A 2nd new nuclear missile base for China, and many questions about strategy
In the barren desert 1,200 miles west of Beijing, the Chinese government is digging a new field of what appears to be 110 silos for launching nuclear missiles. It is the second such field discovered by analysts studying commercial satellite images in recent weeks.
It may signify a vast expansion of China’s nuclear arsenal — the cravings of an economic and technological superpower to show that, after decades of restraint, it is ready to wield an arsenal the size of Washington’s, or Moscow’s.
Or, it may simply be a creative, if costly, negotiating ploy. …
For decades, since its first successful nuclear test in the 1960s, China has maintained a “minimum deterrent,” which most outside experts judge at around 300 nuclear weapons. (The Chinese will not say, and the U.S. government assessments are classified.) If accurate, that is less than a fifth of the number deployed by the United States and Russia, and in the nuclear world, China has always cast itself as occupying something of a moral high ground, avoiding expensive and dangerous arms races.
But that appears to be changing under President Xi Jinping. At the same time that China is cracking down on dissent at home, asserting new control over Hong Kong, threatening Taiwan and making far more aggressive use of cyberweapons, it is also headed into new territory with nuclear weapons.
“The silo construction at Yumen and Hami constitutes the most significant expansion of the Chinese nuclear arsenal ever,” Matt Korda and Hans M. Kristensen wrote in a study of the new silo field. For decades, they noted, China has operated about 20 silos for big, liquid-fuel missiles, called the DF-5. But the newly discovered field, combined with one hundreds of miles away in Yumen, in northeast China, that was discovered by the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies in Monterey, Calif., will give the country roughly 230 new silos. The existence of that first field, of about 120 silos, was reported earlier by The Washington Post.
Trumpet contributing editor Jeremiah Jacques described the ongoing nuclear buildup in the latest print issue of the Trumpet magazine:
In so many nations, nuclear developments are underway that expose the fragility of the global peace. They show that all of the attempts by the United Nations and other international organizations to reduce the nuclear threat have failed. None of man’s various disarmament efforts, peace plans or treaties have been able to secure sure and lasting peace.
All such deals lack a safeguard that can forcibly prevent the use of these unfathomably destructive weapons. And there is no true cause for hope.
But there is hope in the Bible.
In his booklet Nuclear Armageddon Is ‘At the Door,’ editor in chief Gerald Flurry writes: “Only God can solve our number one problem: that of human survival.”
Mr. Flurry’s booklet makes inescapably clear that God’s plan spelled out in the Scriptures gives mankind a definite, hope-filled solution. But it shows that the Bible also contains dire warnings, revealing that tensions around the world will continue to increase until they snap—and nuclear war explodes.
You can order your own free copy of that booklet, Nuclear Armageddon Is ‘At the Door.’