Strategic Advantage of Missile Defense Seems Shelved
The new short film “33 Minutes” (the six-page article) illuminates how much time we have to kiss some of our butts goodbye if a nuclear strike is launched by Korea or Iran against the US. But which of those countries is aligned with a terrorist organization? We know Iran is, but not sure about Korea.
Ten years ago, there were only 6 nuclear weapons states. Today, almost 30 countries have ballistic missile capability (Peter Brookes/ “Missile Defense: Now More Than Ever.”) Unfriendly countries include, but are not limited to Iran, North Korea, China, Russia, and Venezuela/Hugo Chavez.
Just a few days ago, the China navy jostled with an unarmed US Navy service vessel in the South China Sea. Shin Dingli, and expert on US-China relations in Shanghai, said “China won’t be as accommodating as before” about US trips into international waters close to China.
Iran has publicly stated they would like to wipe Israel of the face of the map. Iran has been supplying terrorist organizations (AQI/ al-Qaeda Iraq) for years. It would be more than easy for a supposed ‘terrorist’ to allegedly commandeer a missile and send it Israel’s or America’s way.
Even North Korea has warned that any close proximity of any allied vessel would result in severe consequences.
Missile defense is only an interceptor missile directly colliding with a foreign launched “kill” vehicle. There is no volatile payload associated with an interceptor. As opposed to the ability to hit a “bullet” with a “bullet”, current technology allows the US to hit a spot on a “bullet” with a “bullet” (“33 Minutes”).
The closing speed of the interceptor and the “kill” vehicle will be 15,000 mph (4 miles per second). Missile defense has a 37 to 47 record of successes going back to 2001, so it has been proven to work.
It is also known that Russia is selling missiles to Iran. Russia has raised serious concerns with a missile shield on Poland and the Czech Republic— former satellite states of Russia, not NATO. America and Russia are cognizant of several things: 1) shield proposed cannot thwart all-out attack by Russia’s 2000 ICBMs, 2) the proposed missiles have no offensive capability, 3) Russia fears that missile shield would blunt its nuclear threat, and 4) Russia always thinks in retaliatory steps, but knows US shield is defensive only.
It is very true that a missile shield would lessen Russia’s prominence in the world as a superpower. It’s tough to live with that fact, and their mindset. Russia is afraid of this status change, and feels it must exert its present power.
The cost for a missile shield is high. But back in WWII, % of GDP for defense was over 40% of the US budget. In today’s context, even with supplemental appropriations, it’s only slightly higher than 4%.
But per the US Constitution, the fundamental role of the government makes it necessary to be prepared to defend America in the common defense, found in the 1st paragraph of the Preamble. General Hayden (Air Force) recently reiterated the security concern of Russia’s nuclear weapons falling into the hands of Muslim terrorists. He also says that even though Russia admits that terrorism is an urgent danger, there are disagreements on how to handle it.
In a 2008 YouTube video, Obama says, “I will cut investments in unproven missile defense systems. I will negotiate with Russia…to achieve deep cuts in our nuclear arsenals.” After elected, Obama has stated he is “undecided”.
United Arab Emirates (UAE) has signed an agreement with U.S. defense contractor Raytheon for anti-aircraft missiles (Media Line). The UAE will buy the system for $6.9 billion (Source). NATO is on-board with a US missile defense shield, and plans to co-ordinate theirs with the US. Even though both Poland and the Czech Republic have signed on with the US missile shield, the new administration does not feel like they need to honor those contracts.
One can conclude several things from the above information:
1) existing missile defense can antiquate an ICBM nuclear arsenal
2) missile defense success history is an excellent deterrent, even with flaws
3) any ICBM can be armed with nuclear, or WMD munitions
4) terrorist ICBM would make acquisition of a “return address” difficult
5) without missile defense, America or any other nation, could be held hostage with the threat of ICBM attack
6) “missile-ready” countries are likely to double to 60 in the next 10 years
7) without missile defense, your only option is apologize to those who died
8) Obama wants the option to retaliate and possibly incinerate millions
If one had the option of eliminating ICBMs, of garnering billions of dollars for their technical expertise, eliminating the concept of Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD), saving lives, and keeping the vast majority of its citizens safe per the Constitution, do you think they’d do it?
It seems Obama has already said no. If that’s the case, a rogue missile launch could give him 33 minutes to say “coulda”…, “shoulda”…
Kevin Roeten can be reached at email@example.com.