Skip to comments.Pentagon Downs Missile in Simulated Attack to Test Proposed Shield
Posted on 12/06/2008 5:23:08 AM PST by ETLEdited on 12/06/2008 6:10:03 AM PST by Admin Moderator. [history]
WASHINGTON -- The Defense Department said Friday it shot down a missile in a simulated attack designed to test a proposed shield against strikes by long-range ballistic missiles from nations such as North Korea.
The Pentagon's Missile Defense Agency used an interceptor missile launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California to knock down a missile meant to simulate the speed and trajectory of a North Korean attack. It struck the target missile around 3:30 p.m., shortly after the target was launched from a location in Alaska.
The military has conducted a series of tests in the past several years of the different components of the defensive shield, which is slated to include Patriot air defense batteries, anti-ballistic missiles launched from Navy ships and lasers mounted in planes designed to shoot down incoming missiles.
February 29, 2008 :: News
A video has surfaced of Presidential candidate Senator Barack Obama talking on his plans for strategic issues such as nuclear weapons and missile defense.
The full text from the video, as released, reads as follows:
Thanks so much for the Caucus4Priorities, for the great work you've been doing. As president, I will end misguided defense policies and stand with Caucus4Priorities in fighting special interests in Washington.
First, I'll stop spending $9 billion a month in Iraq. I'm the only major candidate who opposed this war from the beginning. And as president I will end it.[i.e. not win it]
Second, I will cut tens of billions of dollars in wasteful spending.
I will cut investments in unproven missile defense systems.
I will not weaponize space.
I will slow our development of future combat systems.
And I will institute an independent "Defense Priorities Board" to ensure that the Quadrennial Defense Review is not used to justify unnecessary spending.
Third, I will set a goal of a world without nuclear weapons. To seek that goal, I will not develop new nuclear weapons; I will seek a global ban on the production of fissile material; and I will negotiate with Russia to take our ICBMs off hair-trigger alert, and to achieve deep cuts in our nuclear arsenals.
You know where I stand. I've fought for open, ethical and accountable government my entire public life. I don't switch positions or make promises that can't be kept. I don't posture on defense policy and I don't take money from federal lobbyists for powerful defense contractors. As president, my sole priority for defense spending will be protecting the American people. Thanks so much.
Article: Obama Pledges Cuts in Missile Defense, Space, and Nuclear Weapons Programs:
"MissileThreat.com is a project of The Claremont Institute devoted to understanding and promoting the requirements for the strategic defense of the United States."
Next, an expert analysis of Obama's proposals...
Obama Promises to Dismantle Our Armed Forces
by Robert Maginnis
Posted 04/10/2008 ET
Mr. Maginnis is a retired Army lieutenant colonel, a national security and foreign affairs analyst for radio and television and a senior strategist with the U.S. Army.
YouTube has an undated 52-second clip [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7o84PE871BE October, 2007 -ETL] of Democratic presidential candidate Senator Barrack Obama outlining his plans for Americas national defense. Obamas presentation demonstrates either total naivete about important national security programs or he is just pandering for votes among the extreme left.
Watch Obamas message and consider some inconvenient facts about his national security promises.
Im the only major candidate to oppose this war from the beginning and as president I will end it. No one likes war: especially those who have to do the fighting and dying. Yet, our military leaders make clear that the consequences of a rapid withdrawal from Iraq as Obama seeks would be disastrous not only for American interests in the region but for Iraq itself. It would provide a propaganda victory for al Qaeda and Iran because they will be able to claim they defeated America. Further, it could worsen the Iraqi civil war, create an unstable Mideast and further spike oil prices.
Second, I will cut tens of billions of dollars in wasteful spending. Anyone who has worked with the military for any length of time knows there is waste, often in weapons systems. Recently, the Government Accountability Office found that 95 major weapons systems -- including the Joint Strike Fighter and the Littoral Combat Ship -- have exceeded their original budgets. These cost overruns could be the result of waste or mismanagement or, perhaps, the development and fielding of sophisticated new weapons with constantly changing requirements is difficult and inefficient.
The senator should understand there is a difference between waste and defense spending. But does he? There is no reason to think so in any of his speeches or position papers. Obamas employer, the US Congress, indulges in pork barrel earmarks contributing to wasteful Pentagon spending. Earmarks circumvent merit-based systems to create jobs in favored congressional districts and saddle the military with unwanted -- wasteful -- programs.
I will cut investments in unproven missile defense systems. Recently, both our sea-based and ground-based missile systems proved to be successful. On Feb 20, the USS Lake Erie armed with an SM-3 missile destroyed a wayward satellite traveling at more than 17,000 MPH more than 100 miles high. In September, 2007, our ground-based midcourse defense system killed a dummy missile over the Pacific using an interceptor stationed in Alaska. The US Bureau of Arms Control warns, The ballistic missile danger to the US, its forces deployed abroad, and allies and friends is real and growing.
I will not weaponize space. Americas current policy is not to weaponize space. However, its important for policy makers to recognize the USs dependence on space. Our banking, communications and navigation systems almost entirely depend on satellites. Space lines of communication are as essential for commerce today as sea lines of communication were two centuries ago. Does Obama mean he wouldnt provide defensive systems for our satellites? Apparently so.
Surrendering space to rogue nations and pirates places our economy and military at risk. Anti-satellite weaponry will proliferate and must be countered.
I will slow our development of future combat systems. Our combat systems are becoming ancient. Our air force is flying aircraft which are based on 1940s and 1950s technology and our army is driving 1960s and 1970s vintage vehicles. Older equipment is expensive, time consuming to maintain and potentially dangerous.
The Armys Future Combat Systems (FCS) is the first full-spectrum modernization effort in nearly 40 years. It will replace Cold War-era relics with full-spectrum operations capable modular systems designed to operate in complex terrain. It can also be adapted to civil support, such as disaster relief.
Failing to develop future combat systems puts American warriors at risk and unnecessarily jeopardizes our security.
"...and I will institute an independent defense priorities board to ensure that the Quadrennial Defense Review is not used to justify unnecessary spending. Congress created the QDR as an every four-year analysis intended to balance defense strategy and programs with resources.
In 2007, the Government Accountability Office, an independent defense priorities board in its own right, published its analysis of the most recent QDR. It lauded the Bush administration for sustained involvement of senior officials, extensive collaboration with interagency partners and creating a database to track implementation of initiatives. The GAO faulted Congress for failing to clarify its expectations regarding what budget information the Pentagon should provide.
To make matters worse, Congress 2008 Defense Authorization Act created two new and redundant every four year analyses. One is an independent military assessment of roles and missions and the other identifies core mission areas, competenceis and capabilities.
Obama is right to criticize the QDR because it has become an exercise in fantasy but his Congressional colleagues keep piling on new requirements. The senator can help the Pentagon by scaling back on the analyses requirements. Just tell the military what the country can afford and then have the services explain what they will buy and how much risk we will have to accept.
To seek that goal I will not develop new nuclear weapons. Thats dangerous. Our present nuclear arsenal will atrophy if it isnt modernized. According to the head of the militarys Strategic Command, Air Force Gen. Kevin Chilton, our warheads are aging and werent designed to last forever, making him nervous. I liken it to approaching a cliff -- and I dont know how far away from that cliff I am, Chilton said.
Ambassador Linton F. Brooks, administrator of the USs National Nuclear Security Administration, said we have a new program that will potentially reduce the number of warheads and make them safer. Its called the Reliable Replacement Warhead program and contemplates designing new components for previously tested nuclear packages. The RRW would create, Brooks said, a "reduced chance we will ever need to resort to nuclear testing" again.
I will seek a global ban on the production of fissile material... Nations capable of producing nuclear weapons produce fissile material for their atomic arsenals. Many of these same nations produce fissile material to fuel their nuclear power plants which light millions of homes and are a cheap, clean energy source in a world concerned about hydrocarbon pollution.
Efforts to control the production of fissile material date back to the 1946 Baruch Plan but that attempt was abandoned during the Cold War. In 1992, President George H.W. Bush announced that the US no longer produced fissile material for nuclear weapons and in 1993 President Bill Clinton called for Fissile Material Cutoff Treaty negotiations. While this is a worthy goal it is not achievable in an energy hungry world.
...and I will negotiate with Russia to take our ICBMs off hair trigger alert...
The US nuclear forces are not on hair trigger alert. Only a portion of Americas deployed nuclear forces maintain a ready alert status.
Besides, our policy does not rely on a launch on warning strategy. