Beta

×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

North Korea Conducts Third Nuclear Test

timothy posted about a year and a half ago | from the practice-makes-perfect dept.

The Military 270

First time accepted submitter WolfeCanada writes "North Korea apparently conducted a widely anticipated nuclear test Tuesday, strongly indicated by an 'explosion-like' earthquake that monitoring agencies around the globe said appeared to be unnatural." North Korea has confirmed the test, according to the Washington Post, in an article that touches on its political context. Among other things, the Post notes that this "is the first under new North Korean leader Kim Jong Eun and the clearest sign that the third-generation leader, like his father and grandfather, prefers to confront the United States and its allies rather than make peace with them." Adds reader eldavojohn "KCNA news claims that the test was safe and cited the threat of the U.S. for conducting the test, saying 'The test was carried out as part of practical measure of counteraction to defend the country's security and sovereignty in the face of the ferocious hostile act of the U.S. which wantonly violated the DPRK's legitimate right to launch satellite for peaceful purposes.' RT is posting a feed of the many condemnations from governments and organizations."

cancel ×

270 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Third nuclear test... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42870483)

... and first post.

Making Peace? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42870485)

By which you mean inviting in our economic hit men and accepting loans?

Re:Making Peace? (4, Insightful)

Attila Dimedici (1036002) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870527)

By which you mean inviting in our economic hit men and accepting loans?

OK, what possible harm can these "economic hit men" do? It is not like it is possible to make the economic situation in North Korea any worse than it already is.

Re:Making Peace? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42870577)

They could introduce socialism ?

Re:Making Peace? (5, Insightful)

MozeeToby (1163751) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870607)

They could dump a bunch of cheap consumer goods on the public, connect everyone to the internet, make sure everyone is fat and happy. Then, after that is the situation for... oh 2 years, they could make real demands from the NK government. A well fed, well informed population who is used to having what they want is not going to stand for going back to the way things were, not abruptly at least.

This would work... (1)

grimJester (890090) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870817)

Honestly, this is not a bad idea. The sanctions can work if the population sees real effects of the governments actions.

Re:Making Peace? (1)

Attila Dimedici (1036002) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871075)

By what definition would this be harm?

Re:Making Peace? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42871341)

They could dump a bunch of cheap consumer goods on the public, connect everyone to the internet, make sure everyone is fat and happy. Then, after that is the situation for... oh 2 years, they could make real demands from the NK government. A well fed, well informed population who is used to having what they want is not going to stand for going back to the way things were, not abruptly at least.

By what definition would this be harm?

By the conventional standard that condemns such actions as "Western imperialism" and insists that change must come from the people of Korea, and that the Juche monarchy is the sole legitimate form of such democratic change. In other words, by the standards of pretty much everybody.

There is also an economic argument that product dumping would harm native NK industries. There aren't many other than food and guns, but dumping food could hamper food production unless people keep producing with guns to their heads.

Finally, the plan could be harmful if backfires, which could happen if the government continues controlling speech and people come to credit the government for their newfound wealth, and blame the US etc when they threaten to take the benefits away. For precedent, consider the response to the US sanctions on Iraq in the 1990s, though in that case it was the Westerners who blamed the US for taking away their imports while the people of Iraq generally blamed Saddam.

Re:Making Peace? (1)

MozeeToby (1163751) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871471)

Well, from the standpoint of the average NK citizen, it would probably lead to a long and bloody revolution against a government which has shown to have no issue doing absolutely horrid things for it's own ends. That may, or may not, be preferable to the current situation, depending on A) who wins, B) how quickly, and C) just how far said government is willing to go to preserve itself.

More importantly, the harm to the NK power holders is obvious, which is exactly why those power holders do what they can to keep western influence out of their country.

Re:Making Peace? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42871195)

They could dump a bunch of cheap consumer goods on the public, connect everyone to the internet, make sure everyone is fat and happy. Then, after that is the situation for... oh 2 years, they could make real demands from the NK government. A well fed, well informed population who is used to having what they want is not going to stand for going back to the way things were, not abruptly at least.

You're under the mistaken impression the NK government would want and allow their population to have these things. The ones in power are already living cushy lives. If you shower them with money, they'll just use it to build more weapons.

Re:Making Peace? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42870703)

Have you been paying any attention to what the economic hit men have just done to the west. Each western government has mortgaged their nation for the next 20 years to bail out 'the system'

I say we should send all the hit men to Korea and leave them there.

Re:Making Peace? (5, Insightful)

theVarangian (1948970) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870753)

By which you mean inviting in our economic hit men and accepting loans?

