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What is an ICBM…And Why Does North Korea Want One?


Earlier this week, North Korea successfully tested its first missile capable of delivering a nuclear warhead. NK’s supreme leader was quick to gloat stating that the ICBM was a “gift” to “American bastards.” It’s safe to assume this launch, and Kim’s remarks deliberately coincided with America’s Independence Day.

But what the heck is an ICBM and why does North Korea seem hell-bent on having one?

ICBM stands for “intercontinental ballistic missile.” Unlike other ballistic missiles, ICMBs have greater range and speed making them particularly nasty weapons.

What’s even more nightmare inducing though, is their ability to carry nuclear weapons, or chemical and biological weapons. Modern versions of ICBM allow single missiles to carry multiple warheads, meaning each can strike a different target.

Needless to say, this is not something we want a megalomaniac psychopath like Kim to get his hands on.

The world’s first ICBM was developed in World War II, in Nazi Germany under Projekt Amerika. It’s intended targets were New York and other American cities and was intended to be guided by radio.

During the Cold War, both the US and USSR continued to develop their own primitive ICBMs based on Germany’s earlier designs.
Interestingly enough, these early ICBM’s also formed the basis of many space launch systems.

After the Cold War had ended, the US and the Soviet Union agreed to reduce their deployed ICBMs.

Currently, all five of the nations with permanent seats on the United Nations Security Council have operational long-range ballistic missile systems. These nations include The United Kingdom, France, People’s Republic of China, the Soviet Union, and the United States of America.

Modern intercontinental ballistic missiles can be deployed from multiple platforms:

  • Missile silos
  • Submarines
  • Heavy trucks or Mobile launcher
  • Mobile launchers on rails

Russia, the United States, China, North Korea, and India are the only countries currently known to possess land-based ICBMs.

The range and matchless power ICBMs grant their possessors make them particularly attractive to evil dictators like Kim. This is bad news for America, because it means North Korea could potentially, for the first time, rain hellfire down upon the citizens of this great nation.

Experts were quick to assure the public that North Korea is unlikely to have the technology to develop a warhead, nor the reach to hit the lower 48 states.

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