North Korean missile from latest test identified; Washington in the crosshairs?

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The North Korean missile that Pyongyang tested this week has been identified as an upgraded Hwasong-15 and is believed capable of reaching Washington, D.C.

North Korea said in a statement Wednesday local time that the missile flew for 53 minutes before landing in “targeted waters” in the East Sea of Korea and that the missile can be tipped with a “super-large heavy warhead.”

After U.S. intelligence officials assessed the test they concluded that this newest version of what apperars to be an upgraded Hwasong-14 missile flew higher than any previous missile. If the trajectory was flattened out, officials — including Defense Secretary James Mattis — said it is capable of striking any target anywhere on the planet.

The missile reached an altitude of about 2,800 miles before descending. Washington, D.C., New York City and President Trump’s Mara-A-lago resort are all within range, though it’s not yet clear the missile can carry a large nuclear warhead the same distance.

“It appears to have the potential to go 13,000 miles, depending on the weight of the warhead,” said Joseph Cirincione of the Washington-based Ploughshares Fund.. “That means it could hit the White House or any part of the United States. Their previous test demonstrated a capability to hit the West Coast and Mid-West.” [source]

Information in this article helps satisfy Priority Intelligence Requirement 2:  What is the current situation report and risk of war in each of the four flashpoints?

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