North Korea Launches Rocket
Sometimes the quickest way to learn something is by Tweets.
North Korea has launched a rocket over the Sea of Japan. Both the first and second stage have been reported to have come back to earth harmlessly.
More as we find out.
Update: Breaking News Online reports: Launch is posing “a serious threat to the Northeast Asian region and to the international community”, US State Department tells BNO News.
The US is calling this a “provocative” act. The Japanese government is calling the launch “regrettable”.
The Japanese have requested an emergency session of the U.N. Security Council.
Despite the statement from the NHK saying that the missile did not place anything in orbit, the U.S. State department is saying that this has not yet been determined. There will be a State Department press briefing at 11:40 PM EST.
More: Via Drudge, JEAN H. LEE, Associated Press Writer reports at Yahoo:
North Korea defiantly carried out a provocative rocket launch Sunday that the U.S., Japan and other nations suspect was a cover for a test of its long-range missile technology.
From President Obama: BNO now reports the statement made by Pres. Obama moments ago.
“North Korea’s development and proliferation of ballistic missile technology pose a threat to the northeast Asian region and to international peace and security. The launch today of a Taepo-dong 2 missile was a clear violation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1718, which expressly prohibits North Korea from conducting ballistic missile-related activities of any kind. With this provocative act, North Korea has ignored its international obligations, rejected unequivocal calls for restraint, and further isolated itself from the community of nations.
We will immediately consult with our allies in the region, including Japan and the Republic of Korea, and members of the U.N. Security Council to bring this matter before the Council. I urge North Korea to abide fully by the resolutions of the U.N. Security Council and to refrain from further provocative actions.
Preventing the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their means of delivery is a high priority for my administration. The United States is fully committed to maintaining security and stability in northeast Asia and we will continue working for the verifiable denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula through the Six-Party Talks. The Six-Party Talks provide the forum for achieving denuclearization, reducing tensions, and for resolving other issues of concern between North Korea, its four neighbors, and the United States. North Korea has a pathway to acceptance in the international community, but it will not find that acceptance unless it abandons its pursuit of weapons of mass destruction and abides by its international obligations and commitments.”
Indeed. Now if only I had any faith at all in the U.N.’s ability or willingness to enforce their own resolutions.
Final Edition: If you’re wondering how this played out last night and this morning, I’ll let the expert pundits explain. First, Belmont Club.
Reuters quotes diplomatic sources as saying that UN Security Council is unlikely to impose any sanctions on North Korea for firing a missile in defiance of earlier Security Council Resolutions.
In other words, look for the UN to do nothing.
Unless something drastically changes, then the likely outcome of a diplomatic offensive to make North Korea pay for its missile launch is nothing. “Stephen Bosworth, Washington’s special envoy for North Korea, said ahead of the launch last week that he hoped to bring the North back to the talks once the ‘dust’ had settled.”
And the response from our President? Ed Morrissey figures it’ll be about the same as we’ve seen all week at the G20 summit.
No one will accuse Jackson Diehl of being a right-wing neocon, but even from his center-left perspective, the Washington Post columnist recognizes disaster when he sees it. After watching Barack Obama abdicate all responsibility for Porkulus to Nancy Pelosi, Diehl wondered whether Obama was tough enough for the presidency. Obama’s Grand Tour of Europe leaves Diehl more convinced that Obama is a weak sister, unable to stand up for America’s interests:
Yeah – it’s “of a piece”.