By: Paul Bremmer | WND

With the threat of a nuclear-armed North Korea hovering over East Asia, several Japanese cities have begun holding evacuation drills to prepare for a potential missile strike.

The possibility seems very real, with North Korea launching ballistic missiles that left and reentered the atmosphere nine times this year.

North Korea threatens the United States as well. The communist country previously launched two satellites that orbit over the U.S. and are capable of performing a surprise electromagnetic pulse (EMP) attack at an altitude and trajectory that would evade U.S. National Missile Defenses, according to national security expert Peter Vincent Pry.

What’s more, when North Korea performed its first underground nuclear test, American scientists scoffed because it produced an explosion of less than one kiloton, a small fraction of what U.S. nuclear bombs produce.

However, that explosion was the perfect size to trigger an EMP event, according to energy expert Jeffrey Yago. And North Korea’s nuclear tests have gotten bigger since then.

“To think that they’re not looking at this as one way to retaliate against any activity we might take is just fallacy,” Yago told WND.

Japan may be preparing for a missile attack, but Yago is far less concerned about a ground-level nuclear explosion than an EMP attack. While most analysts agree North Korea does not yet have a missile capable of delivering a nuclear warhead to the continental U.S., Yago said it’s clear North Korea does have the technology to create an EMP weapon and detonate it over the center of the United States. An EMP weapon, he said, is easier to make and would be more devastating than a nuclear bomb.

“The EMP weapon, if it’s detonated high above the United States, can cause havoc from one end of the coast to the other, whereas a surface nuclear bomb would certainly be devastating to an area, like a city, but it would be limited to that geographic area, whereas the damage from an EMP could last up to a year and affect the entire country,” Yago said.

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