Executive Intelligence Review


Hyten Confirms U.S. Has No Defense against Russian Hypersonic Weapons

March 21, 2018 (EIRNS)—Gen. John Hyten, commander of U.S. Strategic Command, admitted yesterday that the U.S. military has no defense against the kinds of hypersonic weapons that Russian President Vladimir Putin unveiled on March 1, in his nationally televised Address to the Federal Assembly. The only response the U.S. would be capable of is retaliation, but that assumes that Russia would launch a first strike, which is not its policy.

“The first, most important message I want to deliver today is that the forces under my command are fully ready to deter our adversaries and respond decisively, should deterrence ever fail. We are ready for all threats. No one should doubt this,”

Hyten said in his opening statement to the Senate Armed Services Committee, reported Military.com. But when Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK) asked him if he could defend against the hypersonic and the other types of weapons that Putin announced, Hyten said:

“We have a very difficult—well, our defense is our deterrent capability. We don’t have any defense that could deny the employment of such a weapon against us, so our response would be our deterrent force, which would be the triad and the nuclear capabilities that we have to respond to such a threat.”

Hyten also argued strenuously in favor of the low-yield nuclear options called for in last month’s Nuclear Posture Review, claiming that they are a necessary response to Moscow’s alleged “escalate to de-escalate” doctrine of nuclear first use during a conventional conflict. Sen. Jack Reed (D-RI) pushed back, however, saying that were the U.S. to employ a low-yield nuclear weapon in response to the Russian use of a low-yield nuclear weapon on the battlefield, there is no reason to think that it wouldn’t escalate into a full-scale nuclear exchange.