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In this issue:

  • Meet Castelion
  • News from Amazon and more

a16z-backed Castelion wants to mass-produce defense hardware, starting with hypersonics

One builds weapons in the hope that they are not used. Thus goes the central premise of deterrence theory, which says it is the credible threat of aggression — not the use of aggression — that will ensure states avoid war.

This theory has dominated much of America’s strategic thinking over the past 50-plus years, but new technologies and new adversaries threaten to upend the status quo. For the first time, China has started to outpace the U.S. in critical weapons programs — the country developed a new type of weapon called a hypersonic glide vehicle as early as 2014, which can strike Taipei and the Taiwan Strait in about 20 minutes from its strategic bases in the South China Sea. America’s comparative sluggishness to develop such tech could result in the U.S. falling catastrophically behind its adversaries.

The founders of Castelion, a startup that emerged from stealth this week, cut straight to the point: “Simply put — this cannot be allowed to happen.”

More news from across TC

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