Failed launch is setback for North Korea's new leader

CSIS president: rocket failure 'impossible to hide'

 UPDATED 12:25 PM HST Apr 15, 2012
PYONGYANG, North Korea -

The head of a Hawaii-based think tank said the failure of North Korea's much-touted satellite launch will be a major source of domestic and international embarrassment for the Kim Jong Un regime.

Pacific Forum CSIS president Ralph Cossa says the rocket's disintegration Friday over the Yellow Sea was "impossible to hide from the North Korean people given the advance publicity and presence of international media."

The nearly $1 billion failure has brought humiliation to the country's new young leader and condemnation from a host of nations.

For the 20-something Kim Jong Un it was to have been a highlight of celebratory events surrounding his rise to power.

President Barack Obama said North Korea's failed rocket launch shows the country is wasting money on rockets that "don't work" while its people starve.

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