Japan deploys destroyers ahead of N Korea rocket launch

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  • 3

    almostnative

    Let them launch the rockets and embarras themselves again.

  • -2

    saidani

    its second long-range rocket launch this year after a much-hyped but botched attempt in April.

    As much hyped by the Americans and Japanese governments as by the N Koreans. But the greatest embarrassment from that event belongs to the Japanese government which had to find out the rocket failed from media reports as their early warning system was...well...late.

  • 4

    viking68

    Saidani, the radar system didn't know because it blew up so close to the earth. Blame NK, not Japan. The missile was too close to the earth given the earth's curvature to pick it up.

    The U.S. looks for blooms, the heat from a missile launch, using satellites. Once the missile gets altitude, radars will track it. I'm not sure Japan has satellites that could perform this function or if they should since the U.S. already should have that intel source covered.

  • -4

    saidani

    I'm not sure Japan has satellites that could perform this function or if they should since the U.S. already should have that intel source covered.

    Well, then, the government could save a lot of money by watching CNN which was all over the story. But you miss the point with this technical information and that is the hype promoted by the Japanese government before the launch about their early warning system. It exposed a systemic problem in the government similar to the manner in which it handled the SPEEDI radiation data which is that the government is rather incompetent in these areas because they are too willing to sacrifice the public welfare for political ends which require consensus rather than leadership. All of the hi-tech apparatus in the world is useless if the people in charge of it don't use it properly.

  • 3

    comarade_captain

    In Tokyo, the defense ministry has deployed another PAC-3 battery at its headquarters as part of its effort to intercept anything headed towards the Japanese mainland.

    This is a myth used to scare people both domestically and internationaly!

  • 0

    AKBfan

    Now when the rocket fails the N Koreans can say the Japanese destroyers shot it down!!!!!!!

  • -3

    Nippon_Banzai

    Japan should start manufacturing iron dome defense shield like the Israeli did. With the threat coming from potential enemy like China and North Korea, Japan is way way behind when it comes to preparedness.

  • 5

    Frungy

    In Tokyo, the defense ministry has deployed another PAC-3 battery at its headquarters as part of its effort to intercept anything headed towards the Japanese mainland.

    ... I looked at a map for a moment and I'd like to amend this statement to: " In order to protect the politicians who pay their salaries and some fat-assed old generals who will probably retire in a few years and want to enjoy their fat pensions, they have deployed a PAC-3 battery on the WRONG SIDE of the country at the wrong latitude to prevent anything!"

    The logical position for a ground-based PAC-3 battery would be somewhere like Sado island, not nearly 300kms further away in Tokyo.

  • 0

    Frungy

    The range of the PAC-3 against ballistic missiles is only 20kms (at best 160kms against aircraft). This would rain down fragments all over mainland Japan. Great thinking generals, clearly Tokyo is the BEST place to put the PAC-3 battery.

    ... geniuses... absolute geniuses....

  • 1

    Matthew Simon

    If the missile defense system saves 1 live it is worth it.

  • -1

    Fadamor

    This is a myth used to scare people both domestically and internationaly!

    It's not a myth if there's a missile battery set up at defense headquarters. It's there in case of a guidance "malfunction" that causes the missile to head towards Tokyo rather than south. I don't seriously believe even the whackos in Pyongyang would attempt something so stupid, but they've repeatedly surprised me in the past with their stupidity. Perhaps Japan is just trying to cover all possibilities, no matter how remote. When you're dealing with N.K., even "remote" possibilities have an annoying habit of becoming actualities.

  • 0

    Open Minded

    PR from both sides!

  • 1

    Frungy

    FadamorDec. 06, 2012 - 10:43PM JST It's not a myth if there's a missile battery set up at defense headquarters. It's there in case of a guidance "malfunction" that causes the missile to head towards Tokyo rather than south.

    1. If the missiles head South East towards Tokyo rather than South the logical place to intercept them would be somewhere offshore like Sado island. It would accomplish the same result with a lot less risk.

    2. If the missiles head off course then that leaves the WHOLE of the East of Japan exposed, places like Kyoto, Osaka, etc.

    3. Even if the missile's target is Tokyo the PAC-3 only has a range of 20kms against ballistic missiles. This means that 20kms before Tokyo it gets hit and explodes into a million pieces of shrapnel.... congratulations military geniuses, you've now transformed a solid missile into a whole lot of shrapnel travelling at near 15 000km/hr. Casualties are a near certainty.

    The only people who would be safe would be the generals and politicians cowering in their underground bunker.

    The selfishness and idiocy of the Japanese high command knows no bounds.

  • 0

    Fadamor

    1.If the missiles head South East towards Tokyo rather than South the logical place to intercept them would be somewhere offshore like Sado island. It would accomplish the same result with a lot less risk.

    And of course you're ignoring the fact that they DO have other interception points besides Defense headquarters. The battery there would be a defense of last-resort.

