Can North Korea get its launch right this time?
A DigitalGlobe satellite image obtained March 30, 2012 of North Korea's launch site at Tongch’ang-ri.
December 10th, 2012
01:00 AM ET

Can North Korea get its launch right this time?

By Larry Shaughnessy

The signs were there. Fuel trucks at the launch site, rocket stages being assembled. All supported North Korea's claims that sometime between December 10 and 22, it would launch a small satellite into orbit. Or was going to try.

But Sunday the regime admitted technical details will likely delay what was looking to be the first time the reclusive communist regime had attempted two long-range rocket or missile tests in one year. The launch window was extended by a week because of technical issue with the first-stage rocket engine, according to a report published Monday in the state-run Korean Central News Agency reported.

The scenario has left the U.S. military in a 'wait and see' mode regarding whether North Korea can correct its mistakes so quickly following a failed attempt in April.

"To the degree that they will be more successful than they were last time in such a short period of time and what they've done to correct it, I can't tell you how they assess that," said Adm. Samuel Locklear, commander of the U.S. Pacific Command. "Should they choose to go ahead with it, we'll just have to see how it goes."

The delay might indicate that short turnaround was problematic. The April satellite launch failed spectacularly shortly after the engines started.

Read more about April failure.

"I think it went a minute or so," said David Wright, who has followed North Korea's launches for years as a senior scientist at the Union of Concerned Scientists. "It's hard to do even for an advanced country."

Western observers aren't even sure what went wrong with that attempt.

"My sense is that what must have happened is, the first stage consists of four engines, all of which are supposed to work at the same time," Wright said. "And there's some indication that all four of those were not working correctly and that it was starting to lose power and veer off its trajectory."

That trajectory, unlike previous launches, was in a southern direction over the East China Sea. The goal was to put a satellite into a Polar orbit.

It appears from the North Korean announcement that this next launch will follow the same course.

"They said they still have a second copy of the satellite they were trying to put up, so I think this is basically just a do over," Wright said.

But from a major launch failure to a second attempt, even with the same trajectory and payload, in just eight months is a very short turnaround.

"It's possible it was easy for them to identify, that a part failed or something like that," Wright said.

So is a nation that can barely feed its people capable of a quick "do over" by itself?

"That's the $10,000 question we've been trying to answer. It's pretty clear that North Korea and Iran have been talking, collaborating," Wright said.

"There certainly appears that there has been some trade of information between the two of them. It's very hard to know whether they called in for some help from Iran or whether they've just basically been going through this themselves," he said.

Locklear was vague about whether the U.S. military believes the North Koreans are getting help.

"I think that they have progressively gained better technology over time and they have progressively gained that through a number of methods over a number of years and decades," Locklear said at a recent Pentagon press conference.

China is believed to aid the North Korean military with some equipment though not necessarily launch technology. A Chinese missile transport truck was seen carrying a long range missile during a Pyongyang parade.

Read more about Chinese truck.

"I'm sure there's been some help coming from China. I don't know, you know, the exact extent of that," Defense Secretary Leon Panetta told Congress last spring.

The Navy has dispatched two warships to the region that are equipped to track whatever North Korea may attempt to launch.

The United States considers the launch destabilizing to the region and the "international security environment," Locklear said.

"Our assessment is that their desire to continue down this road is motivated by their desire to ensure that their capability - and they're now a self-proclaimed nuclear state - their ability to be able to demonstrate to the world that they have the capacity to be able to build missiles and have the missile technology to be able to use it in ways of their choosing down the road," Locklear said.

Wright said relations on the Korean Peninsula seem to be driving the schedule of the launch, not global politics or scientific advancements by its rocket engineers.

He explained that developments by South Korea are likely also contributing to the rush to launch.

"South Korea has for a number of years been trying to launch their own satellite ... they were supposed to have tried a launch on November 29," Wright said.

South Korea "had technical problems and postponed that until spring, But clearly from North Korea's point of view, if they could launch a satellite before South Korea that would be a real feather in their cap," he said.

Post by:
Filed under: Iran • Kim Jong Il • Kim Jong Un • Kim Jong-un • North Korea
soundoff (209 Responses)
  1. Nicky666


    December 11, 2012 at 2:39 pm | Reply
  2. Richard

    Concentrate on farming, basket weaving, refridgerator manufacturing. Not only are these things easier to lick, the people will approve. Fireworks displays are also exciting, and cheaper. C'mon North Korea.........any nation can wake up.........why not you? A chicken in every pot !

    December 11, 2012 at 1:49 am | Reply
  3. USAPeasant

    It's not a matter of whether or not the rocket test will fail, which it surely will. The question at hand is if North Korea will admit that the test failed. Typically they just claim it's successful and move on. However last time they invited world press to the event and even admitted that the test failed. It will be interesting to see if they simply admit to failure again or if this time around they provlaim the test was a success.

    I think it be an interesting move if Obama or Hillary called their bluff and proposed that if they suspend their ICBM program we'll pay the russians to take one of them into space.

    December 10, 2012 at 11:58 pm | Reply
    • Dan

      So you must be a time traveller then? You've seen the future? How do you know it will fail?

      December 11, 2012 at 12:16 am | Reply
      • John

        N.Korea and Iran combine is the worse engineering. Of course it will fail. Have you seen Iran's worse freeway ever? Check it out on YouTube...

        December 11, 2012 at 4:39 am |
  4. james

    Rockets for food, who cares if they all starve, as long as they get into space. So Solly.

    December 10, 2012 at 11:55 pm | Reply
  5. rrrtifax

    People are always saying "It's not rocket science", but maybe it is.

