North Korea did something unusual earlier this week. They fired a missile that flew over Japan, a test launch that entered Japanese airspace. The missile which was like this one did not hit anything. But at 6:00 on Tuesday morning, it was a troubling wakeup call for the Japanese who heard warning sirens broadcast and text alerts telling them to take cover.
North Korea has repeatedly launched missiles and conducted nuclear tests to provoke other countries, which considered its weapons programs illegal.
The North Korea's missiles usually fall into the sea, between it in Japan. So, this was seen by Japan and the U.S. as a threat. Those two countries are allies and U.S. President Donald Trump said all options are on the table for dealing with North Korea.
ANDREW STEVENS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It left people on the northern island of Hokkaido shaken and the prime minister in Tokyo angry.
SHINZO ABE, JAPANESE PRIME MINISTER (through translator): The missile which passed over our nation represents the greatest and gravest threat to our nation ever. It also is an egregious threat to the peace and stability of the U.S. Pacific Region.
STEVENS: Abe spoke to the media three times in as many hours. He also had a 40-minute telephone conversation with Donald Trump. The president, Abe said, had told him the U.S. was 100 percent with Japan. They also discussed tough new action against Kim Jong-un's regime, starting with an emergency meeting of the U.N. Security Council.
It's almost 20 years since North Korea successful fired a missile over Japanese soil without any warning. Previously, missiles have been fired from North Korea on a state trajectory to crash back into the sea before crossing into Japanese airspace. With this provocative new move, that strategy may have changed.
On the streets of Tokyo, this latest launch has come as a shock.
We cannot control North Korea, but as a neighboring country, this feels scary, says this man. I was really surprised by the evacuation warning. I thought this must be a real emergency. I feel really scared. We cannot stop North Korea.
The launch came on a very day Japan was showing off its air defense hardware, the Patriot missile system, or PAC-3. Japan has conducted drills like this before, but this is the first time Japan's military has placed a system like this inside a U.S. base.
The symbolism could not have been plainer. Yokota airbase is the home of the American forces in Japan and having the Japanese defense forcers in here underlines just how close they are becoming on security matters facing a common enemy.
Japan has PAC-3 batteries in several locations across the country, and as tensions rise, these types of drills are likely to become more and more common.
Andrew Stevens, CNN, Tokyo.