OK, what possible harm can these "economic hit men" do? It is not like it is possible to make the economic situation in North Korea any worse than it already is.

North Korea will not be economically reformed unless the northern reigime collapses and the country is re-united wiht South Korea. That would create a united Korea in the same position as Germany after the curtainwent down, spending a huge amount of it's GDP rebuilding half the country from nothing. The 'economic hit-men' would probably mostly be South Korean industrialists and bankers who would migrate a lot of jobs up north to take advantage of the cheap labour creating social strife down south as a large number of southerners alluvasudden would find themselves unemployed and having to compete for jobs with northerners willing to accept a way lower standardof living. Judging from the German experience there would also be a feeding frenzy as anything of any value in the north is would be privatized with the resultant corruption and nepotism as the governing political parties try to ensure that anything of value ends up in the hands of party loyalists or it's cheif financial supporters. One thing is for sure, a re-unification would take the wind out of the sails of Korea's economy for at least two decedes.

Re:Making Peace? (2)

rmdingler (1955220) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870881)

+1 Insightful. No Mod Points. Apparently riding the troll like a rented mule is frowned upon in this establishment.

Re:Making Peace? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42871027)

Just like it ruined Germany.

Oh wait....

It's different! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42871193)

Just like it ruined Germany.

Oh wait....

Germany has a high tech industrial base (they didn't go apeshit offshoring ) and have a hard working educated population.

Nothing like S. Korea ....

Nevermind.

Re:It's different! (1)

spiritplumber (1944222) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871271)

East Germany was a lot better off than NK is. In addition, the two countries were separated for less time -- the Koreas had time for a full human lifespan to pass with the countries divided. That is very hard to undo.

Re:It's different! (2)

alexander_686 (957440) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871421)

And, IIRC, East Germany was about 1/4 the size of Germnay. North Korea is 1/3.

From what I have read, the reintegration of N. Korea is going to be a bigger deal then East Germany.

Re:Making Peace? (5, Insightful)

the gnat (153162) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871071)

One thing is for sure, a re-unification would take the wind out of the sails of Korea's economy for at least two decedes.

Perhaps, but Germany's economy today is one of the strongest in Europe, and the East Germans aren't worse off then they were under Communist rule (and my guess is in purely economic terms they are significantly better off). Among other things, they're actually allowed to leave the country if they don't like it - surely that counts for something.

Re:Making Peace? (2)

jythie (914043) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871157)

I am not sure reunification would be the only path the could take. I could see NK taking a page or two out of China and Russia's playbook by privatizing industries internally then opening up trade. NK has a slave workforce that makes china look enlighted, thus thus could probably get a lot of initial captial through being able to undercut labor costs right off the bat.

Re:Making Peace? (2)

khallow (566160) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871289)

One thing is for sure, a re-unification would take the wind out of the sails of Korea's economy for at least two decedes.

Germany didn't see a similar drop in its economy. To the contrary, it's done very well compared to the rest of the EU.

Re:Making Peace? (3, Informative)

Attila Dimedici (1036002) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871383)

Someone else had already addressed the comparison to the German economy (hint, reunification took the wind out of the sails of the German economy for considerably less than two decades). I was going to address several points to what you said. However, ultimately the gap between the economic situation in North and South Korea is so much greater than what existed between East and West Germany that it is hard to say how the Korea experience would compare to that of Germany.
That being said, my point remains, no matter how much like carrion crows "Western" (most likely South Korean) industrialists might be if allowed to intervene in North Korea, it is hard to imagine them making things worse than they already are.

Re:Making Peace? (1)

swarsron (612788) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871461)

That would create a united Korea in the same position as Germany after the curtainwent down, spending a huge amount of it's GDP rebuilding half the country from nothing.

They wouldn't be nearly in the same position as Germany was after the reunification. The DDR can't be compared to NK at all. The DDR had quite a few problems but they were not even close to the problems NK has. As a starter nobody starved to death in the DDR.

