US ‘very concerned’ despite China denials over hypersonic missile

The United States is “very concerned” about China’s development of hypersonic technology, the US disarmament ambassador, Robert Wood, has said, after reports that Beijing had recently launched a hypersonic missile with a nuclear capacity. “We are very concerned by what China has been doing on the hypersonic front,” Robert Wood told reporters in Geneva. The Financial Times reported on Saturday that Beijing had launched a nuclear-capable missile in August that circled the Earth at low orbit before narrowly missing its target. Citing multiple sources, the FT claimed the hypersonic missile…

Chinese military condemns US and Canada over warships in Taiwan Strait

The Chinese military has condemned the United States and Canada for each sending a warship through the Taiwan Strait last week, saying they were threatening peace and stability in the region. China claims democratically ruled Taiwan as its own territory, and has mounted repeated air force missions into Taiwan’s air defence identification zone (ADIZ) over the past year, provoking anger in Taipei. China sent about 150 aircraft into the zone over a four-day period beginning on 1 October in a further heightening of tension between Beijing and Taipei that has…

Coal-state Democrat set to scupper Biden clean energy plans

President Joe Biden is likely to abandon a clean energy programme that was the centrepiece of his efforts to tackle greenhouse gas emissions at home, US media reported, because of opposition from a swing-vote Democratic senator from a state with a historically large coal industry. Funding to replace coal- and gas-fired plants with wind, solar and nuclear generation was part of a massive budget bill that Biden is struggling to get through Congress. The New York Times reported that White House staff members are now rewriting the legislation without the…

America will never be back like before, but the world still needs democratic leadership | Timothy Garton Ash

5088

“America is back,” said President Joe Biden earlier this year, and the entire democratic world breathed a sigh of relief. But as we watch the debacle of the United States’ withdrawal from Afghanistan – Kabul as Saigon 2 – a ghostly voice whispers to us: what if America is not back? What if it is never coming back? What happens then? The Chinese century? Europe as new leader of the free world? Or just plain old international anarchy? If only this were like Saigon in 1975. The US humiliation in…

China will tread carefully in navigating the Taliban’s return

3451

The US’s hasty departure from Afghanistan has provided much material for China’s propaganda agencies to discredit Washington’s foreign policy. But Beijing is also treading a careful line in navigating an increasingly uncertain security situation in one of its most volatile neighbours. On Monday, Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson, Hua Chunying, said that while Beijing will “continue developing good-neighbourly, friendly and cooperative relations with Afghanistan”, it also urges the Taliban to “ensure that all kinds of terrorism and crimes can be curbed so that the Afghan people can stay away from war…