1965 CINCPAC China Assessment

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Recommended Citation

"1965 CINCPAC China Assessment", Nuclear Strategy, January 31, 2000, https://nautilus.org/projects/nuclear-strategy/1965-cincpac-china-assessment/

China conducted its second nuclear test explosion in May. In contrast with the first test in 1964, which was not weaponized, the new test involved an actual bomb that was dropped from an H-6 bomber giving China its first — albeit very limited — nuclear strike capability.

Missile development progressed at “an evenly-paced rate,” and CINCPAC estimated that China was probably working on the Soviet SS-N-4 missile associated with the “G” class submarine, first detected in late-1964. More MIG-19 Farmer aircraft were added to the Air Force inventory, and CINCPAC speculated that this might be as a result of an indigenous production capability.

Although a significant improvement in air defense capabilities occurred in the south and southwest portion of the country this mainly involved passive defenses such as radars. Only one of the sixteen surface-to-air missile sites identified in China by late-1965 was located in the south, although indications were that more were under construction.

These plans and operations are described in more detail in the selected pages from the 1965 CINCPAC history provided below (unlike previous histories, the section of the 1965 history that describes individual plans is almost completely deleted in the declassified version):

Commander in Chief, U.S. Pacific Command, “CINCPAC Command History 1965,” May 13, 1966. Only selected pages. Partially declassified and released under FOIA. (0.20 MB)


Funding for this project was provided by the The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and Ploughshares Fund. For information about the Nuclear Strategy Project contact Hans M. Kristensen.

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