Re:Making Peace? (2)

nbert (785663) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871657)

I don't agree that Korea would be in the same position as Germany. A Korean reunification would be far more challenging for a number of reasons. First of all the population ratio is more in favor of the north (2:1 compared to 3.5:1 in Germany). It's also noteworthy that East Germany was an industrialized country with educated workforce and a functioning agricultural sector. The GDR wasn't great but compared to North Korea it was highly developed and the standard of living was at least similar to that of the western population. Apart from the economical differences the societies didn't have so much time to drift apart and the GDR was more open to external influences (people had Radio/TV from the west, relatives were allowed to visit etc).
Based on the way the unification went in Germany I'm not really sure South Korea could cope with a collapse of the NK regime in the same manner.

obama should just give over america's? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42870489)

http://www.smh.com.au/world/obama-to-call-for-cuts-in-us-nuclear-weapons-20130212-2e9pz.html

Even China is getting tired of their shit (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42870525)

Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi has summoned the North Korean ambassador to the country, saying he was "strongly dissatisfied and resolutely opposed" to the test. The top official also urged the DPRK to "stop any rhetoric or acts that could worsen situations and return to the right course of dialogue and consultation as soon as possible," Reuters reported.

Kim is running out of allies.

Re:Even China is getting tired of their shit (4, Insightful)

jacknifetoaswan (2618987) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870609)

But China will never abandon North Korea, unless NK attacks China directly. They'll continue to support them in any way possible, within reason, to ensure the communist stronghold on the peninsula. Further, the entire world will continue to provide support to NK via humanitarian aid and appeasement, as long as the North signs a piece of paper that says they won't do anything. We've been through this for decades, with North Korea, Iran, Iraq, Libya, etc.

Re:Even China is getting tired of their shit (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42870623)

Well, yeah. I mean, if the US does anything, the Norks will shoot the hostages, and if China does anything, there will be millions of illiterate and malnourished refugees flooding one of the most prosperous areas of China.

*shrug*

Re:Even China is getting tired of their shit (4, Insightful)

ShanghaiBill (739463) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871011)

We've been through this for decades, with North Korea, Iran, Iraq, Libya, etc.

The leaders of two of these countries (Iraq and Libya) gave up their WMDs. They are both now dead. If we want the leaders of rogue nations to give up their nukes, maybe should stop killing them when they do.

Re:Even China is getting tired of their shit (2)

the gnat (153162) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871137)

If we want the leaders of rogue nations to give up their nukes, maybe should stop killing them when they do.

We didn't kill Qaddafi, the Libyan rebels did, and that was after he had threatened to exterminate them like "cockroaches" (his word, not mine). I'm not happy with the way it ended - I would have preferred a trip to The Hague and a small jail cell for the rest of his life - but his death was not a foregone conclusion, and it was certainly not precipitated by his abandonment of WMDs. All of these despots have sufficient resources and wealth to escape and live happy, indulgent lives elsewhere; Qaddafi was simply too arrogant and bloodthirsty to recognize that he couldn't hold on to power indefinitely.

Re:Even China is getting tired of their shit (5, Insightful)

X0563511 (793323) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871141)

They are not getting killed because they had WMDs, they are getting killed because they were fuckheads. They had WMDs also because they were fuckheads.

If they want to stop getting killed, perhaps they should stop being fuckheads?

Re:Even China is getting tired of their shit (4, Interesting)

jythie (914043) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871243)

And that gets to the heart of the issue.. countries with nukes have a lot less to fear from the 1st world then countries without them. While not quite MAD, it changes the whole political equation. I know if I was running a nation that was on America's shit list, getting a viable nuclear weapon would be pretty high in my priority queue. If you can not actually hurt the US, US foreign policy is pretty nasty... even when international rules should curtail the US's behavior, we usually ignore them unless they other country has some kind of bargaining chip or power to push back.

Which is why the US is so adimiment about countries it doesn't like not having nukes.. not because there is any belief that rouge nations will go around attacking people, but because (naturally) we want to be in as strong of a position as possible and others as weak as possible, so anything that means we can not unilaterally push them around is something we want to prevent.

Re:Even China is getting tired of their shit (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42871053)

China isn't supporting North Korea to maintain a communist stronghold on the peninsula. China is supporting North Korea because they don't want a few million refugees pouring across the border in the event of a Pyongyang regime collapse. They don't want the humanitarian crisis ending up on their own soil.

Re:Even China is getting tired of their shit (1)

jythie (914043) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871255)

That and they do not want a joint US/SK military force on their direct boarder. If NK collapses many of the outcomes would result in having to deal with that again.

Re:Even China is getting tired of their shit (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42870837)

What the article is not able to articulate is the "wink wink nudge nudge" the Chinese Foreign Minister was gesturing at the NK Ambassador.

Make no mistake at all. China is 100% all for NK having nuclear weapons.

Re:Even China is getting tired of their shit (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42870869)

China doesn't really want NK to have nuclear weapons, but they prefer that option to the alternative of having a US puppet state right on their border, which would have happened by now if NK didn't build nuclear weapons.

