Weapons China Just Unveiled Have U.S. Officials Worried

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Weapons China Just Unveiled Have U.S. Officials Worried

Postby Jericho on Wed Oct 02, 2019 7:38 pm

The Chinese military unveiled new weapons systems on Monday — as it celebrated the 70th year of the Communist Party’s rule inside the nation — that have experts in the United States worried that the age of unchallenged U.S. military dominance is rapidly coming to an end.

“We’re no longer in a period of overwhelming American dominance but rather one in which our armed forces are adapting to fight against near-peer competitors who are fielding increasingly sophisticated capabilities,” said Randall G. Schriver, assistant secretary of defense for Indo-Pacific security affairs, according to The Washington Times. “Instead of expecting to dominate an opponent, our armed forces are learning to expect to be contested throughout a fight while achieving the political objectives set for them.”

“We take China at their word: They seek to be a world-class military by 2049, and they are making progress toward that goal,” Schriver continued. “They’re working to become a preeminent power in the Indo-Pacific region while simultaneously undertaking plans to expand overseas presence and develop capabilities to sustain operations farther from Chinese shores.”

Among the weapons that have U.S. officials concerned is the DF-17 Hypersonic Missile.

“The Dongfeng-17, or DF-17, is thought to be China’s first operational missile mounted with a hypersonic glide vehicle — capable of flying at more than five times the speed of sound — and the first such weapon deployed anywhere in the world, defense experts said,” The Wall Street Journal reported. “Once launched, the missile is designed to release a hypersonic glide vehicle that can cruise at relatively low altitude and speeds above Mach 5, or about 3,400 miles an hour, changing direction if needed. That allows it to evade current missile defense systems.”

“There’s simply nothing like it in any Western military force,” said Sam Roggeveen, director of the International Security Program at the Lowy Institute in Sydney. “China is now, in some spheres of military technology, ahead of any Western nation.”

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