    2.If the missiles head off course then that leaves the WHOLE of the East of Japan exposed, places like Kyoto, Osaka, etc.

    Obviously. Also, obviously, that's why the destroyers talked about in this article were deployed.

    3.Even if the missile's target is Tokyo the PAC-3 only has a range of 20kms against ballistic missiles. This means that 20kms before Tokyo it gets hit and explodes into a million pieces of shrapnel.... congratulations military geniuses, you've now transformed a solid missile into a whole lot of shrapnel travelling at near 15 000km/hr. Casualties are a near certainty.

    See above about this being a last line of defense placement. Even if the PAC-3 battery has to be used, pieces from an explosion 20 km away aren't going to be traveling anywhere near 15,000 km/hr when they reach the ground, unlike an intact missile with a potentially intact warhead/satellite.

    Regardless, standard practices would mean that there should be a self-destruct charge on the missile that would be employed as soon as the missile deviated from its intended path. The AEGIS destroyers and the PAC-3 battery would only come into play if North Korea decided not to destroy the wayward missile.

  • -3

    YuriOtani

    A lot of this is practice and is useful. What problems are they having setting up pac III in an open area of Tokyo? What problems do the ships have acquiring the target?

    My prediction is all stages will fire and it will enter orbit sort of. It will be either a very low orbit or be unstable. I bet a bottle of Okinawa's best.

  • -1

    saidani

    And of course you're ignoring the fact that they DO have other interception points besides Defense headquarters. The battery there would be a defense of last-resort.

    Defense of the people who are in charge of the other interception points which failed would be a cruel joke on the Japanese people. The Defense headquarters should show some confidence in their overall defenses by using that last line of defense outside an elementary school to protect Japanese children instead of their own asses. What they are saying is that they don't really trust their defenses enough to put themselves at the same level of risk as the rest of the population. And if the missile does reach the Defense headquarters, why should the Japanese people want their failed leaders to be saved?

  • 1

    Frungy

    FadamorDec. 07, 2012 - 01:33AM JST And of course you're ignoring the fact that they DO have other interception points besides Defense headquarters. The battery there would be a defense of last-resort.

    I'm not ignoring those interceptors at all. What I am saying is that if the missile somehow overflies those destroyers then it leaves all of eastern Japan WIDE open. The logical second line of defence is in the East, not the extreme West of Japan.

    See above about this being a last line of defense placement. Even if the PAC-3 battery has to be used, pieces from an explosion 20 km away aren't going to be traveling anywhere near 15,000 km/hr when they reach the ground, unlike an intact missile with a potentially intact warhead/satellite.

    Yes, some momentum will be lost in the explosion, and some will be lost as a result of vectoring, but most of the momentum will be conserved. While the pieces will be smaller this will also result in less wind resistance and less loss of momentum during the fall. The initial speed of an ICBM is about 15 000km/hr, but even if the final fragments hit the ground at a tenth of that speed (1500km/hr) that's faster than a rifle round. Remember that the muzzle velocity of an M-16 is only a fifth of the speed that missile will be travelling.

    The area for at least 20km around Tokyo is heavily populated. To put it simply it is NOT an area that you want to be shooting missiles down over.

    Regardless, standard practices would mean that there should be a self-destruct charge on the missile that would be employed as soon as the missile deviated from its intended path. The AEGIS destroyers and the PAC-3 battery would only come into play if North Korea decided not to destroy the wayward missile.

    .None of the other missiles had self-destruct mechanism, and even when there is a self-destruct mechanism that doesn't mean that the missile is vaporised like in a cartoon. This is why missiles aren't launched over friendly populations, because even with the best safeguards you're looking at a mass of metal travelling at super-sonic speeds, and even a small piece of that debris could be lethal.

    Frankly the decision to put the PAC-3 battery in Tokyo is indefensible and idiotic.

  • 0

    gelendestrasse

    OK Yuri, I'll take that bet. I expect that the missile won't get over 10,000m. BTW, what do you consider Okinawa's best? I want to be ready in case I have to pay out...

    I do think that the Japanese government is doing what they ought to given the assets they have. But I agree that Japan should build an "Iron Dome" system similar to the Israeli one. I would put radar and missile batteries on Takashima and Senkaku just to drive home the point.

  • 0

    T-Mack

    Sound's Great...!!! "Iron Dome System" ..."Nuclear ICBM's"...Defend the Island's ...send naval ships in the trajectory path of NK rocket experiment...or debris field as what was delivered last time the world watched...Japan could be the next world power to lead in nuclear physics, as well as rocket science...but first!... make gainfull employment a reality...

  • 1

    YuriOtani

    Bottle of aged awamori not the cheap stuff sold at the convenience stores but one that has been mellowed with age.

  • 0

    Eduardo Gonzalez

    Bets are open for them to fail again and automatically blame the presence of US, South Korea, and Japan for letting 'em wreck the prefect plan to obliterate mankind

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