North Korea Conducts Sixth Nuclear Test, Threatens EMP Attack on U.S.
North Korea's news agency is claiming that the country has successfully loaded a hydrogen bomb onto an ICBM. Meanwhile, the Hermit Kingdom's leader, Kim Jong Un, has threatened to launch a electromagnetic pulse (EMP) attack on the United States and there are late reports of one, and possibly a second, earthquake that most likely indicates a North Korean nuclear weapons test. The Chinese are saying the second earthquake may be a cave-in caused by the test.
There's no confirmation of the North Koreans' ability to build a thermonuclear device or place it on top of an ICBM. Recent North Korean ICBM missile tests have ended in failure.
Yonhap News Agency reports:
North Korea has developed a hydrogen bomb which can be mounted on a new intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), Pyongyang's state media claimed Sunday.
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un inspected the loading of an "H-bomb into the ICBM during his visit to the Nuclear Weapons Institute, according to the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).
"The institute recently succeeded in making a more developed nuke, true to the strategic intention of the Workers' Party of Korea (WPK) for bringing about a signal turn in nuclear weaponization," the KCNA said.
KCNA also claimed that the "super explosive power" of the hydrogen bomb could range from "tens kiloton to hundreds kiloton."
Reuters states that President Donald Trump and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe talked by phone about the “escalating” nuclear crisis in response to the North Korean claims.
Even more troubling is that Kim is threatening the capability of a catastrophic EMP attack that could be directed at the U.S.
According to the Wall Street Journal:
Mr. Kim also specifically cited the possibility of an electromagnetic pulse, or EMP, attack. Fears of an EMP strike by North Korea have circulated for years among some U.S. policy makers, though others have openly dismissed the possibility of Pyongyang launching such a strike.
In an EMP attack, North Korea would conduct a high-altitude nuclear detonation over the continental U.S. The detonation could emit a brief but powerful electromagnetic signal capable of disrupting swaths of the U.S. electrical grid, experts say.
Ms. Hanham said while such an attack was theoretically possible, the North’s goals made it more likely that Pyongyang would try to follow through on its threat to send a nuclear-tipped missile into a large American city.