North Korea Conducts Hydrogen Bomb Test, Drawing Global Condemnation

Shortly after the news that North Korea announced it was in possession of an "advanced Hydrogen bomb", to which we said that if "the bomb appears to be authentic, it would confirm that the North is preparing for its most provocative action yet: its sixth nuclear test, which would force Trump to respond, having vowed never to allow North Korea to become a nuclear power with offensive capabilities", this is precisely what happened, when on Sunday morning, North Korea conducted what appears its sixth nuclear test, triggering a tremor 10 times as powerful as that from its test a year ago and just hours after it showed off what it called a hydrogen bomb capable of being mounted on a long-range missile.

The U.S. Geological Survey said it had recorded a M6.3 earthquake that it described as a “possible explosion” in northeastern North Korea—near the site of Pyongyang’s past nuclear tests—at a depth of zero kilometers at noon Pyongyang time. The agency initially assessed it to be a magnitude-5.1 temblor.

South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff assumed North Korea conducted its sixth nuclear test, after an artificial earthquake was detected near the site of the North’s previous nuclear tests earlier today. Additionally, the Korea Meteorological Administration said that it had detected a revised magnitude-5.7 earthquake in the same area of North Korea, in what it described as likely being a “man-made” earthquake.

Because earthquakes are measured using a logarithmic scale, a magnitude-6.3 quake would be 10 times as powerful as the one triggered by the North’s September 2016 nuclear test, which triggered a magnitude-5.3 earthquake, according to the USGS.

Leaving all suspense out of it, shortly after the earthquake reports, North Korea says Kim Jong-un ordered the test of a hydrogen bomb that can be fitted onto an ICBM, and the device was successfully detonated. Additionally, North Korea confirmed the nuclear test on local television, adding that it had been a "perfect success."

Experts who studied the earthquake, which was measured by the U.S. Geological Survey at magnitude 6.3, said that there was enough evidence to suggest the North has either developed a hydrogen bomb or was getting very close, accoding to Reuters.

Since the North carries out its tests in defiance of UN sanctions and international condemnation, the head of the UN’s nuclear watchdog, IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano said the nuclear test was “an extremely regrettable act” that was “in complete disregard of the repeated demands of the international community."

In response to the nuclear test, which will be the harhest test of Trump's diplomatic resolve vis-a-vis North Korea yet, a spokesman for South Korea’s military said that it had strengthened its military posture in response to the likely nuclear test, adding that the Joint Chiefs of Staff had preliminarily assessed the incident to be a nuclear test. Elsewhere, Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said his country would work together with the U.S., South Korea, China and Russia on a response to the apparent nuclear test.

“We can never accept it. We will need to make a strong protest,” Mr. Abe said. It is unclear just how a "strong protest" will change anything at this point.

According to the WSJ, North Korea’s September 2016 test had a likely yield of about 10 kilotons, larger than any of its previous four tests, but likely short of the hydrogen bomb that Pyongyang claimed that it detonated. In this case, the magnitude-6.3 explosion would likely mean explosive power of around a megaton, according to Jeffrey Lewis, director of the East Asia Nonproliferation Program at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies.


* * *


A day after Russian President Vladimir warned that the US and North Korea are “balancing on the verge of a large-scale conflict," North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is doing everything in his power to validate Putin’s words.

To wit, in a segment broadcasted Saturday by the Korean Central Broadcasting Network, the North’s state-run television-news network, the regime claimed that it has “succeeded in making a more developed” hydrogen bomb. In the broadcast, Kim can be seen looking on as a purported thermonuclear warhead is loaded onto an intercontinental ballistic missile, which KCNA described as having “great destructive powers." KCNA added that all hydrogen bomb components are homemade, so the North can "produce as many as it wants." The report also claimed that the North have developed a powerful electromagnetic pulse weapon.

According to the Wall Street Journal, experts fear an attack with this type of weapon could wipe out electrical networks in the U.S.

Here are more details from Dow Jones Newswires:

  • North Korea Says It Has ‘Succeeded in Making a More Developed’ Nuclear Weapon
  • Kim Jong Un Witnesses Hydrogen Bomb Being Loaded onto a ‘New ICBM’ —North Korea State Media
  • New Hydrogen Bomb’s Explosive Power Goes Up to Hundreds of Kilotons —North Korea State Media
  • North Korea Threatens ‘Super-Powerful’ EMP, or Electromagnetic Pulse, Attack
  • North Korea Claims All Hydrogen Bomb Components Are ‘Homemade,’ Can Produce ‘As Many As It Wants’

Reuters explains that the hydrogen bomb's power is adjustable to hundreds of kilotons and can be detonated at high altitudes. Kim Jong Un "set forth tasks to be fulfilled in the research into nukes," KCNA said, but it made no mention of plans for a sixth nuclear test.

