China warns US with display of aircraft killer nuclear missiles

The Chinese government has aired footage of aircraft carrier nuclear missiles, with military analysts taking it as a warning to the US. The dual-capable Dongfeng missiles are thought to pose a great threat to US aircraft carrier strike groups. The missiles, thought to be China’s most powerful nuclear-capable weapons, were unveiled in footage to mark National Day. But, as tensions escalate between the two superpowers, the eight-part documentary on China Central Television had impeccable timing.

The two anti-ship missiles, known as DF-21D and DF 26B, pose a significant threat to US carriers. The new-generation DF-41 intercontinental ballistic missiles are reportedly capable of carrying multiple nuclear warheads with a range of over 12,000 km. Such missiles could hit any target on the US mainland, according to defence experts. The CCTV series, which aired over the past week to commemorate the 73rd anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China, showcased at least a dozen of anti-ship missiles. Experts say that amount is equal to an entire missile brigade. Song Zhongping, a former People’s Liberation Army instructor, agrees that the showing isn’t by coincidence, as reported in the South China Morning Post.

“Showcasing Dongfeng series strategic weapons is a subtle warning to the United States, which is instigating other countries to put on pressure on Beijing over the Taiwan issue, as the fierce Ukraine war also poses a dilemma for China.”

“The PLA Rocket Force’s strategic weapons were supposed to be displayed in National Day military parades, but China organises such big events only once a decade or once in five years, which makes such video footage another option for the PLA to show its muscle to its American counterpart.

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“When dealing with US warships, conventional warheads on the dual-capable DF-21D and DF-26 missiles are powerful enough to deter them from entering Chinese waters because of their precision strike capability.”

The PLA Rocket Force launched the two aircraft carrier killer missiles in the South China Sea, back in August 2020, to hit a designated moving ship. The move came just one day after Beijing accused the US of having a U-2 spy plane enter a no-fly zone without permission during a Chinese live-fire naval drill off the country’s northern coast.

In August 2020, the PLA Rocket Force launched the two “aircraft carrier killer” missiles in the South China Sea to hit a designated target, a moving ship. This came just a day after Beijing claimed a US U-2 spy plane had entered a no-fly zone without permission during a Chinese live-fire naval drill off the country’s northern coast.

Fast forward to August 2022, the unprecedented live-fire military exercises around Taiwan were seen as an escalation of tensions. The move received even more scrutiny as it came after US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi visited Taipei. Beijing repeatedly warned Pelosi, but she didn’t listen. As the US stance on Taiwan is that of opposing a Chinese takeover of the island by force, Pelosi’s visit stirred controversy. US President Joe Biden has also reiterated that America would defend Taiwan against any PLA attack, despite the US not recognising Taiwan as an independent state.

As for the recent missile showcasing, Taiwan’s president is calling the mainland Chinese military exercises “irresponsible.”

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Ann Carter

Ann Carter is an award-winning journalist from the United States with over 12 years experience in print and broadcast news. Her work has been featured in America, China and Thailand as she has worked internationally at major news stations as a writer and producer. Carter graduated from the Walter Williams Missouri School of Journalism in the USA.

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