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North Korean Missile Threat Grows as Biden Delays Missile Defense Funding

Posted on Saturday, January 20, 2024
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by AMAC Newsline
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56 Comments

AMAC Exclusive – By Ben Solis

Concept of conflict. Nuclear weapon of mass destruction with North Korea and USA flag in the background

North Korea’s first missile test of 2024, which came on January 15, has renewed fears among Asian and Western military leaders that the Hermit Kingdom may have more advanced missile technologies than previously thought, including hypersonic warheads. Meanwhile, in an alarming parallel development, President Joe Biden has continued to postpone missile defense upgrades for U.S. military bases in the Pacific.

South Korean and Japanese military officials reported shortly after the launch earlier this week that the missile flew some 620 miles from Pyongyang before splashing into the sea. After testing five long-range intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) in 2023 – the most ever – along with dozens of other smaller launches, this latest test is another example of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s growing aggression.

The latest launch comes two months after Pyongyang announced that it had successfully tested new solid-fuel engines, which allow missiles to strike more distant targets (current estimates put the range of North Korea’s missile fleet at more than 3,100 miles) and fly at much higher speeds, making them harder to detect. North Korean officials also announced that the missile launched on Sunday carried a maneuverable hypersonic warhead – a claim that, if true, would mean North Korean missiles can now likely thwart existing U.S. missile defense systems.

There have also been reports that North Korea is developing long-range missiles that could even reach cities on the East Coast of the United States.

A South Korean official told me that North Korea’s latest missiles are capable of striking U.S. military bases in Japan and Guam, the latter of which is just under 1,900 miles from North Korea and is home to some 22,000 U.S. military servicemembers and families.

Three other officials and specialists with whom I spoke who are involved in U.S. missile defense in the Indo-Pacific did not conceal their concern about the pace of North Korean missile development – pointing specifically to the inability of President Biden to prioritize the development of new missile defense technologies. They further said that Biden has abandoned the core idea of missile defense.

“At first, one has to understand that threat is not just from North Korea anymore, but also China, Russia, and Iran,” one Taiwanese official told me. He and many others in Taiwan, Japan, South Korea, and Australia have concluded that Biden has failed to strengthen and extend U.S. strategic deterrence in the Indo-Pacific.

While Kim Jong Un was largely held in check by former President Donald Trump, he began to rapidly increase investment in production of ICBMs and hypersonic technology shortly after Biden took office. According to a 2022 report from the South Korean Defense Ministry, North Korea has been working in conjunction with China and Russia to undermine the missile defense systems of the United States and its allies.

DoYoon An, a former South Korean defense official, told me that Kim “is increasing this threat hourly, not daily, striving to produce more ICBMs with the intent of reaching far beyond the region.”

Yet in response, Biden has dramatically cut funding for the Long Range Discrimination Radar (LRDR) project, which was greenlit by Trump. LRDR was designed to replace older radar systems and could provide crucial early warning for hypersonic threats like those now emerging from North Korea.

One major advantage of LRDR and related systems is their ability to detect missiles in the earliest stages of flight, known as the “boost phase,” when they are most vulnerable. Japanese aviation engineer Dr. Masaki Takahashi told me, “At its early phase, the missile is most vulnerable as its large size cannot be concealed, its slow speed cannot be accelerated, and its scorching temperature can’t be cooled down” – all factors that give missile interceptor systems the advantage.

“Predicting the trajectory of such a missile at the early phase is less complex, and the threatening capacity of the interceptor depends on the distance between the ballistic missile launcher and the intercepting platform,” Dr. Takahashi added.

Notably, Biden’s antipathy toward missile defense projects dates back decades, all the way to his opposition in the Senate to projects related to Ronald Reagan’s Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI). In many ways SDI was the forerunner of all modern missile defense initiatives. It was as part of SDI in the 1980s that the U.S. military, in coordination with leading American universities, first began exploring the idea of using chemical lasers to down missiles – a technology that is now at the core of the most advanced missile interceptor platforms.

The first field tests of this technology came during the first Gulf War and were successful. In 2010, however, President Barack Obama canceled the chemical laser program without replacing it with another boost-phase missile defense project.

