Is it just me or is North Korean leader Kim Jong-un becoming more and more like “Dr. Evil” from the “Austin Powers” film series? I’m just waiting for the day he asks for sharks with “frickin’ lasers” on their heads.
The Center for Strategic and International Studies announced, as part of its Beyond Parallel program, that North Korea could have multiple “secret, smaller missile bases” after agreeing in principal to denuclearize its country amid continuing talks with President Donald Trump and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
According to Fox News:
The report identified about 15 to 20 bases being operated by the Korean People’s Army's Strategic Force, based on information from officials in the government, defense and intelligence, as well as North Korean defectors[…]
The sites can build a slew of missiles for the regime, including intercontinental ballistic missiles that may have the ability to reach U.S. territory. Though the bases are not considered traditional launch facilities, missiles can be launched from the locations in an emergency, the report stated.
Satellite images of a possible base in Sakkanmol, about 50 miles from the Demilitarized Zone, allegedly show headquarter buildings, barracks, maintenance depots and entrances to alleged underground tunnels that would hide missiles and transport trucks.
Pompeo’s scheduled meeting with North Korean official Kim Young Chol was postponed until “a later date” for some unknown reason.
“We will reconvene when our respective schedules permit," State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said concerning the “indefinite postponement.” "Ongoing conversations continue to take place. The United States remains focused on fulfilling the commitments agreed to by President Trump and Chairman Kim at the Singapore Summit in June.”
Not all is lost if it does turn out that North Korea is still manufacturing missiles, despite the agreement to denuclearize. There has never been this or any other level of dialogue between the U.S. and North Korea since Kim Jong-un inherited power from his late father, Kim Jong-il.
North Korean leaders aren’t going to turn their country into a sane bastion of tolerance and freedom overnight. Actual progress takes time, and along the way, there will be ups and downs. This possible “secret” by the North Koreans just happens to be a particularly questionable down. It's either that or North Korea is completely lying and the U.S. is no closer to peace with the Communist nation than they were two years ago.
Writer's Note: You can check out the images of what are being considered possible North Korean missile bases by clicking on the Beyond Parallel link above.