Simone Gao: North Korea just warn the U.S. that the U.S. we should prepare for a Christmas gift from North Korea. What do you think they are contemplating about?
Peter Pry: Well, one possibility you know, is a satellite launch because we have seen recently reported testing going on at their Soho. So high satellite launch facility and most a lot of Western analysts still don’t understand that that could be the greatest threat that North Korea can pose to us. The threat from their satellites. You know, the congressional EMP commission in which I served pointed out that North Korea already has two satellites orbiting over us on a very suspicious trajectory. The KMS three and the KMS four and trajectory of the satellites is consistent with being either practicing or, or being prepared to execute a surprise EMP attack. And maybe I should explain what EMP is first. It’s in the West, we think of it as a form of nuclear attack because it entails detonating a nuclear weapon in outer space at very high altitude.
And, and because a nuclear weapon is involved, most Westerners think of EMP attack as a form of nuclear attack, but it doesn’t look like a nuclear attack at all. And and in most foreign military doctrines of our adversaries, including North Korea, Russia and China, and even Iran, they consider it part of cyber warfare or electronic warfare because, yeah, because when you detonate a nuclear weapon in outer space, at high altitude like that, you don’t get any of the effects that you would associate with a normal nuclear attack. When we think of a nuclear attack, we think of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, a bomb going off on a city, a huge blast, a mushroom cloud, radioactive fallout, people dying, catching on fire and dying from thermal effects. None of that happens with an EMP attack. The weapon is detonated again, very high altitude in the vacuum of space so that if you were standing on the ground directly beneath the explosion, you wouldn’t even hear the thing go off.
There’d be no blast. There’d be no thermal effects of any consequences, no radioactivity that would reach the surface of the earth. You wouldn’t even know about the fact that the weapon had, had had gone off unless you happen to be looking at the right part of the sky. The moment went off and if it was at very high altitude, like 400 kilometers altitude, it just might look like a star blinking on and off or something, and a light in the sky that just blinks on and off. But what the deadly effect that happens that in some many respects is worse than the other nuclear effects I described as this thing called an electromagnetic pulse, which is like a super energetic radio wave. It’s a radio radio wave that’s got so much energy in it that it will destroy electronics over vast area of the earth surface at an altitude of a 300 kilometers, for example, which is the altitude that the North Korean satellites orbit over the United States.
Ms. Gao: It can target areas of disruption. If North Korea only wants to destroy electricity in America, they can do that?
Mr. Pry: With an EMP attack. You could, it would be targeted destruction against the electronic systems in North America. If one of those satellites has a nuclear weapon concealed in it for an EMP attack, it would put an EMP field over all of North America, pretty much all 48 contiguous United States, much of Canada and a good of Mexico. And the electric grid, the communication systems, airplanes flying through that field, you know, the water purification plants, everything we need to survive. All of this, the critical infrastructures, communications, transportation, business and finance, even food and water depend directly or indirectly on electricity. All of that would come to a stop. Now, people wouldn’t die. The wave, the EMP passes harmlessly through people’s bodies, but all those electronics that we need to survive in the long term would be gone. It’s kind of like an anti-tech Gulf forever. You’d be able to repair it and unless you could repair it, but it’s no small thing to be able to repair all the electronic systems. And some of them would be almost impossible for us to repair. Take one example…
Ms. Gao: So the physical infrastructure would be damaged.
Mr. Pry: The physical infrastructure that maintains modern electronic civilization would be, would basically be gone. And the way of thinking of an EMP is, think of it as an anti technology weapon. It subtracts technology from the equation of your society and then leaves your population that is used to having that technology in fact, cannot survive without it, without the technology. And people. For example, if we had a blackout that blacked out all of North America for one year, the EMP commission in which I serve found, we calculated that we would lose up to 90% of our population from starvation disease and societal collapse in a year, in 12 months. So it’s a high tech means of killing millions of people the old fashioned way or of winning a war with one blow with one attack because the United States, for example, if North Korea or China or Russia or some other country where to do to that, to us, an American president would face the dilemma.
