The U.S. Air Force canceled a test of a Minuteman III ballistic missile after announcing a one-month delay, amid fears of escalating tensions with Russia.
Air Force Spokesperson America Ann Stefanek announced today that the force has cancelled the test-fire of the LGM-30G Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) to reduce tensions with the country. Russia In the war Ukraine There is no end in sight.
“The next Minuteman III missile test will take place later this year. The U.S. Air Force remains confident in the readiness of the strategic nuclear forces,” spokesman Stefanek said.
The U.S. Air Force announced on March 2 that it would delay testing of the Minuteman III missile after President Vladimir Putin ordered Russia’s strategic nuclear forces to be placed on high alert. “The U.S. and Russia need to be aware of the potential for miscalculation and take steps to limit it,” the Pentagon said at the time, adding that the tests were “quickly delayed” rather than canceled.
The decision to change the Minuteman-3 missile test schedule was also opposed by some U.S. politicians. Rep. Jim Inhofe, the top Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee, expressed disappointment after the Pentagon announced in March that ICBM tests play an important role in security and ensuring the United States’ nuclear deterrent.
The Air Force said test launches are typically scheduled five years in advance, and preparation and launch schedules take place six to 12 months in advance, so they have nothing to do with world events or tensions. directly in the area.
The LGM-30 Minuteman III missile, which has a range of 9,700 kilometers, has been in service since the 1970s and could be replaced by the $264 billion Ground-Based Strategic Deterrence System (GBSD), excluding the new nuclear warhead.
The United States has about 450 Minuteman III missiles scattered in storage tanks across the country, with about 3,800 warheads in combat and 2,000 in storage. The Minuteman III can carry a W87 warhead, equivalent to 450,000 tons of TNT, or three W78 warheads, each equivalent to 350,000 tons of TNT, which can hit targets individually.
Wu Ying (according to Reuters)