Japan can quickly build a strategic arsenal of land-based and submarine-launched missiles capable of killing up to 30 million Chinese in a nuclear war, according to a Pentagon sponsored study.
A report produced for the Pentagon’s Office of Net Assessment reveals Japan’s government could arm itself with nuclear weapons within a 10-year period, based on Tokyo’s advanced nuclear power infrastructure and its present day space launchers, cruise missiles, and submarines.
Casualty estimates in the report outlining a Chinese nuclear attack on Japan indicate Tokyo would be no match in a future nuclear exchange. Japan would suffer up to 34 million deaths—27 percent of the island nation’s population—from Chinese nuclear missile strikes.
Nuclear experts were unable to calculate accurately Japanese deaths from a nuclear war because of a disagreement among analysts on whether large blasts against cities would create firestorms and thus likely double the death rate. According to one briefing slide in the report, “Either way, Japan faces extinction” from a Chinese attack.