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|User Info||Handicapping The Norks; entered at 2017-08-11 15:16:21|
In July 1962, the US carried out the Starfish Prime test, exploding a 1.44 megaton bomb 400 kilometres (250 mi) above the mid-Pacific Ocean. This demonstrated that the effects of a high-altitude nuclear explosion were much larger than had been previously calculated. Starfish Prime made those effects known to the public by causing electrical damage in Hawaii, about 1,445 kilometres (898 mi) away from the detonation point, knocking out about 300 streetlights, setting off numerous burglar alarms and damaging a microwave link.https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_el....
Ok, this is at the edge of my knowledge but I'm sure I'll be corrected if I am wrong. Many items entering the atmosphere survive until they are around 200,000 feet (~40 miles) up in the atmosphere. That is the point where the atmosphere gets dense enough that it exerts considerable force on the incoming object. The space shuttle broke apart at roughly this altitude.
Now, looking above, a successful EMP was generated at a much higher altitude which indicates that the re-entry problem mentioned in the original post does not have to be completely solved. A partial solution is good enough...
As for the goad them into attacking option, I think I would just go ahead and paste the hell out of them in a surprise attack. Why give them a free shot for the sake of being able to say "they shot first"? Like I said in my first post, we might just have to redefine "win" and go to it.