UK tabloid cheers US hypersonic nukes in Germany, shows nuclear mushroom over Moscow — Analysis

UK papers are hyping the revival of a Cold War-era US artillery unit in Germany, supposed to be armed with ‘Dark Eagle’ hypersonic missiles that will be able reach Moscow in mere minutes, once they are developed.

‘Dark Eagle has landed’ proclaimed The Sun, originally reporting that the new US missiles could “blitz Russia” in just six minutes – before revising that to “21 minutes and 30 seconds” – along with a graphic showing Moscow being vaporized in a mushroom cloud.

The 56th Artillery Command was reactivated by the United States at an event in Germany last week. It had been inactive for over a decade. The Sun article and other British newspapers note that there may be hypersonic missile capabilities. “fully developed and deployed,”The Pentagon claims that it will be sometime around 2023.

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Hypersonic weapons race is a marathon, not a sprint: Who will cross the finish line first?

Just a day before the 56th AC ceremony, the Pentagon announced that the very first “prototype hypersonic ground equipment” was delivered to a stateside artillery unit. A battalion of the US Army’s 1st Corps located at Joint Base Lewis-McChord in Washington state received trucks, trailers, four erector launchers and other components of the Long-Range Hypersonic Weapon (LRHW), but no missiles yet.

The name “Dark Eagle” comes from Rob Strider, the official in charge of the Army’s hypersonic project office. Alabama-based Dynetics has been developing the missile. It is also responsible for the Mother of All Bombs and the Gremlin drone. Lockheed Martin will serve as the principal weapons systems integrator, which is the same company that developed the F-35 fighter plane project.

After another UK publication reported in August that China had successfully tested such weapons, the hypersonic missile race exploded into full gear. This caught the US off guard. Beijing has denied making the claim and said that it was a test of a spaceship. Moscow also tested its Zircon hypersonic rocket, which it claims is almost ready for operation by its naval forces.

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