Although President Trump resumed boost-phase research soon after taking office in 2017, Biden again cut funding for the program in 2021. Biden’s seemingly inexplicable opposition to investing in missile defense technology has now continued in the White House.

With advanced missile threats  growing by the day, the world is becoming more dangerous as a result and American lives are at risk.

Ben Solis is the pen name of an international affairs journalist, historian, and researcher.

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Diane
Diane
1 month ago

Not “inexplicable”. The left wants USA GONE. No mystery….they hate America!

Max
Max
1 month ago

Another example of this administration that continues to hold a TIGER by its tail thinking that they won’t be bitten. Since the military is being held hostage by an inept administration that is only thinking $$$$$ in their pockets and could care less about what is happening around them. Of course, ignorant voters placed these elected crooks in office and the penalty has been severe and getting worse. Imagine a third world country will possibly be holding this nation hostage. I wonder how much money this administration will be handing out to “KEEP THE NATION SAFE”? Don’t hold your breath.

Michael DeCrane
Michael DeCrane
1 month ago

It must be clear, Biden’s administration is compromised. They take their orders from CCP, it’s the only explanation for this disregard for the safety and security of America

Rich
Rich
1 month ago

We should tell Kim that he is playing a very dangerous game. If he attacks us or one of our allies, he will watch his country become a waste land. He holds the blood of his people in his hands. Plain and simple. And people criticized President Trump for holding him in check. Amazing!

Steve47
Steve47
1 month ago

Cruz ship has sailed. You missed the departure. Trump one mistake was not getting some of the people out of positions who stood in the way of good plans to Make America Great Again. Americans who are sleeping should get with those standing up for good America values. God Bless America! Vote Trump 2024

Garyk
Garyk
1 month ago

More EPIC FAILURE thrust upon American Citizens by the marxist democrat party!
Throw them out

Melitia
Melitia
1 month ago

They don’t want “the people” to survive the destruction they have planned, for us.

jimm
jimm
1 month ago

Japan is smart enough to understand that the same same weakling POTUS that has drained the U.S. strategic oil reserves, given $ billions to Iran, and jumped into bed with Communist China, will not protect them against N Korean aggression. The Koreans and Chinese have long lasting hatred for Japan. A rearmed Japan is not necessarily a good thing for the world but it may come to that.

Nick
Nick
1 month ago

The Democrats are firmly to riding this this country all the way into the ground. I need a Democrat to explain to me why they want to destroy the greatest nation in the world. 10 million illegal immigrants are fighting to get in here and the Democrats want to destroy it. Where do they think their children are going to live? Or do they even care

Felix
Felix
1 month ago

The window is open for N Korea, Iran, China, Russia! They are not stupid, they know that for them to be successful to attack the US, is now! Our country has never been so weak and vulnerable as it is right now!

Wayne
Wayne
1 month ago

A couple of missiles aimed and hitting the wh may alter the thinking of joe and his handlers although I doubt it.

John Shipway
John Shipway
1 month ago

I’ve got an idea. Since the US has intercontinental ballistic missiles capable of delivering war heads of all sorts everywhere on earth……….why dont we eliminate all these military bases we have scattered across the Pacific? What the hell is their purpose? They sure don;t make friends among the various nations they infest.
People wonder how the military can have a budget approaching a trillion dollars annually. Think of this word: OVERHEAD. With over 800 military bases across the globe……just think of the cost of providing electricity to those bases, water, sewage, fuel oils,,,,,,,,FOOD and general housing…….clothing, salaries and now sex change surgeries.
God bless America

Stephen Russell
Stephen Russell
1 month ago

Seeds for WW3 going Nuclear

GMA
GMA
1 month ago

Biden is putting us in a WAR! Democrats don’t want to loose to Republican governing so they will kill all of us.

Granny26
Granny26
1 month ago

Why doesn’t someone just go get rid of Kim Jong Un, the little pipsqueak that talks so big? Of course, Butthead Biden is no better. We’re sunk until we get someone decent in the white house that knows what they’re doing and where they’re at ….unlike the one in there now. Jill even has to show him how to get off the stage when he’s through talking…or rather reading.

Jeri
Jeri
1 month ago

Dangerous for America, but, honestly what I would expect from FJB.

