North Korea Fires Intercontinental Ballistic Missile; Lands Inside Japan's Economic Zone

Update 2: The Pentagon says initial assessment of North Korean launch "was an ICBM, traveled about 1,000 km before splashing into Sea of Japan," Reuters reports. Separately, Yonhap notes that the North Korea missile reached an altitude of 4,500 km and flew 960km.

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Update:  In response to the launch, the South Korean military has staged a "precision strike" missile exercise in response, Yonhap reports citing the JCS. Meanwhile, the Pentagon has confirmed that the North Korean launch took place at 1:30pm EST, and was still assessing.

Separately, the office of the Japanese PM said the North Korean missile landed off the coast of Japan, likely inside the country's Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).

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Well, US experts did warn that North Korea could conduct another missile test "within days", and for once, US experts were right, because moments ago Yonhap reported citing South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff, that after a two and a half month hiatus, North Korea has fired a ballistic missile, the first such launch since September 15. The launch marks the first time North Korean has provoked the US and regional nations since US President Donald Trump labelled Pyongyang a state sponsor of terrorism.

"North Korea launched an unidentified ballistic missile eastward from the vicinity of Pyongsong, South Pyongan Province, at dawn today," the S. Korean Joint Chiefs of Staff said.

According to the report, the missile flew eastward and the South Korean military is analyzing details with the U.S. Japan's coast guard confirmed that North Korea fired a missile, which fell in the sea near Japan. The Japanese cabinet office said that the N. Korea missile landed in Japan's exclusive economic zone (EEZ), and thus could be seen as an act of aggression. 

The missile has not been identified, though the US government has confirmed the launch. According to the Pentagon, the missile came from mobile launcher.

Seoul's military has been "closely monitoring" and "tracking possible North Korean provocations" with US partners, a spokesman for the army said Tuesday.

As a reminder, yesterday Japanese officials noticed an increase in radioactivity data suggesting another missile test might be imminent. "North Korea might launch a missile within the next few days," a Japanese government official told local media.

This may be just the first of several launches: The US and South Korean militaries are slated to hold large scale military drills from December 4 through December 8. a move which will further infuriate Pyongyang. The drills will feature more than 230 allied aircraft swarming around the Korean peninsula.

North Korea conducted its sixth and most powerful nuclear test on Sept. 3, and has launched more than a dozen missiles this year as Kim Jong Un’s regime seeks the capability to hit the continental U.S. with a nuclear weapon. The United Nations has imposed stringent sanctions on North Korea for its weapons tests.

Trump on Nov. 20 labeled North Korea a state sponsor of terrorism because of its threats of nuclear devastation and support of terrorist acts including assassinations on foreign soil. North Korea responded by saying the designation reminds the country it should keep hold of its "precious nuclear sword." On Nov. 14, the U.S. concluded strike force drills in the Western Pacific using three aircraft carriers, the first such exercise in a decade.

North Korea has routinely complained about U.S. drills in the region, using them as justification to ratchet up its own weapons program.

China and Russia have stepped up their own efforts to deter North Korea. Russia cannot accept Pyongyang's "missile and nuclear gambit," Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said November 24, since these programs violate United Nations Security Council resolutions. With China, Russia insists that Pyongyang follow through on the "implementation of other provisions of these resolutions that require the resumption of talks," Lavrov said. 

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In response to the launch, USDJPY has tumbled and gold surged - relatively speaking - while stocks, as usual, completely ignore all geopolitical, and any othet, news, and continue to race with bitcoin for the title of the world's biggest ever bubble.

Speaking of the market's latest non-response, while TSYs have ticked higher along with safe havens like gold (XAU), it's been a rather muted reaction, which some trading desks attributed to missile launch being was expected, although the reality is that stocks simply no longer react to geopolitical news. This is best exemplified by the virtual non response in the USDKRW 1m NDF to the news.


Mr. Ed BaBaBouy Tue, 11/28/2017 - 13:36 Permalink

...having a hard time confirming this is a real launch!May be that Fat Boy went short USD/JPY after the Brexit news pushed it up and had Yonhap put this out to make a few bucks when it crashed.  Maybe he needs extra money to finish the real launch coming in a few days!

In reply to by BaBaBouy

Consuelo Shitonya Serfs Tue, 11/28/2017 - 13:43 Permalink

+1 Was there ever a 'roll the credits' on the names of everyone who (supposedly) perished in that incident...?    The entire way this thing was handled by the media is just so over-the-top wrong in terms of real, in-depth coverage, as to be dumbfounding.   The sheer contempt by the State for the attention span of Boobus Americanus is astounding, but very reall all the same. 

In reply to by Shitonya Serfs

JimmyJones Consuelo Tue, 11/28/2017 - 14:06 Permalink

Yet here we are discussing the very topic that you are complaining about.  The Americans are well aware of Vagas being a hit job that was much bigger than the one Patsy they got, but you wouldn't know it because the MSM will not cover it.  Until the existing MSM both broadcast and cable "news" is dismantled and replaced with real news and real investigative Journalist as it already has in "alternative" media things will continue to appear to be "memory holed" even if in reality they haven't been.We know that 3 helicopters turned off their transponders when over Mandalay Bay during the shooting, We know that one of them messed up and turned it back on but broadcast the wrong signal and made it look like a Southwest jet was hovering over the hotel for about 6 mins (all verified by the FAA), We know that the Saudi's have a major ownership in the MGM hotels.  We also know that the Saudi Gov't arrested a Butload of "Royals" shortly afterwards.

In reply to by Consuelo

BrownCoat JimmyJones Tue, 11/28/2017 - 14:34 Permalink

Yup. The Columbine Shooting media coverage went on and on and on. That was for the "anti-gun" narative.Killing a bunch of White people was intended to incite a civil war. The Looney Left has made several attempts already (shooting Republicans at a softball game, attacking a Republican Senator). If it was a criminal black like Michael Brown, the minorities would rise up and loot. TPTB thought killing a bunch of Whites would have a similar effect. It did not work (this time).

In reply to by JimmyJones