Do I continue this war and engage in a war against this adversary while the clock is ticking toward the masturbation of my people? Or do I just do I surrender on that issue or, but just ignore that issue and let North Korea invade South Korea or let Russia take the Baltic States or let China take Taiwan or the South China sea because those things aren’t as important to me as focusing all my resources, including my military resources on rebuilding the electric grid, restoring the water, restoring food supplies to my people because I’m the president of the United States. And my first loyalty is to saving 90% of my population.
Ms. Gao: So the premise of that scenario has to be the North Korea has the ability to do that. And number two, the U S cannot stop it. Is that the case? It is the case right now. Yes. So the North Korea has the ability to do a EMP attack against the U.S. Right now?
Mr. Pry: Yes, that’s correct. The North Korean, now we don’t know for sure that there are nuclear weapons in those satellites. Okay. A super EMP weapon, which is what we think the North Koreans have. Not only can they do an EMP attack, but we think they can do what’s called a super EMP attack. There’s a special kind of nuclear weapon that’s designed specifically to make the EMP attack. And the design is not that complicated. It’s something North Korea could do. And and the, and the weapon is very small and lightweight. It resembles the neutron bomb, which is the official name of it is the enhanced radiation weapon. And it’s called that because the point of this weapon isn’t to make a big explosion, but it’s to make lots of radiation. And we originally designed the bomb for you send the battlefields of NATO Europe to put out neutron radiation, but it also happens to put out huge amounts of gamma radiation and it’s gamma rays that makes the EMP attack.
So if you took a one of these, a bomb and like a neutron bomb that was designed for how would serve artillery tube, we actually have a there’s a mock up of one of these at the atomic museum outside of Sandia national laboratory. And you can actually go into the atomic museum. I have and held a a mock neutron bomb, which is designed to look just like one and wage, just like when in its ways about [inaudible] 60 pounds. You can actually hold it in your hand. Something like that could fit on those North Korean satellites. And we were, we have lots of good reasons for believing that North Koreans have got the super EMP weapon. For one thing, we were demolished when the EMP commission was, was meeting two years before the first North Korean nuclear test in 2004. This is two years before they tested.
We were a day marched by a couple of Russia’s top EMP nuclear scientists who also happened to be generals and the Russian general staff. And they met with us to give us a friendly warning and they said you know, by accident, Russia’s design for a super EMP weapon has accidentally been transferred to North Korea. Yes. To really believe them. I didn’t believe it at all. You know, I think that they had built, deliberately transferred to the design and they were trying to cover up. And they also said that it wasn’t our fault, but that Russian scientists are in North Korea helping them with their nuclear weapons and their missile program. And we know that was true because when you look at, well frankly, most of the North Korean nuclear threat is built on Russian missile technology. You know, that’s how they’ve managed to evolve this thing so, so quickly.
You know, they didn’t invent all this stuff on their own. The Russians have sold the missile technology. Their submarine is based on Russian submarine technology. You know, the Russians transferred 12 Golf class ballistic missile submarines to the North Koreans, including one that still had the missile onboard. Okay. Now it didn’t have the nuclear weapon on it, but they said, and our, this was really foolish of us because our state department let them get away with this. They said, well, we’re giving them, we’re selling the humans, these 12 ballistic missile submarines for scrap. Okay. But they never scrapped the submarines. Instead, they’ve still got them there and they’d been reverse engineering them to figure out how to make ballistic missile submarines. Now, obviously the Russians must’ve known and they’ve also been getting help from China. You know, China, hold on, I think our next interview he is here, I’m sure wait in that room for a little bit.
North Korea, only one of the most sophisticated weapons mankind has been able to build is this thing called a mobile ICBM. It’s an ICBM that can reach across continents and yet, you know, it can be moved around by truck and so you can fire it from forests, from a mountain. You can fire it from anywhere. All right. This is a very hard thing to achieve, okay. Because a, an ICBM and Intercontinental ballistic missile is a very sophisticated piece of weaponry. And to be able to compact everything that you need into a, into a single vehicle to move it around, which is called a towel, a transporter erector launcher. Okay. So on this huge cow, it can lift this ICBM in a way, in hundreds of tons. And then inside the truck you’ve got a command post that has all the computers and everything else you need to target this thing to launch it and do what you would need.
