According to a May 29 AP release, North Korea has test-fired another short-range missile. “South Korea's Yonhap news agency said the latest test launch was a surface-to-air missile designed to defend against aircraft or other missile attacks. It said the missile was believed to be a modified version of the Russian SA-5.” Also reported was the fact that anonymous U.S. officials in Washington “said there are indications of increased activity at a site used to fire long-range missiles,” possibly indicating there will be a test firing from that location in the near future.
One day after Russia said it was going to step up its military surveillance around North Korea in response to North Korea’s recent nuclear test explosion and short-range missile tests, U.S. and South Korean forces also increased their level of watchfulness. CNN reported on May 28 that this puts U.S. and South Korean forces at their second-highest “Watchcon” alert level, a level that was last used when North Korea exploded a nuclear test device in 2006.
The Russian parliament and media refer to him merely as a “Russian businessman.” But to much of the rest of the world, Viktor Bout is known as the “Merchant of Death,” the most notorious member of the dark fraternity of global weapons traffickers who arm terrorist organizations, as well as the tyrannical regimes and brutal warlords and militias responsible for horrendous genocidal slaughters over the past two decades.
“European Union regulators may get the power to overrule national banking authorities under plans to tighten banking supervision that are aimed at avoiding a repeat of mistakes that led to the credit crisis,” the New York Times noted on May 27 in “European Union Looks to Tighten Banking Supervision.” The proposals “call for new European supervisors to have the right to step in and settle disputes if national regulators cannot agree on the oversight of multinational financial institutions.”
North Korea’s belligerence has now extended to restarting its main nuclear reactor, declaring itself no longer bound by the 1953 Korean War armistice, and threatening to attack South Korea if it participates in U.S. efforts to inspect North Korean ships that may be carrying missiles.