• The Heritage Network
    • Resize:
    • A
    • A
    • A
  • Donate
  • If Pyongyang Nuked Seattle ...

    By all appearances, North Korea’s Kim Jong-il is a dictator in a hurry.

    “North Korea has positioned its most sophisticated long-range ballistic missile at a launch site for a test firing that could come within weeks,” the Los Angeles Times reports from Seoul, citing a South Korean newspaper account.

    So no sooner did Kim’s repressive regime observe Memorial Day weekend by detonating a nuclear device underground than it began to get ready above ground to test-launch another long-range missile.

    It would be just Kim’s style to go for maximum drama by test-firing a missile or missiles June 16 — when South Korean President Lee Myung-bak is scheduled to meet with President Barack Obama in Washington.

    Among Kim’s obvious goals is for Pyongyang to be able to threaten Washington and other major American cities with intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) armed with nuclear warheads.

    For now, that remains a future threat. But, as this chart shows, the consequences of just one such missile strike – on Seattle – include nearly 80,000 dead and 42,000 wounded in the initial 48 hours.

    Pyongyang’s recent activities “underscore the critical need for America to develop and deploy a missile defense system,” Bruce Klingner, Heritage’s expert on North Korea, writes in outlining concrete steps the U.S. should take to counter Kim.

    Dong-a Ilbo, a newspaper in Seoul, first reported the expected launch likely involves a version of the Taepodong-2 rocket fired by Pyongyang in April — and theoretically capable of reaching Alaska if not Seattle.

    U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates reacted by saying he may not continue to recommend deep cuts in the still-developing missile defense program if North Korea keeps up such belligerence.

    In a visit Monday to the Missile Defense Complex at Fort Greeley in Alaska, the Associated Press reports, Gates said:

    If anything, I think what the North Koreans have done has won more adherence to the importance of our having at least a unified missile defense capability.”

    Evidence of a new realism setting in? After all, President Obama has said he remains skeptical of missile defense technology, despite a high success rate in U.S. military tests. That technology, if deployed in full, could render obsolete what Klingner calls “the dangerously inadequate policy choices of pre-emption or retaliation.”

    As Peter Brookes, Heritage national security expert, observed in the New York Post about Kim’s nuke show over the Memorial Day weekend:

    The threat that a North Korean nuke could reach us is on the horizon. We don’t know how distant that horizon is, but it appears to have moved closer.”

    Posted in Security [slideshow_deploy]

    29 Responses to If Pyongyang Nuked Seattle ...

    1. Ozzy6900, CT says:

      "There is nothing to worry about. President Obama will go and talk to the North Korean wackos and everything will be alright. have faith in our new messiah! Say Amen, and Amen!"

      Yeah, just keep believing the BS that is pouring out of the White House and Capital Hill.

    2. Greg, Vail, AZ says:

      Democrats just don't get it. Every time they hold the Presidency they cut defense spending, and sure as shootin', the following Republican administration faces a war with emboldened tin pot dictators or religious fanatics that we are not prepared for. Early on in that conflict the dems are a gun ho as anyone, two years later, no matter what the actual circumstances, they have a "take our toys and go home" attitude. It never fails. Dems are the "party of defeat". Give them a bloody nose and they will run home and bury their heads in the sand, and ignore the enemy kicking them in the butt! I am sorry, this is not the spirit that America was built on. We are too insulated here in America, as hard as it is for me to say, perhaps we need something catastrophic to happen in one of our major cities, caused by the very people Obama thinks that if we only talk to them they will be our friends. 9/11 was a horrible lesson, but dems and liberals do not learn easily that placation will not solve our problems with the radical elements of Islam. These people feel they are fully justified in what they do. Their religious beliefs DO NOT ALLOW THEM TO MAKE PEACE WITH THE UNBELIEVER!! So, dems and liberal, get a clue, talk WILL NOT WORK with radical Islamists. They have NEVER upheld any treaty they have ever signed. Their religion FORBIDS IT.

    3. Martha V, Texas says:

      Don't worry, The Messiah Obama, will raise his arms to the sky and the rockets will disappear, similiar to parting of the water. Oh, I forgot we are not a christian nation. Maybe the muslins will pray to there higher being and the rocket will disappear. Obama can pray to both. (Laughing out loud). I think we need to send Obama's followers to a camp like Jim Jones, they will be safe as the Messiah prays for them not to be hit by a rocket. (Laughing out loud). I will take my chances praying to my God and his son.

