Does China really have a nuclear-capable bomber?

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A Chinese H-6K bomber, shown here in CCTV footage, flew missions around Taiwan and the South China Sea in recent weeks, according to a Fox News report. Some analysts are disputing the Fox News story's characterization of the bombers as "nuclear capable." Courtesy of CCTV+/YouTube
From Stripes.com
A Chinese H-6K bomber, shown here in CCTV footage, flew missions around Taiwan and the South China Sea in recent weeks, according to a Fox News report. Some analysts are disputing the Fox News story's characterization of the bombers as "nuclear capable." Courtesy of CCTV+/YouTube

Does China really have a nuclear-capable bomber?

by: Erik Slavin | .
Stars and Stripes | .
published: December 14, 2016

YOKOSUKA NAVAL BASE, Japan — If America straps a warhead to a Chevy Silverado, does it own a nuclear-capable truck?

Technically yes, though the United States arguably has far more efficient ways of maintaining its nuclear deterrent.

The same might be said for the “nuclear-capable” Chinese H-6K bombers that flew around Taiwan and over disputed areas within the South China Sea, according to some analysts.

Fox News first reported the flights earlier this month, citing unidentified U.S. officials in each case.

Many security experts interpreted the flights as a Chinese show of strength in light of President–elect Donald Trump’s overtures to Taiwan.

However, the H-6K’s description as a nuclear weapons carrier touched off a debate over the reports Tuesday.

“No, China’s H-6 bomber is not nuclear-capable,” wrote Jeffrey Lewis, director of the East Asia Nonproliferation Program at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies in Monterey, Calif., on Twitter.

https://www.stripes.com/1.444071

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