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We highlighted earlier Saturday North Korea’s annual celebration of its founder Kim Il Sung and the exhibition of a long line of missiles through the streets of Pyongyang.

These, when placed alongside comments made by top official Choe Ryong Hae about the United States asking for “nuclear justice,” were a clear attempt by North Korea to display its military might.

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Hours later, this appears to have blown up in North Korea’s face.


According to ABC News, a Defense Department official said that a ballistic missile launch “blew up almost immediately.”

“U.S. Pacific Command detected and tracked what we assess was a North Korean missile launch at 11:21 a.m. Hawaii time April 15. The launch of the ballistic missile occurred near Sinpo,” U.S. Pacific Command spokesman Commander David Benham said.

A visitor watches a TV showing file footage of a North Korea’s ballistic missile at Seoul Railway Station in Seoul, South Korea, Sunday, April 16, 2017. A North Korean missile exploded during launch Sunday from the country’s east coast, U.S. and South Korean officials said, a high-profile failure that comes as a powerful U.S. aircraft carrier approaches the Korean Peninsula in a show of force. The letters on the top read ” North Korea, Fire missile.” (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)

Secretary of Defense James Mattis said that President Trump has been briefed on the failed launch and has no comment at this time.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un waves during a military parade on Saturday, April 15, 2017, in Pyongyang, North Korea to celebrate the 105th birth anniversary of Kim Il Sung, the country’s late founder and grandfather of current ruler Kim Jong Un. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)

“The president and his military team are aware of North Korea’s most recent unsuccessful missile launch. The president has no further comment,” he said.

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The kind of missile that was launched is still being determined, though earlier in the day it was speculated that North Korea had developed and was showing off its version of an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).

Matt Naham About the author:
Matt Naham is the Weekend Editor  for Rare. Follow him on Twitter @matt_naham.
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