Unfortunately, analysts pointed out to the UK Telegraph that neither Japan's land-based Patriots or seaborne Aegis defense system is well-suited to destroying intercontinental ballistic missiles launched on high, arcing trajectories, as North Korea's new generation of Hwasong-12 rockets probably would be.
The country has threatened nuclear attacks against the US and its allies as well as a missile strike on Guam.
Previous to this assessment, the Central Intelligence Agency believed that North Korean warheads did not have this capability. North Korea this week threatened to create an "enveloping fire" around the strategically important Pacific island, located about 2,100 miles to its southeast.
"You see these very bad headlines that's terrifying and freaks everybody out", Wachtel said."The most rational of thinkers will read a headline and think they'll have to hide under a bed because the world is going to explode soon".
As tensions between the United States and North Korea continue to escalate, a southern IL woman worries about her family on the U.S. Island territory of Guam.
That echoes efforts by Alaska's USA senators, who said they're hoping for an increase in spending on missile defense in the near future.
Trump suggested a report on more funding for missile defense could be coming in the next week, which Karako said could be a sign that the Pentagon completed its preliminary study from its missile defense review. Having a robust missile defense "buys the leadership of the country space and ... time to make strategic decisions and not be rushed into anything", he said.
North Korean missiles and the challenges they pose to the United States
Japan's Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga has strongly condemned North Korea for saying that it is reviewing an operation for making an "enveloping fire" around the USA territory of Guam in the western Pacific Ocean.
At those speeds, a missile trying to chase and hit it from behind would have no chance during this part of the flight, called the "boost phase". If the U.S. or Japan successfully intercept the missile it could be taken as an act of war, prompting further military response. Even a conservative estimate of the weight of the other components of the warhead assembly places North Korea's nuclear warheads at a minimum of 1102-1322 lbs (500-600 kg).
Guam is home to a USA air base, a Navy installation, a Coast Guard group and roughly 6,000 United States military personnel. It is based in Alaska and California, and is not in a position to stop a missile flying that far south over the Pacific.
"I will do my best to secure our people's lives and property", Abe said without elaboration. Naval officials says the ship can be put back out to sea within days if the need arises.
It is also a permanent home to a Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) interceptor.
She pointed to a review of the nation's ballistic missile defense that is underway at the Pentagon, and said that is likely to provide "a pathway forward to further missile defense improvements".
If "Kim Jong Un chose to launch an ICBM at the United States, I believe we have the system right now to shoot that down - to track it and shoot it down", Sullivan said.More news: As Trump Threatens, US Negotiates With North Korea