Re:Even China is getting tired of their shit (1)

Rockoon (1252108) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871055)

What makes you think NK wont turn into a US puppet state anyways, only now with nukes?

Re:Even China is getting tired of their shit (1)

cffrost (885375) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871479)

What makes you think NK wont turn into a US puppet state anyways, only now with nukes?

Can you give an example of a realistic scenario in which that might occur?

I wonder (1)

sycodon (149926) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870859)

They seem to do this whenever they feel "threatened", which is whenever someone says something mean apparently.

So, we just keep saying mean things to them and they'll keep blowing up their nuclear stock underground. They have to run out eventually.

Re:Even China is getting tired of their shit (1)

schwit1 (797399) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871091)

China likes NK just the way they are. It scares China's neighbors, specifically Japan. This will make Japan come hat in hand to China asking that they please keep the pit bull leashed.

All for the revolution comrades... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42870545)

Good for NK. The US will not even think of invading.
Now, can you commies give 1 or 2 nukes to Iran so all this charade about the US invading goes away ?

Re:All for the revolution comrades... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42870579)

Did Rush give you that idea?

Peaceful Satellite? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42870559)

They just demonstrated the intended payload of that "satellite".

Re:Peaceful Satellite? (1)

localman57 (1340533) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870989)

Yeah. In other news, Elon Musk just announced that he's decided to develop a nuclear warhead. Not that he particularly wants one, but he gets a kick out of sending Instagram photos of the stuff he does to Kim Jong Un.

Heh (1, Flamebait)

benjfowler (239527) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870567)

I guess North Korea is what happens when an entire country gets Assburgers Syndrome

Re:Heh (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42870619)

No.

San Fransisco is what happens when an entire city gets Assburglars Syndrome

"Wantonly violated?" (5, Interesting)

scotts13 (1371443) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870613)

"...wantonly violated the DPRK's legitimate right to launch satellite for peaceful purposes"

I'm sorry, I must have missed where we were shooting down their satellites. What the hell are they talking about?

Re:"Wantonly violated?" (1)

Albanach (527650) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870659)

I think they may be linking the launch of an unmanned US military shuttle shortly before the North Korean satellite launch and the fact their satellite unexpectedly (to them at least) failed to make a stable orbit.

Re:"Wantonly violated?" (1)

Lincolnshire Poacher (1205798) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871095)

and the fact their satellite unexpectedly (to them at least) failed to make a stable orbit.

Huh? The orbit is stable and quite an impressive example of slewing elevation during launch.

"Spinning in an orbit" != "unstable orbit"

Re:"Wantonly violated?" (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42870675)

That is their propoganda bullshit excuse for why the satellite isn't blasting the Leader's theme song from space, as was promised.

You think Kim Jong Un is going to announce to the people that one of his projects failed?

Re:"Wantonly violated?" (1)

localman57 (1340533) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871149)

They were actually pretty open to their own people about the previous rocket's failure to make orbit. This was a bit surprising to the West (the admission, not the failure).

Re:"Wantonly violated?" (2)

Richard_at_work (517087) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870793)

Both Japan and the US are on record as saying they wouldn't hesitate to shoot down anything NK launches, and have had UNSC resolutions assed that bans NK from launching anything at all. I don't personally agree with the UN being able to ban a country from having a space program (I'm making no comment as to whether NK have a legitimate program tho).

Re:"Wantonly violated?" (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42870803)

"...wantonly violated the DPRK's legitimate right to launch satellite for peaceful purposes"

I'm sorry, I must have missed where we were shooting down their satellites. What the hell are they talking about?

I trust you're being sarcastic, but for completeness, they are talking about United Nations Security Council Resolution 1718 [wikipedia.org] which states that "North Korea must 'not conduct any further nuclear test or launch of a ballistic missile', 'suspend all activities related to its ballistic missile programme' and 'abandon all nuclear weapons and existing nuclear programmes in a complete, verifiable and irreversible manner'".

By voting for this resolution, the United States (and China and 13 other countries) are "wantonly violat[ing] the DPRK's legitimate right to launch satellite for peaceful purposes".

Sort of like how United Nations Security Council Resolution 1929 [wikipedia.org] violates Iran's right to develop peaceful nuclear technologies.

Re:"Wantonly violated?" (2)

Zontar_Thing_From_Ve (949321) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870867)

Here's the deal. They do have a "legitimate right" to launch satellites. However, all their "satellite" launches under the previous Kim's government were fairly transparent attempts to test ICBMs. UN sanctions do not give them the right to test ICBMs. So what they do is insist that they are launching satellites and use that as an ICBM test. They may have actually gotten a satellite into orbit on the most recent launch, a first for the country, but everybody knows that the real purpose is to test more powerful missiles.

