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China The Military

China Confirms New Generation of ICBM 224

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the live-fast-die-young-bomb-may-drop-tomorrow dept.
Taco Cowboy (5327) writes with news of the Chinese military's latest toy, an ICBM capable of delivering multiple warheads across the Pacific. From the article: The DF-41 is designed to have a range of 12,000 kilometers (7,500 miles), according to a report by Jane's Strategic Weapon Systems, putting it among the world's longest-range missiles. ... It is "possibly capable of carrying multiple independently targetable re-entry vehicles", the U.S. Defense Department said in a report in June, referring to a payload of several nuclear warheads. It also quoted a Chinese military analyst as saying: "As the U.S. continues to strengthen its missile defense system, developing third generation nuclear weapons capable of carrying multiple warheads is the trend." China's previous longest range missile was the DF-5A, which can carry a single warhead as far as 12,000 km, according to Jane's.
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China Confirms New Generation of ICBM

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  • by i kan reed (749298) on Friday August 01, 2014 @11:34AM (#47581709) Homepage Journal

    I thought you were moving out, after those last couple "incidents" with the island. No, don't get angry, it's just that you never pay your rent, and you break everything.

    I know, we depended on you a lot during that whole spat we had with USSR, but come on, you never do any chores, you just sit there threatening us until one of us decides it's easier to do it than put up with your shit.

    • The problem is that people keep talking about nuclear arms reduction, which is good, but only discuss it between Russia and the US.

      At this point, any talk about reducing nuclear proliferation that doesn't involve China is pointless and naive.
      • by MightyYar (622222)

        I don't think we are quite there yet... China still only has enough nukes to ward off any hawks. If the US and Russia had the same number of nukes as China, we could all pat each other on the back.

        • by phantomfive (622387) on Friday August 01, 2014 @12:20PM (#47582171) Journal

          I don't think we are quite there yet... China still only has enough nukes to ward off any hawks.

          Well, how many nukes does it take, exactly, to destroy a country? Realistically, all anyone has is enough nukes to ensure MAD....it's not like the US is able to bomb Russia without retribution. Estimates of China's stockpile vary, up to 3000 warheads [dailymail.co.uk]. China is secretive and everyone is just guessing what they actually have. Any number you see is just a guess.

          In any case, it's pointless to talk about arms-reduction without being aware that one important country is aiming for arms-increase.

          • by Archtech (159117)

            "China is secretive..."

            Although not quite as secretive as Israel, which (rather cleverly) denies having any nuclear weapons while relying heavily on the fact that everyone knows it does. Reminds me of Raymond Smullyan's celebrated book on logic, entitled "What is the name of this book?"

            • Reminds me of Raymond Smullyan's celebrated book on logic, entitled "What is the name of this book?"

              I bet it was ghostwritten by Abbot and Costello.

          • by MightyYar (622222)

            Even that almost certainly inflated estimate is only 3/5 the number that the US has and 3/8 that of Russia.

          • by sysrammer (446839)
            If we don't know how many nukes they have, we will estimate high. It appears that that is the only sane way to handle the insanity.
          • Referencing the Daily Mail in an internet forum is the forum equivalent of a nuclear first strike.

            Seriously, these guys lie like hell every day. Anything they publish is likely to be complete horseshit.

            In this case the root reference for numbers of Chinese warheads over a couple of hundred is known to be an extremely unlikely rant by a Singaporean graduate student in a 1990's vintage Usenet message.

            If you see someone citing a number like that either they are trying to foment alarm or are just asshats. In th

      • Not only must it include CHina, but their allies. In particular, North Korea, Burma, Iran, and Venezuela.
        Basically, China is in the process of building their own NATO with a quiet spread out system.
    • And these poor bastards [msn.com] chose a real shitty time to be exposing themselves to the rest of the world. With the threat of Ebola and warfare, they were better of waiting 5 more years from now.

  • Known since forever (Score:5, Informative)

    by cheesybagel (670288) on Friday August 01, 2014 @11:34AM (#47581711)

    This missile development effort has been known of since forever. Pictures of the TEL has even showed up. What has not been made public is if the missile is fully operational and deployed or not. The Chinese have also not displayed DF-41 in the National Day parade either.

    This article brings nothing new as there is still no official report of it being operational.

