Militarily, China today is a force to be reckoned with. In recent years its People’s Liberation Army has made enormous strides in technology and innovation as well as numbers. China’s Dong Feng hypersonic missiles, for example, can travel at speeds in excess of Mach 5 (five times the speed of sound), armed with either a high explosive or nuclear warhead. This is giving the US Navy’s 7th Fleet, based at Yokosuka, Japan, pause for thought as to just how close it is prepared to risk sailing to China’s massed missile batteries onshore.

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