07 October 2010

25 September Chinese Long-Range Missile Flight Test Reported in Washington Times

Bill Gertz, Chinese Missile Test,” Washington Times, 6 October 2010.

“A U.S. official confirmed that China’s military fired a missile from the Taiyuan missile center, about 320 miles southwest of Beijing, to Korla, a city in western China some 1,800 miles away” on 25 September.

“China watchers in Asia and the United States were alerted to the test by a Sept. 23 ‘notice to airmen’ issued by the Chinese government. The notice warned aircraft to stay clear of a corridor of airspace stretching from Taiyuan to Korla until Sept. 25.”

“Since the test, an official wall of silence has gone up. There was hope that China would announce the missile firing as it did in January, when a missile defense interceptor test was disclosed in a brief public statement. The silence may be a sign that the missile test was a failure.”

“More likely, analysts say, the test showed some new military capability of China’s growing missile forces that the government does not want to advertise, notably the high-technology anti-ship ballistic missile, based on a modified DF-21 medium-range missile.”


Whatever the exact nature of the test, this suggests that China is proceeding seriously with ballistic missile development.

On 24 August 2010, Admiral Robert F. Willard, Commander, U.S. Pacific Command (PACOM), made the following statement to Japanese media in Tokyo:

To our knowledge, [China’s ASBM] has undergone repeated tests and it is probably very close to being operational.”

Click here to see the latest sources and analysis on Chinese ASBM development.

A concise, recent analysis of Chinese development of ASBMs and related ‘anti-access’ capabilities, may be found here.