Every year, China and Russia independently invest hundreds of billions of dollars in pursuit of a single, overriding objective — attaining the ability to defeat America in a major war.
But it is only now that the U.S. national security apparatus has begun to wake up to how successful Beijing’s and Moscow’s endeavors have been. Unless the Biden administration allocates continued resources to countering the gains America’s adversaries are making, Beijing and Moscow might soon be able to defeat America in a climactic conflict. This isn’t hyperbole.
Let’s start with a look at strategic weapons.
As you read this article, China and Russia have deployed hypersonic glide vehicles into their armed forces. These are capable of carrying many nuclear warheads straight through our missile defenses to American cities. Russia’s “Zircon” weapon stands out as particularly impressive. In contrast, America is unlikely to have any operational hypersonic weapons before mid-2022 at the earliest. Time is against us. The U.S. military’s continued dominance of conventional nuclear strike capabilities mitigates the risk that an adversary would launch a hypersonic surprise attack. But the fact that China and Russia were able to deploy these new weapons encapsulates the core concern that both nations are prioritizing their ability to defeat America in war. Hypersonic vehicles are neither cheap nor technically simple to develop, and nations confident of peace do not invest in them.