Pentagon: North Korea May Be Capable Of Launching Nuclear Missile

Pentagon North Korea May Be Capable Of Launching Nuclear MissileThe Pentagon’s intelligence arm has assessed with “moderate confidence” that North Korea has the ability to deliver a nuclear weapon with a ballistic missile, though the reliability is believed to be “low.”

‘Surprise development’

Disclosed first by a congressman at a hearing on Thursday and then confirmed to CNN by the Defense Department, the assessment by the Defense Intelligence Agency is the clearest acknowledgment yet by the United States about potential advances in North Korea’s nuclear program.

The surprise development comes amid heightened tensions on the Korean Peninsula. North Korea has unleashed a torrent of dramatic threats against the United States and South Korea in recent weeks, including that of a possible nuclear strike.

Pentagon spokesman George Little said later Thursday, “It would be inaccurate to suggest that the North Korean regime has fully tested, developed, or demonstrated the kinds of nuclear capabilities referenced in the passage” of the DIA study.


‘Capable of delivery’

That stance was echoed by James R. Clapper, director of U.S. national intelligence, who said the statement read by Rep. Doug Lamborn “is not an intelligence community assessment. Moreover, North Korea has not yet demonstrated the full range of capabilities necessary for a nuclear armed missile.”

Lamborn, R-Colorado, read from a declassified version of the DIA assessment at a House Armed Services Committee hearing, “DIA assess with moderate confidence the North currently has nuclear weapons capable of delivery by ballistic missiles, however, the reliability will be low.”

Reliability is apparently a reference to the accuracy of the missiles. It is was not clear whether other U.S. intelligence agencies, such as the CIA, agree with the defense analysis.

Do you think North Korea is capable of launching a nuclear missile? And will a war erupt soon?

Source: Jethro Mullen. Barbara Starr and Joe Sterling, CNN

Image: The National Turk

Pentagon Confirms Iran Fired At Unarmed U.S. Drone Over Gulf

Pentagon Confirms Iran Fired At Unarmed U.S. Drone Over GulfIran fired on an unarmed U.S. drone last week as it was hovering in international airspace, the Pentagon announced Thursday.

‘Fired twice’

Spokesman George Little said the incident, which marks the first time the Iranians have fired on a U.S. drone, occurred Nov. 1 at 4:50 a.m. ET. He said the unarmed, unmanned drone was conducting “routine surveillance” over the Persian Gulf when it was “intercepted” by Iran. He said the MQ1 Predator drone, which was not hit, was not in Iranian airspace.

According to Little, two Iranian jets fired twice, missing on both attempts — the drone headed away from the Iranian coast, landing safely soon after at an undisclosed location. The Iranian jets pursued the drone for a short period before giving up.


‘Act of war’

Little said the U.S. government has protested to the Iranians. He would not say whether there were actually plans for a military response. Asked if this should be considered an act of war, Little said he didn’t want to get into “legal characterizations” of the event.  Little stressed that the drone was flying 16 nautical miles off the coast of Kuwait in international waters, and never entered the 12-mile limit that would constitute Iranian territory.

The Pentagon announced the incident as the administration imposed a new round of financial sanctions against Iranian officials and entities. They marked the first sanctions since President Obama’s re-election Tuesday. According to the Treasury Department, the move was “related to the Iranian government’s human rights abuses, its support of terrorism and Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.”

What do you think will be the U.S. government’s specific move regarding this recent drone incident? Share your thoughts and opinions with us!

Source: Fox News

Image: Euro News