North Korea details plan to fire missile salvo toward Guam

Bruno Cirelli
Agosto 10, 2017

"We are concerned about these threats but at the same time we also want to make sure people don't panic and go on with their lives".

The nuclear-armed nation said it was finalizing plans to fire four intermediate-range missiles over Japan to land 18-25 miles from Guam.

That prompted North Korea to say it was considering firing missiles at Guam, a USA -held Pacific island.

Four B-1B Lancers assigned to the 9th Expeditionary Bomb Squadron, deployed from Dyess Air Force Base, Texas, arrive February 6, 2017, at Andersen AFB, Guam.

"How we train is how we fight and the more we interface with our allies, the better prepared we are to fight tonight", said a 37th EBS B-1 pilot. "They are here to protect the islands, just in case something happens".

The possibility of a nuclear confrontation is considered remote.

"It looks like it was used as a good excuse to adjust positions", he said, referring to the latest flare-up of tensions between the United States and North Korea.

Residents woke up Thursday to another pointed threat from Pyongyang, which vowed to complete a plan to attack waters near the island by mid-August.

The dollar slipped below ¥110 in Tokyo trading on Wednesday, as the yen attracted safe-haven buying on growing geopolitical risks over North Korea's missile and nuclear development programs.

Carl Schuster, a Hawaii Pacific University professor and former director of operations at the U.S. Pacific Command's Joint Intelligence Center, told CNN a single ship equipped with Aegis could probably take out two missiles.

Equity markets around the world had fallen as the war of words between the United States and North Korea escalated, with the Dow recording its second negative close, although its 0.2 per cent loss was smaller than in other bourses.

"It's very important to maintain United States deterrent power as the security situation in the region is extremely severe", he added.

"I believe this is a message saying they plan to move missile tests from the Sea of Japan to areas around Guam", he told Reuters.

"If the United States did try to intercept the missiles they would want to intercept all of them, because failing to intercept them all would send a message about the (U.S.'s) limited capacity. those systems aren't ideal", he said.

The United States has remained technically at war with North Korea since the 1950-53 Korean conflict ended without a peace treaty.

Its proximity to China, Japan, the Philippines and the Korean Peninsula has long made the island an essential position for the USA military. "I feel safe with our military presence here - Andersen and the Navy".

The naval base dates to 1898, when the US took over Guam from Spain after the Spanish-American War.

Guam is also home to around 167,742 people, and Guamanians are USA citizens by birth. Guam was also a refuelling and transfer spot for people heading to Southeast Asia, and many refugees fleeing Saigon were evacuated through Guam.

In 1950, it became an unincorporated USA territory. A huge red, white and blue ribbon is outside the airport terminal. Lindsey Graham's statement that "if there was going to be a war, it would be in the region, not in America".

The majority of islanders are ethnically Chamorro - the indigenous group that has lived on the island for thousands of years - and their culture is a touchstone for the islander's way of life.

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