President touts development of a “super duper missile” during Space Force event
US President Donald Trump says he has given the go-ahead for the development of a new hypersonic missile that would be faster than anything possessed by Russia and China, in a further sign of a renewed arms race.
“I call it the super duper missile. And I heard the other night 17 times faster than what they have right now, than you take the fastest missile we have right now,” Trump said in the Oval Office, as he unveiled the logo of the new Space Force, the latest branch of the US military.
Russia recently announced it had developed a missile capable of carrying a nuclear payload that travels more than 20 times the speed of sound. President Vladimir Putin said the Avangard hypersonic missile was operational in December.
China has also been working on hypersonic missiles, though not as fast as the claimed Russian project, but still faster than anything the in the US arsenal.
US defence analysts have expressed concerns the Russian missile could evade detection and US officials have floated putting more sensors in space to more quickly spot an incoming attack.
The Pentagon deferred questions on the president’s comments back to the White House.
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