhead would be much heavier. 

The question now is what Trump meant when late on Tuesday, in response to a question how the US would respond to the latest ICBM launch, he said "we will handle it."

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jaap's picture

I don't understand the stress.

US is selling this great Iron Dome to the world. Why not used it for home defence?


BlindMonkey's picture

I'd take a .40 call Springfield XD for home defense.  Perhaps a Mossberg as another option. Iron dome seems a bit excessive. 

EnglishMajor's picture

At least Hawaii can feel safer, now.

Attitude_Check's picture

Because the US is the most likely  target?   Is logic that foreign a concept to you?

null's picture

Jo cares.
Go on, ask “Jo who?”.

DeadFred's picture

A year ago the all-powerful intelligence agencies said it would be ten years before they could hit any part of the US. I wonder what went wrong? How could such all-knowing institutions be so far off base? Maybe we should blame Russia? /s

Occident Mortal's picture

The North Koreans have done something the US agencies cannot comprehend. It's called 'hard work'.

DeadFred's picture

Who controls NK?
Who really controls NK?


European American's picture

Enough talk (propaganda from Zionization of Ameria). Do us all a big favor and send it to DC.

Cynicles II's picture

could pop the big zion apple, that would end a lot of war on Earth

Montgomery Burns's picture

Amazing how Kim has discoverd how to get people to work hard. Just torture and kill a few slackers !


Having a dozen or so carriers off your coast and contsant "war exercises" just off your borders can be a big motivation.


Having a dozen or so carriers off your coast and contsant "war exercises" just off your borders can be a big motivation.

Bigly's picture

Most of them eat feces at this point

HRClinton's picture

The last time this pace was achieved by singularity of purpose and hard work by sharp minds, was by Germany in WW2.

jeff montanye's picture

well if hitler was in charge he did not have a sharp mind or he wouldn't have attacked the ussr, scared away jewish scientists, not pursued nuclear weapons, or bothered with a surface navy.  even their work on jet engines and rockets suffered from lack of a singularity of purpose.

also a few subterranean ball bearing factories wouldn't have hurt. 

NihilistZerO___'s picture

You mispelled Elon Musk as 'hard work' ;-)

Rizvi Traverse Management. Space-X. NK???

HardAssets's picture

Trillions taken from the American people for ‘defense’ and this is the result? We wanna refund !

J S Bach's picture

"It Can Reach Washington, D.C."

Good.  Now, Mr. Un... make sure you fine tune its trajectory to land on Senator Schumer's and Pelosi's offices.  Timing is of the essence.  We thank you in advance for the great service you will perform for our country.

BlindMonkey's picture

Un can now blow the pants off Rep. Barton...

Lore's picture

@ JSBach: Incidentally, the convention in that part of the world is to refer to people by last name first.  The surname is Kim. 

Notice once again the complete absence in this discussion of the word DETERRENCE.  It's the very cusp of the entire NK missile program, and yet nobody mentions it: DETERRENCE.  Why?  What does North Korea have that someone else could want?  Maybe you're not supposed to ask that question. 

webmatex's picture

Yes US refusal to entertain real talks for the last 65 years has consisently allowed and encouraged NK to develop its deterrent force (Rumsfeld) to the point where the US homeland is today lacking in any defence against its cities except the "ultimate" deterrent of nuclear offense but still  preventing any peace process to proceed against the advice and wishes of SK or China and Russia who have been at the heart of all past initiatives which were ultimately sabataged by US policy.

Kind of a talk or die situation but they still don't get it. Peace is too expensive.

Love to know the cost for the NK war head and launcher compared to US laxative sales last year.

I could donate a table and a few garden chairs for talks, they could even use the garden and i'll light up the BBQ ande break out the booze for the fuckers. Might poison the food too he!

jeff montanye's picture

the trillions of the last generation were spent almost entirely on the defense of israel as seen by the likud/mossad zionists.


well they have pissed away a few trillion on shit like this:


macholatte's picture



Kim Jon’s speech at the awards ceremony:

I gladly and graciously accept this “Terrorist of the Year” award.
Thanks so very much to the Committee, our great staff and scientists, and, of course, I have to thank George Bush the first, Billy Clinton, a big kiss to you Billy, George Bush Jr, Barry Soetero who provided so much emotional support and money, we can’t forget the money and of course my mentor, President Xi.


poeg's picture

It was found one day on a truck across the no man's land border with a label, half scratched off but legible non the less as reading "Property Of The CIA: Won't be none if we can't start some."

The Wizard's picture

DC, NYC, San Fran, LA, they can have mercy on Seattle

waspwench's picture

Why? Seattle is a sanctuary city and a liberal/progressive swamp.

Moe Hamhead's picture

"I shot an arrow into the air, it fell to earth, I know not where"  That's what I interpret the head-line to say:  forget where they intend it to go, it could hit anywhere!

Theosebes Goodfellow's picture

~"Could hit Washington? And this is cause for concern? Fuck that. This is cause for celebration."~

Well, technically speaking, it is one way to clean up the swamp.

waspwench's picture

So how much money does Kim want to do this for us? Or could he be persuaded to do it as a favour?

