north korean nuclear test successful

October 8, 2006

The details are still coming in, but The Associated Press is reporting that the North Korean government has issued a statement saying that it has successfully completed its first nuclear weapons test without incident–that is, they’re all still alive for the time being–
just under two hours ago at 9:36 p.m. EDT. Stay tuned for updates.

Update 12:38 a.m.: The full text of the announcement is here, and the AP article linked above has been updated with a large amount of new information, including an off-the-record confirmation from South Korea of a 3.6-magnitude tremor at the time of the test. Oh dear. The White House is taking the news “seriously,” the Japanese are waiting for verification, and the North Korean government is proclaiming it “a historic event” and “a great leap forward” reflective of a popular desire to have “powerful self-reliant defense capability.” There’s also something about it being the start of “peace and stability” in the region. See an NYT article with historical context here, and try to avoid panicking.

–D. S. W.


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