Photo: MOHAMMED ABED/AFP / Getty Images
the army of The United States reported that it carried out a test of an unarmed Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile to “validate and verify” the effectiveness and safety of the nuclear weapons system.
The test was conducted Tuesday at 12:49 a.m. Pacific Time from Vandenberg Space Force Base in Santa Barbara County, California. Here the images of the launch of Minuteman III:
“These test launches demonstrate the readiness of US nuclear forces and provide confidence in the lethality and effectiveness of the nation’s nuclear deterrent,” said Col. Bryan Titus, deputy commander of the Delta 30 space launch.
The launch helps “validate and verify the safety, effectiveness and readiness of the weapon system,” the military said.
Minuteman missiles have formed the core of America’s ground-based nuclear capability for 60 years.. Tuesday’s test comes after a delay earlier this month to avoid escalating tensions with China over Taiwan.
China had launched several military exercises in response to US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s Aug. 2 visit to the island claimed by Beijing.
A test launch in April was also called off over concerns that Vladimir Putin would see it as an escalation amid the country’s attack on Ukraine.
“The Department of the Air Force recently canceled the routinely planned test flight of an LGM-30G Minuteman III missile,” Pentagon Deputy Press Secretary Todd Breasseale said at the time.
“The launch had previously been delayed due to an excess of precaution to avoid misunderstandings or miscommunication during the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine,” it added.
The Air Force typically tests four Minuteman III rockets per year, and tests are planned months and sometimes years in advance. Canceling or postponing a test due to concerns that the release might be provocative is very rare.
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