As a reminder, in July, the North launched two ICBMs capable of reaching the US mainland, and after a monthlong break, Kim resumed his provocative missile tests last Friday by launching three short-range missiles into the Sea of Japan – and then on Monday, in another unprecedented provocation, the North fired an intermediate-range missile over the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido.

Of course, there is no way of knowing whether the warhead is authentic, though we’re sure the intelligence community’s army of analysts will promptly opine one way or the other. Here’s Reuters with a more detailed account of the broadcast…

“Kim visited the country’s Nuclear Weapons Institute and “watched an H-bomb to be loaded into new ICBM,” KCNA said. “All components of the H-bomb were homemade and all the processes ... were put on the Juche basis, thus enabling the country to produce powerful nuclear weapons as many as it wants, he said.”


Juche is North Korea’s homegrown ruling go-it-alone ideology that is a mix of Marxism and extreme nationalism preached by state founder Kim Il Sung, the current leader’s grandfather.


Kim Jong Un “set forth tasks to be fulfilled in the research into nukes,” KCNA said, but it made no mention of plans for a sixth nuclear test.”

Whether or not the claim of having an H-bomb is a fabrication, professional observers of the Kim regime warn that the report is a signal that the North Korean leader is preparing to carry out what would be the country's sixth nuclear test. North Korea last year conducted its fourth and fifth nuclear tests, claiming that the fourth in January 2016 was a successful hydrogen bomb test, though outside observers raised doubts about this claim. The North conducted a fifth nuclear test in September 2016, which was measured to be possibly North Korea’s biggest detonation ever, but the earthquake it caused was still not believed to be big enough to demonstrate a thermonuclear test, according to Reuters.

And at least one observer who weighed in on Twitter said that the bomb appears to be authentic, which would confirm that the North is preparing for its most provocative action yet: its sixth nuclear test, which would force Trump to respond, having vowed never to allow North Korea to become a nuclear power with offensive capabilities.

Meanwhile, China and Russia have repeatedly urged the US and North Korea to engage in talks – even going so far as to offer a “roadmap” to de-escalation that would ask the North to halt progress on its missile program while the US and South Korea end military exercises.  As always, we await a response from President Donald Trump, who spent Saturday visiting disaster victims of Hurricane Harvey in Texas. As WSJ noted, the State Department has yet to comment.


Looney Dead Canary Sat, 09/02/2017 - 20:30 Permalink

  We’ve been scammed for years by the MIC and their lackeys in Congress and the Fat Korean Boychik have exposed this humongous fraud. Don’t we have multi-layered missile defense? Don’t we have bases almost everywhere in Asia? We were told that we have the best-er-est ground-based and ship-based anti-ICBMs. We were told that THAAD can hit a piece of pigeon shit before it hits the ground. If we can’t shoot down North Korea’s semi-primitive test-missiles, how are we supposed to intercept the top-notch missiles launched by the Russians or Chinese if we succeed starting a war with them? Shooting down Little Kim’s Flying Dildos over international waters would’ve put the end to his Rocketry Project a long time ago. The thing is WE CAN’T. Now, I wanna know what happened to all the money we spent on our “exceptional” Missile Defense!   ;-) Looney

In reply to by Dead Canary

a Smudge by an… stizazz Sat, 09/02/2017 - 21:31 Permalink

Looks like a still to me.Engineer 1: Great leader behold our weapon of terror and destruction!Kimmy: Awesome dude! How many of these can you make?Engineer 1: Enough to the United States.Kimmy: Keep up the good work.Engineer 2: I can't believe he bought that.Engineer 1: Shut up and pour. I need a drink.

In reply to by stizazz

Manthong a Smudge by an… Sat, 09/02/2017 - 22:57 Permalink

  Soviet Commissar: Comrade farmer, how is the potato crop doing? Farmer: Oh, comrade, the crop is so bountiful, when we pile it up it will touch the hand of God. Soviet Commissar: What?.   We are communists and there is no God. Farmer: That’s alright, because there are no potatoes. … from memory, a joke told by Reagan   But for some strange reason the thought problem is not extended. OK, so the young-un might be able to do an EMP…. somewhere… maybe. Um… if we burst a 1 megaton neutron bomb at 10,000 feet over the center of  Pyongyang, outside of pressure blasting the entire downtown to bits how much of the capitol's electric/electronic infrastructure would be left? Oh gosh… maybe the leftist media wants to make it look like Kim Jong Un is holding all the cards.  I am a dyslexic atheist and I believe that there is no Dog.

