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US launches postponed missile test amid tensions with China

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The U.S. Air Force carried out a test of an intercontinental missile with nuclear capabilities. The test was delayed 12 days to avoid inflaming tension with China but also sends a signal of readiness in response to ongoing Chinese threats over Taiwan.

“This scheduled test launch is demonstrative of how our nation’s ICBM fleet illustrates our readiness and reliability of the weapon system,” squadron commander Col. Chris Cruise said. “It is also a great platform to show the skill sets and expertise of our strategic weapons maintenance personnel and of our missile crews who maintain an unwavering vigilance to defend the homeland.”

The test launch was supposed to take place Aug. 4, but on that day, the White House announced the delay in missile testing amid a controversial visit to Taiwan by U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA). China objected to Pelosi’s visit and had launched roughly 11 missile strikes near the coast of Taiwan. White House National Security spokesman John Kirby said at the time that delaying the test launch was “the responsible thing to do” and condemned China’s missile launches as irresponsible and provocative.

“A strong, confident, capable nuclear power can afford to wait a couple of weeks for a test to make it clear — not just in word but in deed — how serious we are when we say we have no interest in escalating the tensions,” Kirby said.

This isn’t the first time scheduled missile testing has been pushed back. The first delay came in March, when Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin postponed a missile test to avoid any tension with Russia as the country began invading Ukraine.

Air Force Global Strike Command said in a release that the Minuteman III missile was launched from Vandenberg Space Force Base in California by the 576th Flight Test Squadron a little before 1 a.m. Pacific Standard Time. The commander of the task force had said test launches are unrelated and not carried out in response to recent world events.

Karah Rucker: THE U-S MILITARY JUST TESTED A NUCLEAR-CAPABLE LONG-RANGE MISSILE.
IT WAS LAUNCHED TUESDAY MORNING OFF THE COAST OF CALIFORNIA.
WHILE THE AIR FORCE SAID IT CONDUCTS ROUTINE TESTS OF ITS WEAPONS SYSTEM- THIS PARTICULAR TEST WAS DELAYED TO AVOID ESCALATING TENSIONS WITH CHINA.
BEIJING HAS SPENT MOST OF THIS MONTH CARRYING OUT MILITARY DRILLS AROUND TAIWAN IN RESPONSE TO HOUSE SPEAKER NANCY PELOSI’S VISIT.
Karine Jean-Pierre | White House press secretary: “There was no reason to have this escalation that we’re seeing from China. You know, it is it is fundamentally irresponsible what they are doing and we’ll continue our efforts to keep open lines of communication with Beijing while defending our interests and values in the region.”
THOSE MILITARY DRILLS CONTINUED THIS WEEK AFTER A GROUP OF U-S LAWMAKERS VISITED TAIWAN ON MONDAY.
YESTERDAY’S TEST LAUNCH INDICATES WASHINGTON IS NOT WORRIED ABOUT THE TAIWAN SITUATION ESCALATING IN THE SHORT TERM.
THE BIDEN ADMINISTRATION HAS SAID IT WOULD CONTINUE ROUTINE AIR AND NAVAL OPERATIONS IN THE TAIWAN STRAIT IN THE COMING WEEKS.

The U.S. Air Force carried out a test of an intercontinental missile with nuclear capabilities. The test was delayed 12 days to avoid inflaming tension with China but also sends a signal of readiness in response to ongoing Chinese threats over Taiwan.

“This scheduled test launch is demonstrative of how our nation’s ICBM fleet illustrates our readiness and reliability of the weapon system,” squadron commander Col. Chris Cruise said. “It is also a great platform to show the skill sets and expertise of our strategic weapons maintenance personnel and of our missile crews who maintain an unwavering vigilance to defend the homeland.”

The test launch was supposed to take place Aug. 4, but on that day, the White House announced the delay in missile testing amid a controversial visit to Taiwan by U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA). China objected to Pelosi’s visit and had launched roughly 11 missile strikes near the coast of Taiwan. White House National Security spokesman John Kirby said at the time that delaying the test launch was “the responsible thing to do” and condemned China’s missile launches as irresponsible and provocative.

“A strong, confident, capable nuclear power can afford to wait a couple of weeks for a test to make it clear — not just in word but in deed — how serious we are when we say we have no interest in escalating the tensions,” Kirby said.

This isn’t the first time scheduled missile testing has been pushed back. The first delay came in March, when Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin postponed a missile test to avoid any tension with Russia as the country began invading Ukraine.

Air Force Global Strike Command said in a release that the Minuteman III missile was launched from Vandenberg Space Force Base in California by the 576th Flight Test Squadron a little before 1 a.m. Pacific Standard Time. The commander of the task force had said test launches are unrelated and not carried out in response to recent world events.

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