Advertisements
//
you're reading...
Defence & Aerospace

China making preparations to counter US nuclear attack


Missiles being test-fired at an undisclosed location.

Missiles being test-fired at an undisclosed location.

China showcased its strategic nuclear submarines when there were prospects of a war with Japan that may involve the US. It was afraid that the US might retaliate with nuclear weapons if China sank a US aircraft carrier.

By showcasing the submarines, China told the US that it has second-strike capabilities with strategic nuclear submarines in addition to its mobile ICBMs hidden in its 5,000 km long tunnels.

Now, the US is planning to upgrade its missile defence that may intercept China’s second-strike ICBMs and there are prospects of US military intervention with China’s maritime territorial disputes with other claimants.

Therefore, China is now busy upgrading its ICBMs to enable each of them to have more than one warhead, each of which can target independently.

The New York Times published a report titled “China Making Some Missiles More Powerful” on that. The following is the full text of the report:

China Making Some Missiles More Powerful

After decades of maintaining a minimal nuclear force, China has re-engineered many of its long-range ballistic missiles to carry multiple warheads, a step that federal officials and policy analysts say appears designed to give pause to the United States as it prepares to deploy more robust missile defences in the Pacific.

What makes China’s decision particularly notable is that the technology of miniaturising warheads and putting three or more atop a single missile has been in Chinese hands for decades. But a succession of Chinese leaders deliberately let it sit unused; they were not interested in getting into the kind of arms race that characterised the Cold War nuclear competition between the United States and the Soviet Union.

Now, however, President Xi Jinping appears to have altered course, at the same moment that he is building military airfields on disputed islands in the South China Sea, declaring exclusive Chinese “air defence identification zones,” sending Chinese submarines through the Persian Gulf for the first time and creating a powerful new arsenal of cyberweapons

Many of those steps have taken American officials by surprise and have become evidence of the challenge the Obama administration faces in dealing with China, in particular after American intelligence agencies had predicted that Mr. Xi would focus on economic development and follow the path of his predecessor, who advocated the country’s “peaceful rise.”

How multiple warheads work

How multiple warheads work

Secretary of State John Kerry arrived in Beijing on Saturday to discuss a variety of security and economic issues of concern to the United States, although it remained unclear whether this development with the missiles, which officials describe as recent, was on his agenda.

American officials say that, so far, China has declined to engage in talks on the decision to begin deploying multiple nuclear warheads atop its ballistic missiles.

“The United States would like to have a discussion of the broader issues of nuclear modernisation and ballistic missile defence with China,” said Phillip C. Saunders, director of the Centre for the Study of Chinese Military Affairs at National Defence University, a Pentagon-funded academic institution attended by many of the military’s next cadre of senior commanders.

“The Chinese have been reluctant to have that discussion in official channels,” Mr. Saunders said, although he and other experts have engaged in unofficial conversations with their Chinese counterparts on the warhead issue.

Beijing’s new nuclear program was reported deep inside the annual Pentagon report to Congress about Chinese military capabilities, disclosing a development that poses a dilemma for the Obama administration, which has never talked publicly about these Chinese nuclear advances.

President Obama is under more pressure than ever to deploy missile defence systems in the Pacific, although American policy officially states that those interceptors are to counter North Korea, not China. At the same time, the president is trying to find a way to signal that he will resist Chinese efforts to intimidate its neighbours, including some of Washington’s closest allies, and to keep the United States out of the Western Pacific.

Already, there is talk in the Pentagon of speeding up the missile defence effort and of sending military ships into international waters near the disputed islands, to make it clear that the United States will insist on free navigation even in areas that China is claiming as its exclusive zone.

Hans M. Kristensen, director of the Nuclear Information Project at the Federation of American Scientists, a policy research group in Washington, called the new deployments of Chinese warheads “a bad day for nuclear constraint.”

“China’s little force is slowly getting a little bigger,” he said, “and its limited capabilities are slowly getting a little better.”

To American officials, the Chinese move fits into a rapid transformation of their strategy under Mr. Xi, now considered one of the most powerful leaders since Mao Zedong or Deng Xiaoping. Vivid photographs, which were released recently, of Chinese efforts to reclaim land on disputed islands in the South China Sea and immediately build airfields on them, underscored for White House policy makers and military planners the speed and intensity of Mr. Xi’s determination to push potential competitors out into the mid-Pacific.

That has involved building aircraft carriers and submarines to create an overall force that could pose a credible challenge to the United States in the event of a regional crisis. Some of China’s military modernisation program has been aimed directly at America’s technological advantage. China has sought technologies to block American surveillance and communications satellites, and its major investments in cybertechnology — and probes and attacks on American computer networks — are viewed by American officials as a way to both steal intellectual property and prepare for future conflict.

The upgrade to the nuclear forces fits into that strategy.

“This is obviously part of an effort to prepare for long-term competition with the United States,” said Ashley J. Tellis, a senior associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace who was a senior national security official in the George W. Bush administration. “The Chinese are always fearful of American nuclear advantage.”

American nuclear forces today outnumber China’s by eight to one. The choice of which nuclear missiles to upgrade was notable, Mr. Tellis said, because China chose “one of few that can unambiguously reach the United States.”

The United States pioneered multiple warheads early in the Cold War. The move was more threatening than simply adding arms. In theory, one missile could release warheads that adjusted their flight paths so each zoomed toward a different target.

The term for the technical advance — multiple independently targetable re-entry vehicle, or MIRV — became one of the Cold War’s most dreaded fixtures. It embodied the horrors of overkill and unthinkable slaughter. Each re-entry vehicle was a miniaturised hydrogen bomb. Each, by definition, was many times more destructive than the crude atomic weapon that levelled Hiroshima.

