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Posts by Martyn Williams
As a computer-based war-game, the Ulchi Freedom Guardian exercise that begins this week in South Korea requires lots and lots of computers.
In pictures released Thursday by the U.S. Department of Defense, some of those computers and the complexity of the set-up can be seen. The images and a video show the inside of the Joint Operations Center for the exercise. It was built by the U.S. I Corps and Third Army of South Korea.
A North Korean state IT company has approached Russia’s Information and Computer Technologies Industry Association (APKIT) proposing a greater working relationship with Russian IT companies.
The country apparently wants to win business from Russian companies and the Pyongyang Kwangmyong IT Corp. held talks with APKIT in July and August, according to the APKIT.
As part of those talks, the North Korean company proposed a number of areas of collaboration and provided details of the skills possessed by its staff in Pyongyang. Those documents were seen by North Korea Tech.
The U.S. Department of Defense has released the first photos from the 10-day Ulchi Freedom Guardian 2014 joint military exercise that has just begun in South Korea.
The computer-based exercise simulates South Korean defense of a North Korean attack and, not surprisingly, have North Korea angry.
The daily Rodong Sinmun wrote, “It is foolish and ridiculous if the U.S. and south Korean puppet forces calculate that they will get something through provocative Ulji Freedom Guardian joint military exercises against the DPRK,” and said they won’t achieve anything. The editorial came a couple of weeks after the newspaper said North Korea’s own military exercises More >
North Korea’s main evening news bulletin has a new look.
Korean Central Television has updated the opening sequence of the 8pm evening news program for the first time since September 2012.
The new graphics begin with a map of the world, zooming into the DPRK and then a wall of clips from the station’s news programming including one of the country’s mass parades, a rocket launch, scenes from farming and industry, and several sports.
Here what the versions used until September 2012 and after that time looked like:
And here’s video of the new More >
Last week I wrote about the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration’s regulations on U.S. carriers or aircraft using North Korean airspace. They prohibit flight in most of the skies controlled by Pyongyang but allow it — with caution — in a portion east of 132 degrees East latitude.
The ban is in place because of North Korea’s unpredictable short- and medium-range missile launches and uncertainties over just how good the coordination is between civil air traffic controllers and the military. The rules are in place to avoid an aircraft getting shot down, either by mistake or due to a misunderstanding.
So, I decided to More >
Speaking during a news conference at The Pentagon on Tuesday, Admiral Sam Locklear, commander of the U.S. Pacific Command, said he was concerned that the international community was becoming “numb” to them.
“Over and over and over again, you see it and you become somewhat numb to it, immune to it, and you start to say, well, it’s not such a big deal,” he said.
North Korea has fired a number of missiles from bases across the country into the More >
Engineers from North Korea and seven other nations are being given training in technology related to China’s Beidou (Compass) satellite navigation system this week, according to Chinese media reports.
The engineers are attending a course in Hubei province being put on by the National Remote Sensing Center. The organization is part of China’s Ministry of Science and Technology and is charged with development of the Beidou system.
Beidou is a satellite navigation system developed to reduce Chinese reliance on the U.S. Navstar Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) system. It’s one of several new satellite navigation networks being launched to supplement the American system. Satellite navigation has More >
The planned expansion of the U.S. missile defense shield to guard against potential threats from North Korea and other nations will cost $5.8 billion over the coming years, according to an estimate released this week.
The estimate was made by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) in response to a question from Jeff Sessions, a Republican senator for Alabama and a member of the Senate Subcommittee on Strategic Forces. They examine the cost of the system over the last few years and its likely cost over the coming five years.
It reveals that the Missile Defense Agency’s Ground-Based Midcourse Defense (GMD) program has cost just under $9 More >
The shooting down of MH17 over Ukraine has raised awareness of a series of restrictions the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration has placed on aircraft operating around the world, including over North Korea.
North Korean airspace extends well beyond the land borders of the country to include a large portion of the Sea of Japan (East Sea) and, to a lesser extent, a region over the Yellow Sea (West Sea.) It’s called the Pyongyang FIR (flight information region) and is shown in the map below.
The FAA regulations date back to April 1997, when North Korea began allowing foreign airlines to fly through its airspace. That included U.S. carriers, but More >
South Korea’s latest attempt to sway the minds of the North Korean people looks like a dud before it’s even begun.
This month, the South Korean military begins regular programming on a new shortwave radio station aimed at the DPRK, but the selection of frequency, low transmitter power and aggressive jamming means few if anyone in the DPRK can probably hear it.
Voice of Freedom began several years ago on FM along the border. The use of FM hobbled the station because the signals typically only travel a few tens of kilometers and are susceptible to being blocked by the many hills in the area.