In reply to by a Smudge by an…

Slack Jack Manthong Sun, 09/03/2017 - 04:31 Permalink

Why doesn't Trump try to fix a problem that will destroy millions more American homes than any nuclear war with North Korea?

So, why is the global rise in temperatures so worrisome?

For one thing, as temperatures rise good farmland will become desert (e.g., dust-bowl conditions will probably return to the American Midwest).

Another major problem is sea-level rise.

Have a look at

The U.S. Geological Survey people claim that;

The Greenland ice sheet melting will raise sea-level 6.55 meters (21.5 feet),
the West Antarctica ice sheet melting will raise sea-level 8.06 meters (26.4 feet),
the East Antarctica ice sheet melting will raise sea-level 64.8 meters (212.6 feet),
and all other ice melting will raise sea-level 0.91 meters (3 feet).

For a grand total of about 80 meters (263 feet).

So, what does an 80 meter (263 feet) rise in sea-level mean. Have a look at the following map of the world after an 80 meter rise. It means that over one billion people will have to be resettled to higher ground and that much of the most productive agricultural land will be under water. Fortunately, at current rates, the Greenland ice sheet will take over a thousand years to melt and the Antarctica ice sheet, much longer. However, the greater the temperature rise the faster the ice sheets will melt, bringing the problem much closer. Remember, the huge ice sheet that recently covered much of North America, almost completely melted in only 15,000 years (today, only the Greenland ice sheet, and some other small patches of it, remain). Since then (15,000 years ago), sea-levels have risen about 125 meters (410 feet), only 80 meters to go.

The ice sheets have been continuously melting for thousands of years. What is left of them today, is still melting, and will continue to melt. Human caused global warning will cause this remnant to melt significantly faster. This is a big, big, problem.

For HUGE detailed maps of the "World after the Melt" go to:

Global temperatures are increasing. And by quite a lot each year.

2016 is the hottest year on record for global temperatures.

This is 0.0380 degrees centigrade hotter than the previous record year which was 2015.

0.0380 is a large increase in just one year.

2015 was the hottest year (at that time) for global temperatures.

This was 0.1601 degrees hotter than the previous record year which was 2014.

0.1601 is an absolutely huge increase in just one year (at this rate temperatures would increase by 16 degrees in a century).

2014 was the hottest year (at that time) for global temperatures.

This was 0.0402 degrees hotter than the previous record year which was 2010.

The conspiracy to hide global warming data.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is given tax money to make global temperature records available to the public. However, certain people at NOAA continually sabotage this aspect of NOAA's mandate. For example, these people have (deliberately) sabotaged the web-page that delivers the temperature records.

Look for yourself:

Go to the page: scroll down to the The Global Anomalies and Index Data section and click the download button and see what happens. Well, you get the message:

"Not Found. The requested URL /monitoring-references/faq/anomalies-download was not found on this server."

I guess that the 2017 data must be truly horrible if they have to hide it away.

It turns out that this seems to be the case; NASA reports that:

July 2017 had the hottest average land temperatures on record.

The new July 2017 record was +1.20 degrees centigrade above the 20th century average (of the July data). The previous record average land temperature for July was just last year. It was +1.10 degrees above the 20th century average.

Did the media bother to tell you about this? No!

In reply to by Manthong

Slack Jack Shemp 4 Victory Sun, 09/03/2017 - 06:37 Permalink

Shemp 4 Victory @ Sep 3, 2017 5:55 AM "Don't respond to this idiot... it only encourages him... he will not read your replies"

You don't make much sense do you? You say that he will not read responses,... YET,... his reading of the responses will only encourage him.

Such low intelligence shown by Shemp 4 Victory.

In reply to by Shemp 4 Victory

lil dirtball jomama Sun, 09/03/2017 - 11:11 Permalink

I used to come to ZH for real news - now I just come for the lulz. It's a ZHombie wasteland.


"Anonymous ID:RAeI4ItC Sun 27 Aug 2017 01:07:57 No.139175925 Report
Once the iphone hit the market in 2007 there was no going back. There was the pre-iphone internet that took at least an 85 IQ to access, and the post 2007 internet that has led to today's "brain free" experience."

In reply to by jomama

moneybots Slack Jack Sun, 09/03/2017 - 10:19 Permalink

"The Greenland ice sheet melting will raise sea-level 6.55 meters (21.5 feet), the West Antarctica ice sheet melting will raise sea-level 8.06 meters (26.4 feet), the East Antarctica ice sheet melting will raise sea-level 64.8 meters (212.6 feet), and all other ice melting will raise sea-level 0.91 meters (3 feet). For a grand total of about 80 meters (263 feet)." There is no "will."Second, the climate is going to do whatever it wants, as it always has.The area now known as New York City has several times been buried under a sheet of ice, year round. 

