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North Korea damaged their nuclear test facility

Discussion in 'The Case For...' started by shamangineer, May 1, 2018.

  1. shamangineer

    shamangineer Well-Known Member

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  2. shamangineer

    shamangineer Well-Known Member

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    https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018...confirms-north-korean-nuke-site-has-collapsed
    From above:

    . . . the study published Thursday echoed the findings of Chinese seismologists, who determined earlier this year that the site was basically unusable after a cavity inside the mountain where nuclear test were allegedly being carried out.

    The new study, which created three-dimensional images of the site, backs the Chinese researchers’ conclusion that a large part of the site can’t be used—while showing that the initial damage is “dwarfed” by the gradual collapse detected from space over the next few hours and days. That damage covers an area with a radius of 800 meters and a height of 400 meters, according to Mr. Barbot, who is also an adjunct professor at the University of Southern California.

    “These findings make us infer that a large part of the Punggye-ri test site is inoperable and that further test may require a substantial investment in the construction of another facility elsewhere,” he said.

    The most recent North Korean nuclear test, which was carried out in early September, caused an initial magnitude-6.3 earthquake, followed by a smaller quake roughly nine minutes later that was triggered by the collapse of damaged rock above the now-ruined cavity, the Chinese study said.

    Despite the fact that Kim essentially started off negotiations with a lie by offering a false concession to the US, some officials and experts see Kim's decision to close the site as an important concession - while others view it with suspicion - and see it as a sign that the North might be disingenuous.

    But regardless, with the date and location for the talks set (June 12 in Singapore), just like Trump's withdrawal from the Iran deal - we won't have a crystal clear view of what will come next.
     
  3. shamangineer

    shamangineer Well-Known Member

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  4. shamangineer

    shamangineer Well-Known Member

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    https://amp.thedailybeast.com/satel...r-test-site-before-unilaterally-destroying-it
    From above:
    North Korea destroyed its Punggye-ri nuclear test site on Friday in front of an audience of reporters after unilaterally offering to destroy the site in mid-May. North Korean state media hailed the move as “an important process for global nuclear disarmament” carried out with “high-level transparency,” and President Trump praised it as “a very smart and gracious gesture.” But some experts suspect the site may have been sanitized by the North Koreans before reporters arrived.

    Well before the dismantlement ceremony, satellite imagery of the south entrance obtained by the Middlebury Institute for International Studies show activity at the site as the North began to remove guard structures. The photo shows a heavy truck at the entrance to the south tunnel at the site.

    The imagery was captured on May 7, a day before Secretary of State Mike Pompeo visited North Korea for a second time and five days before North Korean officials officially announced a schedule for the destruction of the site. Video of the south tunnel entrance recorded by Sky News’ Tom Cheshire on the day the test site was dismantled also shows parts of the tunnel’s walls carved out where cables carrying data from the test chamber would be. As early as May 2, U.S. intelligence officials told CBS News that the North had begun to remove cables from the site.

    It’s not clear what, if anything, the truck seen at the tunnel entrance was carrying but Jeffrey Lewis, director of Middlebury’s East Asia Nonproliferation Program, suspects that the activity shown in satellite imagery depicted the North removing material from the test site.

    “The only reason to sanitize the site is if you are planning on protecting national security information,” Lewis told The Daily Beast. “The North Koreans are still treating information about their nuclear weapons program as sensitive—that suggests North Korea is unlikely to hand over actual nuclear weapons.”

    On Friday, the White House National Security Council’s top East Asia staffer Matthew Pottinger told surrogates in an off-the-record briefing that was independently described to The Daily Beast that “What you didn't know is that Secretary Pompeo and the South Korean government were both promised that experts would be invited to verify today's demolition and to do some advance work there.”

    Pottinger referred to the North’s failure to make good on the apparent offer he described as a broken promise, concluding that “we will not have forensic evidence that much was accomplished.”