    December 10, 2012 at 11:52 pm | Reply
  6. steve

    I think I see the problem, the forgot to put the "estes" stickers on. Just a few more "d " engines and they'll be all high tech. I imagine a few of their starving repressed citizenry will feel threatened enough by their armed guards to muster the fear and adrenaline necessary to clap and smile painfully regardless of how this ridiculous waste of their resources goes.

    December 10, 2012 at 11:14 pm | Reply
  7. Mike

    How great would it be if they nuked themselves?

    December 10, 2012 at 10:55 pm | Reply
    • steve

      I like the way you think.

      December 10, 2012 at 11:15 pm | Reply
      • John

        I'll second to that... Wait matches required?

        December 11, 2012 at 4:41 am |
    • fekt

      nah, they're just gonna try to unsuccessfully try and launch a nuclear missile platform into space. it's going to fall to earth and start off a chain reaction that leads to world war 3. one of the shortest wars in history as the nukes begin flying everywhere. set your calendars for 12 21 12. a date which conveniently falls in their launch window.

      December 10, 2012 at 11:29 pm | Reply
  8. FedUpwithLA

    These people are not easily going to go away . . .

    December 10, 2012 at 10:35 pm | Reply
    • Frankly

      It's not the "people" of North's the dictator running the show.

      December 10, 2012 at 11:41 pm | Reply
  9. Kudu

    "Pyongyang, we have a problem" kinda brings a tear to the eye...

    December 10, 2012 at 10:30 pm | Reply
  10. Ralph Petrillo

    Build a safety net around South Korea like exists in Israel and bomb North Korea out of existence.

    December 10, 2012 at 10:11 pm | Reply
    • Hard Drinkin' Lincoln

      Another brain-dead chickenhawk heard from.

      December 11, 2012 at 3:05 pm | Reply
  11. David

    This is just a delay tactic because the North Korean scientists know that when the rocket fails they'll be sent to prison or executed.

    December 10, 2012 at 9:47 pm | Reply
    • Frankly

      agreed but you forgot to add "or starved or have their families effected too"

      December 10, 2012 at 11:44 pm | Reply
    • Hard Drinkin' Lincoln

      A valid point – the poor buggers. Almost makes me wanna see them succeed. Almost.

      December 11, 2012 at 3:08 pm | Reply
  12. Steve S

    The country is on the brink of starvation, and 'great leader' dreams of being a space power.
    Sounds like a bad Stephen King novel, doesn't it?

    December 10, 2012 at 9:45 pm | Reply
    • sbp

      Actually, sounds like a Roger Moore era bad James Bond movie plot.

      December 10, 2012 at 10:51 pm | Reply
  13. rad666

    Another rice burner fails to launch?

    December 10, 2012 at 9:29 pm | Reply
    • AstroD

      Wow, how eloquently put.

      December 10, 2012 at 9:40 pm | Reply
  14. peter pan

    i hope the rocket detours and lands on the U.S. whitehouse.... of course i also hope they evacuate in time

    December 10, 2012 at 8:47 pm | Reply
  15. CaesarXIII

    Problem #1 It was made in Korea

    December 10, 2012 at 8:27 pm | Reply
    • peter pan

      viva north korea!

      December 10, 2012 at 8:48 pm | Reply
  16. Devanand

    Problem with your rocket? Try Viagra!

    December 10, 2012 at 8:25 pm | Reply
  17. BigGuyWithABigPlane

    I think we should send back that gangaman style guy back to him home country,and strap HIM to a rocket and see it explode lol

    Plus,KimJOngSUn loves entertainment and stuff

    December 10, 2012 at 8:09 pm | Reply
    • Herby Sagues

      That's SOUTH Korea.

      December 11, 2012 at 1:57 am | Reply
  18. trex

    ........Actually, the problem wasnt with the rocket itself......................The problem was a factor of how many fully fed NK's would be needed to load the ........RUBBERBAND......................

    December 10, 2012 at 7:55 pm | Reply
    • trex

      ................THINK............"Squash the BUG".........................if ya dont know,..............dont ask.

      December 10, 2012 at 7:57 pm | Reply
  19. Washington is a liar

    So, after seeing this, like many other failures of the NK'ans, and making fun of them on this board to your stomach's fill, will you keep believing Washington that NK is such a big threat that would keep justifying spending billions to defend against them, while many in the US go hungry – I kid you not, check the facts – many in the US live in poverty, but at least their country is capable of defending itself against the NK power.

    December 10, 2012 at 7:40 pm | Reply
  20. JAS

    They should stick to building tonka toys. That's about all they can handle.

    December 10, 2012 at 7:04 pm | Reply
    • peter pan

      and you should drink bleach

      December 10, 2012 at 8:50 pm | Reply
  21. Lifes short

    Estes makes great model rockets. Maybe North Korea should start there.

    December 10, 2012 at 6:39 pm | Reply
  22. Luke

    As repressive as the North Korean regime is, I would hate to be the lead scientists working on this. Kinda tough to keep coming up with reasons why they continue to have problems with the rockets.

    December 10, 2012 at 5:25 pm | Reply
    • it is your usa

      it will happen dont let the u.s.a fool you the date is and will be on DEC17, 2012 for sure

      December 10, 2012 at 5:58 pm | Reply
      • Ian

        What a great day for N. Korea. Too bad they are decades late to the game. Our rockets (ICBMs) don't fail to take off. Russia has had satellites since the 50s. Is this supposed to impress or scare anyone? Maybe they should spend more money, ya know, feeding their starving population and such.

        December 10, 2012 at 6:30 pm |
      • BigGuyWithABigPlane


        Well,I dont think the NOrth Korean people know about all that,seeing how they are an oppressed regime.