China watched all this from the sidelines. Gingerly, it improved its warheads and missile forces in what amounted to baby steps, but chose to field a force that the leadership in Beijing believed could deter aggression with the smallest number of deployed warheads.

In 1999, during the Clinton administration, Republicans in Congress charged that Chinese spies had stolen the secrets of H-bomb miniaturisation. But intelligence agencies noted Beijing’s restraint.

“For 20 years,” the C.I.A. reported, “China has had the technical capability to develop” missiles with multiple warheads and could, if so desired, upgrade its missile forces with MIRVs “in a few years.”

The calculus shifted in 2004, when the Bush administration began deploying a ground-based antimissile system in Alaska and California. Early in 2013, the Obama administration, worrying about North Korean nuclear advances, ordered an upgrade. It called for the interceptors to increase in number to 44 from 30.

While administration officials emphasised that Chinese missiles were not in the system’s cross hairs, they acknowledged that the growing number of interceptors might shatter at least some of Beijing’s warheads.

Today, analysts see China’s addition of multiple warheads as at least partly a response to Washington’s antimissile strides. “They’re doing it,” Mr. Kristensen of the Federation of American Scientists said, “to make sure they could get through the ballistic missile defences.”

The Pentagon report, released on May 8, said that Beijing’s most powerful weapon now bore MIRV warheads. The intercontinental ballistic missile is known as the DF-5 (for Dong Feng, or East Wind). The Pentagon has said that China has about 20 in underground silos.

Private analysts said each upgraded DF-5 had probably received three warheads and that the advances might span half the missile force. If so, the number of warheads China can fire from that weapon at the United States has increased to about 40 from 20.

“It’s been a long time coming,” said Jeffrey Lewis, an expert on Chinese nuclear forces at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey. In an interview, he emphasised that even fewer of the DF-5s might have received the upgrade.

Early last week, Mr. Kristensen posted a public report on the missile intelligence.

Beijing’s new membership in “the MIRV club,” he said, “strains the credibility of China’s official assurance that it only wants a minimum nuclear deterrent and is not part of a nuclear arms race.”

Contributed by Tiananmen’s Tremendous Achievements

Source: The New York Times – “China Making Some Missiles More Powerful”
Advertisements

About chankaiyee2

Author of the book "Tiananmen's Tremendous Achievements" about how with the help of Tiananmen Protests, talented scholars with moral integrity seized power in the Party and state and brought prosperity to China. The second edition of the book will be published within a few days to mark the 25th anniversary of Tiananmen Protests All the parts in the first edition remain in the second edition with a few changes due to information available later and better understanding. There are also some changes for improvements of style. The new parts are Chapters 12-19 on events in China after the first edition was published: The fierce power struggle for succession between reformists and conservatives; Xi Jinping winning all elders’ support during his mysterious disappearance for 2 weeks in early September, 2012; and Xi Jinping Cyclone. Chan Kai Yee's new book: SPACE ERA STRATEGY: The Way China Beats The US An eye-opening book that tells the truth how the US is losing to China. The US is losing as it adopts the outdated strategy of Air-Sea Battle while China adopts the space era strategy to pursue integrated space and air capabilities: It is losing due to its diplomacy that has given rise to Russian-Chinese alliance. US outdated strategy has enabled China to catch up and surpass the US in key weapons: Hypersonic weapons (HGV) that Pentagon regards as the weapon that will dominate the world in the future. Aerospaceplane in China’s development of space-air bomber that can engage enemy anywhere in the world within an hour and destroy an entire aircraft carrier battle group within minutes. Anti-satellite (ASAT) weapons, anti-ASAT weapons, stealth aircrafts, drones, AEW&C, etc. The book gives detailed descriptions of China’s weapon development based on information mainly from Chinese sources that the author monitors closely. U.S. Must Not Be Beaten by China! China is not a democracy. Its political system cannot prevent the emergence of a despotic leader or stop such a leader when he begins to bring disasters to people. A few decades ago, Mao Zedong, the worst tyrant in world history did emerge and bring disasters to Chinese people. He wanted to fight a nuclear war to replace capitalism with communism but could not bring nuclear holocaust to world people as China was too weak and poor at that time. If a despot like Mao Zedong emerges when China has surpassed the US in military strength, world people will suffer the misery experienced by Chinese people in Mao era. China surpassing the US in GDP is not something to worry about as China has the heavy burden to satisfy its huge population, but China surpassing the US in military strength will be world people’s greatest concern if China remains an autocracy. US people are of much better quality than Chinese people. What they lack is a wise leader to adopt the correct strategy and diplomacy and the creative ways to use its resources in developing its military capabilities. I hope that with the emergence of a great leader, the US can put an end to its decline and remain number one in the world. China, US, space era strategy, air-sea battle, space-air bomber, arms race, weapon development, chan kai yee

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Advertisements

Type 407 Training Visas

Get An Australian Diploma

Learn How To Sell Real Estate To Chinese Buyers

Sell Your Real Estate To Chinese Investors

China Daily Mail

China Daily Mail is not affiliated in any way with The China Daily or the government of the People's Republic of China.

Enter your email address to receive an email each time an article is published, or join our RSS feed. 100% FREE.

Want to write for China Daily Mail?

Read "Contributor Guidelines" above to join our team of 68 contributors. Write news or opinion about issues in China, or post photos and video. Promote your own site.

Recent Posts

China Daily Mail Stories Have Been Featured In:

%d bloggers like this: