The United States Air Force recently unveiled its newest high-tech nuclear stealth bomber after years of surveilled development. The B-21 Raider, which will deliver conventional and nuclear weapons around the globe using long-range and mid-air refueling capabilities, is part of the U.S. Armed Forces’ answer to rising concerns over growing threats in China and other rogue regimes.
The latest military development is the first new U.S. bomber aircraft in more than 30 years.
“This isn’t just another airplane,” said U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin. “It’s the embodiment of America’s determination to defend the republic that we all love. We will soon fly this aircraft, evaluate it, and then move it into production,” added Sec. Austin.
Each aircraft, which carries a similar ‘flying wing’ shape to its predecessor, the B-2, is projected to cost $729.25 million.
The U.S. Air Force planned to buy at least several hundred planes and began to replace B-1 and B-2 bombers. Every aspect of the program is classified.
The latest development comes as the Pentagon is modernizing to keep up with threats against America and defense for its allies.
The new bomber will help with the modernization of silo-launched nuclear ballistic missiles and submarine-launched warheads, as the department shifts from counterterrorism campaigns in recent years to meet China’s rapid military progress, according to Pentagon officials.
According to reports, the Chinese government is on track to have 1,500 nuclear weapons by 2035 and is upgrading its conventional capabilities.
“We needed a new bomber for the 21st Century that would allow us to take on much more complicated threats, like the threats that we fear we would one day face from China, Russia,” explained Air Force secretary Deborah Lee James when the Raider was announced in 2015.
Officials from American Defense Companies, like chief executive Kathy Warden of Northrop Grumman Corp, said that the latest military creation is “extremely advanced” compared to the B-2 with advances in computer capabilities and materials used in coatings, making it “harder to detect.”
Defense analysts familiar with the new B-21 say that other advances include new ways to control electronic emissions, which means the bomber could confuse adversary radars and disguise itself as another object.
In the past few months, reports from the Pentagon indicate that the U.S. Armed Forces’ troop performance and military technology are on the decline while regimes like China, North Korea, Iran, and others are increasing their presence.
Officials in the Pentagon and outside military analysts have called on Congressional lawmakers to address these issues regarding the American military forces, warning that the U.S. might not be prepared to deal with China in future conflicts.