        I'm sure they are told that nobody has ever done this before and North Korea will be the first ones to build a real-life vehicle that can reach to the Heavens and send a device that can speak to to grand-father of the current leader.

        This IS the country where the last leader told his people he could control the weather with his emotions,and had an invisable cell-phone where he can control the olympic team lol

        December 10, 2012 at 8:12 pm |

    Couldn't find a bottle?

    December 10, 2012 at 5:25 pm | Reply
  24. cpc65

    Nobody brought any matches to light the fuse.

    December 10, 2012 at 5:13 pm | Reply
  25. Greg Faith

    Guess they need to pay the engineers a bit more! I'd certainly now work very hard on it If I was not being paid enough. It will flop again.

    December 10, 2012 at 4:57 pm | Reply
    • MNjonny

      I could sell them my technology... Stick the thing in a large plastic tube, fill the base with hair spray or OFF mosquito spray and then ignite the thing with the switch from my bbq grill.
      Heck it worked fine when I launched a perfect 6 inch round, 9 inch long potato into Canada over the Rainy River from Baudette Minnesota. We could just up scale it a little bit and when it came back down it would be ready eat.

      December 10, 2012 at 5:37 pm | Reply
      • Frankly're the one that got my second helping of mashed potatoes!!! A little hard on the landing over here in Canada, but hey, it was bbq season and I had my plate in my hands. Thank you neighbour! :-)

        December 10, 2012 at 11:52 pm |
  26. Allaisa

    Few days back Pakistan tested a long range rocket which is based on this N Korean ding dong. That test failed and only sheer luck saved hundreds of Pakistani villagers. At that time people started wondering if N Korea will test the very same rocket (albeit modified by Pakistan) without first analyzing the cause for the Pakistani missile failure. Now it looks like they are proved correct and N Korea wants to find out what went wrong with the Paki missile before firing off their own missile. They dont like to lose 'face'

    December 10, 2012 at 4:47 pm | Reply
    • Bigot Police

      Paki is a slur

      December 10, 2012 at 7:37 pm | Reply
  27. JohnRJohnson

    maybe they had it pointing the wrong way.... Like down.

    December 10, 2012 at 4:13 pm | Reply
  28. ItsAllOverAnyway

    The N-Ks aren't serious about these dates anyway. They've been trading technology with the Mayans, not the Iranians. Their just preparing their last round of fireworks.

    December 10, 2012 at 3:58 pm | Reply
  29. Rogue351

    It's rocket science, what is the big deal North Korea. I am willing to bet that if you really tried you could be a lot more successful treating your people like human beings. Putting in clean drinking water systems and helping them to feed themselves. That would be the place to start. Them maybe you could step out into the world and start participating as apposed the treating to blow everyone up. Your starting in the wrong place. And chances are if this thing does get off the ground it will never reach orbit. Stop wasting money and start waking up to the global 21st century.

    December 10, 2012 at 3:58 pm | Reply
  30. Marpet

    Tough to get ahead when you have to murder all your scientist's after each failure. Should have the Old Man write a book on rocketry back in University, along with the 1500 other books he "wrote".

    December 10, 2012 at 3:54 pm | Reply
  31. US

    ahmadinejad couldnt get sungs rocket off...

    December 10, 2012 at 3:41 pm | Reply
  32. opposition

    iran failed again...

    December 10, 2012 at 3:18 pm | Reply
  33. Slanters Peanuts

    Asians, especially north koreans have no rockets in their of course they cant launch a rocket....

    December 10, 2012 at 3:17 pm | Reply
    • jimbo0117

      Ignorant and racist all in one post – well done!

      December 10, 2012 at 3:48 pm | Reply
  34. CaesarXIII

    Can only hope they nuke themselves and radiate their nation for many years to come.

    December 10, 2012 at 3:14 pm | Reply
    • Hogan's Goat

      "nuke themselves and radiate their nation for many years to come" Are you kidding? These people are like lab rats in cages. We need to knock down their awful government and let them go free.

      December 10, 2012 at 4:44 pm | Reply
    • Frankly

      It's not the people of North Korea. They're under a dictator (and I'm being kind by adding "tator"). Try reading more about it and learn.

      December 10, 2012 at 11:56 pm | Reply
  35. Mark

    The "ugly Asians" as they're known as.

    December 10, 2012 at 3:06 pm | Reply
    • peter pan

      ugly maybe, but at least they dont terrorize countries like the americans do on a steady basis, i think the americans have killed more innocent people than any "terrorist" organization would have

      December 10, 2012 at 9:04 pm | Reply
      • Star-Spangled Bullsh!t

        Ssssshhhhhh!!!!!'ll wake the Clovers.

        December 11, 2012 at 5:14 pm |
  36. Buck

    If we're not careful, North Korea will end up faking spaceflight better than NASA. If that happens, our tax-funded entertainment for the sake of 'science' will be immensely challenged. All they have to do is make a successful launch into orbit, and the rest is fakery.....

    December 10, 2012 at 3:02 pm | Reply
    • RL

      Wow, is that tinfoil hat a little tight?

      December 10, 2012 at 3:08 pm | Reply
  37. dusgustedbyexpertslanguage

    What does it say about the state of our nation when an 'expert' can not string together a reasonable sentence. One sentence contains the word "able" or a closely related work like capable six times and also says that "their desire is motivated by their desire..."." Such babble just makes me cringe.

    December 10, 2012 at 3:02 pm | Reply
    • marycontrary

      You must be referring to David Wright "senior scientist"...some of his less than stellar quotes:
      "I think it went a minute or so,"
      "so I think this is basically just a do over,"
      "a part failed or something like that,"
      "That's the $10,000 question we've been trying to answer"
      As I was reading I thought surely CNN was duped by some 16 yr old calling himself a senior scientist.

