Another recent ballistic missile test by Kim Jong Un’s North Korean regime ended in failure over the weekend, prompting another round of headlines poking fun at the reclusive state’s inability to make meaningful progress in building a missile with a high probability of success. Although it seems likely enough that the floundering economy and educational isolation that characterizes the nation in the global theater would result in a good deal of difficulty in producing such a complex weapon system, another theory has begun to surface.
Unsubstantiated reports keep popping up all around the internet that suggest the United States may have somehow managed to cause the failure in Sunday’s medium range ballistic missile test that may have been intended as a proof of concept for a submarine launchable platform. Is there any evidence to support such a claim? Not really – but there is, to a certain extent, precedent.
The United States has long been aware that, despite developing some of the most advanced anti-missile technology on the planet, shooting down missiles is a losing game. Even the THAAD missile defense system that China has been so upset about the U.S. deploying in South Korea couldn’t actually hope to stop an all-out nuclear assault levied by the small nation – the fact of the matter is, with enough missiles in the air, no one could hope to shoot them all down.
As SOFREP has reported before, the missile defense system tasked with protecting the mainland United States has some serious issues and no real plans to remedy them any time soon. The GMD missile system we use relies on launching our own missiles into orbit that are designed to eject a “kill vehicle” that hunts down and destroys a nuke before it re-enters the atmosphere over the U.S. – but repeated failures in testing have forced us to plan on firing four to five GMD missiles at any one missile launched our way in order to effectively engage it – meaning if there are more than a dozen or so missiles headed toward the United States, it would be effectively impossible to stop them all.