The Pentagon confirmed Saturday that North Korea had successfully carried out yet another ballistic missile test earlier that day, launching a projectile 435 miles into the Sea of Japan. The test, the latest provocation from the rogue Kim Jong Un regime, drew a strong reaction from President Trump’s White House, which issued a statement saying that North Korea has been a “flagrant menace for far too long.”
In the statement, the White House suggested that Vladimir Putin should be just as unhappy with the launch as the U.S.. Trump, the statement said, “cannot imagine that Russia is pleased” with the test, considering how close the missile came to the Russian mainland. As they put it, the missile’s final landing point was closer to Russia than to Japan.
Russia did respond to the test, placing its eastern air defense system on high alert. In a statement from the country’s Federation Council Committee on Defense and Security, a top Russian official said, “We cannot fail to understand that the territory of Russia is not only an object for attack but also a place where a missile may fall. In order to protect ourselves from possible incidents, we will keep our air defense systems in the Far East in a state of increased combat readiness.”
According to David Wright of the Union of Concerned Scientists, the missile launched on Saturday would have an outside range of 4,500 km, which would theoretically make it capable of hitting the U.S. territory of Guam.
“This range is considerably longer than the estimated range of the Musudan missile, which showed a range of about 3,000 km in a test last year,” he wrote on the UCS blog this weekend. “Guam is 3,400 km from North Korea. Reaching the US West Coast would require a missile with a range of more than 8,000 km. Hawaii is roughly 7,000 km from North Korea.”
Among other things, this incident underlines why it’s so essential for Trump to reach out to China, Russia, and other quasi-foes of the U.S. so that our countries can work together for mutual benefit. Unlike what you’ll hear from the media, which is eager to paint Trump as either compromised or naive, this strategy is the only possible way to stop greater evils such as North Korea, ISIS, and Iran. If we had a press that was more interested in what’s best for the United States than what’s best for their neoliberal world order, that obvious truth would shine through every instance of White House reporting.