U.S. Rep. Doug Lamborn had some very alarming information on North Korea’s nuclear weapons capability that he released publicly in a House Armed Services Committee hearing Thursday.
Lamborn, (R-Colo.), read an unclassified section of a classified report from the Defense Intelligence Agency that said North Korea does indeed have the capability to launch a nuclear weapon with a ballistic missile.
Lamborn asked Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey if he agreed with the DIA’s conclusion:
DIA assesses with moderate confidence the North currently has nuclear weapons capable of delivery by ballistic missiles, however the reliability will be low.
Dempsey wouldn’t answer the question, saying of the report, “I haven’t seen it and you said it’s not publicly released, so I choose not to comment on it.”
The conclusion from the DIA plays into a larger debate within the U.S. intelligence community about North Korea’s ability to launch a nuclear missile. While North Korea has conducted three underground nuclear tests since 2006, the U.S. has been divided for years on whether the country’s engineers can place a nuclear warhead atop a ballistic missile. The DIA report now shows that the military’s most important intelligence agency believes, albeit with “moderate confidence,” that North Korea has mastered the technology.
Watch the exchange via Rep. Lamborn on YouTube: