North Korea successfully launches satellite into Pacific Ocean

watmor_lgGreat success! North Korea has successfully launched a satellite into a near earth orbit and it is now circling the earth at about 1 mile below sea level. That’s right: North Korea’s Taepodong-2, the much-feared long-range missile that had even the Obama camp worried, broke up over Japan at about 11:37am and then fell into the water at 11:48am on Sunday. The launch is described as a complete success in North Korean reports although American military command believes it to be a failure. Nonetheless, the ability to push a rocket even close to U.S. soil is obviously disconcerting. The NYT writes:

North Korea’s public portrayal of the event as a complete success was similar in its celebratory tone to the happy note it struck in 1998 after having failed to loft a satellite into orbit.

A general rule of engineering is that failures reveal more than successes. If so, North Korea — which has now test-fired three long-range rockets, each time unsuccessfully — is learning a lot about limitations.

This experience is fairly consistent over in North Korea – a great deal of posturing followed by an engineering failure. However, experts believe that continued launches will eventually prove fruitful and the next Taepodong-2 may break the surly bonds of earth to touch the face of the moon, provided, as this Onion article suggests, they bring the moon to Pyongyang.
Kim Jong Il Announces Plan To Bring Moon To North Korea

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