This is an amazing piece of technology and there’s only three countries in the world that have mobilized GBMs, Russia, China, and North Korea. Not even the United States has got a mobile ICBM, but North Korea has got one. How did they do that? How did they do that? Well, we know that China has given them the towels because in one of their parades they forgot to take off the logo that showed the Chinese factory that manufactured the towel. So the Chinese and the Russians had been helping the North Korean program. And so we think that’s how the North Koreans ended up with the super EMP weapon technology that it was transferred to them, given to them by the Russians. And Russian scientists help them develop it. And the Russian scientist who met with us warned us, they said, we’re giving you this friendly warning that, you know, in a warning or a sweat.
I think it was a threat obviously, but they were trying to cover their tracks because they knew eventually that North Korea was going to test this and and they wanted to try to have, it’s called plausible deniability so that they could cover their tracks and say, well, we didn’t intend for them.
Ms. Gao: When did that happen?
Mr. Pry: That happened in the year 2004 and in 2000 the summer of 2004 and then summer of 2004, the two Russian generals told us that they said, you know, they’re so, they’re far enough along in this than in a couple of years. They may be able to be able to test a super EMP weapon. So don’t blame us and don’t be surprised. But we’re in 2006 they tested a nuclear weapon that most people thought was a failure because it had such a low explosive yield. It was only in one to three kilo tons.
Okay. But that is exactly the yield of a super EMP weapon because the super EMP weapon is just a small weapon, is not designed to make a big explosion, is designed to put out a lot of gamma rays. And and seismically, it looked like the super, you know, P weapon because it had such a small yield and there’s this fizzle in the seismic signature that sounds like the gamma rays coming out and whatever it was, the North Koreans were happy with it because they immediately started putting this weapon on, on their missiles. And then the next two tests were also similarly very low yield. Then in the year 2017, in the summer of 2017, they test, they surprised everybody again by testing a really big, uh, hydrogen bomb, basically had a yield of 250 kilotons and they just, and they described this weapon as being also capable of super EMP attack.
Okay. And then they, the day after the hydrogen bomb EMP. Yes. And their official description of it, they said this this is, it’s a got a dial, a yield capability so that you can use it for a wide range of purposes, including super EMP attack. So if they wanted to blow up a city with it, they could use it for that. But if they dialed it, they could change the mission so that it could also be used for super EMP attack. And then I think this was on September 1st that they did the test. I might be mistaken, it might have been the second. But the day after that they released a technical manual called the, the the EMP might have nuclear weapons, which accurately describes super EMP weapons. So the evidence is really pretty compelling that North Korea knows how to build super EMP weapons, that they have them.
The big quiet, you know, the big, one of the big questions for us is, are those satellites armed for super EMP attack? Do they actually have the weapons in them or are they just practicing? And the reason one of the reasons I should explain to check three, it’s not just the altitude, but they’re on what’s called a South polar trajectory. The weapons of the, the, the satellites fly over the South pole and then come up from the South and fly over the United States from the South. And they do this several times a day now. During the cold war of the Soviet union had came up with a surprise, a secret weapon called the fractional orbital bombardment system. And the idea was to make a surprise EMP attack on the United States by putting a nuclear weapon in a satellite that would be flown over the South pole and come up from the South and then detonate over us from that direction.
Why is that? Why from the South? Because all of our ballistic missile, early warning radars are facing North looking for an attack coming over the North pole. And all of our interceptors are located either in Alaska or in Northern California. So we’re, we’re blind and defenseless from the South. We were during the cold war, we still are today. And this thing looks a lot like this, the secret weapon that the Soviets had developed and they transferred that technology to the, to the North Koreans. So all these things, and there’s some other factors as well. The name of the device you know, refers to the refers to the conquerors star that that can, that the Kim family allegedly all of the Kim’s were supposedly born under the conquerors, stars the star in the North Korean flag that you know there was a mythic figure and Korean history who supposedly drove out the Chinese back in the year two 22 BC or something like that, or 2000, 222 BC.
