With North Korea’s apparent success with ICBMs this past year it’s easy to forget their failures. Less than a year ago one of their missiles blew up shortly after launch. We now know that the failed missile landed in a populated area of North Korea.
On April 28, 2017, North Korea launched a single Hwasong-12/KN17 intermediate-range ballistic missile (IRBM) from Pukchang Airfield in South Pyongan Province (the Korean People’s Army’s Air and Anti-Air Force Unit 447 in Ryongak-dong, Sunchon City, to be more precise). That missile failed shortly after launch and crashed in the Chongsin-dong, in North Korean city of Tokchon, causing considerable damage to a complex of industrial or agricultural buildings.
Was the failure the result of a failed part, a failed or human error? I doubt that we will ever know. My take away from this is that perhaps N. Korea isn’t as prepared to launch a nuclear tipped weapon as they pretend to be and even the U.S. could have a failure on launch of a nuclear missile.