In this episode, Mr. Ankit Panda joins us to discuss China’s growing conventional missile arsenal and associated implications for military strategy and security in the Indo-Pacific region. He highlights the role of China’s ground-based missiles in the projection of military power, noting that an increased arsenal can hamper U.S. forces in the region and give the People’s Liberation Army increased maneuverability. China’s missile arsenal is an important factor in its anti-access/area denial (A2/AD) strategy, Mr. Panda argues, noting the role and efficacy of anti-ship ballistic missiles in projecting force areas surrounding the South and East China Seas. Mr. Panda talks about the consequences of the U.S. withdrawal from the INF treaty and the political obstacles to an increased U.S. arsenal around China’s periphery. Mr. Panda discusses the consequences of the U.S. withdrawal from the INF treaty and the political obstacles to an increased U.S. arsenal around China’s periphery. In addition, he explains the strategic implications of China’s dual-capable missile forces, and specifically the DF-26 missile’s ability to rapidly convert between nuclear and conventional warheads. Finally, Mr. Panda analyzes the role of hypersonic glide vehicles, noting that, while the underlying technology is not new, advances in materials science have allowed more countries to develop HGV systems.
Ankit Panda is the Stanton Senior Fellow in the Nuclear Policy Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. An expert on the Asia-Pacific region, his research interests range from nuclear strategy, arms control, missile defense, nonproliferation, emerging technologies, and U.S. extended deterrence. He is the author of Kim Jong Un and the Bomb: Survival and Deterrence in North Korea.