WASHINGTON, Dec 3 (KUNA) -- The United States of America has unveiled a new formidable stealth bomber with capacities to unleash conventional and nuclear munitions.
The announcement was made late on Friday by US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, who declared that the B-21 Raider is "the first strategic bomber in more than three decades" and a "testament to America's enduring advantages in ingenuity and innovation."
Stealth bombers are famous for capacity to evade radars and carry out critical lon-range missions.
In remarks at the unveiling ceremony of the US Air Force B-21 Bomber in Palmdale, California, Austin said that the B-21 Raider is proof of the Pentagon's "long-term commitment to building advanced capabilities that will fortify America's ability to deter aggression, today and into the future."
"The Raider is designed to deliver both conventional and nuclear munitions, with formidable precision," he remarked. "So like generations of US bombers before it, the B-21 will be able to support joint and coalition forces across the full spectrum of operations."
He said that as the US "continues to innovate, this bomber will be able to defend our country with new weapons that haven't even been created yet."
"The B-21 is multi-functional. It can handle anything from intel gathering to battle management to integrating with our allies and partners. And it will work seamlessly across domains and across theaters and across the joint force," the Pentagon chief remarked. "That makes it vital to our mission to defend America and deter aggression."
He stressed that "America's defense will always be rooted in deterring conflict. So we are again making it plain to any potential foe: the risks and costs of aggression far outweigh any conceivable gains."
"This isn't just another airplane. It's not just another acquisition," he said. "It's a testament to our strategy of deterrence, with the capabilities to back it up, every time and everywhere."
The B-21, which is a "digital" bomber, has been in development for seven years. It is the world's first sixth-generation aircraft.
Six B-21 Raiders are "in various stages of final assembly and test at Northrop Grumman's plant in Palmdale," according to the company. (end)