(Editor’s Note; We encourage our readers to send us pieces to be considered for publication. This comes from Cris Gettel, a veteran of both the regular Army and National Guard. He is a graduate student currently studying international relations in the Washington DC area)

On August 16th, the Air Force Global Strike Command launched a Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile from California into the Pacific Ocean. This test was delayed after Speaker Pelosi’s controversial visit to Taiwan over fears of escalating tensions with China over the status of the disputed island. With the conflict between Russia and Ukraine and China and Taiwan, this test was a message to world powers that America retains the ability to launch nuclear strikes anywhere in the world, but what exactly is the Minuteman III ICBM?