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Did North Korea Conduct Secret Nuclear Tests?

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the poking-around-inside-atoms dept.

News 159

gbrumfiel writes "In May of 2010, North Korea made the bizarre claim that it had achieved nuclear fusion. Many, many commentators (including faithful Slashdot readers) mocked the dear leader for his outlandish boast, but could there have been a kernel of truth in the claim? Apparently some odd radioactivity was spotted by detectors surrounding the North just days after the announcement. Now, a new analysis by a Swedish scientist suggests that the radiation may have leaked from covert experiments into boosting fission warheads. The evidence is tentative at best, and many are skeptical, but it does seem that something odd was up on the Korean peninsula that spring."

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Easy fix. (0, Troll)

grub (11606) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919239)


1) Nuke the North
2) Blame it on fusion experimentation
3) ???
4) PROFIT!

Re:Easy fix. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38919363)

The main problem of your theory has a big flaw. What is so unique about NK in comparison to Iraq? It's oil. If NK had a huge deposit of oil, or other valuable resources, cost of war will be easily justified and we'll be in action in no time.

Re:Easy fix. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38919499)

That and nuking North Korea would really upset China, and they have real nuclear weapons. Not to mention they hold like half the West's debt...

Re:Easy fix. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38919539)

Hah, I'd like to see them try to collect.

Re:Easy fix. (2)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919705)

Hah, the largest nuclear stockpile on the planet would like to see them try to collect.

FTFY.

Re:Easy fix. (1)

YrWrstNtmr (564987) | more than 2 years ago | (#38921067)

Hah, the largest nuclear stockpile on the planet would like to see them try to collect.

FTFY.

If you are referring to the US, it is actually, the second largest nuclear stockpile.

Re:Easy fix. (0, Offtopic)

tmosley (996283) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919913)

No, I don't think you would. I don't think you would like to see what would happen should they so much as stop extending us credit.

Look around your workstation and try to find something not made in China. Now imagine that everything that was made in China was suddenly gone. Go to the store, and all the made in China stuff is gone from there too. Think about what will happen to the prices of the remaining goods.

Re:Easy fix. (0, Offtopic)

demachina (71715) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920327)

It would suck for a while but it would probably be a huge win in the long run.

It would be one of the few ways the U.S. could regain a manufacturing base. It is nearly impossible for a country to stay solvent for the long run with the massive current accounts deficit the U.S. is running, Yea there would be short term pain until the U.S. rebuilt its industrial base along with probably rebuilding it other cheap places like Mexico or South America. It would be kind of win to get the manufacturing base closer to the U.S. whatever because as fossil fuel prices explode so do shipping costs.

All things considered a quick crisis would be better than maintaining the status quo which will inevitably lead to a U.S. default, a dollar collapse and truly massive upheaval in the U.S. and in the rest of the world.

Either the U.S. needs to return to running trade surpluses or its going to have to go old school and use its massive military to plunder the rest of the world. Squandering nearly a trillion a year on your military and producing nothing but failed money sinks like Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan has to be some of the most flawed strategic thinking in history.

Re:Easy fix. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38920525)

Look around your workstation and try to find something not made in China.

That was easy. I've got one of these [flickr.com] .

Now imagine that everything that was made in China was suddenly gone. Go to the store, and all the made in China stuff is gone from there too.

Woot!!!! About time!

Think about what will happen to the prices of the remaining goods.

I'm loving it. This quality of stuff is worth paying a little extra for!
*poof* Drat. Just a dream. *sigh*

Re:Easy fix. (0)

tmosley (996283) | more than 2 years ago | (#38921091)

Wow, you really must hate poor people, having fantasies of raising prices on the things they need.

Re:Easy fix. (1)

g0bshiTe (596213) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920879)

It would mean that production would do one of two things.

Either A) return to this country, or most likely B) move to the next cheapest country that could produce it.

Re:Easy fix. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38919637)

26% of the debt.

on closing debts (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38920249)

trying to welch on a debt seems more likely to cause the US to attack China than to dissuade them of the notion.

Re:Easy fix. (1)

g0bshiTe (596213) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920847)

No it wouldn't. Considering what China now has in industrial production, they really aren't looking to "make any waves" for themselves. In fact the their support has been waning. http://globalspin.blogs.time.com/2011/12/20/chinas-stake-in-a-stable-north-korea/ [time.com]

It seems the Chinese would like to back them, but stay under the rest of the worlds radar while doing so. Should North Korea launch a missile into Seoul like they promised this year over the "Christmas Tree Dispute". http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-16129633 [bbc.co.uk]

Should they actually follow through with their threats how fast do you think China would be to say "you guys are on your own".