    4. Whicket Williams Kin says:

      The missile he is testing has no other purpose. We should not allow him to launch it. I suggest sending a predator drone to destroy Both long range missiles he is preparing to launch BEFORE he lauches them.

    5. Jb, Dallas says:

      Obama is an idiot…no faith I tell you I have no faith in him.

    6. Tom Iowa says:

      If I were a betting man, I would say that Kim is looking to start a war before turning over the reins of power to number three son. Quick MR. OBAMA, save us. Tell Kim how we are sorry for all the naughties we have done and will never do again..

    7. Jim, Wisconsin says:

      This is no time for jokes. Even less is it a time for a community organizer who has never been a real executive but plays a President on TV.

      I am waiting for any of the 54% who voted for undefined hope and change to barf up the Kool-Aid and realize that Kim's nukes will not spare blue states.

    8. Dennis M Sigala says:

      Obama in my opinion has been a complete disastor in the making, He is destroying our country, I just cannot understand what happened to the people of the United States, I am a proud conservative growing up in President Reagan times, when we stood for a country with true values and beliefs, And most of us were proud of our country.And to this moment the Dems and Libs still love him. They are so blind, he is robbiung from them and they praise him. What the H" are you people thinking, If you want a socialist country then please leave. Obama is a dictator in the "New United Socialist States of America's"

      And all you so called republicans, you have failed the people that you represent.

      And lastly why has everyone just accepted Nancy Pelosi going silent, She need to step done and you senators need to stand up demand that she does. What she had done to the CIA and the troops is not acceptable

      It sure wasn't long when the dums wanted Newt to step done.

    9. bill s Tampa bay says:

      Why wait to be nuked? The USA should send several ICBM'S with nukes and level N.K. The N.K. problem will then end, finally. The same should apply to Iran. The Obama administration has to terrorize the terrorists in order to end the mid-east war in Afganistan and Pakistan and not play patty cakes with the terrorists.

    10. Mark, WA says:

      I recall Jimmy Carter went over there on behalf of Slick Willy to work the Nuke Deal (they subsequently cheated). He came back and gushed about how great it was is N. Korea and how the people are so happy. Sources said even His Slickness looked at him like he was from another planet…

    11. Greg, Texas says:

      There's no need to kill millions of North Koreans by nuking Pyongyang. With stealth planes, cruise missiles, and precision weapons, we can destroy the launch pad and the nuke sites without giving the North Koreans clear evidence that we did it. Remember that this is North Korea, which doesn't have the ability to analyze bomb residue and say, "This could only have come from the Americans." The Chinese or Russians could do it for them, but no one will help the North Koreans now. North Korea is determined not only to get away with what they're doing, but also to make us engage bilaterally. They are determined to dominate the United States politically. We should just decide now whether we'll submit to that, or go to war. That is our choice, and we have to make it eventually. The longer we wait, the stronger that maniac gets. Yes, peace is better, but you only get peace of both sides want it.

    12. Lynn B. DeSpain says:

      Think about this; NK with its frieghters and Warships and/or Iran with their frieghters and War ships, come within two hundred miles of the West Coast and launch even one nuclear missle? If that missle were to explode two hundred miles above Nebraska, there would be no danger of radiation. There would also be an Electro Magnetic Pulse, an EMP. the results; no electricity, to transportation, planes would fall, no food, no refrigeration, no generators, no way to get parts to fix the problems, no way to receive information as to what is going on and is help coming.

      Solution; Nuke Them until they Glow! Talk won't do it. Embargos have no effect. There is no reversal for Rabies.


    13. rich, redwood city,C says:

      Mr. Obama, in my opinion is a disaster for this country. I have talked with many friends in Europe and they are all feeling that we are now getting like them and they are laughing wildly. When that little fellow from N. Korea drops the big one on us, will he go and apologize again? We are acting like a bunch of wimps. When are we going to stand up for our country?

      Between Obama, Pelosi who apparently suffers from CRS,and Reid we are going down the big commode in the sky.

      Please bring back President Regan. Nobody messed with us then.Boy has that changed.

    14. Pingback: not a pretty graph « RockStar PeterSon

    15. Brandon, Reno says:

      The likelihood of Norko nuking a US city and invading south Korea demanding unification on their terms is extremely high. They have languished for six decades and had no one to blame except themselves or the US. Guess who they chose to blame all that time.

    16. Tony, Houston, Texas says:

      In only a few short months, is there any question Obama is in over his head?

    17. Howard Rampy says:

      It is hard for a community organizer to understand what is real and what is not. THis guy is so full of it, and he is taking us down as fast as he can….Protect the UAW boys and screw Americans.

