Sen. Cotton: ‘It’s imperative’ Biden modernizes US nuclear forces while China grows nuclear arsenal

SEN. TOM COTTON: The report about China’s crash nuclear buildup is very troubling. China has long had a small nuclear force but they’re obviously trying to rapidly expand it. You mentioned all of the missile silos they’re building in western China, which is a big change from their current nuclear forces. They of course have bomber aircraft as well as submarines. And as you mentioned, published reports just a couple of weeks ago suggest they not just have traditional intercontinental ballistic missiles which travel in a predictable pattern and, therefore, are susceptible to missile defenses – but now hypersonic glide vehicles which travel five times the speed of sound as well as travel in unpredictable patterns, making them harder to defend against. 

This is obviously China’s effort to race to reach nuclear parity with the United States and perhaps one day surpass us. That would be very dangerous to the United States. Not just because of the threat those nuclear weapons pose if they’re used but their ability to deter the United States to defend our own interests, whether it’s standing up for our manufacturing jobs and our trading rights or defending our partners and allies like Japan and Taiwan. It’s imperative that the Biden administration modernize our own nuclear forces so that can never happen.

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