Amid stalled talks with the US we have the dangerous Thanksgiving specter of multiple North Korea ICBM launches in the past month — or were they?
Pyongyang has lashed out at Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, calling him a "political dwarf" for 'misidentifying' missiles used in the latest tests. In the fourth known recent test of a new "multiple launch rocket system," two short-range projectiles were fired into waters off NK's east coast on Thursday. It's sparked an intense debate over the nature of the missiles, and whether they were banned ballistic missiles under United Nations Security Council resolutions, which would constitute a threat to the region and the world.
On Saturday a North Korean Foreign Ministry official called Abe “the most stupid person ever known in history” after the Japanese leader publicly characterized the latest rocket test as a likely ballistic missile launch.
“It can be said that Abe is the only one idiot in the world and the most stupid man ever known in history as he fails to distinguish a missile from multiple launch rocket system while seeing the photo-accompanied report,” NK's Foreign Ministry’s Department of Japanese Affairs said on the North’s official Korean Central News Agency channel.
All of this has led an enraged Pyongyang to issue a more direct threat of "a real ballistic missile" which concluded the fiery and bizarre "political dwarf" comments:
“Abe may see what a real ballistic missile is in the not distant future and under his nose,” the statement said.
And followed with, “Abe is none other than a perfect imbecile and a political dwarf without parallel in the world.”
Of Thursday's launch, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told reporters that the missiles didn't enter Japan's airspace or "exclusive economic zone" at sea. The incident followed a series of short-range missile tests by North Korea in late October, which landed near Japan.
According to South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff, the projectiles launched days ago flew about 380km (235 miles) at a maximum altitude of 97km (60 miles), leading to debate over their nature and classification in among western analysts as well.
"Some experts said the distance and trajectory of the projectiles showed they were virtually missiles or missile-classed weapons," Sky News noted.
The South Korean army further assessed they were "presumed to be fired from a super-large caliber multiple rocket launcher," according to an official statement .
Though the White House has in recent months downplayed the tests, Pyongyang's new threat to launch "a real ballistic missile" over Japan is sure to provoke a reaction from Washington, also given that if confirmed to be a ballistic missile test, it would mark the 13th since May of this year.