And it refers back to the star of the conqueror star. And the it’s just a strange thing to name something that’s supposed to be for peaceful purposes, but all of these things make us very suspicious that those satellites may already be armed for nuclear EMP attack. And that’s what the next surprise might be. They might put another satellite in orbit, see if they can make that constellation of satellites. If they have enough satellites, it reduces the, the a w it reduces the time so that you can almost always have a satellite overhead. You know, if you have enough of them. You know, when you, when you will have one satellite up there you know, your when, when, when, when one satellite becomes too, you know, it cuts in half the amount of time you have when you don’t have a satellite.
When you put a third satellite up there, it’s going to cut it by a third. Okay. So it’ll be sort of like 19th century gunboat diplomacy. You know, where you could park a battleship off someone’s shore. All right? And you don’t even have to use the battleship. Just the threat of the battleship being there. All right. Gives you political leverage, right? And so the, just the fact of these satellites constantly being overhead, it’s sort of a nuclear sort of a good Damocles hanging over your civilization’s head that can give you political leverage so that, that could be what the Christmas surprises.
Ms. Gao: Okay. I have a question. So you just said, you know, now we know it’s very likely they already have this technology is weapon, but number two is the U.S. is vulnerable. The U.S. cannot protect itself protected. I mean the U.S. does not have an effective defense system to protect itself.
Mr. Pry: Well, we, we don’t right now, but there’s no excuse for us to be vulnerable to EMP. We know how to protect our civilization. The technology has existed in the department of defense has used it, protect, select military systems for 50 years. Fairity cages, blocking devices, surge arresters. If we were to use these same technologies to protect the critical infrastructures, you know, we can harden our grid. Of course, that’s going to take time, even on a crash basis, it’s going to take several years to be able to protect the electric grid. We also have the option of shooting these satellites down and we’ve recommended, we’ve recommended that the president do that. I wish he would, you know, we could catch one of these satellites, you know, send an Aegis guided missile cruiser, for example, someplace out in the Pacific in a location where that’s a broad ocean area where there is not a, it’s far away from, from humanity. Okay. And then shoot it down over a broad, broad ocean area just in case it’s rigged for salvage fusing because the North Koreans might have rigged it to blow up just as soon as it’s intercepted. And if that happened, you’d have an EMP out there over the Pacific someplace. Not but not over America.
Ms. Gao: I see. So what did the president say?
Mr. Pry: Well, I haven’t talked to him personally and directly about this, but obviously every day that passes and we don’t shoot down a North Korean satellite. The president has said no to the idea of shooting on the satellite. If he ever says yes, those satellites will be shut down. And I wish he would say yes. I think it would make all the difference. I think North Korea doesn’t take seriously our new denuclearization negotiations because they think it’s all a big bluff, you know?
Ms. Gao: Well that’s interesting because they are calling on the U S to stop the current way of calculation if it’s still interested in diplomatic talks. So it seems to me they want to resume the talks and they want to, you know, somehow solve this problem.
Mr. Pry: They only want to resolve the talks if the United States is interested in removing the sanctions and making some concessions to them to remove the, to give them economic relief. And and I don’t believe that they are that they, that they will that they’re ever going to be serious about giving up their nuclear capabilities. They’ve worked too hard. They’ve made too many sacrifices to acquire them. They’ve seen what happens to other countries that give up their nuclear capabilities. Look at Ukraine. At one time Ukraine had been after the United States and Russia. It was the third it had is it was the third most powerful nuclear state in the world. It gave up its weapons. And now Ukraine can’t even defend own territory. You know, Libya Kadafi ended up being executed and assassinated and his country for a long time was no longer an actor in the world because he gave up his nuclear weapons program.
Ms. Gao: All good lessons for Kim Jung Un.
Mr. Pry: Yeah. So it’s very likely that they will, and it’s not just that he fears for his life. I think that’s the most benign interpretation, you know just look at what he has achieved by having this nuclear weapons program. And in every other respect, North Korea is a failed state. All right? But he has actually brought a president of the United States to Summit’s justice if he’s China or Russia, right? Kim Jung UN to negotiate president Trump calls him his friend. You know, we have suspended military exercises with South Korea to appease North to, to a piece the North.
Ms. Gao: When he said the us should stop its current way of calculation. What is he referring to?