      December 10, 2012 at 5:07 pm | Reply
      • marycontrary

        I see now that you were actually referring to Adm. Samuel Locklear's quotes. Hard to believe our country's leaders sound like a bunch of illiterates. Most of this article sounds dumbed down.

        December 10, 2012 at 5:17 pm |
  38. B

    Let's say they succeed in launch...
    The next story will be, NK satellite mysteriously "collides" with another "satellite" upon entering orbit.

    December 10, 2012 at 2:51 pm | Reply
    • hommie12

      I had better luck putting match heads in a co2 cartridge than these knuckleheads yrs. ago.

      December 10, 2012 at 2:57 pm | Reply
  39. Organic1

    I am sure Toys R Us can sent them one of those model rocket kits with engines and everything they need to get a functional rocket to fire, even if they have to only walk 100 yards to retrieve it, at least they can fire it again if they purchase more engines. In that field they need to learn to crawl before they try and walk.

    December 10, 2012 at 2:49 pm | Reply
  40. widow

    so is when is it going to explode and fail again?

    December 10, 2012 at 2:48 pm | Reply
  41. Strikeforce

    Performance issues...that's not uncommon in North Korea I hear...

    December 10, 2012 at 2:46 pm | Reply
  42. Mayan Time Travelers

    The actual launch date is December 21. Sheesh, whaddya need us to do? Write it down in stone?

    December 10, 2012 at 2:36 pm | Reply
  43. sarge from Utah

    The guy with the matchbox who lights the rocket has defected to South Korea!

    December 10, 2012 at 2:36 pm | Reply
    • TheZel


      December 10, 2012 at 2:44 pm | Reply
  44. saveyourfeet

    Interesting. What I care about is this: I am a type 1 diabetic. My feet were going to be amputated. until I found a simple way to stop that from happening. if you are a diabetic you need to read saveyourfeetDOTwordpressDOTcom

    December 10, 2012 at 2:12 pm | Reply
    • DickPerry

      I now have read that line 5 times and it hasn't done anything to my bloodsugar..

      December 10, 2012 at 3:17 pm | Reply
  45. Larry

    I'm pretty sure obama will sent you their parts. he gives everything away here

    December 10, 2012 at 2:06 pm | Reply
  46. alan fischer

    The North Koreans have not changed-Remember the Korean war-the Korean soldiers had a passion for shooting American soldiers while their hands were tried behind their backs.

    December 10, 2012 at 1:58 pm | Reply
  47. ug

    I'm sure the UN will send them the right parts.

    December 10, 2012 at 1:47 pm | Reply
  48. buzz

    No one had fuel in their zippo to light the fuse

    December 10, 2012 at 1:40 pm | Reply
  49. Hogan's Goat

    Don't be ashamed, North Korea. It's not uncommon to have a little "rocket trouble." All you need is a little understanding.

    December 10, 2012 at 1:39 pm | Reply
  50. Mike

    Maybe they should ask their magic unicorns for help.

    December 10, 2012 at 1:28 pm | Reply
  51. Johnna

    I have the news on the delay straight from the little fat guy in charge. The delay was caused by the fact that when all the rocket stages were delivered to the launch site, someone forgot to make the second stage of the rocket. Nyuk...nyuk...nyuk!

    December 10, 2012 at 1:05 pm | Reply
  52. jorge washinsen

    People need to quit worrying whether it will go but should be wondering where it will come down.I wonder if it can reach Iran?

    December 10, 2012 at 12:58 pm | Reply
    • toddrf

      "once the rockets go up, who cares where they come down? That's not my department, says Werner Von Braun"

      December 10, 2012 at 3:54 pm | Reply
  53. Fdaniel gray

    Ah me, moderated out. AGAIN!!!! Gee, The Los Angeles Times occasionally publishes my letters. See Nov. 29, 2012.

    December 10, 2012 at 12:37 pm | Reply
    • jorge washinsen

      You will be okay now, all the regular help is back.The ones with chips on their shoulders work on weekends.

      December 10, 2012 at 1:02 pm | Reply
      • Hogan's Goat

        Guys, you are being auto-moderated. Google the word CLBUTTIC and you will see what I mean. Avoid certain words and you are fine.

        December 10, 2012 at 4:46 pm |
  54. Robin Jones

    "Technical Issue": In North Korea, this means that the crew responsible for winding up the rubber band propulsion system were unable to complete the task due to starvation.

    December 10, 2012 at 12:27 pm | Reply
  55. nonyabidnes

    Wasn't there a movie portraying their rockets? I believe it was called "Failure to Launch"...

    December 10, 2012 at 12:25 pm | Reply
  56. manyote

    From the looks of that launch pad, it would be a feat if they could even launch a kite from there.

    December 10, 2012 at 12:18 pm | Reply
  57. reddog9500

    "If at first you don't succeed..."

    December 10, 2012 at 12:14 pm | Reply
  58. hypatia

    sure it will work, so long as the rubberband is wound tight enough and the hamster is awake

    December 10, 2012 at 12:03 pm | Reply
  59. davetharave

    North Korea dudes . . . you don't need rockets, nobody is going to attack you. Why don't you use the $$$ you spend on rockets to feed your hungry children ? Nobody is interested in attacking your rocky, crusty little country so get a clue !

    December 10, 2012 at 11:57 am | Reply
    • Mark

      These people are buffoons, spending billions to puff out there chests, only to get egg (or something) on their face time and time again. Someday, one of these will actually leave the ground. So what? Their leadership should be on trial at the Hague.

