Breaking News Stories
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An Immediate Threat?
by Mark Armstrong
with Iran Soon?
by Michael Burkert
US Forces vulnerable to
devastating electromagnetic pulse attack
by Mark Jason Alcala
In a scenario eerily similar to a James Bond film, news reports suggest
that North Korea has a working EMP weapon in place. In fact, an expert
claims that the nation could already have two satellites in orbit and is
now preparing to unleash a devastating electromagnetic pulse attack
against the United States, an attack that many fear could usher in World
While people have been used to reading fantastic yet unbacked news
developments from North Korea, the EMP claim has more credibility to it.
This time, the worrying claim was made by Dr. Peter Vincent Pry, an
executive director of the Task Force on National and Homeland Security,
according to the Independent.
Dr. Pry claims that North Korea has been developing an EMP weapon (short
for electromagnetic pulse) over the years. The nation started the
program back in the 80s. Apparently, they have already launched two
satellites for this purpose: one in 2012 and a more recent one in 2016.
The potentially devastating effects of an electromagnetic pulse were
recognized during the early days of nuclear weapons testing. Back then,
it was observed that nuclear detonations, even ones high up in the
atmosphere, could have effects on electronic equipment.
Naturally, the two superpowers wanted to weaponize the known effects of
EMP. In fact, it was the premise of the James Bond film Goldeneye, where
the villain sought to disrupt global commerce and stock market trading
by detonating a thermonuclear device on board a satellite over London,
erasing every digital record of whatever trading occurred at that time.
But what threat does the alleged North Korean EMP capability pose to the
United States? While an electromagnetic pulse attack is predicted to
cause a significant amount of devastation due to its interference with
electronics, there are those who calculate that North Korea does not
pose a significant threat to the U.S. population in general.
Apparently, the EMP capability that North Korea could possess is not yet
proven to be as devastating as predicted by some scientists. For
instance, Russian and U.S. experiments conducted during the Cold War
failed to convince experts that EMP is indeed as devastating as it was
touted to be, reports the Daily Mail.
Known as Project Starfish, the United States conducted an experiment on
the effects of an electromagnetic pulse from a nuclear weapon detonated
high in the atmosphere. For this purpose, the U.S. denoted a 1.44
megaton nuclear device, which is around 100 times more powerful that the
one dropped on Nagasaki during World War 2, high above the Pacific
While the visual effects of the nuclear explosion were indeed stunning,
its EMP effects were not as spectacular as expected. For instance, only
one series of street lights in Hawaii was affected as a result of the
Russian also conducted similar tests on the effects of EMP during that
time. One such test involved detonating a 300-kiloton warhead near
Jezkazgan, a city in Kazakhstan. This time, the electromagnetic pulse
was more damaging compared to the U.S. test. For example, all fuses, as
well as the overvoltage protectors of a 570-kilometer telephone line,
But reports of a North Korean EMP having the capacity to damage military
equipment and U.S. society, in general, may be a bit overplayed. In
fact, Jeffery Lewis, a nuclear non-proliferation expert, claims that
they may be a bit “silly.” Thus far, results of electromagnetic pulse
experiments have been anticlimactic, specifically when it comes to
And then there are doubts on the actual North Korean EMPs capability. In
a previous Inquisitr report, Stratfor military analyst Sim Tack
explained that the nation’s capability to launch an electromagnetic
pulse attack may be a bit theoretical at the moment.
The verdict: North Korean EMP is unlikely to fry your microwave oven’s
circuits. At best, the nation may try to capitalize on the perceived
threat as a bargaining chip in case of another U.S.-led sanction.