Re:Easy fix. (4, Insightful)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919609)

1) Nuke the North
2) Blame it on fusion experimentation
3) ???
4) PROFIT!

Though I expect you are joking, I do expect the US and ROK have been exploring these options for years -- considering if it would work and how China would react. The North Korean leaders are clearly the most despicable exploiters of the human race the world has seen in generations, but China likes to have them as a buffer. Possibly also fearing the economy and military of a unified Korea.

Re:Easy fix. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38919691)

China would react by exporting even more lead and melamine tainted products (not to mention poison salt) for the US market in retaliation for the US sending China nuclear dust.

Re:Easy fix. (4, Informative)

Bill, Shooter of Bul (629286) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919759)

That made sense 20 years ago, but China being afraid of a unified Korea, is like the US being afraid of a unified Dutch Antillies.

Re:Easy fix. (4, Interesting)

Dahamma (304068) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920025)

Economically China doesn't want the competition that cheap North Korean labor combined with an already highly industrialized South Korea would bring.

Militarily if you combined the armies of North and South Korea it would be the *second* largest by active personnel behind China (clearly behind US & Russia in technology, but not by as much as you'd think as the US provides a lot of hardware). If you combine their trained (active and reserve) military personnel, it absolutely dwarfs any other military besides Russia.

That's plenty of reason for China not to want to see a unified democratic Korea...

Re:Easy fix. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38920117)

You're missing the point. China isn't afraid that a unified Korea can impose its will upon China or threaten it militarily, it's afraid that a unified Korea means US troops on its border, rather than on the other side of North Korea.

Re:Easy fix. (1)

EvilBudMan (588716) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920123)

Yeah, that cold war thinking never goes away. Dang I miss it.

Re:Easy fix. (4, Informative)

DigiShaman (671371) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920193)

China doesn't want a unified Korea for several reasons.

1. China wants a pit bull keeping the US and allies from getting too close to its border.
2. The fall of N. Korea would mean potentially millions of refugees flooding into China.
3. China is no longer in the position to play in role of Good-Cop Bad-Cop. Geopolitically, it makes them look bad to not have a neighbor that's far worse.

The fall of the N. Korea regime wouldn't be the end of the world. I doubt China would put up too much of a stink about it. But if given the option, China would rather have N. Korea to stick around a bit longer.

Re:Easy fix. (3, Insightful)

MaWeiTao (908546) | more than 2 years ago | (#38921183)

I don't know if those reasons are accurate. These are the issues I see for China with a unified Korea.

1. Think back on Germany's unification. A unified Korea will become even more of an economic powerhouse. With unification South Korea would now have a massive untapped resource in the north. For example, why outsource manufacturing as they've been doing when they now can make stuff domestically for cheap. Also imagine the massive amount of investment the north is going to enjoy. Koreans have little need for Chinese goods, relatively speaking. I'm not sure with the NK mindset will be, but South Koreans are very nationalist.

2) An economically prosperous country will now exist on China's border. Refugees are not the problem. If anything, Chinese will probably be flocking across the border for opportunities. Sure, China's economy is burgeoning, but that growth is not uniform and it certainly not the case in that corner of China.

3) A strong American ally now shares a border with China. This one is obvious.

Everything thing else is a non-issue. I'm pretty sure North Korea gives China constant headaches, but they'll never acknowledge that. I don't really see what strategic benefit they offer China beyond providing a buffer hundreds of miles wide. They definitely provide no economic value, although I'm sure what little gets into NK is Chinese made. That likely wont continue with a unified nation.

Re:Easy fix. (1)

eth1 (94901) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920255)

1) Nuke the North
2) Blame it on fusion experimentation
3) ???
4) PROFIT!

Though I expect you are joking, I do expect the US and ROK have been exploring these options for years -- considering if it would work and how China would react. The North Korean leaders are clearly the most despicable exploiters of the human race the world has seen in generations, but China likes to have them as a buffer. Possibly also fearing the economy and military of a unified Korea.

Can't you trace radioactive residue somehow (ratios of isotopes, or something like that) after the fact? That might make that scheme difficult unless we can get some of their own nuclear material to build the bomb out of.

Re:Easy fix. (1)

tnk1 (899206) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920825)

There is no doubt that there are plans a nuclear exchange with North Korea, although they are more likely based on the original situation in the 50s and 60s where the NK army was both much larger and not quite as obsolete in comparison to the SK and US armies. The Joint Staff probably has plans on fighting a war with Canada, if only as an exercise. Of course plans are one thing, mobilization to make those plans even feasible is another.

