North Korean Activity Stirs Fears of a Missile Test
The New York Times
February 3, 2009
North Korea has been moving what appear to be components of a long-range missile to a launching site, a South Korean official and news reports said Tuesday, raising fears that it might test-fire a missile.
The object is believed to be a Taepodong-2 missile, Yonhap said. The missile is designed to fly at least 4,200 miles, far enough to reach North America, and carry a payload of 1,400 to 2,200 pounds, according to the South Korean Defense Ministry.
Iran Reports Launching Its Own Satellite
The Washington Post
February 4, 2009
Iran said Tuesday it had successfully sent its first domestically produced satellite into orbit using an Iranian-made long-distance missile, joining an exclusive club of fewer than a dozen nations with such capabilities.
The rocket used to launch the satellite was not the most sophisticated in Iran's arsenal. Iran used the two-stage Safir-2 -- Safir is a Farsi term meaning "ambassador."
By contrast, Iran's sophisticated Shahab-3 missile has a range of at least 750 miles, and Iran claims to have extended its reach even farther. At minimum, the Shahab-3 would allow Iran to strike targets throughout the Middle East, Turkey and the southeastern flank of Europe.