By Theodore Shoebat
The Japanese government will be developing a hypersonic missile, or a missile that can travel faster than the speed of sound. This will be a weapon that will threaten the navy of China. According to the South China Morning Post:
Japan is developing a hypersonic anti-ship missile, a weapon that can cruise at high altitudes and could pose a threat to Chinese aircraft carriers in the East China Sea.
The Ministry of Defence has said it would be a hyper velocity gliding projectile (HVGP) and it planned to deploy an early version of the missile in 2026, followed by an enhanced version after 2028.
The planned missile would be able to travel at five times the speed of sound, meaning it would be a hypersonic weapon. With such a missile in service, Japan would be the fourth country in the world armed with hypersonic gliding technology, after China, Russia and the United States.
The technology allows a missile to glide at high speed in the upper atmosphere – a weak spot for air defence systems – and to follow complex trajectories, making it difficult to intercept with existing anti-missile shields.
Japan’s first missile would focus on land targets, while the upgraded version would feature claw-shaped payloads, enhanced speeds and firing ranges to attack large surface ships, the ministry said.
The missile will be a threat to the Chinese navy, as the report later states:
Beijing-based military analyst Zhou Chenming said if Japan successfully developed the weapon, it could be a threat to Chinese navy activities in the area and it may have an impact on strategic balance in the region down the track.
But he noted there had been delays in Japan’s previous weapons programmes.
“There are many uncertainties … from Japan’s internal politics to its diplomatic policy changes, as well as military technologies,” he said. “So we will need to keep an eye on how this programme proceeds over the next few years.”
As I said in January of this year, the 2020s is going to be decade of massive military preparation for a global conflict: