Korea: September 23, 2000


: A controversial theory has sharply divided the western intelligence community. The facts are few and could mean anything. They include: 

@ The North Korean missiles bear an astonishing resemblance to the old Russian SS-4 missile.

@ In October 1992, Russian police detained more than 60 Russian missile experts as they were about to leave Moscow for North Korea. The experts worked at the Makayev state missile center in the Ural Mountains, which had just had its budget cut by the government.

@ Numerous Russian companies have had their budgets cut and have gone into the export business without the sanction of their government.

@ European police have seized some North Korean missile parts which had Russian markings.

Beyond these facts, opinions differ sharply. Some believe that the Russian involvement in the North Korean missile project started and ended in 1992. Others believe that Russian missile experts have been in North Korea since 1992 and that the North Korean missile program is almost entirely the result of the efforts of these Russian expatriates.--Stephen V Cole


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