Lieutenant Beale
Lieutenant Beale
1 month ago

I’ll bet you’ll change your tune when you’re on the business end of said destroyer missiles, señor.

zoe frost
zoe frost
1 month ago

Traitor anti-Republic expletive Obama (implementing his ambiguous “fundamental transformation” we now know is the transformation of our freedoms/opportunities Constitutional Republic to their preferred communism) canceled the chemical laser program. Pro-Republic President Trump, wanting to protect our country, wisely resumed boost-phase research soon after taking office. Then, due tomultiple nefarious acts by traitors and their useful idiots, *biden was installed into the corrupt JoeBama regime of misery. Commie/Globalist elitist’s puppet Commie Obamie, being puppet Biden’s puppet master, cut funding for the program in 2021. These corrupt, evil coven of comrade traitors now have “fundamental transformation” on hyper warp speed – if the traitors don’t weaken and destroy our republic (and Trump, the man who kept it together, and will do it again!!!). they’ll never be able to implement totalitarian tyranny worldwide.

Thinking
Thinking
1 month ago

Well ole Joe is beholden to China that is why he doesn’t allow more research or making an anti missile defense system. Proof. The Balloon from China flew over our country uninterrupted for a week. Appeasement is O’s plan and is still the plan today. Communists like O and Xi stay together. North Korea might be the instigator but China is going to finish it. Only ole Joe has no idea about that. After three years in office and millions of migrants, terrorists and criminals have come across our border he has acknowledged there is a crisis. Really Joe? For 10 years already? Excuse me but under your watch, 3 years, many many millions more came in, than the 7 years combined, before that. He just can’t stop lying. It is in his DNA. We see what is happening at the border and yet he is still trying to tell us what we are seeing is fake. Clever if we fall for it. Ole Joe gotta go.

G Morgan
G Morgan
1 month ago

Just another way Uncle Joes going to screw us all !

GARY
GARY
1 month ago

This all begs the question of where the heck does the money come from to enable the tiny speck of North Korea to do these things?

Kyle Buy you some guns,and learn how to shoot
Kyle Buy you some guns,and learn how to shoot
1 month ago

Tell Rocket Man,one shell hits us, goodby N.Korea. We will bomb hius ass off the map. Kyle L.

Donna
Donna
1 month ago

Do you ever tire of annoying people?

Rich
Rich
1 month ago

Never under estimate your enemy.

Joh Lewis
Joh Lewis
1 month ago

Obozo and Stupid Joe hate USA. Biden is trying to pay more deadbeats that borrowed from all of us and don’t want to pay it back..I saw a comment the other day that said “If your college degree isn’t worth it to you, it certainly isn’t worth it to us.”

Denise Murray
Denise Murray
1 month ago

Biden’s too busy sending our money to the Ukraine, as he personally gets wealthier and wealthier via his Chinese buddies…This nation is literally under attack from its own “president” and “government”…and a previous “president” who did irreparable damage to this nation…on purpose. George Bush Sr. presidential election speech: “We must usher in the New World Order.” Democrats and Rino’s destroying our once Constitutional Republic…must usher in that “new world order”…
And the “elite” are drooling to control the world entirely from their lofty perches…but that also means population control…they’ve got a “great” start tho’…over 60 million unborn citizens since the 70’s, eliminated. Our nation is under attack no less deadly that if Russia were dropping bombs on us…this is just easier to “dress up.”

Kdesq
Kdesq
1 month ago

Joe Biden and ostinky are the two most worthless scumbags ever in American politics. Biden for sure is one of the dumbest and meanest clowns in DC ever. Ostinky is just an anti American non American POS. They both need to be flushed.

Randall L. Beatty
Randall L. Beatty
1 month ago

Biden only wants to send military equipment to other countries we need someone to build our defense here Biden and his team do nothing China or Russia could walk right in and Biden would do nothing he and his team are weak.

johnh
johnh
1 month ago

Advice to Joe Biden: THE BEST OFFENSE IS A GOOD DEFENSE. Come on man, pay attention to the world around you.

Robert Zuccaro
Robert Zuccaro
1 month ago

China is to North Korea as Iran is to Houthi. China, Iran, Russia. The Axis of Evil still exists. Cut off the head and the snaje dies.

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