      December 10, 2012 at 12:04 pm | Reply
    • mindstorms

      Yes, they sure are wasting their money unlike the United States that went to war looking for imaginary WMDs.

      December 10, 2012 at 2:07 pm | Reply
  60. gmenfan54

    Another rocket launch from Wile E. Coyote and the Acme Rocket Co.

    December 10, 2012 at 11:52 am | Reply
    • bckerr


      December 10, 2012 at 12:59 pm | Reply
    • fandancy

      Mini Wile E Coyote.

      December 10, 2012 at 1:06 pm | Reply
  61. Double Pulsars

    I shot an Arrow into the air
    It fell to earth I know not where,
    For so swiftly it flew, the sight
    Could not follow it in its flight.

    – by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

    December 10, 2012 at 11:50 am | Reply
  62. sarge from Utah

    They have run out of matches to light it!

    December 10, 2012 at 11:50 am | Reply
  63. Jocho Johnson

    Shouldn't they be concentrating their scientific efforts on increasing agricultural yields?!

    December 10, 2012 at 11:46 am | Reply
    • JLV

      The satilite was so their farmers could get the weather channel.

      December 10, 2012 at 3:35 pm | Reply
  64. DowChuck

    NK prefects the ICBM. Iran perfects the bomb. Syria. Egypt, Jordon supply the invasion forces. Just call me paranoid. Hopefully the US warship will undergo a simulated shoot down of the missle.

    December 10, 2012 at 11:42 am | Reply
    • sbuler

      Right DowChuck. And the numbers on the back of stop signs are to guide the UN troops when they invade. Get a shrink or at least a hobby.

      December 10, 2012 at 12:05 pm | Reply
    • Chris


      December 10, 2012 at 1:02 pm | Reply
    • Hogan's Goat

      You are paranoid.

      December 10, 2012 at 4:47 pm | Reply
  65. Michael

    I thought "Sum Ting Wong" was canned after the last failed attempt. surprised to hear he's going to try it again.

    Perhaps the reason that the NK's can attempt again so soon is that they don't have to worry about the bloody bureaucracy getting in the way with such meaningless regulations or concerns as safety.

    December 10, 2012 at 11:41 am | Reply
  66. Eloi

    Their biggest advance this time is switching from coal to LP gas. Kim explained that they are now exploring new methods of launching ocean satellites so it will be considered a success!

    December 10, 2012 at 11:36 am | Reply
    • JLV

      their plan is to fill the pacific with failed launches so that their troops can march to the US

      December 10, 2012 at 3:38 pm | Reply
      • craig

        good one

        December 10, 2012 at 8:46 pm |
  67. Tim

    Maybe Mitt Romney shook hands with it.

    December 10, 2012 at 11:35 am | Reply
    • taco


      December 10, 2012 at 11:52 am | Reply
    • Hogan's Goat

      Yeah, Mitt was born under a bad sign. This obviously ain't his year.

      December 10, 2012 at 4:48 pm | Reply
  68. BJNJ

    I guess that little chubby guy doesn't look threatening enough to cause the rocket to launch. No matter how stupid north korea looks to the world they fantasize they look cool. A bunch of under achivers who in reality are the infected pimples on the anus of society. BJNJ

    December 10, 2012 at 11:32 am | Reply
    • iceandsnow3

      To BJNJ....LOVE your post! I got a real belly laugh!

      December 10, 2012 at 11:52 am | Reply
  69. blaze562

    They seem to have forgotten the rockets power source, two AA batteries..

    December 10, 2012 at 11:23 am | Reply
    • JLV

      radioshack was closed

      December 10, 2012 at 3:39 pm | Reply
  70. SilentBoy741

    Apparently balsa wood is not the best material for a multi-stage rocket.

    December 10, 2012 at 11:22 am | Reply
    • taco


      December 10, 2012 at 11:52 am | Reply
  71. Why so Serious?

    Rather than spending money moving war ships into the region every time they have a launch, or even worse, criticizing them for doing exactly what the US and Russia did during the formation of their space program; multiple failures. Why not offer to put it up for them after the payload is inspected to make certain that it is just a weather satellite and Invite them into the international community in a limited capacity, something they do not seem likely to do on their own.

    December 10, 2012 at 11:16 am | Reply
    • iceandsnow3

      WHY IN HELL would we help those sob's?

      December 10, 2012 at 11:54 am | Reply
    • Hell...lo

      Oh boy, are you green.

      December 10, 2012 at 11:58 am | Reply
      • Why so Serious?

        I am Green, meaning not afraid of creating real change. You would have us bomb them right? Or rather threaten to, knowing full well that we won’t.

        December 10, 2012 at 6:51 pm |
    • Tiredoldman

      Yep lets teach a sworn enemy how to make successful rockets. That way they can use the rocket to launch a nuke with it later on. How friggin dense are you? You never give an enemy any information. You only give an alley information if it benefits our goals.

      December 10, 2012 at 12:08 pm | Reply
      • Why so Serious?

        You obviously did not read the post. I never advocated showing them how to make rockets. One the contrary, I made a comment on how they would have no need for rockets. Imagine if China, its ally, put the satellite up for them. China would certainly not allow us to inspect the payload. Make no mistake, it’s only a matter of time and they will get it into orbit. Would you rather have no idea what it really is? Stop being so naïve, the world can, and more recently, does operate without the influence of the US. I fully agree that North Korea with any missiles is a bad idea. There is an opportunity for a peaceful solution here; the question is will it be our opportunity or China’s? Egypt has already made us look unnecessary when dealing with the Palestinians. China can easily do the same. I think it will more likely be China that eventually diffuses the situation, making the US look like an ineffective force in the region. We can sit back with our finger on the trigger with the whole world knowing that we won’t actually do anything to North Korea, because Washington is afraid of a one million man army, or we can try something new. I know one thing; the standard response of doing nothing does not work.

