By Judith Bergman for the Gatestone Institute
"The PRC likely intends to have at least 1,000 warheads by 2030, exceeding the pace and size the DoD projected in 2020." — Military and Security Developments Involving the People's Republic of China 2021, US Dept. of Defense.
"In space, China is putting up satellites at twice the rate of the United States and "fielding operational systems at an incredible rate." — General David Thompson, the Space Force's first vice chief of space operations, quoted in The Washington Post, November 30, 2021.
"Look at what they [CCP) have today.... We're witnessing one of the largest shifts in global geostrategic power that the world has witnessed." — General Mark Milley, Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, breakingdefense.com, November 4, 2021.
"[T]he Chinese are building up their military capabilities in space, cyberspace, and in the conventional force. It's all happening at the same time." — Timothy Heath, senior international and defense researcher at Rand Corporation, Business Insider, January 4, 2022.
"To fully assess the China threat, it is also necessary to consider the capability of the associated delivery system, command and control, readiness, posture, doctrine and training. By these measures, China is already capable of executing any plausible nuclear employment strategy within their region and will soon be able to do so at intercontinental ranges as well."
— Admiral Charles Richard, Commander of U.S. Strategic Command, Senate Committee on Armed Services, April 20, 2021.
There is now as well the added probability of China and Russia engaging in military coordination.... a strategic partnership of "no limits" and with "no forbidden areas" in an agreement that they said was aimed at countering the influence of the United States.
This cooperation has already seen China undermining Western sanctions on Russia and supplying Russian President Vladimir Putin with the lifeline he needs to continue his war in Ukraine.
"The friendship between the two peoples is iron clad." — Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, Associated Press, March 7, 2022.
"For the first time in our history, the nation is on a trajectory to face two nuclear-capable, strategic peer adversaries at the same time, who must be deterred differently." — Admiral Charles Richard, Senate Committee on Armed Services, April 20, 2021.
[T]his is NOT the time for the US to cancel the sea-launched nuclear cruise missile (SLCM-N), as President Joe Biden plans to do.
Meanwhile, Biden's proposed defense budget risks speeding the US to defeat by insufficiently taking into account the current skyrocketing inflation, as acknowledged in early April by Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and Pentagon comptroller Mike McCord.
"This budget assumes an inflation rate of 2.2%, which is obviously incorrect because it's almost 8%," said Milley. "Because the budget was produced quite a while ago, those calculations were made prior to the current inflation rate."
"Nearly every dollar of increase in this budget will be eaten by inflation. Very little, if anything, will be left over to modernize and grow capability." — Representative Mike Rogers, (R-Ala.) House Armed Services Committee, Defense News, April 5, 2022.
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The accelerating pace of China's nuclear buildup is concerning in itself, but even more so given that the military buildup constitutes just one, but significant, part of China's general military buildup and modernization. Pictured: DF-17 hypersonic missiles at a military parade in Beijing, China, on October 1, 2019. (Photo by Kevin Frayer/Getty Images)