Just when Hawaiians thought it was safe to come out of their bomb shelters, the folks on the continental U.S. were given cause to look skyward.
MIT professor Theodore Postol and David Wright, a physicist at the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS), write in this week's Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists that the long-range rocket North Korea launched on April 5th could be converted into a ballistic missile that can theoretically hit half the United States with a payload of one ton or more.
The "Unha-2" rocket, which was a disguised form of a ballistic missile is capable of flying over 6,700 kilometer. The rocket could fly even further -- over 10,000 kilometers -- if turned into a missile: "We estimate that it could have a range of 10,000-10,500 kilometers, allowing it to reach Alaska, Hawaii, and roughly half of the lower 48 states."
They end their scientific speculation on a positive note. If key Unha-2's components were acquired from Russia and elsewhere, they further speculate, then North Korea's domestic missile development program may be much more limited than commonly assumed.
Ok, so the Norks have some tough choices ahead: South Dakota or North Dakota or Ohio or...