Instead of Missile Test, North Korea Marks Anniversary With Party

Kim Holds Celebration for Top Nuclear Scientists, Engineers

North Korea’s 69th anniversary celebration over the weekend was expected by many to be another opportunity for the nation to conduct missile tests. That’s been a common expectation every time any North Korean holiday is coming.

Instead of a test, North Korea decided to hold a major party, with Kim Jong-un hosting a gala party for all the country’s top nuclear scientists and engineers in Pyongyang. This was presented as a major celebration of their most recent successful test.

The celebration for the scientists was a big one, in keeping with North Korea’s tendency to have big “heroes’ welcomes” for officials. It included not only a banquet in their honor, but a huge outdoor rally with fireworks.

Kim presented the Sept 3 test as a “merciless sledgehammer blow to the US imperialists.” It was by far the largest of North Korea’s nuclear tests, and officials said it was a a hydrogen bomb, as opposed to all previous tests, which were atomic bombs.

With North Korea’s increasingly successful missile testing, and it’s nuclear capabilities, the nation has an increasing deterrent capability, which is seen as limiting US options to attack them without starting a disastrous conflict.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.