I'd say that there is a set of plans for a nuclear strike on NK that probably make use of some tactical nukes based on carrier aircraft for busting a massed NK offensive, and if needed, probably some plans to hit Pyongyang with a strategic weapon from a ballistic missile sub if NK goes all nuts and starts trying to throw it's one or two usable nukes at other people. None of those plans would be very high probability as the SK government might prefer a long, hard fight or even possibly surrender to having even part of the peninsula irradiated and it is doubtful that the US would launch without the SK government approving it.

Re:Easy fix. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38921165)

The North Korean leaders are clearly the most despicable exploiters of the human race the world has seen in generations study up on the khmer rouge

Re:Easy fix. Not (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38921667)

Consider that China would love to send about 400,000,000 muslims out to the west and that N Korea is a puppet on China's other hand, any possible end result would be worse than any human's imagination can fathom with a cup of coffee in their hand. That is like asking {everyone} in the world to commit suicide at precisely the exact time. Problem on planet earth solved. No one wins, except for the 500,000,000 sneaky cheaters.

Not only... (5, Funny)

Oswald McWeany (2428506) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919329)

Not only did North Korea manage to produce a Nuclear Warhead- but the late Kim Jong himself put it together using only a paper clip, a mashed potato and a bucket of play-doh.

What it takes the West billions of $ and many top scientists, North Korea can accomplish with just a Kim and a few house-hold supplies. Incidentally, Kim Jong Il, invented the mashed potato. Just a little known factoid.

Re:Not only... (5, Funny)

SJHillman (1966756) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919567)

Every character ever played by Richard Dean Anderson, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sylvester Stallone or Chuck Norris was actually based on Jim Kong Il. There was one time his paper clip snapped in fear while building a nuclear warhead, so Kim Jong Il roundhouse-kicked it. This caused the warhead to go off. Fortunately for us, he was able to subdue the nuclear explosion and stuff it back into the warhead. This is where refurbished nukes comes from.

Re:Not only... (2)

silverspell (1556765) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920119)

Every character ever played by Richard Dean Anderson, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sylvester Stallone or Chuck Norris was actually based on Jim Kong Il.

Yes, quite a media-friendly family. One of his brothers had a movie franchise, and another got a real sweetheart deal with Nintendo. Ever since he married that Korean woman, though, he's been keeping a low profile.

Gosh and what does that say about Americans (-1, Flamebait)

SmallFurryCreature (593017) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920227)

So... you are saying this as a person who drooled while he watched these actors play super humans as part of a unique American culture (The rest of the world does not have super-hero style comics) and elected actors in the highest positions in government.

Kim Jong and his family are insane, but American movie goers have been worshipping this kind of grandstanding for decades... what is sadder? Kim Jong's delusions or MacGuyver, A-Team, Stallone and god knows who else going into Vietnam to show that the US didn't really get its ass kicked out (because throwing your helicopters overboard to make space for more fleeing soldiers eh, retreating (at as great a speed as possible) makes perfect sense) and one man can win the war after all even if it is only on the silver screen.

Got the feeling that Americans making fun of North Korean leaders is like two insane persons in a napoleon outfit laughing at each other since they know the other must be insane since they are the real thing.

Re:Gosh and what does that say about Americans (1)

Nadaka (224565) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920383)

I know for a fact that Japan, Korea, Central and South America have their own superhero comics, plus there is at least one being put out in Arabic countries.

Re:Gosh and what does that say about Americans (1)

the gnat (153162) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920455)

Wow, someone's got an axe to grind...

a person who drooled while he watched these actors play super humans as part of a unique American culture (The rest of the world does not have super-hero style comics)

It may be unique American culture, but the rest of the world consumes it ferociously - Terminator 3 (the last movie starring Ahnuld, just before he became governor) made twice as much outside the US as domestically.

As far as indigenous culture goes, the Chinese have their share of cartoonish super-hero antics and over-the-top violence. Watch Jet Li's version of "Fist of Legend" (where the bad guys are Japanese, of course) and tell me he doesn't have super powers in that film. (It's actually a very enjoyable movie.) Or some of the old John Woo films: "Hard Boiled" makes the typical American badass cop movie look like "Terms of Endearment."

Re:Gosh and what does that say about Americans (1)

SJHillman (1966756) | more than 2 years ago | (#38921275)

Actually, I never cared for most movies or shows by those actors... MacGyver was one of the best... you know, the guy that abhors guns and wouldn't shoot somebody to save his life.

