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North Korea Defies U.S. — Again

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Posted on April 6 2009 2:59 pm
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While President Barack Obama is in Europe pushing for a nuclear-free world, the Supreme Leader of the North Koreans, Kim Jung-Il—along with representatives of the Supreme Leader of Iran—has taken advantage of the world’s distractions with Obama-mania to test-launch a rocket, in defiance of the muted protestations of the West.

A 15-strong delegation of missile experts from Iran was dispatched to North Korea to help Pyongyang prepare for the launch. These experts (which included senior officials from the Iranian rocket and satellite producer Shahid Hemmat Industrial Group) brought a letter from President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to Kim Jong-Il stressing the importance of cooperating on “space technology.”

Previous rocket tests have given the North Koreans (and by extension, the Iranians) the confidence to know what the response of the United States and its allies would be after this latest launch—nothing.

“North Korea broke the rules once more by testing a rocket that could be used for a long-range missile,” Obama said. “This provocation underscores the need for action—not just this afternoon at the U.N. Security Council, but in our determination to prevent the spread of these weapons.”

To the North Koreans, this was a predictably tepid response. Do you think the North Koreans really care about yet another hollow condemnation by the impotent United Nations Security Council? By now, the Supreme Leader has collected enough of those to wallpaper his bathroom. What he does care about is money, because the inhabitants of his Socialist paradise are starving. Where the money comes from—whether from China (which could have stopped the launch if it really wanted to), Syria, or Iran—makes no difference to Kim Jong Il.

Meanwhile the Iranians, who are flush with petrodollars, have been looking for an effective launch medium for the nuclear weapons which they are developing, also in defiance of the UN Security Council. President Ahmadinejad, as you recall, has openly called for Israel to be “wiped off the map.” With North Korean missiles providing the long-range capacity to carry a nuclear payload, Ahmadinejad may soon have the capability to carry out his pledge.

This post was written by Claude Cartaginese.

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