Re:"Wantonly violated?" (2, Interesting)

ShanghaiBill (739463) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871079)

I'm sorry, I must have missed where we were shooting down their satellites.

What makes you so sure that we didn't shoot it down?

Re:"Wantonly violated?" (0)

Reservoir Penguin (611789) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871345)

Seriously? When South Korea recently launched a satellite the world was quiet, like nobody noticed that SK is an aggressive puppet regime occupied by tens of thousands of US troops. DPRK was condemned by the so called "international community" for their launch. Double standards.

Re:"Wantonly violated?" (5, Interesting)

guttentag (313541) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871371)

When North Korea makes announcements it often comes off sounding schizophrenic. Before the "satellite" launch, it announced that it was merely a peaceful satellite. After the launch, it bluntly announced that it was actually a cover for an ICBM test to help it one day deliver a nuclear weapon to the U.S. Now it's back to calling it a peaceful satellite. I suspect three possibilities:
  • when you are as accustomed to crafting a manufactured reality as North Korea is, it's easy to lose track of what you claimed before. I have found that one of the most effective ways to catch a person lying is to ask for details until the person contradicts himself, indicating that rather than remembering what actually happened, he lost track of what lies he fabricated earlier. That may be what we are seeing here from the propaganda machine.
  • North Korea's propaganda machine changes the message as often as necessary to suit its needs of the moment. Think of Orwell's 1984, where "The Party" would say it was at war with Eastasia and in alliance with Eurasia, and this had always been the state of things, except Winston knew that four years ago it was not the case. And by the end of the book it switches back again, with the people accepting that it had always been that way. When it suits North Korea's purposes to tell its people that it is making scientific progress, it is launching a satellite. When it suits The Party's purposes to show that it is standing up to its "evil" sworn enemy (the U.S.), it is an ICBM test. When they have no data from their "satellite" to show, they claim the U.S. shot it down, which conditions people to be more accepting of an ICBM test in the future.
  • North Korean leadership is far from monolithic. There was actually speculation that the young new leader did not want to escalate tensions with the rest of the world, having been educated in Switzerland. However he might have to bow to the pressure of the military that was already in power. So analysts were waiting to see if he would truly depart from the confrontational stance his father took. If there were still any lingering doubts, this test shows that he is either unwilling or unable to deviate from that course. The changing messages from the propaganda machine may be an indication of internal conflicts: one group tells the propaganda machine to announce it has peaceful intentions, while the other bluntly announces it is preparing to nuke the U.S. The more extreme the contradictions, the more likely it is that you have two factions fighting over the same mouthpiece.

Re:"Wantonly violated?" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42871565)

Excellent analysis. Best I've read on the internet today. WTB mod points.

The scary part... (5, Informative)

jacknifetoaswan (2618987) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870639)

The scariest part about this whole test scenario is that while the induced earthquake was only a 4.9 on the Richter Scale (the previous was 4.5), that means the new bomb has released four times the energy of the last bomb. Further, they're focusing on miniaturization of the physics package, which allows them to mount the warhead on a missile. If they're ever able to engineer (or buy) a working delivery mechanism, South Korea, Japan, and even US interests, are at risk of nuclear escalation and bombardment.

I know South Korea is actively pursuing upgrading their AEGIS Destroyers with the US Navy's Ballistic Missile Defense technology, and Japan already has it, but this is a really scary scenario.

Re:The scary part... (2)

rmdingler (1955220) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870913)

12.6 times more energy.

Re:The scary part... (3, Insightful)

TheNinjaroach (878876) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870927)

the induced earthquake was only a 4.9 on the Richter Scale (the previous was 4.5), that means the new bomb has released four times the energy of the last bomb.

No, it means the earthquake had four times the energy as the last artificial earthquake. As far as I know, there's not a 1:1 relationship between the power in the bomb and the power of the earthquake it creates.

Re:The scary part... (5, Informative)

DerekLyons (302214) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871121)

As far as I know, there's not a 1:1 relationship between the power in the bomb and the power of the earthquake it creates.

There isn't. It depends on the type of rock, the local seismic conditions, and how well the weapons energy couples to the local rock (which depends on test chamber geometry, the presence or absence of stemming, etc...). Predicting yield from earthquake strength is a very inexact science. (Heck, even determining the exact Richter measurement involves a certain amount of assumptions and black art.)

Re:The scary part... (1)

cffrost (885375) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871555)

As far as I know, there's not a 1:1 relationship between the power in the bomb and the power of the earthquake it creates.