While I realize it's nice and warm, you may want to get your head out of your ass once in a while.

Re:Not only... (1)

wiredog (43288) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919589)

So he's MacGyver?

Re:Not only... (1)

slashmojo (818930) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919599)

I always wondered where Macgyver ended up..

Re:Not only... (2)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919661)

Not only did North Korea manage to produce a Nuclear Warhead- but the late Kim Jong himself put it together using only a paper clip, a mashed potato and a bucket of play-doh.

What it takes the West billions of $ and many top scientists, North Korea can accomplish with just a Kim and a few house-hold supplies. Incidentally, Kim Jong Il, invented the mashed potato. Just a little known factoid.

Sorry, but you're mixing him up with Valdimir "I'm a Rocketman" Putin, who did this on his break between test driving a new F1 car from Lada and climbing K2.

Kim Jong-Il would have willed it into being, because he's a god.

Re:Not only... (5, Funny)

forkfail (228161) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919895)

Kim Jong Il looking at it [tumblr.com] or it didn't happen.

Re:Not only... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38920993)

There an old saying: "Never attribute to malice that which is explained by North Korea."

what in north korea isn't 'odd'? (3, Informative)

Sir_Sri (199544) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919367)

Given they already have a covert nuclear programme doing covert experiments isn't that much of a shock. But really, everything these guys do is odd to some degree, I mean, they have a leader who was born in any of 1982, 83 or 84 and no one seems quite clear as to which. Or why they would lie about it.

It's not even clear who these outlandish lies are for, which is what makes the whole thing odd. Even if it's just misdirection to confuse anyone trying to find out the truth that doesn't make it any less odd.

Re:what in north korea isn't 'odd'? (0)

azadrozny (576352) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919531)

Nothing odd here. The ages of Chinese gymnasts change all the time [wikipedia.org] .

Re:what in north korea isn't 'odd'? (3, Funny)

mehrotra.akash (1539473) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919737)

I think it would be more odd if someones age remained constant

Re:what in north korea isn't 'odd'? (1)

azadrozny (576352) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920301)

Ha! Age, birth year, its all the same, right? I bet in North Korea they could make your age remain constant :)

Re:what in north korea isn't 'odd'? (4, Insightful)

ZeroSumHappiness (1710320) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919803)

One reason for the inaccuracy in date of birth is that East Asia has a different method of reckoning age. As such, a person's "age" can be represented by a number up to two more than it would be in the West. So if you're told that someone is "23" and you don't know their birth date and don't know if that's the "traditional" age or their "Western" age then the best you can do is narrow it down to one of three years.

Also, specifically in China, but to an extent the rest of East Asia, there's value in your Zodiac sign, which is determined by your year of birth. So there /would/ be incentive to lie about it anyway.

So yeah, ignore other cultures and it's really freaking weird and unreasonable.

Re:what in north korea isn't 'odd'? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38919941)

Lying about your Zodiac sign is really freaking weird and unreasonable.

Re:what in north korea isn't 'odd'? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38921403)

Westerners seem to accept a Jewish dude who was born from a virgin, talked to satan up on a mountain somewhere, claimed to be a son of god *and* god at the same time, died, and came back three days later just fine.

Re:what in north korea isn't 'odd'? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38920589)

"Cultural" is not a catch-all justification for "reasonable," similar to "traditional."

Re:what in north korea isn't 'odd'? (1)

GonzoPhysicist (1231558) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920863)

You bring up a good point, so does he claim to be a dog, pig, or rat?

Seismic evidence? (5, Informative)

Bradmont (513167) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919371)

Nuclear detonations create telltale signatures on seismometers, which makes it pretty much impossible to perform nuclear tests without being noticed by the international community. The article even admits this:

Others remain deeply sceptical that the tests took place at all. Most troubling is the lack of any seismic vibrations to support the radioisotope data, according to Ola Dahlman, a retired geophysicist who spent years working with the test-ban group's detection network. The Korean peninsula is wired to spot the tiniest shake from a nuclear explosion, Dahlman says. "It should have been able to see something."

Re:Seismic evidence? (1)

Sulphur (1548251) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919507)

Nuclear detonations create telltale signatures on seismometers, which makes it pretty much impossible to perform nuclear tests without being noticed by the international community. The article even admits this:

Others remain deeply sceptical that the tests took place at all. Most troubling is the lack of any seismic vibrations to support the radioisotope data, according to Ola Dahlman, a retired geophysicist who spent years working with the test-ban group's detection network. The Korean peninsula is wired to spot the tiniest shake from a nuclear explosion, Dahlman says. "It should have been able to see something."

