As tensions rise between North Korea and the United States, many people all around the world are serious fearing the possibility of nuclear conflict.
Currently, we hold the military advantage, especially in terms of nuclear firepower and capabilities but that doesn’t mean that North Korea should be dismissed.
Kim Jong Un continues to push their nuclear weapons programs and has already stated that they can hit U.S. controlled territory.
What is even more troubling is what was just spotted on the seas around North Korea that could push their missile strike range as far as New York City and maybe even further.
Daily Mail reports more:
North Korea could be preparing to carry out a submarine missile test in defiance of President Trump’s attempts to bring the rogue nation to heel.
Satellite images taken on Monday shows activity at a test site which mirrors preparations ahead of the country’s last test of their Pukguksong-1 submarine-launched ballistic missile in August last year.
The images were released after President Trump said American weapons are ‘locked and loaded’ in case Kim Jong-un makes any more ‘overt threats’ toward the US.
Joseph Bermudez, a specialist in North Korean defense and intelligence affairs, posted photographs on the authoritative 38 North blog of the US-Korea Institute at Johns Hopkins University.
‘Recent commercial satellite imagery reveals several developments suggesting that North Korea may be accelerating the development of the sea-based leg of its nuclear forces,’ he said.
Activity on a SINPO-class experimental ballistic missile submarine at the Mayang-do navy shipyard and submarine base, he said, suggests ‘that the North may be preparing for a new series of ‘at sea’ test launches, has undertaken modifications or upgrades to the submarine’s launch systems, or is developing a more advanced version of the Pukguksong-1.’
The Pukguksong-1 is an SLBM that was first successfully test-launched on August 24, 2016.
That missile flew 500km (300 miles) towards Japan, which leader Kim Jong-Un said at the time put the US mainland within striking range from a Pacific-based submarine.
Bermudez said the preparations at the submarine in recent weeks match those ahead of previous tests.
Trump has not made it clear exactly what would constitute an ‘overt threat’ to the US, or whether a fresh missile test would be grounds for military intervention.
Amid the heightened tensions other countries in the region began preparing for the possibility of war as Japan deployed missile defenses on Saturday.
Patriot missile defenses were pictured being set up in Kochi prefecture after the North threatened to fire its newly developed Hwasong-12 and 14 missiles over the country in order to strike at the US military base in Guam.
Japan has in the past vowed to shoot down North Korean missiles or rockets that threaten to hit its territory.
The defense ministry deployed the Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) system in Shimane, Hiroshima and Kochi in western Japan, which North Korea had warned could be along its missiles’ flight path.
It also deployed the anti-missile system in neighbouring Ehime, according to the reports, while the Asahi Shimbun said one maritime Self-Defence Force Aegis destroyer was stationed in the Sea of Japan (East Sea) to shoot down missiles.
Chinese Premier Xi Jinping called for calm in the region as Japan said it was prepared to defend itself against any threat from North Korea
Television footage showed military vehicles carrying launchers and other equipment for the surface-to-air system entering a Japanese base in Kochi before dawn.
‘While standing by 24 hours in preparation for a launch, we are calling on our residents to be on alert in case we issue emergency information,’ a government spokesman said.
The deployment came as Chinese President Xi Jinping made a plea for cool-headedness in a phone conversation with U.S. President Donald Trump on Saturday, urging both sides to avoid words or actions that could worsen the situation.
Trump has called on China to pressure North Korea to halt a nuclear weapons program that is nearing the capability of targeting the United States.
China is the North’s biggest economic partner and source of aid, but says it alone can’t compel Pyongyang to end its nuclear and missile programs.
State-run China Central Television quoted Xi as telling Trump the ‘relevant parties must maintain restraint and avoid words and deeds that would exacerbate the tension on the Korean Peninsula.’