Captain Chlamydia's picture




the killer microdrones.

You can neither run nor hide.


ErostheDog's picture

if IA follows the same trajectory as computer processor speed, in 10 years skynet will have already taken control and us lowly humans will be way too busy to take time to read article comments. 

webmatex's picture


Had them for years their called Jehova's Witness.

Taser would fry the circuits, bucket of water maybe.

Justin Case's picture

Nothing happens.  They can fight back now.

The main story is that the Korean War has been going on for seven decades. A small, weak North Korea faces the most powerful country in the world. We are still at war, and we have a new leadership that is continuing the policies of the former leaders but possibly jacking them up a notch or two. We are exerting extremely strong pressure and threats on North Korea. They have one weapon to deal with us, and it's one that we encouraged them to develop over the last decade by abandoning previous efforts to reach a peace agreement in the Korean War. That is their nuclear weapons. What we know from the experience of these decades is that every time they're faced with major threats from the United States, or the United States and South Korea, or the United States and Japan and South Korea, as they are at the moment, their approach is to test again and to make clear that they are a player in the nuclear weapon realm. Of course, they're feeling the pressure doubly at the moment. They are feeling it because Trump is talking about North Korea as crazy and also as the biggest threat.


Blankone's picture

The article is BS. NK cannot fight back now, not against the US.

From the article - This was confirmed by North Korea missile analyst, Shea Cotton, who cited Allthingsnuclear author David Wright, and who told the BBC that the initial estimates of the ICBM test mean that North Korea can now reach New York and Washington DC.

That sentence reeks just like the one room analyst who was quoted and used to "verify" all things against Assad.

If NK could hit the US they would show it by firing and allowing a missile to continue flying past Japan and more than half way to the US over open ocean.

ALSO from the article - the "experts" said - Reports are saying that the missile test was highly lofted and landed in the Sea of Japan some 960 km (600 miles) from the launch site. They are also saying the missile reached a maximum altitude of 4,500 km.

AN ALTITUDE OF 4,500KM - (2,800 MILES). I need a LOT of verification of this. It went up 2,800 miles and only traveled horizontally 600 miles. Smells like BS. The international space station is only 250 miles up so these experts claim NK shot a missile 10 times higher and then reentered earths atmosphere, under control, and splashed it just 200 miles short of Japan.

chunga's picture

I'm not a rocket scientist but that does sound pretty high up there. Some expert should easliy be able to say if that's normal. 

poeg's picture

They were using a scope not open sights and had a Canadian sniper pull the trigger.

poeg's picture

Then the aliens popped out and stormed a movie set.

Freddie's picture

Is there a crowd funding site where people can donate money for extra fuel so they can make it to Wash DC or the NY Fed?  

new game's picture

crazy is as crazy does. crazy mAn !

two hoots's picture

Agree, they just protected themselves from some regime change idea.  Too bad countries feel the need to do so?  Must have been a better approach given their people were starving and things in general miserable?   Think we missed an opportunity to pursue covert kindness?

Vageling's picture

Sorry Haus, they can't. It appears to me the supreme chubby leader is uping up on his trump card (pun intended). They have the numbers, but not much modern warfare gear. Just a mean dog growling and barking to defend it's territory. Which ofcourse is their game. These guys... They can bite back, but taking on others? A bridge too far.

P.S. Waiving the "Deutsches Reich" flag now,  I see ;) The German empire. That was 100 years ago. But I get it :)

Jacksons Ghost's picture

Oh Noes!  Not DC!  Please, stop...don't.

LetThemEatRand's picture

"Ignore it [repeal of net neutrality]? Hell I'm celebrating it."

You won't be celebrating it when this site and many more like it slow down to a crawl because they don't pay extra to Verizon, comcast, etc.  Meanwhile, the call for internet censorship will continue unabated, with the difference being that he big companies (who have no accountability) will do the censoring.  The First Amendment doesn't apply to them so they can censor all they want.  Be careful what you wish for.

MonetaryApostate's picture

Yeah, he won't be celebrating his internet usage bill either, we are soooo screwed fo sho!

pods's picture

With all due respect Rand, this site cannot slow down much more, sans adblock of course.

What this would do, is cause NFLX to implode overnight because they cannot pay market rates for the bandwith they steal from everyone.

Net Neutrality was sold as some sort of 1st amendment BS, when in effect, it was just cost shifting by NFLX and to a lesser degree Amazon and Youtube for their HUGE bandwidth requirements.

If repealed, they would be responsible for paying for their huge bandwidth, thus the $10 for all you can stream will go bye bye.

It was sold as a free speech issue, when in reality it was fucking the ISPs (meaning everyone who doesnt stream NFLX) with the costs for the bandwith used by them.

Karl Denninger has been all over this. I know what most will say about Karl, but if anyone should know about this issue, it is him. He ran a damn ISP for christsakes.  Now commence the downvotes, I really DGAF.  This net neutrality issue was just a sneaky way of allowing NFLX to continue with a bankrupt business model by screwing ME.


Akzed's picture

Told my son precisely that Saturday. I think he converted to the notdark side.