        December 10, 2012 at 6:47 pm |
    • justiggs

      Well said.

      December 11, 2012 at 5:22 am | Reply
  72. Matt Sewell

    Did they contract a Chinese company for parts? :)

    December 10, 2012 at 11:12 am | Reply
  73. tet1953

    Wow.. they can arbitrarily extend a launch window for a satellite launch? Who knew? lol

    December 10, 2012 at 10:39 am | Reply
  74. Red Chinese Nuclear Barrage

    I'm glad that the US govt has finally got its head out of the sand about China being directly responsible for all of North Korea's military macho idiot behavior while officially denying any involvement. Europe and NATO needs to send a financial message to China that enough is enough. China should stop stirring up trouble for themselves via North Korea. I can't believe the bozos in charge trust Communist China, as if it were no longer a scion of Mao. Look at the regular malicious espionage and hacking from China that occurs on a daily basis against the US.

    December 10, 2012 at 10:33 am | Reply
    • iceandsnow3

      I totally agree. Canada has just approved the sale of a huge oil concern to China....unbelievable!! Thank God I won't be around when they eventually take over the world. There's just too many of them not to be able to do it.

      December 10, 2012 at 11:59 am | Reply
      • Dennis

        well stupid ! Obuma turned the oil deal down and left us with no choice!

        December 10, 2012 at 12:49 pm |
    • Logic

      When you are 3 months due on you rent, you can't really complain to the landlord about his friend's loud party down the hall. As long as China is lending US money, I don't think US can do more than yell at the neighbor from the street.

      December 10, 2012 at 12:04 pm | Reply
      • Red Chinese Nuclear Barrage

        The USA owes China back the money that it put on its books, conjured out of thin air? Is it me or does it not make any sense to pay back money that they never had to begin with. Yuan/Renminbi is a fiat note. You take your book with $0 in it and tell everyone that you have $1,000,000,000. How is the US late on rent to China. Look at the real numbers and you'll see that China owns a miniscule portion of American debt. Most of US debt is owed back to....the USA. It's a fact, go ahead and do your fact checking. Most Americans don't know Alaska from the Phillipines; that's clear from reading some of these posts online thinking that US owes China back money it conjured out of thin air. The US does owe China equitable payments based on what they actually have, not what they fake. The US should pay this much fairly as a fair and honest country, but why would it pay back something made dishonestly they do not owe.

        December 10, 2012 at 1:34 pm |
  75. Oscar Pitchfork

    Hey-they're still doing better than India with their "Burning Cow-Dung-Powered" orbital vehicle.

    December 10, 2012 at 10:16 am | Reply
    • Kafiruddin

      What will the pakis do now with all the green paint that they bought?

      December 10, 2012 at 11:36 am | Reply
  76. 1termlimits

    Someone in NK put the sign on wrong..."This End Up".

    December 10, 2012 at 10:14 am | Reply
    • SilentBoy741

      "Aim Pointy End Toward Space."

      December 10, 2012 at 11:17 am | Reply
  77. Dave.C

    Its not so much that there putting up a satellite, its about thrust capabilities on there rocket.Remember you take off a satellite and put on warheads you now have a ICBM and our allies in the region will start beating the "War drum"and we all know who answers that call.The whole story smells bad considering they
    try to figure out on a daily basis:Food, electricity, clean water, and do the most illogical thing everyday.

    December 10, 2012 at 9:43 am | Reply
    • Rudolf Rocker

      You no good use Engrish

      December 10, 2012 at 10:01 am | Reply
      • iceandsnow3


        December 10, 2012 at 12:01 pm |
  78. Tony

    One creative idea would be to, just for ONCE, RE-ACTIVATE the Y-ABL (airborne laser mounted afront of a 747–look at Google) that the government has in storage to SHOOT that missle down, if it does launch. North Korea will NEVER expect it, they don't have the technological know-how to even understand how to detect what has happened, and it would be a BIG political statement from the U.S. that "yeah, you have a missile, but *WE* (as in the U.S.) can SHOOT IT DOWN and there is NOTHING you can do about it.

    Then maybe that PIGLET son can order some more pizzas, get more FAT, and ride more horses for political posters...

    December 10, 2012 at 9:40 am | Reply
    • rick

      Tony: If you read up on this laser weapon, you will see that in order to shoot down a missile in boost phase, i.e. when the missile is still well inside the country of origin, the 747 would need to be also inside that country in some kind of figure-8 holding pattern, within 300km of the launch site – because the laser they developed doesn't have nearly enough power to be fired from, say, 1000 miles away. So you're proposing a lumbering, ducks-in-a-barrel target like a 747 fly around inside NK, waiting for a chance to shoot down a missile? I'm sure even the NK could handle that situation.

      December 10, 2012 at 11:07 am | Reply
      • rick

        What the US =should= be working on is a rail gun weapon that can fire from a space orbit (and maybe they are).

        December 10, 2012 at 11:09 am |
      • Hogan's Goat

        "What the US =should= be working on is a rail gun weapon that can fire from a space orbit (and maybe they are)." If we knew China was building that, we would attack at once. Nobody's making space weapons because we don't all want to die. That's also why there's no moonbase; a moonbase would control Earth's skies.

        December 10, 2012 at 4:51 pm |
  79. Larry

    better hurry NK only 11 days left before the sun knocks out all the power grids on earth. too late then!

    December 10, 2012 at 9:23 am | Reply
  80. Dustin

    "Why rocket no fry?"