In reply to by Slack Jack

CNONC tmosley Sun, 09/03/2017 - 10:21 Permalink

If you haven't figured out by now that the Iranian missle and nuclear programs are the NK programs, you are not paying attention.  You can be suspicious of US military policy all you want, as it is a rational suspicion.  But to assume that Iran and NK are not dangerous is to play a silly game of good guys vs. bad guys.  The poitical and military leadership of both Iran and North Korea appear to have concluded that the US poses an existential threat to them.  It would not be surprising for them to attempt to exploit a period of perceived political weakness in the US.  A misjudgement of the extent of that weaknes is what could lead to a war. North Korea fears US and South Korean economic power.  Iran fears US naval power.  Using nuclear weapons to inflict economic damage, via EMP strike, or to blow holes in the ocean while destroying legitimate military targets will not provoke the same response by the global community as burning cities full of civilians off the map. Do not make the mistake of assuming that all actors in this event perceive the world and its threats as you do, or that you, or they, are rational in their outlook.  Iran and NK certainly desire nuclear weapons for what they believe to be their legitimate defensive capabilities.  The mistake that the analysts, including those dribbling opinions on fora like this, may make is assuming that "defensive" means "reactive."  It does not.

In reply to by tmosley

a Smudge by an… CNONC Sun, 09/03/2017 - 12:14 Permalink

That's OK, I remember the same being said for Guatemala and El Salvador. They were the spearhead of a Soviet invasion don't ya know. Really doesn't matter where we're at war. What matters is we all keep working to support the MIC and it's beneficiaries.This government is truly running at our expense. Indeed, at the expense of the whole world at this point.

In reply to by CNONC

CNONC a Smudge by an… Sun, 09/03/2017 - 12:55 Permalink

My objection to this line of reasoning is that it is one sided.  Even if it was absolutely correct that the US foreign policy could be completely explained by its capture by the MIC, the analysis would be incomplete and, therefore, inaccurate, if it assumes that the other actors are merely reactive, that they do not have motives driven by their own political circumstances, that they wish only to be left alone.  The history of the US in central america is not one of selfless promrtion of democracy and human rights, but to fail to acknowledge the equally destructive role of the Soviets and the various factions, parties and rebels that sought either US or Soviet assistance in the attainment of their own parochial goals is to fail to understand the history of the region.  To view the NK or Iranians as simply reactive victims of US hegemony is to deny those countries the legitimacy of their own actions.  For good or ill, they have chosen a path which they hope will achieve their goals.  If you wish to promote peace, you must understand those goals.  Those goals may be altruistic and noble, or corrupt and venal, but they are real, independant of US goals, and are believed by the nations policy makers to be necessary to the continued existence of the State.  Peace, therfore, often comes at the price of accepting, tolerating, and even supporting tyranny.  And, by "tyranny," I do not necessarily confine the discussion to NK and Iran as parties in this conflict. 

In reply to by a Smudge by an…

HRClinton Haus-Targaryen Sun, 09/03/2017 - 12:17 Permalink

Well, Targaryen, let me put it this way...The incestuous (((Lannister Bastards))) who sit on the Empire's "Iron Throne", care very much about someone other than themselves having Wild Fire and Dragons (Wild Fire on wings).To the readers who are not Game of Thrones aficionados, it means...That not only can they share the tech with state actors who oppose the Iron Grip of the Rothschild Banks, but could share it with (say) the Taliban. Which would end the US/Lannister occupation in one bang. Which in turn would allow the OBOR project to proceed through Afghanistan. Much to China's and Iran's delight and profit. Can you imagine the Horror/Shrek that would ensue in (((NY/JY))), i.e. in the Lanister Casterly/Easterly Rock?"Allies klar?"

In reply to by Haus-Targaryen

CNONC BennyBoy Sun, 09/03/2017 - 10:32 Permalink

How does the test flight of an unarmed gravity bomb count as a nuclear test comparable with this NK test?  Did you read the article, and fail to understand it, or are you attempting to pesuade greater fools than yourself by creating a false equivalency and hoping nobody notices?Are you a paid lackey?  You should be.  You should require some compensation for exposing yourself as a fool, even if it is anonymously.

In reply to by BennyBoy

CNONC jaxville Sun, 09/03/2017 - 11:49 Permalink

I did not offer an opinion on North Korea's right to develop weapons.  If you wish to engage in a debate over the wisdom of a world system which only recognizes Westphalian states as legitimate international actors, we can do so.  You, however, prefer to move on to an unrelated subject.  Where, in any part of the article or any comment of mine was Israel mentioned?    

In reply to by jaxville