There isn't. It depends on the type of rock, the local seismic conditions, and how well the weapons energy couples to the local rock (which depends on test chamber geometry, the presence or absence of stemming, etc...). Predicting yield from earthquake strength is a very inexact science. (Heck, even determining the exact Richter measurement involves a certain amount of assumptions and black art.)

What is "stemming" in this context?

Re:The scary part... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42871545)

Let's assume that the test took place at the same location as before, and that the Richter scale measurement took place at the same location as was previously done as well.

Let's also assume that the seismic shock wave passed through the earth under identical impedance conditions in all directions. (point source explosion, spherical propagation of energetic release).

The energy release of an earthquake scales with the amplitude of the shock wave to the 3/2 power. The Richter measurements are a log base 10 measurement of the amplitudes.

Therefore, the energy release of the improved bomb could be approximated by [ 10^ (4.9 - 4.5) ] ^ (3/2).

The 1st Law of Thermodynamics says that unless the Richter scale was also measuring the energy of another earth quake that was released upon explosion (stored strain energy in the earth's crust), the source of the explosion was 4 times as energetic as the previous bomb.

This is 4 times the amount of energy release.

Re:The scary part... (1)

Hentes (2461350) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871587)

But the energy of the earthquake is still a lower boundary for the energy of the bomb.

Re:The scary part... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42870939)

In which case, the rest of the world can start being just as worried about North Korea, as they are about the US. After all, the US already has all these things.

If you guys really are worried about countries with nuclear weapons, you should have pressured your own government to not follow this path, so that the countries that currently feel threatened by the US wouldn't be forced to get nuclear weapons of their own. Look at the last four boogeymen... Russia, China, Afghanistan and Iraq. Two of them had nuclear weapons, and two of them got invaded. The lesson is quite clear: If the US declares your country a boogeyman, you either get nuclear weapons or you get invaded. North Korea and Iran have received the message, and are acting on it.

Re:The scary part... (1)

FirstOne (193462) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870961)

If they're ever able to engineer (or buy) a working delivery mechanism, South Korea, Japan, and even US interests,are at risk of nuclear escalation and bombardment."

It's not the threat of bombardment that worries me, it's the threat of an EMP attack [washingtontimes.com] you should be worried about..

The loss of our grid infrastructure would inevitably lead to multiple Fukishima like meltdowns in the USA.

Re:The scary part... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42871021)

It was in a James Bond movie, so it must be true!

Re:The scary part... (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871069)

The scariest part about this whole test scenario is that while the induced earthquake was only a 4.9 on the Richter Scale (the previous was 4.5), that means the new bomb has released four times the energy of the last bomb.

Cargo cult commenting at it's finest... while "four times the energy" certainly sounds scary - looking at the actual numbers means they've likely developed a 10kt bomb. Dangerous, but pretty puny so far as strategic weapons go. 10k is pretty useless for anything but holding un-reinforced area targets at risk, and even then requires a fairly accurate delivery mechanism as the radius of significant damage (anything more than breaking windows) is barely a mile across.
 

Further, they're focusing on miniaturization of the physics package, which allows them to mount the warhead on a missile.

More self-panicking courtesy of Captain Obvious of the Cargo Cult. Who here thinks that any nuclear weapons state wouldn't focus on miniaturization? (If you answer "but bombs on [container ships|trucks|some other far fetched Hollywood inspired delivery mechanism], you're so far off base you're not even in the same city.) Pretty much every nuclear power goes for missiles - they're the most effective deterrent system available.* And in a dictatorship, they're really desirable because you can keep them close to home under the control of trusted troops (with the warheads under the control of a different set of trusted troops).
 
Did you learn your rhetoric at a DHS sponsored school, or just soak it up naturally? (The latter is quite prevalent as the 'net lends itself to sensationalism.)
 
* The South Africans didn't, but they weren't designing a deterrent system in the conventional sense.

Re:The scary part... (1)

jacknifetoaswan (2618987) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871609)

Considering that Little Boy and Fat Man were rated at 16 kt and 21 kt, respectively, 10 kt is not something to just ignore. Those two bombs did a pretty good number on Japanese citizens and buildings, given a rough Wikipedia estimate of 150,000 - 250,000 dead. Given a few more years of development time, it's conceivable, however unlikely, that they could work to increase the yield of the weapon, while simultaneously reducing the size and weight.

Regardless of that, what rhetoric did I spout, and why is your response so full of ridicule over my 'sensationalism'? Simply stating facts and opining on possible future outcomes isn't panic, it's commenting on a Slashdot article.

