Russia and China have far outpaced the U.S. in the development of hypersonic weapons, retired Major General Howard Thompson, former chief of staff of the NORAD Command, wrote in his article for The Hill.
“Hypersonics, the authors conclude, would afford the U.S. with unprecedented rapid reach, global target access, a “fourth dimension effect” by effectively shrinking a foe’s decision-making window and a complete rendering of existing air defenses to be obsolete,” he wrote.
According to Thompson, “a Russian hypersonic glide vehicle (HGV), known as the Avangard, completed a successful flight test in December in which the weapon purportedly reached 27 times the speed of sound.”
Thompson says that currently the United States does not have this potential.
“The stark reality is that our current missile defense systems, as well as our operational mindset, are simply incapable versus this threat,” he wrote.
According to him, threat will require U.S. investment in “an extensive defensive architecture."
In December 2018, the US Accounting Chamber released a report that the United States does not have the ability to defend itself against hypersonic weapons of Russia and China.