It was conducted on the Far Side of the moon; right near the Nazi base.

Re:Seismic evidence? (2)

localman57 (1340533) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919527)

Nuclear detonations create telltale signatures on seismometers, which makes it pretty much impossible to perform nuclear tests without being noticed by the international community.

You haven't been keeping up with your N.K. press releases. In 2006 Kim Jong Il personally invented a device which teleports earthquake energy from one place to another.

The massive quake and resulting Tsunami that hit Japan was a result of a of a Nuclear Test, the seismic energy of which in turn was teleported out of North Korea. Jong Il was later quoted as saying "It worked really well. It's just that my aim was off, because I was soooooooo drunk. Otherwise South Korea would have been in some real serious shit."

Re:Seismic evidence? (4, Interesting)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919723)

Nuclear detonations create telltale signatures on seismometers, which makes it pretty much impossible to perform nuclear tests without being noticed by the international community. The article even admits this:

Others remain deeply sceptical that the tests took place at all. Most troubling is the lack of any seismic vibrations to support the radioisotope data, according to Ola Dahlman, a retired geophysicist who spent years working with the test-ban group's detection network. The Korean peninsula is wired to spot the tiniest shake from a nuclear explosion, Dahlman says. "It should have been able to see something."

A mate of mine performed this work in the late 80's and early 1990's, at a location I'll not divulge, but suffice to say the sensitivity of their monitoring equipment was completely saturated by the 1989 Loma Prieta Earthquake in Northern California. They could track every little tremor around the world, including mining explosions and pinpoint the location with great accuracy. This was part of Nuclear Test Ban Treaty adherence monitoring.

Re:Seismic evidence? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38921075)

Exactly! So which recent seismic event was used as cover for the thermonuclear test?

Re:Seismic evidence? (1)

wisnoskij (1206448) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919765)

While Nuclear testing implies gigantic explosions of the kind to produce seismic evidence I imagine you can achieve nuclear fission without producing a giant bang.
For example, I think nuclear power plants use fission to create power and do so without seismic evidence or gigantic explosions.
And I am sure that it is possible to explode a small enough amount of the stuff to not produce noticeable seismic evidence.

Re:Seismic evidence? (1)

JSBiff (87824) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919987)

"And I am sure that it is possible to explode a small enough amount of the stuff to not produce noticeable seismic evidence."

I generally agree with your post - you can do non-explosive nuclear testing. However, I'm not so sure about the bit quoted above.

It's my understanding, though I may be wrong, that in order to get an explosion, at all, you need a minimum amount of plutonium or uranium, and that the minimum amount still produces a heck of a bang. Further, if N. Korea is experimenting with fusion boosted fission, that bang would be amplified quite a bit for even the smallest possible bomb, I think. Again, I'm not sure, but that's sort of my impression.

Re:Seismic evidence? (1)

WastedMeat (1103369) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920139)

It is true that you need a minimum critical mass to initiate the chain reaction, but no law guarantees that all of that material has to fission before the device blows itself apart, into a several sub-critical pieces.

Re:Seismic evidence? (1)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920385)

Nuclear detonations create telltale signatures on seismometers, which makes it pretty much impossible to perform nuclear tests without being noticed by the international community. The article even admits this:

Others remain deeply sceptical that the tests took place at all. Most troubling is the lack of any seismic vibrations to support the radioisotope data, according to Ola Dahlman, a retired geophysicist who spent years working with the test-ban group's detection network. The Korean peninsula is wired to spot the tiniest shake from a nuclear explosion, Dahlman says. "It should have been able to see something."

Reminds me of one of our famous theatre comedies, where a character - an apprentice - "waited until his master fell asleep and then he started silently chiseling the wall." (he has a suspicion that the master had bodies of young girls immured in his basement)

Liberate N.Korea (0)

gmuslera (3436) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919373)

Now that they apparently have weapons of mass destruction they could be invaded, replaced their government with a pupp..., i mean, democratic leader, and put them in a modern world while oil or other natural resource is given to some friendly corporations. If you think you having a deja vu, dont worry, is just a glitch on the matrix.

Re:Liberate N.Korea (0)

AnonyMouseCowWard (2542464) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920149)

[...] they could be invaded, replaced their government with a pupp..., i mean, democratic leader, and put them in a modern world while oil or other natural resource is given to some friendly corporations.

Too bad they don't have much oil, else you'd see one more "democratic" country.