Mr. Pry: I think he’s referring to the idea that that we think of denuclearization is merely disarming North Korea. I think what Kim Jong UN wants how he wants to change the calculations is not just the lifting of economic sanctions. You know, but what’s going to be negotiated is a, what are we going to give up militarily on our side, for example, to denuclearize the take the idea of denuclearize the Korean peninsula, which is what the North Koreans claimed they want, which is what the Chinese can do. They want, well, they would argue that the presence of a single American soldier in South Korea, since America is a nuclear power, does not constitute denuclearization. That you can’t have denuclearization until every U S military asset is out of South Korea. And then what about the agreement? The idea of an Alliance, a military Alliance between South Korea and the United States would, couldn’t want, even if the United States pulled of all all of our troops out, you could still argue from my North Korean perspective that the fact of that Alliance relationship means the North Korea, the peninsula has not been denuclearized.
And so there would be a severing of ties between the United States and South Korea. You know, I’m not saying that even that would lead Kim Jong. I don’t think anything would persuade him to give up his his his, his nuclear weapons. But these are the kinds of arguments they would make that are so unreasonable that that there is really no reconciling with them. But they’ve gotten away with this administration after administration in part because our own state department is so naive, they believe everything can be negotiated and everything should be negotiated. But it’s, it could ultimately prove fatal to the American people to kinda going down this course because North Korea has not suspended its nuclear weapons and program. While the negotiations are in suspension and nothing is going on in terms of us talking with each other, they continue to make nuclear weapons, they continue to make mobile BMS.
At some point they will build a strong enough nuclear deterrent that the military option will no longer be on the table. You see, when, when president Trump first came into the office and into office and I had written an article about this there was a realistic military option for the United States to disarm North Korea of the threat to the United States itself. You know, we could shoot down those two satellites and we, and we could launch, we could use three aircraft carrier groups that would take just a few hours using a few three aircraft carrier groups. They’ll blow up the small number of, of mobile ICBM that North Korea is deployed up to this point. I think in 2017 they only had 12 of them. You know, we surely do. We know like where exactly they are. We would, we would be able to focus our intelligence assets. Okay.
And probably be able to locate 12 mobilized GBMs. And if we weren’t, if we, if we couldn’t, if we couldn’t locate them you know, we would be able to, well, you know, we know where a lot of the underground facilities are, where they hide these missiles, you know, you can blow up the doors, you know, to collapse the entryways to the caverns. So yes, I think our intelligence assets would be good enough given such a small number of ICBM so that we could have high confidence. We could also surround surge ages, guided missile cruisers around the Korean peninsula so that if we missed one or a few, we would have our missile defenses first the ages and then the missile defenses that are based in Alaska and Northern California to intercept any, if they were foolish enough to actually launch an ICBM against the United States, which I don’t think they would be if we were, if we, if we did a quick surgical strike that was focused on just taking out the nuclear assets to could threaten the United States it would be over and done with so quickly that I think would very minimize the opportunity or the possibility of Kim Jong-un making a foolish decision to actually attack.
That would mean his doom at the end of his regime. And while he’s an evil person and a psychopath, he’s not stupid. Okay. He wants to stay in power from Kim Jong UN’s perspective. You know, he would still be left with his medium range ballistic missiles to threaten Japan and South Korea. He’d still be left for the short range ballistic missiles to prosecute a tactical nuclear war against the U S forces in South Korea. You had to hit, still have his enormous army you know, with more tanks and aircraft. So there’d be all kinds of a security blanket that he would still have so that he would know that his regime would still be in power providing he did not escalate the situation and attack South Korea, Japan, or the United States in the course of our effort to disarm him of his ICBM. But it should be unacceptable. It was president Trump.
Every American president had said it’s been an unacceptable for North Korea to have nuclear weapons, but what should really have been unacceptable at a red line that we cannot tolerate crossing is for the United States and the American people themselves, you know, to be at risk to North Korea. We aren’t contrary to what the Democrat party wants because the outgoing Obama administration, their position basically was, well, look, we need to learn to live with a nuclear armed North Korea. You know, now that they’ve got even a few mobilized CPMs, you know, there’s nothing, it’s too risky to take them out. So it’s better to learn to live with a nuclear armed North Korea.