    • Next generation? If this were the 1950's, multi headed ICBM's were regulars in the early 1960's. If China wanted Next Generation, try a Moon colony, or Mars colony. How about a working FTL? And just where the hell is my 200 inch Smart TV for $200? If the chairwoman wants fear; fear its nation's policy of rejoicing in Ignorent Sloth.
      • by cheesybagel (670288) on Friday August 01, 2014 @12:17PM (#47582137)

        The newness in the DF-41 is that it would be the first solid fuel Chinese ICBM with the ability to hit the entire Continental US. Plus it would be mobile since it is supposed to be launched from a truck mounted TEL. The only system the Chinese currently which can hit the entire CONUS is the DF-5A which is a hypergolic liquid fuel missile which is so damned big it can only be launched from silos. Supposedly the Chinese dug an mountain up in order to have make these silos decades ago but they are still vulnerable to first strike. Unlike the US, UK, France, Russia, the Chinese nuclear submarine force is pathetic so they can hardly count on the submarines as a viable deterrent either.

        This would basically put the Chinese up with the Russians in terms of land missile capability. Ahead of the US too since the only land based missiles are silo based like the Minuteman. The US did have a project for a road mobile ICBM called the Midgetman at one point but it was cancelled.

    • by MiniMike (234881)

      This missile development effort has been known of since forever. Pictures of the TEL has even showed up.

      So is it based on stolen U.S. designs, or stolen Russian designs?

  • WOPR (Score:5, Funny)

    by TheDarkener (198348) on Friday August 01, 2014 @11:41AM (#47581753)

    Herro, Professor Farken. Would you rike to pray a game?

    • What side do you want?

      1. USSR
      2. USA
      3. North Korea
      4. China
      5. France
      6. UK
      7. India
      8. Pakistan
      9. Israel

      • Did you forget Iran? And Venezuela was said to be working with China/North Korea, as is Burma.
  • by Scot Seese (137975) on Friday August 01, 2014 @11:47AM (#47581827)

    Nuclear proliferation is becoming to sound like the plot to some absurdist classic Star Trek episode.

    The leaders of all the planets' nations sit in a room, arrayed in a circle. The room is white and completely bare, except for their chairs, and in the center of the room a single gleaming, chromed post rising from the floor about 3 feet tall. Atop the shiny post is a single large, tennis-ball sized red button.

    It is widely accepted among all the leaders that pressing the button activates a mechanism that destroys the planet. Yet this doesn't stop them from rising from their chairs, and arguing - yelling, taunting even - other leaders around the circle, so enraging them that at times several of them are close to snapping, rushing forward and pounding the red button.

    Because at the end of the day, the leaders are all flawed human beings, driven by the psychological baggage of behavioral evolutionary holdovers, cultural and religious constructs, and overwhelmingly the inability to view the other participants in the room as peers equally deserving of resources as the tribes represented by the leaders.

    Sooner or later, someone - in a moment of hubris, misplaced confidence in their own technology or military, or religious zeal - is going to dash out of their chair and smack that button.

    • by MRe_nl (306212)

      "The leaders of all the planets' nations sit in a room, arrayed in a circle. The men are all white and completely bald, except for the Chinese",

    • by cyberchondriac (456626) on Friday August 01, 2014 @11:57AM (#47581921) Journal
      And yet in nearly 7 decades of MAD, no one has ever done so. What's the alternative, trust that others will actually do what they say and remove all nuclear capability? Every country would see that as a golden opportunity to keep some hidden by hook, nook, or crook, so that then they're the only ones in the world with nukes.. win!
      Or more likely, every country would do that, so we're right back where we're started, albeit with lower numbers of warheads.
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by jgtg32a (1173373)
        Little to early to say but so far it looks like removing nuclear capability isn't really working out too well for Ukraine.
        • by Archtech (159117)

          Little to early to say but so far it looks like removing nuclear capability isn't really working out too well for Ukraine.

          Although it's lucky for the inhabitants of Donyetsk and Lugyansk. Because the nutjobs in Kiev would probably have used them by now.

          • I don't think even those nut jobs would be retarded enough to effectively nuke themselves.

            Or are you talking about tossing a few at Russia? That would be even stupider.

        • by Archtech (159117)

          Little to early to say but so far it looks like removing nuclear capability isn't really working out too well for Ukraine.

          Anyway, the glove puppets in Kiev are being operated by people with plenty of WMD. Which they are hoping to line up, wheel-to-wheel, right on the Russian border. As well as filling up the Black Sea with nuclear-armed ships, especially if they can take Crimea away from Russia and deprive it of a sea port closer than the Arctic Circle.

        • by AmiMoJo (196126) *

          What good would nukes have done Ukraine? They could threaten to nuke Moscow, but only if they themselves were willing to be utterly obliterated. Moscow has a fairly advanced missile shield too, so it might not even work.

          I really doubt they would have pushed that button over Crimea, or over the current low level conflict. Considering how fractured the country is and that the government was recently overthrown in a coup it isn't even clear if they could have launched if their leader wanted to. If they had had

          • I really doubt they would have pushed that button over Crimea, or over the current low level conflict.