Re:Liberate N.Korea (1)

lennier (44736) | more than 2 years ago | (#38921475)

invaded, replaced their government with a pupp...

A puppy government? Squeeee!

Makes sense (0)

G3ckoG33k (647276) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919409)

It does make sense that the report should come from a Swedish scientist, for credibility.

It was probably planted. An American or South Korean scientist would not have gained the same credibility, even if they most likely have been in the knowing for very long.

Why Swedish? Well, Hans Blix (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hans_Blix), who screwed Geogre Bush "the lesser", when they spoke of weapons of mass destruction was Swedish. That made Bush "the lesser" look like a cunt without a hole.

Now, another, albeit younger Swede may provide the small-dicked brat in charge of North Korea with a look like that one too.

Re:Makes sense (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38919523)

That's Hans Brix.

Hans Brix? Oh no! (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38919595)

Kim Jong Il: Hans Brix? Oh no! Oh, herro. Great to see you again, Hans!
Hans Blix: Mr. Il, I was supposed to be allowed to inspect your palace today, but your guards won't let me enter certain areas.
Kim Jong Il: Hans, Hans, Hans! We've been frew this a dozen times. I don't have any weapons of mass destwuction, OK Hans?
Hans Blix: Then let me look around, so I can ease the UN's collective mind. I'm sorry, but the UN must be firm with you. Let me in, or else.
Kim Jong Il: Or else what?
Hans Blix: Or else we will be very angry with you... and we will write you a letter, telling you how angry we are.
Kim Jong Il: OK, Hans. I'll show you. Stand to your reft.
Hans Blix: [Moves to the left]
Kim Jong Il: A rittle more.
Hans Blix: [Moves to the left again]
Kim Jong Il: Good.
[Opens up trap, Hans falls in]

More like... (4, Interesting)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919419)

More like they had an accident and covered it up with "We make bomb for advancement of North Korean workers and great glory of Dear Leader"

IIRC there was a very large explosion of a train car which they were pretty hushed up about, apparently Dear Leader, who only trusted rail travel, was on his train and not too terribly far from the accident when it happened.

If this country didn't exist, with all its screwy behavior, Sci-Fi writers would have a tough time making it all up.

Re:More like... (2)

Bill, Shooter of Bul (629286) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919833)

Maybe that would be due to the confusing habit of Sci-Fi writers only writing about Science Fiction. Tom Clancy might be able to do it though

the wrong experiment (1)

w.hamra1987 (1193987) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919455)

It was fission, what they actually achieved, someone, somewhere, in their secret underground cavern labratories, mislabelled the experiment... They just couldnt admit the mistake and relabel it again.

Re:the wrong experiment (1)

localman57 (1340533) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919863)

That's not what I heard. I heard that the whole thing was based on an NSA audio interception. Apparently, Kim was getting ready to go on a picnic, and was packing a bunch of beer for the trip.

Kim Jong Un (by telephone): Hey, dad, you got the beer? Don't put it in the old Cooler. It doesn't stay cold. Put it in the new Coleman we imported last week. I asked your butler to fill the bottom with water before he put it into the walk-in freezer yesterday. Is it ready to go?

Kim Jong Il: Yes. Thanks to the help of my friend, we have new cooler frozen.

NSA just heard the last part, and went ape-shit. It's just the way it sounds when he says it.

Nuclear Fusion is 'Easy' (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38919475)

Sure, why not? Nuclear fusion is 'easy' if you put more energy into the system than you get out. The experiment has been performed plenty of times around the world.

A sustained, energy-positive fusion reaction on the other hand...

Re:Nuclear Fusion is 'Easy' (2)

medv4380 (1604309) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919695)

Oh, come on we get a lot more energy out of Fusion then we put in. It's making it not explode that's the real trick.

Yeah - read about Castle Bravo (1)

JSBiff (87824) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920041)

Yeah, in the Castle Bravo test, they got a *lot* more energy out - the bomb was 2.5 times more powerful than it was *designed* to be - and at 6 megatons, it was no small bomb to begin with. If that's not "Net Power", I don't know what is.

Re:Nuclear Fusion is 'Easy' (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38919745)

I'm no physicist, but it occurs to me: Do stars even do energy-positive fusion? I mean, there's no one shooting energy into stars, obviously, but they are being acted on by gravity in a pretty significant way. Could it just be that gravity is providing the energy for fusion, with the heat/light total being less than that "input" by gravity?

Re:Nuclear Fusion is 'Easy' (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920477)

I'm no physicist, but it occurs to me: Do stars even do energy-positive fusion? I mean, there's no one shooting energy into stars, obviously, but they are being acted on by gravity in a pretty significant way. Could it just be that gravity is providing the energy for fusion, with the heat/light total being less than that "input" by gravity?