Re:The scary part... (1)

Liquid Len (739188) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871603)

True. And I have a hard time convincing myself that these guys are doing it alone. For sure, they get some help. China ?

I'm actually quite impressed with the DPRK... (3, Funny)

acidfast7 (551610) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870671)

they hardly have any infrastructure or resources and somehow manage to both demand foreign aid (and have it delivered) and stay relevant on a global stage (well above where they should be based on peaceful accomplishments). Well played DPRK, my hat is off to you!

Re:I'm actually quite impressed with the DPRK... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42870729)

... conveniently ignoring the fact that the rest of the world simply wants them to come back into the world community, and not manufacture weapons of mass destruction (which they promise to use South Korea, Japan, and the Unites Sates).

Rather soon we are going to get fed up with their shit and conduct business in a much more abrupt and absolute manner.

Re:I'm actually quite impressed with the DPRK... (2)

acidfast7 (551610) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870777)

I assume that you mean "we" in the sense of the US, which isn't going to do anything because it's essentially bankrupt, devoid of EU/NATO allies and "super scared" of China. The US is just going to verbally condemn the DPRK's actions. Unless you mean "we" in a different context, in which, I don't see China doing anything, Japan is too busy with China, Russia couldn't care less and the EU never does anything. What I am missing in your "hollow threat?"

Re:I'm actually quite impressed with the DPRK... (2)

i_ate_god (899684) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870853)

Canadians

Re:I'm actually quite impressed with the DPRK... (1)

acidfast7 (551610) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870947)

horseback? hmmm, interesting tactical option.

Re:I'm actually quite impressed with the DPRK... (1)

Talderas (1212466) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871229)

I was thinking Australian Cane Toad bombardment.

Re:I'm actually quite impressed with the DPRK... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42871343)

they only need to support 1 city,pyongyang,and 400,000 people.The rest of the country,about 8 - 10 million people, are used basically for slave labor to support pyongyang and the 400,000 elite.The west (america) feeds their labor force,therefore they dont have to, and the chinese supply raw resources.I believe we should stop feeding them; starvation is a good incentive to revolt.People are dying in this regime now anyways and I believe less will die in the long term if this regime is put down sooner rather than later.This is a criminal regime, run by a criminal family.

Re:I'm actually quite impressed with the DPRK... (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42871575)

They used slave labor to purchase nuclear weapons technology from a Dutch-trained Pakistani physicists in the 1970's. This isn't home grown technology.

What happen? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42870689)

Somebody set up us the bomb!

Kinda scary... (1, Insightful)

holiggan (522846) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870721)

... to see some countries still stuck in the "cold war" mindset. Worse, to see some countries trapped in the "middle ages" mindset...

Re:Kinda scary... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42871059)

Yeah, when will the US realize those days are over?

Re:Kinda scary... (0)

acidfast7 (551610) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871067)

it's an evolutionary process. the DPRK is evolving and I currently like someone to play the antithetic role to the role of the US as global capitalist. we all have our parts (i personally enjoy socialist Europe), but i think your use of "stuck" and "trapped" demonstrate a good bit of ignorance.

Re:Kinda scary... (1)

the gnat (153162) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871247)

i think your use of "stuck" and "trapped" demonstrate a good bit of ignorance

Actually, they're very appropriate for this context, since North Koreans are simply not allowed to leave their country - unlike the citizens of nearly every other country in the modern world. They're also not allowed to do a lot of other things we - socialist Europe included - take for granted, but the use of force to keep people in the country is nearly unique. They are serfs in every way that matters.

Re:Kinda scary... (1)

Intrepid imaginaut (1970940) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871327)

The DPRK aren't "communist" in any ideological sense of the word. They are a totalitarian autocracy keeping the citizens in a state of primitive servitude. Which funnily enough is exactly where communism tends to lead in the real world. I mean think about it - step 1) give us all your stuff, step 2) we'll redistribute it. Is anyone even slightly surprised that it never gets past step 1.

Why is this on Slashdot? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42870735)

This isn't news for nerds, its just news and I got it hours ago on traditional news sites.

Re:Why is this on Slashdot? (2)

rmdingler (1955220) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870977)

Nerds live side-by-side persons of merely average intelligence and are equally affected by evil governmental regimes and happenstance. We don't all write code for a living or live in our mother's basement. Hell, I think two or three of us even have women. Sit back, pipe down, and let the number of comments sort this out.

