Sunday, June 28, 2009

DPRK (North Korea) really can't reach Hawaii with a missle lob, can it? Watch what Hollywood does with this idea!

Can North Korea really strike Hawaii (on July 4, as the hype has it)? A site called “All our government does” says no, with the basic link for the short story here.

There’s another piece by John Feffer, June 23, “Pearl Harbor, Part II”, at Foreign Policy in Focus, link here. Even if they did reach, would our Reagan era Star Wars defense work? (Remember the movie "War Games"?)

On the other hand (or “But”), there are loose stories around that North Korea just might be able to lob a missile with a crude weapon 4500 miles or so and reach Hawaii or Sarah Palin’s Alaska. A bigger “threat” might come from a Tom Clancy scenario where terrorists take a crude weapon and scud and launch it from some kind of vessel (perhaps taken) in the high seas. It’s pretty easy to imagine the movie script (call it "EMP", below), somebody like Michael Bay directing it, and Shia LaBeouf playing a green Navy hero. But, gravely, a high altitude blast could have a devastating electromagnetic pulse (EMP) effect, an idea also attributed to Iran last year by neoconservatives (and covered on this blog). The “idea” has been around ever since Popular Science published a long forgotten article on EMP and Faraday cages a week before 9/11. Perhaps the biggest “threat” of all would come from aliens. (“I will accept nothing less,” a friend blogged. “Aliens changing our orbit so we fall into the Sun – and they just aren’t telling us”, except on the sci-fi channel.) We couldn’t do anything about them at all.

But it’s well to take DPRK (Democratic Republic of North Korea, or Democratic People’s Republic of Korea ) seriously. Believe it or not, the country is on the web, here. I recall the fun we made of communism and Marxism in Army barracks back in 1969: “from each according to ability, to each according to his needs.” Remember what people said about 9/11: it represented a massive failure of imagination. Policy makers need to see more movies.

Attribution link for NASA photo of Big Island.

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