North Korea Announces Capability to Miniaturize Nuclear Warhead
May 20, 2015
- Miniaturization is one of several technological bottlenecks to a nuclear arsenal. North Korean claims of having accomplished this feat cannot be completely dismissed as fanciful.
- The timing of the statement suggests a degree of pique at Secretary of State Kerry's strong statements against the North and in support of the alliance on the occasion of his May 17 – 18 visit to South Korea.
- It also suggests some pushback at Western analysis downplaying the significance of their submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) launch on May 8, 2015.
- North Korean outbursts like this have sometimes been intended to establish a position of strength in advance of the start of negotiations.
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