Kim Jong-Un is ready to raise the bar in the coming weeks with increasingly provocative and eccentric displays of his military nuclear program.
In recently released photos provided by the North Korean government, the Supreme Leader visited a hall that showed different types of warheads designed to be mounted on missiles or missile launchers.
The photos showed Kim – who weighs a whopping 270 pounds or 122 kg – talking to officials across the hall.
The warheads contain about 10 khaki green capsules with red tips.
Other weapons were devices that looked like a black and white finned cone or a large torpedo.
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un inspects nuclear warheads at an undisclosed location
The Supreme Leader visited a hall displaying different types of warheads designed to be mounted on rockets or rocket launchers
It was also seen alongside smaller, more obtuse and rounder nuclear devices.
These weapons were originally referred to as Fat Man nuclear weapons after their use in the August 1945 Nagasaki explosion, due to their rounded, broad shape.
One of the nuclear weapons was a warhead called the Hwasan-91, as described on a poster in the hall.
The images on the poster implied the weapon could fit some of North Korea’s short-range ballistic systems, cruise missiles and a purported underwater nuclear drone that the country first unveiled last week.
The size and shape of the Hwasan-31, which some experts say was about 50 centimeters (19 in) wide and 90 centimeters (35 in) long, suggested progress in North Korean efforts to create a miniaturized warhead that could its delivery systems could fit. said Kim Dong-yub, a professor at the University of North Korean Studies in Seoul.
Other weapons were devices that looked like a black and white finned cone or a large torpedo
It was also seen alongside smaller, more obtuse and rounder nuclear devices
It comes as Kim used the meetings to emphasize the need to ramp up bomb fuel production to achieve his goals of expanding his nuclear arsenal “exponentially,” and issued unspecified “major tasks” for his nuclear industry.
Kim also examined the country’s established plans for nuclear counterattacks as scientists briefed him on the North’s latest nuclear weapons systems and advances in warhead-on-missile mounting technologies, according to Korea’s Central News Agency.
Cheong Seong-Chang, an analyst at South Korea’s Sejong Institute, said the reports suggest North Korea is getting closer to its next nuclear test.
Hours before North Korea’s sixth test in 2017, state media showed Kim Jong Un observing a silver, peanut-shaped device, which was apparently an alleged thermonuclear weapon built for intercontinental ballistic missiles that the North claimed to have detonated during that test .
One of the nuclear weapons was a warhead called the Hwasan-91, as described on a poster in the hall
Cheong said the North will likely use its next test to claim it has acquired a miniaturized warhead to mount on a growing number of weapons it describes as “tactical.”
The North’s use of the term communicates a threat to use them proactively during conflicts to blunt the stronger conventional forces of South Korea and the United States.
Lee Sung-jun, spokesman for the Seoul Joint Chiefs of Staff, said the South’s military was analyzing the warhead revealed in the North Korean photos, but did not provide specific assessments.
The poster’s images implied the weapon could fit some of North Korea’s short-range ballistic systems, cruise missiles and a purported underwater nuclear drone the country first revealed last week
It comes as Kim used the meetings to emphasize the need to ramp up bomb fuel production to achieve his goals of expanding his nuclear arsenal “exponentially.”
Kim’s calls to boost bomb fuel production came days after Russian President Vladimir Putin announced plans to station tactical nuclear weapons in neighboring Belarus, in what was seen as a warning to the West as it increases military support for Ukraine.
While aligning itself with Russia over its invasion of Ukraine, North Korea has emphasized three-way cooperation with Moscow and Beijing to confront a “new Cold War” waged by “US imperialists” who accuses it of bringing the conflict to Asia by ramping up the military. activities with Seoul and Tokyo.