Ms. Gao: So you just said there are two, there’s going to be a point that military military intervention is too late for the U S
Mr. Pry: Yes, there is. And maybe we’ve even passed already past that point. You know 12 ice UBMS we could have done that. At some point, you know, I’m not sure how many ICBM as they have now. It’s, it’s, it’s almost 20, 20. That’s been three years. You know, maybe they’ve doubled their force to 24.
I’d have to do the calculations, you know, but you know, I think someplace below 50, you know, we could still do it, but if they get a hundred mobile ice GBMs
I think that, that, that would be considered such a risky option to go after them under those circumstances, that a, we would never do it. And then we’re going to be put into a situation where we have to accept a mutual assured destruction relationship with Kim Jong UN, Kim Joel. None. Okay. And that’s not going to end well. I think it’s inevitable that that this psychopath is going to North Korea has had an incredibly aggressive history. You know, these people who say, well, we can learn to live with a nuclear North Korea don’t know their history at all and don’t know the history, not just of Kim Jong moon, but if the North Korean regime think of how aggressive that regime has been in history. Think of, think of the Korean war. Okay. Before Korea even had any nuclear weapons, and the United States had a near monopoly on nuclear weapons just because Russia had managed to start getting nuclear weapons, they thought that was enough, that it would deter the United States from using its nuclear weapons.
And they were willing to challenge. It ended up not just the United States, but the whole United nations. And they launched the Korean war. North Korea invaded South Korea, even though the was troops there and killed tens of thousands of Americans, even though we had the bomb, right? This is what they were willing to do before they had ice that could reach the mainland of the United States. What kind of chances might they be willing to take? And what kinds of aggressive behaviors might they engage in now that they have? They can see themselves as an equal with the United States. Because when you can destroy your rifles, civilization you want to affect, aren’t equal and equal in death and equal in the capability to utterly destroy your adversary.
Ms. Gao: Okay, so let’s go back to the first question at the top of the program. So you said it’s likely they are, they are contemplating you know,
Mr. Pry: Launching a satellite as a possible Christmas present, but it could be far worse than that. The other thing I think of,
Ms. Gao: Yeah, I mean, I know there’s all these possibilities and stuff, but your gut feeling is that to that serious point, yet they’re really contemplating the most serious scenario.
Mr. Pry: Well by most serious scenario and actual attack on the United States, it’s possible. We don’t know what’s going on. North Korea is a black box to us. We have been taken by surprise so many times in history. Let me give you an example. We just passed December 7th, 1941, which is the 78th anniversary of Pearl Harbor when the ship Japan, Imperial, Japan surprised us by attacking the U S Navy at Pearl Harbor and sinking the us Navy at Pearl Harbor. Why did they do that and how come we were so surprised? We had this boundless faith. The Roosevelt administration really believed in his personal relationship with the emperor and that they, the Japanese wouldn’t attack and and that and that they could be persuaded by our economic sanctions. Okay. To back off of their Imperial designs to establish eight East Asia co prosperity sphere and and they, they, and they knew that they were at a decision point where the head to choose, are we going to become Imperial Japan and build this Jap Japanese empire by taking over China and parts of Southeast Asia?
And the rest if we listened to the United States and restrain ourselves, you know, we can’t build this empire without metal from the United States and oil from the United States, but we can build the empire if we defined the United States and we seize the raw materials we need that exist already in Asia. And and, and their choice was and it was basically the economic sanctions or economic sanctions and, and Roosevelt’s naive belief in his relationship with the emperor that set us up for being surprised at Pearl Harbor. Now we have an American president who thinks he has, or at least he publicly says he has a special relationship with Kim Jong on. Okay. And that the pathway of negotiation is still open to us. But even as he’s, as he uses these honeyed words, okay, the words of friendship, he keeps ratcheting up those economic sanctions.
Right. And you know, it’s totalitarian States are fragile from the outside. It looks like they’re indestructible, but at some point, those sanctions can become a threat to the existence of the state because people are starving to death in such numbers. And the elite starts starving to death in such numbers. And you have to worry about being assassinated by political rivals in the rest. You know, they are systems that operate very differently in a very closed way, and they concealed their weaknesses and their fear, fear, fears from us. I don’t know that our state department and our intelligence community is wise enough to be able to tell when we’ve crossed that red line with North Korea where one more set of sanctions is going to drive them over the line the way it did with Imperial Japan. And they have to face that fatal choice choice between do I surrender to the United States and humility I self and basically throw myself into the mercy of the United States by giving them everything that they want.
