08/22/2014, 00.00
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China's atomic "super-missile" worries the United States and Japan

Beijing is testing a system capable of releasing nuclear missiles (at immense speed to evade defence systems) over American and Japanese territory. According to the Land of the Dragon it is a "necessary" technology to counter Washingtons presence, but experts fear a new hike in tensions in the area.

Beijing (AsiaNews / Agencies) - Chinese attempts to obtain a hypersonic vehicle, capable of releasing nuclear bombs at immense speed to evade defence systems, has apparently fail again. Military sources say the second test carried out by the People's Liberation Army on August 7, was unsuccessful. However, the decision to develop these weapons worries the United States and Japan, given that once they are capable of reaching their target Beijing would be able to bomb American and Japanese territory with atomic weapons.

The system (called WU-14) is designed to be carried by a ballistic missile to an undisclosed suborbital altitude, then released. The vehicle then dives towards its target at speeds of up to Mach 10, more than 12,000km/h. It is then designed to release bombs on target and finally self-destruct. The entire operation can be controlled from within the country. At the moment only the United States has similar operational technology: Russia and India are trying to develop it.

According to Chinese experts, this system "is necessary" since China's weapons "are weaker than the US' shields, which are deployed everywhere in the world". According to Li Jie, a military expert, "this development will help China improve its military deterrence. But in any case, our government will carry on its doctrine against the use of nuclear weapons unless forced to".

What is almost certain is that this choice will worsen the military tension in the area. According to Professor Arthur Ding Shu-fan, secretary general of the Chinese Council for Advanced Policy Studies in Taipei, the Pentagon "will work more closely with Japan to defend the Asia-Pacific region, and Shinzo Abe will have all the excuses he needed to restore the Land of the Rising Sun to being a military power".

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