South Korea has successfully put a homegrown satellite into orbit for the first time in the country's history, officials say. Now, who's going to break the bad news to their big bad neighbors to the North? "South Korean authorities say their latest attempted satellite launch is a crucial step for the development of the country's civilian space program. The satellite carried by the launch vehicle is mainly intended for gathering climate data and other atmospheric information," reports CNN. The launch comes a little over a month since North Korea put its own (albeit terribly bunk) satellite into space on December 11. South Korean officials are probably hoping their satellite doesn't share the same fate as the North Korean one which is currently tumbling out control as space junk, more or less.
South Korea is now the tenth nation to send a satellite into space, which is big, important news — but due strict Internet restriction and state-run
propaganda news, it's unlikely that many North Koreans even know about it. What they'll likely get is a news report like about how South Korea is provoking war, like this report from North Korea's Korean Central News Agency, which ran today — even though there's no mention of the satellite, it's still pretty hostile:
The U.S. and the south Korean puppet forces staged joint exercises of all branches of arms, the first of its kind in history, from the outset of the year. This can never be overlooked.
The U.S. and south Korea have rounded off the combat command and operation command system, a planned and provocative step aimed to provoke a war. The hostile policy toward the DPRK being pursued by the U.S. and all other dishonest forces, the U.S. huge nuclear forces that back the policy and provocative military exercises pose greatest threat to the peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula.
And North Korean higher-ups are still fuming after South Korea admonished the country's "successful" space launch in December. KCNA wrote:
Soon after satellite Kwangmyongsong 3-2 was shot to space, the group of traitors called for a "strong counteraction" and "harsher sanctions", speaking loudly of a "provocation" to the international community.
As CNN reports, after the launch South Korea joins a "small group of nations that have sent a rocket into space from their own soil. Others include the United States, Russia, China, Japan, France, India, Israel, Iran and North Korea."
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.