North Korea had a breakthrough missile test recently. The success of which has huge implications for its ability to wage war with other nations, the United States especially.
From The Telegraph (hence the British way of spelling)
The ballistic missile launched by North Korea on May 14 successfully re-entered the Earth’s atmosphere, according to analysts, a significant breakthrough for Pyongyang’s missile programme.
Defence officials in South Korea and the US have confirmed that the launch of the liquid- fuel Hwasong-12 was a success.
North Korea claimed that the weapon reached an altitude of 2,111.5 km (1,312 miles) and travelled a distance of 489 miles before breaching Japan’s Air Defence Identification Zone and splashing down in the Sea of Japan.
The missile took a steep parabolic route that tested its ability to survive re-entry into the atmosphere, with North Korean state media reporting that the missile – capable of carrying a “large-size, heavy nuclear warhead” to a target on the US mainland – had come through “the worst re-entry situation” and struck its intended target.
That claim was confirmed by South Korean government sources, who told the JoongAng Daily that analysis of data communication from North Korea’s missile control centre confirmed the warhead survived the 5,000 degrees Celsius (9,032 Fahrenheit) and extreme vibration it experienced on re-entry.
This is why this appears to be so critical, emphasis in bold is mine.
US defence officials have similarly confirmed to NBC News that the test was a success.
Analysts have long considered the largest challenges to North Korea’s ballistic missile programme to be achieving re-entry and miniaturising a nuclear warhead to enable it to be mounted on a missile.
Given the abject poverty and total dearth of resources in that country it’s hard to imagine that managed to achieve such a degree of success with no help whatsoever. China has to be involved in some way.