Guam issues fact sheets preparing residents for a nuclear attack

Cheryl Sanders
August 14, 2017

In August 2015, 1 million North Koreans offered to enlist or re-enlist in the army when a mine exploded in the demilitarised zone between the two Koreas, raising additional tensions.

America's top military officer has told his counterparts in South Korea that the United States is ready to use the "full range" of its military capabilities to defend itself and its allies from any North Korean provocation.

Critics fear that's a bad move.

Japan said on Saturday it has installed anti-missile systems in several parts of the country following North Korea's threat to launch four ballistic missiles towards the American island of Guam.

Amid this war of words that threatens to turn into a war of a more literal variety, it's worth taking a moment to understand just what North Korea is up to here.

North Korea has threatened to attack the US territory of Guam in the Western Pacific ocean.

Guam Governor Eddie Calvo said there was no heightened threat from North Korea.

At the end of last week, the UN Security Council unanimously adopted new sanctions on North Korea - the single largest sanctions package on it so far - because of the recent intercontinental ballistic missile tests of the Kim Jong-un regime.

If the USA has two interceptors fired at each North Korean threat "the odds of success are good", said Elleman, who said the United States has a 96% chance of downing each individual missile.

This would be a deeply provocative act, from the USA perspective, and there has been widespread debate about whether Washington would try to shoot the missiles down if they are launched.

He added that he hopes North Korean leader will "find another path." .

Calvo, who noted that this is not the first time North Korea has threatened the island, bluntly told Guam residents to simply conduct their daily business "as usual".

Trump began his Friday barrage with an especially fiery tweet: "Military solutions are now fully in place, locked and loaded, should North Korea act unwisely".

A U.S. nuclear expert has warned that Kim Jong-un might be coming closer to being able to produce a hydrogen bomb, also known as thermonuclear weapon, as it is able to produce tritium, a key element.

South Korea is less focused on increasing the flight range, as that could face opposition from neighbours including China, Russia and Japan, and the 800-km range limit covers all of North Korea in any case, senior government officials said.

With North Korea threatening to send a salvo of ballistic missiles close to Guam, a US military hub in the Pacific, pressure could grow for Washington to put its multibillion-dollar missile defense system into use and shoot them out of the air. "If the explosion is some distance away, it could take 30 seconds or more for the blast wave to hit", the sheet says. Trump, responding to a report that US intelligence indicates Pyongyang can now put a nuclear warhead on its long-range missiles, vowed to rain down "fire and fury" if challenged.

State news agency KCNA has reported such mobilisations all over the country on Thursday and Friday.

Even the governor of Guam has projected a feeling of calm.

"They're now telegraphing their punch, which means they don't want to have any misunderstandings".

The SDF has already sent an Aegis destroyer installed with the SM-3 interceptor to the Sea of Japan, to be on alert for North Korean missiles. Previously Japan's position was only to shoot down missiles headed for its own territory.

Another tour guide, Teng Yi, said that while some may be deterred by tensions on the Korean peninsula, it was prompting others to get to North Korea while they still can.

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