Let me Bing that for you [wikipedia.org] .

Now, don't do that again. If you can't figure out how to use the Internet, go back to Facebook where you belong.

Re:Nuclear Fusion is 'Easy' (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38920727)

If you're gonna be snotty, it's important to at least be mildly clever or funny.

Re:Nuclear Fusion is 'Easy' (1)

kenwd0elq (985465) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920811)

There has been speculation that some stars may oscillate between radiating energy generated by fusion, and radiating energy generated by gravitational collapse. It may even be that many stars wobble on the cusp of fusion and collapse; a star expands slightly due to the heat and pressure of fusion to the point that fusion no longer occurs, followed by a slight gravitational collapse until the core is dense enough to support fusion again. (Read the Vernor Vinge book "A Deepness in the Sky" http://www.amazon.com/Deepness-Sky-Vernor-Vinge/dp/0812536355/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1328304339&sr=1-1 [amazon.com] for an extreme example.) The star's radiative output might vary only slightly between the phases.

After all, most theories of how the Sun works suggest that we ought to be able to detect SOME solar neutrinos; what if the Sun is in the "collapse" phase just now, and the reason we can't detect the neutrinos is because there aren't any?

Re:Nuclear Fusion is 'Easy' (1)

mister_playboy (1474163) | more than 2 years ago | (#38921125)

After all, most theories of how the Sun works suggest that we ought to be able to detect SOME solar neutrinos; what if the Sun is in the "collapse" phase just now, and the reason we can't detect the neutrinos is because there aren't any?

The issue of "missing" neutrinos was solved a decade ago, but at no point were detecting zero neutrinos, merely about 66% less than expected.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_neutrino_problem [wikipedia.org]

yeah, 10,000 cold fusion cups (1)

swschrad (312009) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919517)

the measured energy produced was not quite enough to reanimate Dear Leader. next they will try adding a D-cell battery to the mix. assuming they can find one that hasn't corroded out.

Fusion is easy (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38919553)

Fusion is easy. You can make fusion with a tabletop setup. Overunity is the hard part. Explosive fusion is also hard. It wouldn't surprise me if the dear leader made some bigass Farnsworth Fusors and ran them knowing that people would be monitoring. It's a cheap way to fuel this kind of speculation.

Oh! For crying out loud! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38919647)

I'm so ronerery...

everybody now!

Not a bizarre claim. (5, Insightful)

tragedy (27079) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919677)

Nuclear fusion is easy. Pretty much anyone can build a Farnsworth Fusor [wikipedia.org] and there are all sorts of other ways to achieve fusion. Achieving net positive fusion isn't even that difficult for a country that already has fission-based atomic bombs. The problem is achieving net positive fusion that is stable, sustainable, and controlled.

The question asked by the story title: "did North Korea conduct secret nuclear tests?" has a simple answer. Yes. Of course they conducted secret nuclear tests. It's already public knowledge that they have a nuclear program. They also, like every nuclear power, keep the details hush hush. Therefore, secret nuclear tests.

Re:Not a bizarre claim. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38920131)

Pretty much anyone can build a Farnsworth Fusor

But not everyone can build an engine that moves the universe around a stationary ship.

Re:Not a bizarre claim. (1)

SpaceLifeForm (228190) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920163)

Sure they did. They also had a problem in the mid 90s when they had a Criticality Incident. [wikipedia.org]

Not purely public knowledge, known in military circles and other groups that monitor satellite intel.

Test Chamber (1)

Grindalf (1089511) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919689)

Comrades, the dangers of a resonance cascade scenario in this equation are infinitesimally small!

Comrade, how to fulfill the prophecy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38919807)

We've an important question: "how to accomplish the fullfilment of the prophecy when the man/woman abandons the Earth?".

  1. 1. The "evil mission" rejects the "prophecy", it's violating the testaments written by ancient prophets many centuries ago.
  2. 2. Or the "prophecy" rejects the "evil mission" (with its impredictable mortal consequences).

Why to put we in risk our lives when few individuals wanted evilnessly to success their own "evil mission" for their own private interests?.

JCPM: Oh! God mine! I'm here because i was assigned no another place than here, on this planet named "La Tierra".

Re:Test Chamber (1)

JSBiff (87824) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920079)

Oh, yes, but we must definitely worry about the furrzzzle blartlebing schwizznuts.

