While the weight of South Korea’s missile payload is expected to remain the same at 500 kg, Seoul is now allowed to lob them bad boys as far as 800 km –up from the old limit of 300 km.
Google Earth’s cool ruler tool shows that regardless of where they are fired from on the peninsula, Beijing is out of range, but installations on the southernmost part of the peninsula put Shanghai in play should the Chinese get pissy over Ieodo. And its feasible, with a good wind, that downtown Tokyo is reachable if fired upon from Ulleungdo –located in the middle of the body of water between Korea and Japan.
The Donga Ilbo, which showed deft erudition in the opening line of an op-ed piece earlier this month (“A missile is a flying object armed with a warhead and designed to strike a target”), made a fair point that, in regard to Norko missile ranges, there is some serious inequity:
Pyongyang has deployed at military bases the Musudan-ho, a ballistic missile with a maximum range of 3,000 kilometers, and test-fired the Taepodong 2 missile, which has a range of 6,700 kilometers and can carry a warhead weighing 650 to 1,000 kilograms. To balance the seriously imbalanced missile capacities between both Koreas, the range of South Korean missiles should be increased to at least 800 kilometers.
And so it has.