China: October 27, 1999


China has a new rocket artillery system that could spell big trouble for Taiwan. The system is a mobile "rocket gun" with six 406mm tubes mounted on the huge 8x8 truck chassis used to carry the M11 ballistic missile. An autoloader system allows the tubes to be quickly reloaded. The huge rockets have a range of 300km, enough to strike any point on Taiwan from the Chinese coast. The rockets include GPS guidance, as well as infrared television, giving them pinpoint accuracy. Various types of warheads can be used, including blast, fragmentation, incendiary, ground penetrating, cluster bombs, and anti-armor submunitions. No existing air defense system in the hands of the Taiwanese could deal with such an attack.--Stephen V Cole


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