Last month, the Financial Times reported that China carried out two hypersonic weapons tests of a new “fractional orbital bombardment” system this past summer involving a hypersonic glide vehicle which America “does not currently possess.” Beijing maintains the testing involved a “routine” trial of reusable space rocket technology.
“They launched a long-range missile. It went around the world, dropped off a hypersonic glide vehicle that glided all the way back to China, that impacted the target in China,” Hyten told CBS News on Wednesday, referring to a test said to have taken place on 27 July.
“That’s a very significant capability that has the potential to change a lot of things, so we have to be very concerned about that,” the general suggested.“Why are they building all of this capability? They look like a first-use weapon. That’s what those weapons look like to me,” Hyten said.