China tests ‘Guam killer’ missile it says can strike moving warships

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Photo: Chinese state media reported the missiles could strike moving warships. (CCTV)

 

China’s military has test-fired its DF-26 intermediate ballistic missile, which reportedly has the capacity to strike moving warships.

The missile is nicknamed the “Guam killer” because US military bases on the Pacific island are within its range.

Chinese state media reported that the tests were conducted in an undisclosed location in China’s north-west. Continue reading

China Mobilizes DF-26 Missiles in Response to Warship Passage

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Nuclear, intermediate-range anti-ship missiles shown on television after Navy warship sails S. China Sea

China has mobilized nuclear-capable intermediate-range missiles in response to the passage of a Navy warship near disputed islands in the South China Sea this week, according to state-run Chinese media.

The long-range, anti-ship ballistic missile known as the DF-26—dubbed the “Guam-killer” because of its ability to strike targets on the U.S. western Pacific island—was moved in northwestern China, China Central Television reported Wednesday. Continue reading

Beijing’s great game to win over Pacific’s small island states

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Micronesia’s President Peter Christian, center, reviews an honor guard with Xi Jinping outside the Great Hall of the People in Beijing in March 2017. Photo: AFP/ Greg Baker

 

Deploying classic tactics – leverage via investment, tourism, diplomacy and political funding – Beijing is winning the strategic competition with Washington across the west and northern Pacific

While the South China Sea is East Asia’s strategic center stage as China expands its military presence and control over that critical seascape, Beijing is quietly and successfully upping its presence in Pacific territories that have traditionally fallen under US influence.

But unlike in the South China Sea, it is not capturing influence with hard power. Instead, it is deploying a range of big-picture, long-game asymmetric tactics that will be familiar to anyone who has studied Beijing’s Belt and Road initiatives in other regions.

While the US fought its now-legendary, trans-Pacific “island hopping” campaign against Japan in many of these territories in World War II, China is today winning a new, non-kinetic war by default – for, beyond East Asian shores, the Pacific suffers from benign neglect in Washington. Continue reading

China’s disturbing new nuclear buildup

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DF-26 missiles appear at a Beijing parade in this file photo

 

When it comes to China’s ongoing military buildup, most attention is paid to the modernization of the People’s Liberation Army’s (PLA) conventional forces, that is, fighter jets, submarines, armored vehicles, precision-guided munitions, and the like. The nuclear side of this buildup is almost totally ignored – and yet what is happening here is equally disturbing.

For China, “going nuclear” was major achievement. Beijing detonated its first atomic (fission-type) bomb in 1964, followed by the test of a thermonuclear (fusion-type) device three years later. Given the relatively backward state of China’s defense science and technology base, these feats, along with the launching of China’s first satellite in 1970, were a source of considerable national pride.

Despite the success of its “two bombs and one satellite,” Beijing faced the problem of what to do with its new-founded nuclear capability. It could not hope to match the nuclear forces of the United States or the USSR in terms of quantity or quality. Nevertheless, there had to be a strong strategic rationale for possessing – and possibly using – nuclear weapons. Continue reading

China Building Missiles to Strike Guam

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Ballistic and cruise missile threat to U.S. island is increasing, congressional commission says

China is building up intermediate-range ballistic and cruise missiles that pose a growing threat to Guam, the strategic Pacific island that is central to the U.S. military pivot to Asia, according to a congressional report made public Tuesday.

Six different missiles capable of reaching Guam from China are deployed or in late stages of development, says the report by the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission. Continue reading