|Volume 53 Number 10, April 22, 2023
On March 16, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) successfully test launched the Intercontinental Ballistic Missile Hwasongpho-17. The test launch was to serve as a warning to the US that the DPRK would respond firmly to the ongoing large-scale US-Republic of Korea (ROK) joint military exercises called Freedom Shield being conducted from March 13 to 23.
Rodong Sinmun, the newspaper of the Worker's Party of Korea (WPK), reported that from March 21 to 23, a new unmanned nuclear assault underwater craft called "Haeil" was also successfully tested. This strategic weapon, developed over a ten-year period, is designed to infiltrate the enemy's operational waters and cause maximum damage to its naval strike groups as well as operational supply depots and ports.
The DPRK also conducted a drill on March 22 to test cruise missiles as part of tactical nuclear missions. Rodong Sinmun added that these weapons tests were conducted to let the US and the ROK know that in the event of a confrontation, they would get more than they bargained for and that they should immediately stop their "reckless anti-DPRK war drills".
The launch of the Hwasongpho-17 missile and other weapons tests are a direct consequence of the ongoing provocations by the US imperialists against the state and security of the DPRK. This year alone, 20 joint military exercises are planned involving the US, ROK, Japan, Australia and others. All are targeted at invading the DPRK, overthrowing its socialist system and taking over the entire Korean Peninsula to use as a launching pad for war against China and Russia.
While the US/NATO forces and the media in Britain and elsewhere present the DPRK as an aggressor and create doubt about its desire for peace, the facts tell otherwise. Rodong Sinmun noted that the "grave challenging situation against the state security of the DPRK requires it to have stronger war deterrents for firmly supporting its peaceful socialist state-building activities". It also added that the frequency, scope and intensity of US-led war threats and aggression require that the DPRK take measures to ensure that the entire armed forces are prepared for an "all-out war".
Responding to the unfolding acts of aggression and war by the US and ROK, more than a million young DPRK women and men mobilised themselves for the Korean People's Army in a recent campaign, to express their national pride and patriotism, and their determination to defend their homeland against all threats.
It is certain that the people of the DPRK and the democratic and peace-loving people of the ROK do not want a war to break out on the Korean Peninsula. The people of the DPRK have the right to be; the people of the Korean Peninsula have the right to self-determination and peace.
It is the US/NATO, including Britain, which must be held to account for warmongering and aggression on the Korean Peninsula, and attempting to destabilise the DPRK through unjust UN Security Council sanctions and their own, engineered by the US to effect regime change in the DPRK.