      VOTE 2010 AND GET IT RIGHT THIS TIME!!!!!!!!


    18. David VanNorman Wi says:

      I vote to turn North Korea into glass the next time he fires a missile. He is up to no good. Why should we wait on him to do something crazy. Next time he shoots off a missile shoot it out the air. If he sets up another one you bomb the site.If he continues put one in his bedroom window. It worked for Kadafey.

    19. Helmetfoot Boston, says:

      The Prez will make everything Okay if No. Korea nukes Seattle.

      He will just apologize for building a city in their target zone and say we should have known that they might shoot at that geographic point. Then he'll ask for thier forgiveness.

      Of course all this will be preceded by "a strong note of condemnation.

    20. Rich Sabatowski Lan says:

      Aw shucks fellas, All we have to do is say we're sorry for being so arrogant. The previous administration is to blame and BHO just inherited this mess. BHO will draw down our troops in South Korea as soon as Kim wants us too." Just say the word Sir and I'll have them out right away. Again, I am so very sorry for the mistakes that we have made over the years and beseech your forgiveness."

    21. Marie Grants Pass, O says:

      I wish him the best. There is no point in putting him down (now Congress, that's another story). Do what we CAN do and leave the rest to what may be good change further down the road. If I'm in la-la-la land, so be it. I'm expecting the worse and hoping for the best.

    22. JCP, Ky says:

      It looks like the liberal Democrats elected themselves a muslim; Obama hasn't a clue about anything. He has no military experience; well i think he has no experience at all except for setting in church and listening to his preacher damning the United States for twenty years. IMPEACH him and Tim Geitner. We would be a lot better off without either of them. Those two have ruined this country in just a few short months.

    23. gene,minnesota says:

      Well I guess I would say lets all go out and vote in 2010 but have of them Repulicans we got now are rinos who can we depend on anymore, heck our governor in my state believes in global warming, what a good for nothing republican he is. I think the GOP have plans to run him for the Prez Job I will not vote for this rino. Tim Pewlenty can go you no where.

    24. marcy pompano beach says:

      here i thought, according to the media ,the liberals ,the democrats, and unfortunitly some rhinos, they only wanted to kill americans when g.bush was president.please someone send them a memo or something. i'm surprised obama has'nt come out and said "can't we all just get along?" peace and love, peace and love

    25. Barb -mn says:

      Whatever happens is part of the plan.

      The only ones that voted for this guy are the ones behind the plan, Muslims, easily manipulated, nieve, easily influenced, vulnerable and weak. Don't give me any credit.

    26. Barb -mn says:

      Whatever happens is part of the plan.

      The only ones that voted for this guy are the ones behind the plan, Muslims, easily manipulated, nieve, easily influenced, vulnerable and weak. Don't give me any credit.

      What happens when a nuke is detonated under ground? Sounds like a serious cause of deliberate man-made global warming?

      Hmm, the time will come.

    27. BeeGee - Florida says:

      Soooooo we have a missle Defense system!!??

      Encourge them to do the test firing and, to the amazement and shock of the American public and the World, use our defense system to

      "eliminate" the missle when in international waters.

      Perhaps if we the people actually believe that after all the millions spent on our defense- we might actually have a working and effective system- the rest of the "leaders" and "loonies" will rethink and understand our superiority.

    28. JAB, Spring LAKE, mI says:

      If only the "SPEECH-MAKER IN CHIEF" had the courage and brains all of the above responders possess. They give me real "HOPE", and a good laugh, which is good for the soul.

    29. Larry , Oregon says:

      I believe we are past due for a test of our missile defense system. Looks like Kim Jong Il would like to help!

    Comments are subject to approval and moderation. We remind everyone that The Heritage Foundation promotes a civil society where ideas and debate flourish. Please be respectful of each other and the subjects of any criticism. While we may not always agree on policy, we should all agree that being appropriately informed is everyone's intention visiting this site. Profanity, lewdness, personal attacks, and other forms of incivility will not be tolerated. Please keep your thoughts brief and avoid ALL CAPS. While we respect your first amendment rights, we are obligated to our readers to maintain these standards. Thanks for joining the conversation.

    Big Government Is NOT the Answer

    Your tax dollars are being spent on programs that we really don't need.

    I Agree I Disagree ×

    Get Heritage In Your Inbox — FREE!

    Heritage Foundation e-mails keep you updated on the ongoing policy battles in Washington and around the country.