In the wake of North Korea’s most recent ballistic missile test, which may indicate Kim’s regime is now capable of delivering a nuclear warhead to targets as far away as New York or Boston, South Korean President Moon Jae-in has authorized the deployment of four additional THAAD Missile Defense Systems in his country.

President Moon, a liberal that has actively pursued an open dialogue and improved relations with the North, had previously ordered the halt of further THAAD deployments pending an environment impact study.  It was widely speculated at the time, however, that the decision to suspend THAAD deployments was primarily due to intense financial pressures placed on the nation by nearby economic powerhouse, China.

The Chinese government has been extremely critical of America’s THAAD systems in South Korea.  While their recent complaints have revolved around heightening tensions with Kim’s regime, their ulterior concerns have always been about the THAAD’s powerful radar array – which is not only capable of locating missiles launched in the region, but of tracking Chinese equipment within their borders.

South Korea’s government has reportedly notified China of their decision, though the Chinese government has yet to issue an official statement in response.