Fusion....right (3, Interesting)

Nidi62 (1525137) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919717)

That would explain why North Korea is one of the most brightly lit countries in the world. They have so much electricity available for everyone to use because they have harnessed nuclear fusion. But then, why does it look like this [newscientist.com] ?

Re:Fusion....right (1)

Keruo (771880) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919983)

Duh. Their fusion works with solar power..

Re:Fusion....right (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38920007)

Perhaps they are a nation of dedicated astronomers

Re:Fusion....right (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38920087)

Not only have they conquered nuclear fusion, but they've conquered light pollution as well. I wish my state looked like that at least one night a year.

Re:Fusion....right (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38920183)

that is a little mis-leading, as North Korea turns their generators off at night, which makes sense in a planned economy. North Korea is still a shit-hole, just saying that particular fact of no Night-time luminosity could be just as well a sign of a well adjusted society with happy members with regular sleep schedules and lack of wasted lamp post lights, etc, as a lot of Night-time luminosity could be taken as a sign of factory mills with rotating shifts, slave wages, where the beds are never cold, and a disruption of family and social life: a society on the way to spiritual death. correlate =!cosataion. rethink your priorities, night time economic activity disproportionately serves the very richs interests. If someone stock piles a ton of newspapers or hordes other things we call them crazy, but if someone stock piles more money then they could ever need we call them successful.

Re:Fusion....right (5, Insightful)

Nidi62 (1525137) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920347)

just saying that particular fact of no Night-time luminosity could be just as well a sign of a well adjusted society with happy members with regular sleep schedules and lack of wasted lamp post lights, etc, as a lot of Night-time luminosity could be taken as a sign of factory mills with rotating shifts, slave wages, where the beds are never cold, and a disruption of family and social life: a society on the way to spiritual death.

It's also a sign of a country that has bakeries that can have fresh bread ready for breakfast in the morning to feed the citizens, newspapers being printed and delivered to inform the citizens, as well as deliveries of fresh produce and manufactured goods that get consumed at a high rate by a citizenry with regular healthy diets and disposable income. But you're right; since North Korea has no night-time luminosity, I guess it is safe to assume that North Korea has neither of these things as well. Tell me, are they still making all of you people in Pyongyang mourn over "Dear Leader"'s death?

Secret Nuclear Tests? (1)

wisnoskij (1206448) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919789)

"Secret Nuclear Tests" aka, they broadcast the event around the world but no one believed them.

Comrade, i've seen a crown of lollipops. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38919933)

Comrade, weeks ago, i got interestful information of the weird resonance that happened to my dream.

I've seen a crown of cream and liquid strawberry lollipops (corona de chupachups de nata y fresa liquida) after of the resulting nuclear detonation, possibly in the land of Canaan, and two important electro-executed but living witnesses were kneeling themselves to said crown.

As this image, http://img193.imageshack.us/img193/3323/1258423867194.jpg [imageshack.us] but its crown is molecularly colored as a crown of cream and liquid strawberry lollipops, and it's very narrowed and very highest its trunk.

JCPM: a House of bones and skulls is generally not a sustainable place for living there.

Known for some time: (4, Funny)

SmurfButcher Bob (313810) | more than 2 years ago | (#38919859)

N. Korea Detonates 40 Years Of GDP
http://www.theonion.com/articles/n-korea-detonates-40-years-of-gdp,2068/ [theonion.com]

"PYONGYANG, NORTH KOREA—A press release issued by the state-run Korean Central News Agency Monday confirmed that the Oct. 9 underground nuclear test in North Korea's Yanggang province successfully exploded the communist nation's total gross domestic product for the past four decades..."

Nukes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38920037)

N. Korea has nukes, Iran has nukes... If they didn't make them they bought or stole them..

Just close your eyes, ignore it and it will go away right? Or maybe we could just throw a bunch of money at it?

Secret? (1)

xcfmx (25409) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920055)

Were they secret if they told us and we chose not to believe them?

Newsworthy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38920233)

North Korea made (a) bizarre claim

STOP THE PRESSES!

lol (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38920341)

Anonymous!

Something doesn't add up... (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | more than 2 years ago | (#38920515)

Dr. De Geer is using evidence of a fission reaction to support the conclusion that a fusion reaction occurred? That makes no sense whatsoever. I don't think a near fizzle/low yield detonation can even induce fusion in the first place.

Evidence of a low yield uranium blast would make me think of testing a new weapons design and/or a composite core, not boosted fission.

Nuclear test "accidents". (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38920891)

I am surprised there hasn't already been nuclear testing "accidents" in North Korea and Iran, among other places.

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