    December 10, 2012 at 9:21 am | Reply
    • rick

      "Dat's da probrem, dey ARE frying!"

      December 10, 2012 at 11:10 am | Reply
      • SilentBoy741

        "No, not fry. *FRY*!"

        December 10, 2012 at 11:19 am |
      • The Craw

        Not the "craw," the Craw!

        December 11, 2012 at 8:05 am |
  81. Hahahahahaha

    Lil Donged One has "trouble with his rocket"? Hahahahahahhaha

    December 10, 2012 at 9:17 am | Reply
    • rick

      Can't get it up and when it does it shoot branks.

      December 10, 2012 at 11:11 am | Reply
      • Tiredoldman

        No No
        The main problem is it prematurely detonates just like Aaaackbar the terrorist did.

        December 10, 2012 at 12:14 pm |
  82. Larry

    they can't find a big enough rubber band?

    December 10, 2012 at 9:16 am | Reply
  83. Dick Cheney

    Hey Dufuss's,
    Do you guys know what a directed energy weapon does to a satellite launch??? The same thing it did to the last one!!!

    December 10, 2012 at 9:12 am | Reply
    • Hogan's Goat

      We're not shooting down their rockets, Dickie. They just don't know Jack about ballistics.

      December 11, 2012 at 8:07 am | Reply
  84. evilstonefish

    Theses clowns couldn't launch a bottle rocket from a bottle.

    December 10, 2012 at 8:58 am | Reply
  85. Dan

    They need to use a bigger sling-shot.

    December 10, 2012 at 8:56 am | Reply
  86. Dave

    Will blow themselves up?

    December 10, 2012 at 8:37 am | Reply
    • iceandsnow3

      One can only hope!

      December 10, 2012 at 12:04 pm | Reply
  87. Patrick

    Have they determined what the satellite is "designed for"? If thye US determine that it poses national security risk for us, i wouldn't be surprised if the satellite "had an accident"-either pre-launch...or once in space

    December 10, 2012 at 8:36 am | Reply
    • peter pan

      its non of your business, "americans" think they run the world, well ya maybe for now but america will fall just like the rest of the "empires" no doubt

      December 10, 2012 at 8:59 pm | Reply
      • Hogan's Goat

        "america will fall just like the rest of the "empires" no doubt" Says a guy who lives in Never Never Land with a bunch of pirates and fairies. Dream on; we will endure. “Though much is taken, much abides; and though we are not now that strength which in old days moved earth and heaven, that which we are, we are; One equal temper of heroic hearts, made weak by time and fate, but strong in will to strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.”

        December 11, 2012 at 9:15 am |
  88. Amanda Huggenkiss

    ninety percent of all rocket problems are traced to low potency

    December 10, 2012 at 8:32 am | Reply
    • Hogan's Goat

      What you are shooting at can make a huge difference as well. Perhaps they need a more attractive target zone?

      December 11, 2012 at 9:16 am | Reply
  89. Rocket Science is Fun!

    It is very ironic to me that many of the people posting on the NK launch are US citizens who are notoriously bad at science and math. You want to give a few NK engineers a hard time for driving a third world country into the space age? These guys are more successful in that pitiful country than you are in the richest and most privileged country in the world.

    Don't blame the people for the failures of their dirtbag government.

    December 10, 2012 at 8:04 am | Reply
    • Lifes short

      You really have no idea of what your talking about. Math and secience? We have an SUV sized rover on Mars genius. And it's working perfectly. Now on to a wonderful day with intelligent people.

      December 10, 2012 at 8:20 am | Reply
    • Troll Slayer

      So you are implying that the US drove the Curiosity rover over to Mars? Or perhaps they had FedEx drop it off?

      December 10, 2012 at 8:24 am | Reply
      • rick

        Nah, FedEx would have thrown the thing into a Martian's front yard and broke it.

        December 10, 2012 at 11:13 am |
    • RadioResearch

      "Don't blame the people for the failures of their dirtbag government."

      Just so. This a good thing for all of the US-bashers to remember. Don't denigrate the people when the government is the failure.

      Having said that, this is another NK flying chamberpot that is headed directly for the drink.

      December 10, 2012 at 8:29 am | Reply
    • Ty

      "Don't blame the people for the failures of their dirtbag government."

      Which gov't are we talking about here, US or NK? So hard to tell them apart these days.

      December 10, 2012 at 10:01 am | Reply
      • iceandsnow3

        OUCH!! Where do you come from?

        December 10, 2012 at 12:08 pm |
      • Dennis


        December 10, 2012 at 12:53 pm |
      • Moe

        For someone making a ignoramus comment, comparing the United States Government with North Korea Government, doesn't have a single clue what they're talking about. Even if the U.S. Gov made mistakes and have issues, that doesn't compare to a country that restricts every single idea and gets torture for saying it. (Or the whole family gets sent off to a Work Camp.) There's nothing to compare between the US and NK Country, Government, idea, etc etc...... At least our goverment will give us the right to say F.U. to them.

        December 10, 2012 at 2:17 pm |
      • Yes and No

        Ty is right in the sense that both are warmongers and foolishly spend a lot on defense while some of their ppl live below the poverty line. But wrong in the sense that US is rich while NK is poor, and the US is much more in debt than NK while NK can't even borrow money, so technically no debt.

        December 10, 2012 at 7:55 pm |
      • Hogan's Goat

        "OUCH!! Where do you come from?" Tea Bag Fairy Land, where everything is upside-down.

        December 11, 2012 at 10:40 am |
    • Brett

      So funny. Who is the one reading the US news website on the US created internet?
      On a completely different note, NK can have their stupid rockets. I have successfully launched more rocket-based projectiles on the 4th of July then they have in their entire existence. Why they don't borrow their designs from those, we will never know. its a better starting point than a rubber band or compressed air.

