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The Daily Brief: China Is Building The “Most Significant Expansion” Of Its Nuclear Missiles, According To US Report

China Is Building The “Most Significant Expansion” Of Its Nuclear Missiles, According To US Report

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Summary:

  • In a new US research study, a satellite image shows a second missile silo field, believed to be able to hold over 110 silos, being constructed in China, prompting questions about the Chinese’s plans of expanding its nuclear capabilities. 
  • The Federation of American Scientists (FAS) who wrote up the report claim that this missile silo field in Xinjiang, along with another field discovered earlier in the month in Yumen, is “the most significant expansion of the Chinese nuclear arsenal ever.”
  • The space from this new field would allow China to double or triple its nuclear weapons, at most allowing around 350 warheads. 
  • This would break China’s “minimum deterrence policy,” a policy taken up in 1960 after the first atomic bomb setoff by Beijing which was made in hopes of decreasing attacks.  
  • The report went on to call the actions taken to be “logical” in response to the “dynamic arms competition in which multiple nuclear-armed players… are improving both their nuclear and conventional forces as well as missile defense capabilities,”
  • The FAS also noted that it was unclear how much space would be potentially used for decoys, or how many warheads each missile would hold. 
  • The news comes during arms control talks between the United States and Russia which aim to reduce the amount of nuclear arms. China has not taken part in any negotiations despite the US urging them to join the new arms treaty. 
  • A US Strategic Command representative voiced his concern about the issue on Twitter about the “growing threat the world faces” due to the secrecy of these constructions. 
  • The Chinese government has denied joining the arms treaty with the United States, and has yet to comment on the recent report.

Sources 

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2021/7/28/china-is-building-a-second-missile-silo-field-say-us-researchers

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-china-57995185

https://www.cnn.com/2021/07/28/china/china-second-missile-silo-field-intl-hnk-ml/index.html

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All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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