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North Korea Launches Rocket, December 2012

December 13, 2012 by  

North Korea Launches Rocket, December 2012, North Korea’s newly launched satellite marks a “big deal” for Pyongyang, the crossing of a major threshold and a public relations win for the secretive country’s new leader, Kim Jong Un, experts say.

The success, after years of failed attempts, triggered worries among world leaders about nuclear weapons, Iran and the balance of power in the Pacific.

U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta called the launch “clear provocation.”

Experts do not believe North Korea has a nuclear warhead small enough to fly on the kind of missile that Pyongyang has now proved it can send long-distance.

And the United States believes the North Koreans may not have full control of the satellite they launched into space Wednesday, according to one U.S. official who declined to be identified due to the sensitive nature of the information.

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