by Tyler Durden
China has activated its “ship killer” Dong Feng ballistic missiles after a US navy ship traveled within 12 nautical miles of the Parcel Islands “to challenge excessive maritime claims and preserve access to the waterways as governed by international law,” according to a US Pacific Fleet Spokesman.
In the 1990s, China laid claim to all of the Parcel Islands using a straight baseline around the entire archipelago, which it has labeled the Xisha Islands. The boundary is not recognized by international maritime law, while Vietnam and Taiwan have also laid claim to the islands.
The USS McCampbell (DDG-85) passed by the disputed island on Monday, during which “The Chinese side immediately sent military vessel and aircraft,” according to China’s Foreign Ministry Spokesman, Lu Kang, adding that they warned the ship to leave.”
The deployment of the DF-26 missiles was reported by China’s state-controlled Global Times, which tweeted a montage of brave and loyal Chinese servicemen driving Xi’s Dongs to various locations in China set to the theme song of your average 1990s action movie. The missiles will not be positioned near the Taiwan Strait or the actual disputed islands – instead, the truck-mounted weapons have been sent to China’s more remote plateau and desert areas.
“A mobile missile launch from deep in the country’s interior is more difficult to intercept,” said an expert quoted by the Global Times, who claimed that the DF-26 has a range of 4500km, more than enough to cover the entire South China Sea.