Kirby: ‘Ask Putin why Russia has nuclear hypersonic missiles’

WASHINGTON, BM – Yesterday, July 19, Russia officially announced that the Russian Navy had successfully tested the Zircon hypersonic missile in the White Sea. The carrier of the hypersonic missile was the frigate Admiral Gorshkov. All the world’s media covered the hypersonic missile test, and the world was waiting for the US reaction.

At his regular press briefing, Pentagon spokesman John F. Kirby said the United States was fully aware of what Russia and President Vladimir Putin were doing. Kirby declined to analyze the topic but noted that Russia’s actions could seriously destabilize world peace. Kirby stressed that the development and testing of hypersonic missiles capable of carrying nuclear warheads pose a risk to stability and peace around the planet.

Kirby stressed that the United States has also joined the race to develop and arm hypersonic missiles, but unlike Moscow, Washington is focusing its efforts on developing non-nuclear hypersonic missiles.

The information presented by Kirby provoked several questions, one of which was: “And why are the Russians developing nuclear-capable hypersonic missiles but the United States is not making nuclear,” a journalist from the press conference room asked.

“You’d have to ask Vladimir Putin why he’s chosen to go that route. We’ve chosen as a matter of policy to develop non-nuclear hypersonic capabilities and that’s – and that’s what we’re focused on,” was the brief response to Pentagon spokesman John F. Kirby.

Kirby reiterated that the Pentagon and the White House administration work with NATO daily on issues related to Russia’s activities in an attempt to monitor, verify and counter “Russian destabilization in the region and around the world.” Kirby did not fail to mention that Washington takes very seriously and monitors the activities of the Russians in the fifth domain – cyberspace.

AGM-183 and W88 tests

A year ago, the United States lagged far behind in the development of hypersonic missiles. Twelve months later, however, Washington announced that it had already completed several tests of the AGM-183 hypersonic missile developed by Lockheed Martin and designed to be launched by bombers.

Most recently, the United States announced that it had performed the first “dry test” of the latest warhead W88 Alt 370. The warhead has an estimated yield of 475 kilotons and can be used in blasting or contact detonation methods. According to unconfirmed information, the United States has produced about 400 warheads from the 1980s to the present. W88 differs in small size, which allows them to be integrated on different missiles and, accordingly, on different sized vessels.

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