The Pentagon is being tight-lipped about a Wednesday test of its Aegis Ashore missile defense system, after a land-based interceptor launched from Hawaii failed to hit a target missile fired from an aircraft, according to a new report.
All the Pentagon will say officially is that a test of the system, more commonly deployed on U.S. Navy warships, took place Wednesday.
But CNN reported Wednesday that the missile failed.
The report stated the interceptor missile, known as a Standard-Missile 3, was launched from the Pacific Missile Range Facility, Kauai, Hawaii, Wednesday morning.
Normally, the Missile Defense Agency posts the results of its missile tests on its public website, as it did in August, when the destroyer USS John Paul Jones successfully intercepted a medium-range target missile using a newer Standard Missile-6.
CNN said the unusual secrecy surrounding the failed test was due in part to “sensitivities surrounding North Korea's participation in the upcoming Olympic Games and continuing tensions with leader Kim Jong Un.”
Japan recently expressed a desire to buy the Aegis Ashore system to beef up its missiles defenses in the face of a increasing threat from North Korea, which continues to lob test missile into the Sea of Japan, and sometimes over Japanese territory.
The Aegis system has an overall record of 35 successful intercepts in 42 attempts against ballistic missile targets, according the MDA website.
The last two SM-3 tests in December 2015 and February 2017 were reported as successful.