      December 10, 2012 at 1:56 pm | Reply
    • Hogan's Goat

      "These guys are more successful in that pitiful country than you are" They have to turn the electricity off every night by 9pm to save money. I'm talking the whole country goes dark. Good luck with that.

      December 11, 2012 at 9:18 am | Reply
  90. 33VMUH

    Really, does anything work right in that country anymore?

    December 10, 2012 at 8:04 am | Reply
    • evansusmc

      Of course. The people in the labor camps are working their tails off.

      December 10, 2012 at 9:40 am | Reply
      • peter pan

        and in other news americans getting fatter and fatter from being lazy and over doing it on fast food
        this just in americans cant go to space anymore as their rockets cant handle their fat asses

        December 10, 2012 at 8:57 pm |
      • evansusmc

        OK first off your comment was a load of crap. Secondly you might want to direct that comment to someone that is applies to. I a guarantee that I am in much better shape right now than you will ever be or ever were.

        December 11, 2012 at 9:20 am |
      • CurmudgeonTx

        This just in...Americans have private enterprises taking cargo, and soon people into space whereas North Korea's government can't even do as much as a single satellite.

        December 11, 2012 at 2:28 am |
      • Hogan's Goat

        "americans cant go to space anymore " because we voted for two fundamentalists in a row and they shut down our space program to avoid scaring God up in heaven.

        December 11, 2012 at 9:21 am |
  91. Tom

    Watch now, Kim Jung Un is going to have it launched on Dec 21, 2012 (No, it's not the end of the world) just so that he can use another bs propaganda saying he saved the world from apocalyptic destruction. Not that it'll matter because it's destined for the ocean not the skies.

    December 10, 2012 at 7:43 am | Reply
  92. Kasey

    I believe that the "technical problem" is directly related to the current shortage of Chinese-made bottle rockets.

    December 10, 2012 at 7:42 am | Reply
  93. David M

    They decided they needed a longer fuse, and they realized they needed larger on-board gas tanks so the rocket would clear land before it ran out of gas. What a joke these jamotes are.

    On the serious side, I really feel sorry for the N. Korean people. They are essentially captives in their own country and they are starving to death. Ourwardly, they praise leader Kim Whoopie Pie, but inwardly they have to be bitter, knowing that the money spent on this launch would have fed a lot of people.

    There will be a day of reckoning and it will not be pretty.

    December 10, 2012 at 7:38 am | Reply
    • Dennis

      is the mighty USA going to free them like Iraq or Afghanistan?????????????????????????

      December 10, 2012 at 12:55 pm | Reply
      • Hogan's Goat

        Twenty-five question marks: the sure sign of an insane mind.

        December 11, 2012 at 9:22 am |
  94. Gazz

    Let's hope so. They need a strong deterrence or they'll end up like Iraq.

    December 10, 2012 at 2:59 am | Reply
    • Pierre-Normand

      Unlike Irak, North-Korea isn't ethnically divided. The North Korean and South Korean people are pretty much the same. The only enemy of the North-Korean people is the North-Korean regime. North-Korean leaders are callous and utterly corrupt. If the regime falls, no-one will want it back. There'd be nothing for an insurgency to rally around.

      December 10, 2012 at 4:58 am | Reply
      • Dennis

        and you think the Kurd` s in northern Iraq want anything to do with the south?????????????

        December 10, 2012 at 12:56 pm |
    • Troll killer

      You're either a troll for North Korea or totally stupid. The Chinese use North Korea as totally secure training area, and also as a secure place for conducting illegal experiments on humans. I have met many South Koreans, but never in my life have I ever met a single North Korean. You know why? They are a captive people. The whole country is divided into little kingdoms where the top military leader in the area is the king, and their new leader is the emperor. The common people are treated no better than animals.

      December 10, 2012 at 6:54 am | Reply
      • dave

        Well the gays claim we are animals, so why should nk treat their people like anything else?

        December 10, 2012 at 9:08 am |
      • Hogan's Goat

        " gays claim we are animals" Does anyone actually claim that humans are NOT 'animals?' Don't know about you, man, but I'm no robot or ghost. I have to eat and drink, and evacuate waste, and I practice reproducing every chance I get. I have tiny fingers on the end of my feet. But I'm not gay, if that's any help.

        December 11, 2012 at 9:28 am |
    • steve

      Deterent to what? International food aid for their starving citizens? Iraq no longer has a murderous dictator at their head. Seems like a step in the right direction to me. But then perhaps you're a fan of murderous, despotic, insane rulers. Who am I to assume you're sane.

      December 10, 2012 at 11:12 pm | Reply
  95. pckmark

    Meanwhile in America:

    December 10, 2012 at 2:29 am | Reply
  96. FIip

    Hope they fail again, which will shake the very foundation of the regime under the new unstable leader.

    December 10, 2012 at 2:06 am | Reply
    • peter pan

      i hope you fall on your fork

      December 10, 2012 at 8:55 pm | Reply
      • steve

        Good to know somebody supports the murderous, despotic, grinding dictatorship of North Korea. It just wouldn't be a real conversation without the point of view of the satan's advocate. Or in this case, given what we know of North Korea, the advocate of whoever satan's role model is.

        December 10, 2012 at 11:10 pm |
      • Hogan's Goat

        "peter pan" Tinker Belle is calling you. Why don't you go hang out with your pals in Never Never Land for a few years and see if you can grow up?

        December 11, 2012 at 9:25 am |
  97. TheSurvivalGuy

    Reblogged this on thesurvivalplaceblog.

    December 10, 2012 at 1:36 am | Reply

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