Hypersonic missiles: Why the new “arms race” is going nowhere fast

Andrew Reddie

Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, 2020

Speaking on December 24, 2019, Russian President Vladimir Putin marked the deployment of Russia’s first nuclear-capable hypersonic missile system, noting, “Today, we have a unique situation in our new and recent history. [Other countries] are trying to catch up with us. Not a single country possesses hypersonic weapons, let alone continental-range hypersonic weapons.”

The question that is now facing policy makers in Washington, Beijing, London, and elsewhere is whether and how this deployment reshapes strategic stability.

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