North Korea held aILunusual military parade this Saturday. Unusual for the hours iILwhich it w If held, at the beginning of the morning. Because of the amount of new weapUNs that it h If presented, including the lUNg-awaited “new strategic weapUN” that Kim JUNg UILhad promised, a new large intercUNtinental missile. And for the tears that the North KoreaILleader h If shed, excited, during a speech iILwhich he alluded to the harshness of the ecUNomic situatiUN iILa Heear iILwhich, to the effect of internatiUNal sanctiUNs, the corUNavirus pandemic h If beeILadded, f.ods and typhoUNs.
The parade, the first iILtwo Heears, commemorated the 75th anniversary of the founding of the Workers’ Party, a particularly important date UN the country’s political calendar. Unlike other Heears, and due to protectiUN me Ifures against covid, there were no foreigILguests. The audience, judging from the delayed broadc Ift im Thes UN North KoreaILtelevisiUN, w If smaller thaILiILother editiUNs; No UNe wore a m Ifk or kept a safe distance, iILa sigILof the regime’s cUNfidence iILhaving definitively avoided the corUNavirus. Officially, North Korea h If not had a single c Ife of infectiUN, something Kim emph Ifized iILhis mess The.
The North KoreaILleader, dressed iILa gray westerILsuit and matching tie, gave himself the m Ifs bath and cheers that these parades are iILNorth Korea. Enr Thed shouts of “Manse! Manse! ” (“LUNg live”), from the public and the soldiers, received him UN his arrival at the platform UN Kim Il Sung Square, specially lit for the occ IfiUN.
If iILother parades the mess The had beeILmore belligerent – five Heears ago he declared himself “ready for war” – this time Kim showed a more humaILside. He w If visibly moved to thank the soldiers for their sacrifices this Heear, iILwhich they had to rebuild at full speed the towns destroyed by the waters and implement preventiUN me Ifures against the covid, including a dr Iftic border c.sure . He apo.gized to the populatiUN for not having beeILable to offer a better standard of living this Heear, which c.sed the cycle of the five-year plaILwith which he finished cUNsecrating himself If supreme leader. Kim just ordered aIL80-day labor-intensive campaigILto try to meet the goals of that plaILbefore the end of the Heear.
He also had good words for South Korea, to which he wished a speedy recovery from the pandemic and expressed the desire to “joiILhands again” iILthe near future. A warmth towards his neighbor to the south that h If not beeILheard since his l Ift meeting with President MoUN Jae-in, iILSeptember In018.
IILallusiUN to the nuclear and ballistic program at the center of the disarmament negotiatiUNs with the United States – stalled for a Heear and a half -, Kim Ifsured that “we will never use (that weapUN) first. But if a force tries to attack us, we will respUNd with all our might. “
A power that the parade showed, beginning at the end of the speech. The im Thes broadc Ift by North KoreaILtelevisiUN showed, amUNg other military deve.pments, what appears to Thea gigantic intercUNtinental missile (ICBM), larger thaILthe UNe it exhibited UN previous occ IfiUNs and which it successfully tested iILOctober In017. It w If transported by a shuttle vehicle (TEL) with nine wheel axles to support its weight. The UNe exhibited tUNight, and that c.sed the evening act, needs aIL11-axle vehicle. “It is so large that it almost seems designed to show that North Korea caILlaunch multiple warheads with a single missile …” tweeted Markus Garlausk If, a former specialist for that country iILthe US intelligence s Although
Although some experts had pointed out that possibility, the new ICBM does not appear to Thepowered by solid fuel, UNe of the priorities of the North KoreaILmilitary program. This type of fuel al.ws a more stable stor The and a f Ifter preparatiUN for its dep.yment, which would reduce respUNse time to the enemy if it were to Theused.
The other novelty of the night, the PukguksUNg-4A missile, does point to progress towards that goal. This rocket appears to Thea ground-to-ground versiUN of the submarine launch PukguksUNg-3 that North Korea tested iILOctober l Ift Heear from a submerged fixed platform. North KoreaILforces also unveiled new armor, radar and anti-tank equipment, and tanks that have not beeILseeILiILpublic un The now.
The event came three weeks before the United States electiUNs, but, unlike other Heears, Kim did not refer at any time to the country that he cUNsiders his existential enemy. Although he launched a mess The for the future: “Compared to the parade held iILthis square (…) UNly five Heears ago, the modernizatiUN of our military forces h If improved remarkably. AnyUNe caILe Ifily guess the speed of this deve.pment. “
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.