North Korea
North KoreaFlash 90

North Korea alarmed the west when it reported Tuesday that it had successfully tested a ballistic missile capable of reaching the United States.

The missile flew for 37 minutes and reached a height of 1,500 miles, leading missile experts to conclude that it could have a range of 4,000 miles, putting the state of Alaska within striking distance of the rouge nation.

Arutz Sheva spoke with Tal Inbar, the head of the Space and UAV Research Center at the Fisher Institute for Air and Space Strategic Studies, about the reasons for the North Korean launch.

Inbar said that the timing of the launch, which was carried out on the US Independence Day, showed that it was intended to send America a message. He also said that North Korea has never published the details of a successful missile launch unless the international community could independently verify that the test had occurred.

US officials confirmed to Fox News that the test did occur as North Korea had described.

Inbar warned that North Korea was improving its missile capability and improving the range of its missiles. "That does not mean they can reach New York or Washington today, but it is only a matter of time."

He said that Kim Jong Un's real goal was to establish a nuclear deterrent against the US by proving that he could strike anywhere in the country, as the US and and the Soviet Union were each deterred from striking each other because of their own nuclear arsenals during the Cold War. According to Inbar, the North Korean dictator believes that he would then be safe from an American attack.

Inbar warned that the international community's inability to prevent North Korea from acquiring nuclear weapons could lead to a similar situation playing out with Iran in the near future.