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US test-launches nuclear-capable Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile (VIDEO)

US test-launches nuclear-capable Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile (VIDEO)
The US has tested an unarmed Minuteman III ICBM, launching it from southern California towards the Marshall Islands in the Pacific. The nuclear-capable missile successfully hit its target.

The missile was launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base early Wednesday. The projectile traveled 4,200 miles (6,759km) over the Pacific towards a target placed on Kwajalein Atoll in the Marshall Islands.

Video of the launch shows the missile silo opening before liftoff, as well as the ascent of the projectile. The footage does not show the final stages of the missile’s flight, though it is said to have successfully hit the mock target.

The goal of the test launch was described by Air Force Global Strike Command as to “validate and verify the effectiveness, readiness and accuracy of the weapon system.” The Minuteman III is the only nuclear-capable ground-based ICBM that remains in service in the US.

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