House Homeland Security Committee ranking member Representative Mike Rogers questions witnesses during a hearing about “Worldwide threats to the Homeland” on Capitol Hill on September 17, 2020 in Washington, DC. (Photo by CHIP SOMODEVILLA/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
OAN Roy Francis
12:10 PM PT – Tuesday, February 7, 2023
The House Armed Services Committee conducted its first hearing on the threats posed by China on Tuesday.
House Speaker Kevin McCarthy had established the committee in December to focus on addressing the threats posed by the People’s Republic of China (PRC) to the United States.
In his opening remarks, the Chairman of the committee, Mike Rogers (R-Ala.) talked about how big the danger that China poses is.
“China is the most challenging national security threat America has faced in 30 years,” he said. “if we fail to acknowledge that, and take immediate action to deter it, the next 30 years could be devastating for our nation.”
Admiral Harry B. Harris Jr. was present to give testimony at the hearing, he made the point that the U.S. should fully support Taiwan and put an end to the strategic ambiguity for the island.
“Taiwan is democratic, an idea factory, and a global force for good,” he said. “I’ve called for ending the almost 44-year U.S. policy of strategic ambiguity in favor of strategic clarity. I also believe we should ink a bilateral free trade agreement with Taipei as soon as possible.”
Representative Rob Wittman (R-Va.) also pointed out that the pace at which the Department of Defense works is “cause for grave concern” especially when countering China.
The pace at which DoD conducts business in the face of ever-growing threats from Beijing is cause for grave concern.
I asked Admiral Harris and Dr. Sisson about this during today’s @HASCRepublicans hearing on threats from the CCP. We must move at the speed of reality. pic.twitter.com/9DQfK9L4X9
— Rep. Rob Wittman (@RobWittman) February 7, 2023
Another point of concern for the committee was the report from the U.S. Strategic Command from January 26th, that China now has more Intercontinental Ballistic Missile launchers than the U.S.
The report came from the head of U.S. Strategic Command, General Anthony Cotton. He reported that although the U.S. still has a larger inventory of ICBMs and nuclear warheads, China has now exceeded the U.S. in land-based launchers for the missiles.
Ranking members of the committee raised the alarm on the situation and said that this should be a wake-up call for all Americans to what is happening.
“This should serve as a wake-up call for the United States,” said Mike Rogers, Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-Colo.) and Sen. Deb Fischer (R-Neb.) in a joint statement. “It is not an understatement to say that the Chinese nuclear modernization program is advancing faster than most believed possible. We have no time to waste in adjusting our nuclear force posture to deter both Russia and China. This will have to mean higher numbers and new capabilities.”
According to Rogers, China has doubled the number of warheads in two years, when the U.S. had estimated that it would take them 10 years.
“The [Chinese Communist Party] is rapidly expanding its nuclear capability. They have doubled their number of warheads in just 2 years,” Rogers said at Tuesday’s hearing. “We estimated it would take them a decade to do that.”
China has been a major point of focus for Republicans since they have taken over the House. The recent spy balloon flying over the country sharpened the focus on the dangers that are posed by the Communist country and the need for the U.S. to be able to deter them.