China recently tested a hypersonic weapon system as part of its aggressive advancement in space and military technologies, a move that a top Pentagon official calls “very concerning.”
“What we saw was a very significant event of a test of a hypersonic weapon system, and it is very concerning,” said Gen. Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Milley said classified information prevented him from expanding on the details. He said the US is also working on hypersonic weapons.
“I think I saw in some of the newspapers, they used the term Sputnik moment,” Milley said. “I don’t know if it’s quite a Sputnik moment, but I think it’s very close to that. So it’s a very significant technological event that occurred, or test that occurred, by the Chinese. And it has all of our attention.”
The Soviet Union stunned the world with their launching of a Sputnick satellite in 1957. The move sparked fear that the US was falling behind technologically.
China refuted reports about its test, saying it was testing technology for a reusable space vehicle for peaceful purposes.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Milley’s comments conveyed concern regarding China’s military advancements.
“They continue to pursue capabilities that increase tensions in the region,” Psaki said. “And we continue to have concerns about that. And I think that was reflected in his comments.”