Kim Jong Un Allegedly Views Spy Satellite Photos
North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un allegedly inspected photos of “major target regions” and U.S. military bases from the country’s new spy satellite. According to North Korean state media, the spy satellite took photos of various U.S. bases and many South Korean cities, such as the capital, Seoul.
Kim allegedly inspected spy photos of the South Korean cities Kunsan, Mokpo, Osan, and Pyeongtaek. U.S. and South Korea have military bases in these regions. Photos were also taken of various South Korean regions, such as Busan, Daegu, Jinhae, Gangneung, Pohang, and Ulsan.
According to the state-run KCNA, one photo reportedly showed a U.S. aircraft carrier in Busan. This carrier, Carl Vinson, arrived in Busan on Tuesday. Kim also allegedly saw photos of U.S. Naval Station Pearl Harbor and Hickam Air Force Base, both of which are located in Hawaii. Images of the U.S. Pacific territory of Guam were also seen by Kim.
However, South Korean Defence Minister Shin Won-sik claims that North Korea has “exaggerated” when discussing supposed images of Guam, saying, “Even if it enters normal orbit, it takes a considerable time to carry out normal reconnaissance.”
All of these photos were allegedly taken by North Korea’s spy satellite after being launched on Tuesday. According to KCNA, the satellite passed over Hawaii on Saturday.
Kim looked at these photos during a visit to the National Aerospace Technology Administration (NATA).
Though South Korean defense officials have not independently verified what, exactly, North Korea’s new spy satellite’s capabilities are, they have already condemned North Korea’s actions alongside other countries.
South Korea, Japan, and the U.S. all “strongly condemned the (Nov. 21) launch for its destabilizing effect on the region.”
It isn’t yet known whether this spy satellite can truly take images of sensitive regions, such as where U.S. military bases are located. Though South Korea has said Kim and North Korea have exaggerated their claims of spy photos, their admittance that they aren’t aware of the satellite’s capabilities has worried some analysts.
South Korea has concluded that Russian support likely enabled North Korea to put a spy satellite into orbit for the first time this week. https://t.co/zvMYT1dphY
— ABC News (@ABC) November 23, 2023
If this satellite does indeed work as North Korea claims it does, analysts have already warned that the spy satellite could quickly make the country’s military much stronger.
KCNA, meanwhile, in a report said, “The launch of a reconnaissance satellite is the legal right of North Korea to strengthen its right to self-defense.”