China’s military recently deployed an upgraded strategic bomber that will carry the military’s new long-range land attack cruise missile, capable of attacking Hawaii and Guam, according to a draft congressional report.
The Oct. 8 draft of the forthcoming report of the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission also reveals that China has developed a new armed drone nearly identical to U.S. military’s Reaper. The Chinese missile-firing drone likely was developed through Chinese cyber espionage against U.S. defense contractors.
The report highlights a rapidly modernizing Chinese military that includes large numbers of new weapons and new warfighting techniques, including attack capabilities in space and cyberspace.
On the bomber, the People’s Liberation Army in June accepted the first of 15 new Hongzha-6K, or H-6K, bombers. The bomber is based on a late 1950s Soviet design but has an extended range. However, its long-range cruise missile is new.
The report said the H-6K, also known as “Zhan Shen” or God of War, “can carry China’s new long-range land-attack cruise missile (LACM).”
“The bomber/LACM weapon system provides the PLA Air Force with the ability to conduct conventional strikes against regional targets throughout the western Pacific, including U.S. facilities in Guam,” the report said.
Guam is being built up by the U.S. military as a key strategic military hub as part of the new “pivot” strategy of realigning forces toward Asia.
The report said China’s new land-attack missile can be equipped with a nuclear warhead. However, so far there is no confirmation that the new missile is armed with nuclear warheads.
China last month disclosed for the first time video of the Changjian-10, or CJ-10, land-attack cruise missile carried by the new bomber. The H-6K carries up to six of the missiles.
The Chinese are also developing a nuclear-capable variant known as the CJ-20 that would be deployed on the H-6K.
Rick Fisher, a Chinese military expert with the International Assessment and Strategy Center, said analysts disagree with the commission assessment that the new bomber is likely to be limited to non-nuclear cruise missiles.
“In 2012 Russia’s former Rocket Forces chief of staff retired General Victor Yesin explicitly warned that some of Chinese ground and air launched DH-10 cruise missiles are nuclear armed. China is very likely developing multiple new long-range bombers to succeed the H-6K,” Fisher said. The CJ-10 is based on the DH-10.
Chinese National Defense University military expert Ge Lide stated in a China state television interview Oct. 18 that the CJ-10 is “China’s first sophisticated and cutting-edge precision weapon system capable of long-range precision strikes.”
“It is also a key member of the land-launched and air-launched long-range cruise missile family,” he said.
The missile uses China’s Beidou satellite navigation system for guidance and has a range of up to 1,500 miles.
China can strike targets in all coastal waters within an area known as the “first-island chain,” a string of islands close to China’s eastern and southern coast, with the bomber-cruise missile combination.
Full article: China Deploys New Bomber with Long-Range Land Attack Missile (Washington Free Beacon)