.. נחמו נחמו עמי
"Comfort, comfort my people.."
North Korea has been building new underground missile bases along its east coast, targeting Japan and US military facilities in Japan, a report said.Best line:
Some 200 Rodong missiles with a range of up to 2,200 kilometers (1,360 miles) and 50 SSN-6 missiles with ranges of 2,500 to 4,000 kilometers are at the new bases, the state-run Institute of Foreign Affairs and National Security (IFANS) said in the report carried by Yonhap news agency.
"The new bases clustered along the east coastal line are for medium- and long-range missiles targeting Japan and US military bases in Japan," read the report by Yun Deok-Min, an IFANS arms control expert.
"Combined with its nuclear weapons, North Korea's ballistic missiles provides it with a powerful deterrent."
North Korea has also constructed new underground missile bases deep in mountains near its border with China, to avoid outside attacks, it said.
The communist nation set off new alarm bells in the region with its July 5 test-firing of seven ballistic missiles which splashed in the Sea of Japan (East Sea). In 1998, it test-launched a missile over Japan.
Pyongyang's official Rodong Sinmun newspaper on Thursday warned against Japan's recent US-backed military buildup which it said "is aimed to mount a preemptive attack" on North Korea.
"The Japanese reactionaries had better behave with discretion, bearing in mind that reinvasion of Korea is as foolish an act as jumping into fire with (a) faggot on one's back," Rodong said.
The U.S. intelligence community has determined that Beijing has developed and deployed a series of missiles that would give China second-strike nuclear capability in any confrontation with the United States. The determination of a sea-based deterrent is said to have significantly increased Beijing's threat to the United States.The Chinese have also decided to militarize outer space.
"It is clear to me that China is now embarking on a significant investment in a second-strike capability to ensure the survival and, thus, viability of its nuclear forces," said Richard Fisher, a researcher at the International Assessment and Strategy Center and a leading U.S. expert on China.
In a presentation to the American Enterprise Institute on July 11, Mr. Fisher said China has launched or tested a series of nuclear missiles and platforms.
He said the first Type 94 submarine ballistic nuclear missile has been equipped and launched.
The Type 94, which began construction in 1999, is designed to contain the JL-2 submarine-launched nuclear missiles. Each submarine is meant to contain 16 JL-2s, or DF-31s, with a range of 8,000 kilometers, which would allow Chinese submarines to target portions of the United States from areas near the Chinese coast.
The disclosure of the completion of the Type 94 submarine appeared to mark a significant acceleration in China's nuclear submarine program. As late as May 2004, the Pentagon asserted that the new Chinese missile submarine would not be operational until around 2010.
WASHINGTON, Aug. 3 (UPI) -- As the conflict in Lebanon intensifies, U.S. official are weighing the consequences of a possible strategic shift by the Islamic extremist group Hezbollah.
U.S. officials tell United Press International that intelligence assessments indicate the group's strategic posture up till now appears designed to avoid direct confrontation with the United States.
But "whenever there's an up-tick in tension (in the Middle East) there's a concern that the posture could change," said one U.S. intelligence official authorized to speak with the media. At that point, said the official, attention switches to trying to work out what capabilities the group might have. "Capacity is what is interesting people at the moment."
Rep. Ed Royce, R-Calif., chairman of the House subcommittee on terrorism and non-proliferation, told UPI he is concerned Hezbollah might be positioning itself for an attack against the United States.
"We're seeing a pattern of activities on the border and elsewhere," he said, indicating "a renewed operational focus by Hezbollah on getting their people in over the border, between the ports of entry," because that way, U.S. authorities will not know they are in the country.
Royce said there was a rise in the number of ethnic Lebanese with Brazilian nationality apprehended at the border. "We're seeing a pattern of (Hezbollah) operatives" from Latin American countries "attempting to come into the United States," he said.
The tri-border region of South America, where the frontiers of Brazil, Bolivia and Argentina all meet, has a large Lebanese-origin population and has long been identified by some in U.S. intelligence as a hotspot for Hezbollah activities
Royce referenced recent statements from militants linked to Hezbollah in Iran that said they had the capability to stage suicide attacks against U.S interests around the world.
Bichara said there had been other cases of Filipino workers jumping out of their employers' apartment to escape and return to the Philippines after President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo ordered the mass evacuation due to the worsening security situation.Unfortunately, unlike Israel, the Filipinos are unlikely to go to war over the fate of their abused daughters (and they are abused throughout the Arab world, where they and Sri Lankan girls are ubiquitous as maids). Much like Mexico, the authorities enjoy the foreign currency remittances too much to do anything substantial for the betterment of their own people. You won't even hear a peep of protest from the Philippines over the chronic rapes, beatings, imprisonment, and de-facto slavery of their citizens in the Arab world.
Nearly 3,000 have already returned to the Southeast Asian country over the past two weeks, some of them defying employers' orders to stay. Most of the Filipinos working in Lebanon are women hired as domestic help.
Three Filipino women were brought to an orthopaedic clinic in Syria this week with broken legs and arms after falling from apartment buildings in Lebanon, Philippine diplomats said.