China developing dangerous ballistic missle

Greg Baker/AFP
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The US Defense Department believes the Chinese People’s Liberation Army is developing a new Intercontinental Ballistic Missile. That is, a heavy, multi-stage missile that leaves the Earth’s atmosphere and travels around the world at huge velocities before re-entering and descending toward its target at 20 times the speed of sound. Such missiles normally have a nuclear warhead: but this one, uniquely, would be armed with conventional explosives.

It’s an incredibly dangerous idea. A bad idea the Pentagon is intimately familiar with. After all, it tried to develop the same kind of “conventional” ICBM years ago – and ultimately gave up as it began to appreciate everything that could go wrong.

Namely, there seemed to be a good chance that, if US forces ever fired a conventional ICBM in anger, nuclear-armed countries would detect the launch, recognize the energy and trajectory of an ICBM – and be faced with an impossible dilemma.

Were the Americans launching a nuclear first strike? Would they lie, if asked? And how long could America’s nuclear rivals wait for clarification before launching their own nukes?


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Chuck comes from a lineage of journalism. He has written for some of the webs most popular news sites. He enjoys spending time outdoors, bull riding, and collecting old vinyl records. Roll Tide!