Low-Yield Bombs 'Could Destroy All N.Korea's Nuke Facilities'

  • By Cho Yi-jun

    June 18, 2020 13:46

    A Pentagon simulation program suggests that the U.S.' new "low-yield" nuclear weapons could destroy all of North Korea's five nuclear facilities with collateral damage of fewer than 100 deaths.

    Keir Lieber at Georgetown University claimed low-yield nuclear weapons would be more effective than high-yield nuclear bombs in deterring North Korea from its nuclear weapons program, according to Voice of America.

    Lieber said he simulated the level of collateral damage and nuclear fallout after a nuclear attack by the U.S. on Yongbyon and other nuclear facilities there, using the Pentagon's "hazard prediction and assessment capability" software.

    North Korea's five major nuclear facilities are in Yongbyon and Pakchon in North Pyongan Province, Hagap in Jagang Province, Kangson in Pyongyang, and Pyongsan in Hwanghae Province.

    If 10 W88 conventional nuclear warheads were used, fallout would spread across most of South Korea and even Japan and cause up to 3 million deaths on the Korean Peninsula alone, Lieber estimated.

    But he claimed that if 20 B61 low-yield nuclear warheads were used, low-level fallout would occur only in areas around targets and leave fewer than 100 people dead nearby, which is similar to the damage from conventional weapons.

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