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July 6, 2006
AP: North Korea Targeted Hawaiian Waters

According to an AP report, North Korea wanted to use its Taepodong-2 missile to hit the waters around Hawaii, apparently to send a message to the US. The Japanese newspaper Sankei reported that Kim Jong-Il wanted to protest economic sanctions:

North Korea targeted waters near Hawaii when it fired a long-range missile this week, a Japanese newspaper reported Friday.

The long-range Taepodong-2 was part of a barrage of seven missiles test-fired by North Korea on Wednesday. They all fell harmlessly into the Sea of Japan, but South Korean officials said the long-range missile had malfunctioned, suggesting it was intended for a more remote target.

Japan's conservative mainstream daily Sankei said that Japanese and US defense officials have concluded that the Taepodong-2 had targeted US state of Hawaii in the Pacific Ocean, after analyzing data collected from their intelligence equipment.

The newspaper quoted unidentified Japanese and US government officials.

The officials decided that the missile was pointed at Hawaii from the angle of its nose cone immediately after its launch and the altitude it has reached, after analyzing data collected by Aegis-equipped destroyers and RC-135S electronic reconnaissance aircraft, the newspaper said.

We have waited to see what analysis could be made by defense experts from the limited telemetry available about the intended target. If this proves correct, it will increase pressure on the White House to pursue a tougher line on Pyongyang and its missile tests -- perhaps even pushing us towards the risky policy of hitting the launch sites before any more ICBMs fly.

It also makes it a little tougher for us to settle for a "presidential statement" from the UN Security Council as well. That shows that the North Koreans represent a direct threat to our territory. We need to present a tough and united front to face down Kim. If the UNSC can't find it in themselves to do that while Kim fires missiles at Hawaii, then perhaps we can find some other use for Turtle Bay.

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at July 6, 2006 9:16 PM

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» Kim Jong-Il is insane: Hawaii was the target from Public Secrets: from the files of the Irishspy
If this AP report is correct, the waters around the state of Hawaii were the target of the Taepodong-2 that failed yesterday:North Korea targeted waters near Hawaii when it fired a long-range missile this week, a Japanese newspaper reported Friday. [Read More]

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