Monday, October 18, 2021

China’s frightening test of new hypersonic weapon: ‘We have no idea how they did this’ - Thomas Lifson


​ by Thomas Lifson

China has demonstrated an attack weapon well beyond our capabilities, defense against which would be difficult if not impossible.

The Financial Times has published a scoop that should frighten every American and which casts further doubt on the competence and capability of our military leadership. China has demonstrated an attack weapon well beyond our capabilities, defense against which would be difficult if not impossible.

China tested a nuclear-capable hypersonic missile in August that circled the globe before speeding towards its target, demonstrating an advanced space capability that caught US intelligence by surprise.

Five people familiar with the test said the Chinese military launched a rocket that carried a hypersonic glide vehicle which flew through low-orbit space before cruising down towards its target.

The missile missed its target by about two-dozen miles, according to three people briefed on the intelligence. But two said the test showed that China had made astounding progress on hypersonic weapons and was far more advanced than US officials realised.

The test has raised new questions about why the US often underestimated China’s military modernisation.

“We have no idea how they did this,” said a fourth person.

The Financial Times has suspended its normal pay wall for this article, so I urge you to read the whole thing.

As readers of this website already know, the senior leadership of the United States military is obsessed with:

  • Critical race theory, diving troops along racial lines and devastating morale.
  • Transgenderism, squandering the defense budget on free (and very expensive) “gender reassignment” surgery for anyone who joins the military.
  • Integrating “birthing people” into every military function, including flight suits for pregnant pilots.
  • Vaccination mandates, which could drive out large numbers of skilled service members, not to mention irreplaceable scientists, critically weakening force effectiveness.
Now, the latest critical, issue preoccupying our senior military, manicures: 

Meanwhile, our military reportedly has been shocked by how far China has gotten ahead of us in space-based, nuclear-capable hypersonic gliders that, unlike missiles, can maneuver as the zero in on their targets, making missile defense far less effective if not impossible.

“Hypersonic glide vehicles . . . fly at lower trajectories and can manoeuvre in flight, which makes them hard to track and destroy,” said Fravel, a professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Our military’s ideological corruption and focus on investing in at-best-irrelevant and at-worst-harmful initiatives surely must remind many Chinese leaders of their own history that proved disastrous in the late nineteenth century.[i]  At the time, Japan was aggressively modernizing and building up its military capacity, including a very capable navy.  In response, a visionary senior official Li Hongzhang, created a Northern Fleet, purchasing 2 German battleships with 12 inch Krupp guns and 14 inch armor. But further work was starved of funds because the Empress Dowager Cixi wished to restore the Summer Palace northwest of Beijing for her retirement, and redirected the money to work there, notoriously including the 1893 reconstruction of a marble boat in a lake on the palace grounds.

Photo credit: Rolf Müller CC BY-SA 3.0 license

In order to conceal the misappropriation of funds, the Imperial Household Department, with the necessary (and probably coerced) cooperation of Li Hongzhang, reported the expenditures as “naval funds.” Just like “gender reassignment surgery” is a “defense expenditure.”

The rest, as the saying goes, is history. A year-and-a-half later, on July 25, 1894, the Japanese Navy attacked China’s fleet and sank 2 ships, launching the First Sino-Japanese War.  After 6 months of naval and land warfare, China sued for peace and, among other things, handed over Taiwan and Korea to Japan.

Now, China wants Taiwan back, and don’t for a second think that they have forgotten how they lost it in the first place, by squandering funds that should have been used for advanced weapons on useless baubles, of interest mostly to corrupt, decadent, and cowardly rulers.

[i] This account is largely drawn from East Asia: The Modern Transformation by John K. Fairbank, whose classroom lecture on this incident I still remember more than 50 years later


Thomas Lifson


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