I'm just waiting... (1)

bleh-of-the-huns (17740) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870769)

For them to launch something.. in the name of whatever (satellite, defense, radio broadcast, telecom., etc), and have it fail and rain debris over a populated area of some other country.. Then the shit will hit the fan.. I doubt even China would sit by idly while shit rains down on them (and if it ends up being radioactive in any way, it would be even worse).

Posturing only goes so far, and then someone will steamroll through..

Why is this on Slashdot? (0, Offtopic)

EmagGeek (574360) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870791)

First of all, it's not news for nerds. Second, the story is not at least 2 weeks old. Third, it doesn't meet the list of acceptable subject matter:

- Apple Rocks
- Microsoft Sucks
- Linux is awesome, but I hate it because I am not in charge
- Do my job for me
- Ask Slashdot: $TROLL_QUESTION

So, what gives? Is there a new addition to the list of acceptable subject matter on Slashdot?

Re:Why is this on Slashdot? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42870865)

Stuff that matters.

Re:Why is this on Slashdot? (1)

Jake S Griffin (1704486) | about a year and a half ago | (#42870891)

Oops forgot to sign in :-(

Re:Why is this on Slashdot? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42870953)

politics.slashdot.org [slashdot.org]

Flawed plan - Nukes won't save them (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42870983)

The U.S. by itself is too large for most nuclear attacks to completely disable it outright. A large enough one launched from a country like the USSR back during the Cold War might've done it, but North Korea is very small by comparison.

Then when you bring in allies and such, the odds of nuclear deterrence being a magic bullet that lets North Korea be safe from NATO is even less likely; it's not like they magically have 10k+ nukes overnight.

US did that too ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42871035)

Search in Google for 7.12.12, there was a a-bomb test in nevada, US.

So double standards ?

Re:US did that too ... (1)

Virtucon (127420) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871219)

Double? Not really but since our last nuclear test was in 1992, I suggest that we start up testing again. Nothing bootstraps an economy like large weapons projects however I submit that Nevada is not really suitable for this anymore. First, The Mortgage Crisis has left most of Nevada more barren and empty than before, so if you set off a Nuke there, would anybody notice? Second is potential fallout to Utah and points East of the Test area.

Now, I propose at least one new test area, frankly we really need two because under my administration I would designate certain areas as common test areas for all nations to test their nuclear weapons capabilities. I'd start in an area just North and East of Saudia Arabia on the other side of the gulf. The other area I'd suggest for comprehensive Nuclear testing would be just North of South Korea. By doing this all nations of the world (including Israel, South Africa etc.) could test their weapons there and have all the other world powers actually come and see the show. Testing is critical because everybody's Nuke stockpile is getting older, and frankly that computer simulation math thingy that the do in the labs really doesn't prove to me and the rest of the retards on the planet that they do work. So, I think we should begin testing in one or both of these selected areas to demonstrate that our Nukes still work.

Weapons unused are useless deterrents.

Re:US did that too ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42871273)

Well if the US need to start testing nuclear weapons again, I say test in eastern Texas.
Maybe something good can out of this.

Re:US did that too ... (1)

Merk42 (1906718) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871451)

As sited earlier, there is a United Nations Security Council Resolution [wikipedia.org] saying DPRK can't conduct nuclear tests. Is there a resolution that applies to the U.S.?

I can almost see their point... (1)

Builder (103701) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871097)

Look at Iraq - would America really have invaded if they honestly believed that nuclear retaliation was a real option ? By having nukes (and being moderately batshit insane), Kim ensures that he can run his dictatorship without outside interference.

What ferocious act? (1)

Dishwasha (125561) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871339)

What ferocious act is NK claiming the US did against it? Are they claiming we shot down their satellite?

You have to ask.... is NK's leader suicidal? (2)

mark-t (151149) | about a year and a half ago | (#42871347)

Because certainly he must realize the severity of retaliation that would occur if he were to actually make an aggressive move against another nation.

And given that... is it really so naive to think that they really just wanted to launch peaceful satellites? Although I know that the recent nuclear testing doesn't exactly help their case in that regard, it's easily conceivable that it is naught more than posturing... an attempt (not necessarily an effective one) to try to intimidate other countries into letting them practice what they wanted to do.

Like I said... if their underlying intent were genuinely to launch an ICBM against another country, I'm pretty sure that the nation's leader realizes that there won't be a nation left for him to lead afterwards. Doesn't it then follow that, by course of the instinct for one's own survival, that he might, just might, actually be telling the truth?

Kim Jong Un is the BEER BARON! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42871621)

I think it must have been that bean I had for dinner.

Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?
or Connect with...

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>