I mean, this is the North Korean perspective when I say that, all right, or do I carry on and go to the next step of aggression? And and to to establish not only my existence, you know, as North Korea, but to realize some of my wildest, most ambitious dreams that makes North Korea appear superpower w w America and China and Russia. You know, because because we are such a fearful fall and do something so scary that it that it that I use aggression to break my way out of out of this, maybe by attacking the United States, eliminating the United States as my enemy because, because the United States is putting my own existence at risk with these endless sanctions, but a middle way is, is more likely. One of the things I, I’m, I’m a little concerned about and reading about the speculations about what North Korea might do, what the Christmas present might be is most analysts seem to think that that the North Koreans are going to consider doing something like they’ve done in the past.
You know, maybe another hour long range ICBM test, maybe another nuclear test. You know, but they kind of ignore that. The pattern from has been that the, the, the North Koreans always try to outdo themselves. They try to do the unexpected to shock us. Okay. And [inaudible] they don’t keep just doing the same old thing. It’s been escalating. You know, we’ve gone from in 2006 a weapon that was one to three kilotons to a hydrogen bomb test in 2017. Okay. You know, we’ve gone from intermediate medium range ballistic missiles launched into Japan’s economic zone to demonstrated ICBM capabilities that can reach anywhere in the United States. That came as a surprise to our intelligence community. You know, in the, in the spring of 2017, the U S intelligence community thought that North Korea was still years away from being able to have an ICBM and at least a decade away from a hydrogen bomb.
And before the summer was over, we had to be crediting them with both. ICBM is a demonstrated ICBM capability and a hydrogen bomb just months at taking us by surprise. And the North Koreans, they know that this psychological shock, you know, is, is the best way of possibly breaking up the sanctions regime and getting the United States to to do what they want to do. So what could they do? You know, it’s probably not going to shock us. It’ll make Trump very angry. Probably won’t shock us if they start retesting ice UBMS you know, the North Koreans have said maybe they’ll do an atmospheric test, you know, instead of just launching a satellite, you know, what if they actually do an EMP test, you know, to demonstrate this capability. That would be the kind of thing that would, that would be a shock to the global system and it would bring probably a lot of pressure to bear on the United States from our allies around the world.
You know, who say, look, you know, while the sanctions thing isn’t working, maybe we’d have to reverse course and start giving the North Koreans some of what they want. Anything to stop them from X atmosphere or exo atmospheric testing. You know, that’s a non underground testing. They could do an atmospheric test out over the Pacific someplace. But I think an EMP test is something that they might seriously consider as a Christmas present or something they might do in the course of the next year. For sure. Russia, China, and North Korea and Iran don’t want president Trump reelected. You know, he’s been a tough customer. They would, they were getting away with murder under Obama. They were basically winning without war under Obama. And, and when you look at the Democrat attitude toward nuclear weapons, I mean, they want to stop the West modernization program and the Democrat party you know, their focus is so much on us domestic politics that the Democrat party isn’t going to care about the South China sea or Taiwan or any of these other things.
You know, Elizabeth Warren isn’t about launching new Wars against anybody or Bernie Sanders or, or anything like that. They will be much easier to deal with than president. And so all of these countries have an incentive to do something very scary and dangerous and play nuclear brinksmanship between now and the next elections. If it makes Trump look bad. And and gets him defeated as the next president of the United States. So I think I, I don’t think we can rule out something like an actual atmospheric nuclear task store or, or an exo atmospheric nuclear test for EMP. That would be, if I were the North Koreans, that would be my choice because it doesn’t really do any environmental damage, but it’s spectacular. And you’d be, you could see it, the whole world would see it and it’s so high tech, this new way of warfare that it would be extremely impressive that would announce to a significant Christmas present. Yeah, that’s right. And it even looks like a Christmas present because it would create a brilliant Aurora Borealis in space you know, for the whole world to admire.
Ms. Gao: Right. All right. I hope president Trump can see this interview.
Mr. Pry: Oh, me too.