            It's not low level if it's in your own backyard.

        • It does very well, in fact.
          You see, the reason why Ukrainian army is so weak is that while they have inherited a shitload of Soviet weapons (Ukraine was the second largest weapon site of the USSR), they have sold almost everything to unscrupulous buyers. Who knows where their nukes would be now.

      • by Rockoon (1252108)

        so we're right back where we're started, albeit with lower numbers of warheads

        ..and everyone thinking that they now have an advantage.

      • by Kjella (173770)

        And yet in nearly 7 decades of MAD, no one has ever done so.

        The Romans managed 206 years in their "pax romana", it's not exactly proof MAD is working or everlasting. What we do know is that there's an awfully big boom when it doesn't work.

        What's the alternative, trust that others will actually do what they say and remove all nuclear capability? Every country would see that as a golden opportunity to keep some hidden by hook, nook, or crook, so that then they're the only ones in the world with nukes.. win!

        Enough to win if everyone else sees it as a madman's weapon that should be neutralized before they go all Hitler on us? Because when you pop outside that little bubble called global thermonuclear war everyone else who talked about killing hundreds of millions of civilians would be considered a genocidal lunatic. Could a rouge nucle

        • Don't forget that the "nuclear club" has a pretty solid double standard where they perfectly legitimize having their own nukes and last I checked the official NATO and Russian policy is that they can respond to any attack, conventional or nuclear with nuclear force while they strongly work for non-proliferation to prevent others from having the same weapons at their disposal. They trust it so much they very strongly don't want anyone else to join the "MAD club", why do you think that is? Because they know the whole thing is fickle as hell and someone might end up pushing the button

          You'll get no argument from me there. It's not a great solution by any means, but seems to be the most realistic at the moment.

        • Rogue! Not the French for 'red'!

          the official NATO and Russian policy is that they can respond to any attack, conventional or nuclear with nuclear force while they strongly work for non-proliferation to prevent others from having the same weapons at their disposal.

          I get so tired of the arguments ad absurdum around here. The few nuclear powers we have now have--for the MOST part--proven themselves to be relatively sane and unlikely to actually use them. But no, let's just publish complete designs for The Bomb on the Internet and let every country with the raw material build their own. What could possibly go wrong?

          I'm not a fan of anybody having nukes either, but they do, and your argument sounds to me like, "Wah! This other country has

      • Ironically, despite my comment sounding as though I may be opposed to nuclear proliferation, I am not. I'm only opposed to nuclear capability falling into the hands of stateless organizations or despotic regimes unbeholden to the wishes and well being of their populace.

        Nuclear weapons are an incredibly powerful normalizing force, creating symmetry from military, industrial, technological and population asymmetry.

        In this century, nations such as France or Great Britain lack the ability or political will to

      • Reminds of something we joked about years ago. It's like a couple of kids, knee deep in gasoline each with a pack of matches arguing over who has more matches. Now we have more kids with more matches...
    • You're missing one critical piece in this example: the red button doesn't destroy the planet, it sends a message to other humans outside the room to destroy the planet.

      This is how I understand both the US and Russian system to function, but I don't know about the Chinese system. I would hope the designers of these systems realize that leaving this decision up to a politician alone is not the right answer, as the other systems have recognized.

      • by Sentrion (964745)

        Launch staff are consistently drilled to launch the nukes on command. They receive launch codes and attempt to arm the nukes. When the codes provided are part of a drill, the nukes don't launch. If the codes are legit, then the launch crew has no idea until they hear the silo doors begin to open.

        So as long as the soldiers are properly trained and show a track record of doing what their told, they might as well be a hard circuit to the launch systems.

        • Maybe I've seen too many movies, but I always was told there was a "DRILL" code book and a "LIVE" code book, so the operator would know.

    • by argStyopa (232550)

      1963 called, wondered where the imminent apocalypse was?

  • After all, so many here have pointed out that China only has 300 warheads, 700 at the most.
    And as the far left wingers know, there is no way that they are in active production that enables them to put 600 warheads on their subs (100-160 warheads / sub, with 3 subs currently, and another 5-6 coming ), another 500-1000 in their planes, and another 1000 on land-based ICBM (i.e. 100 missiles).

    So, yeah, I have no doubt that the far left is right.
  • Don't worry, its just their way of competing against Amazon's droid delivery service.

  • ... version 41is better than 5A?

  • The multi warhead capable assertion is lame. It's just a matter of the weight the missle is capable of delivering. Since the miniaturization of thermonuclear war heads has been done years ago, this is silly. A W-88 warhead in the US arsenal weighs little enough to be transported on an appliance dolly for heavens sake.

  • ... developed weapons specifically ranged to reach US? Nice.

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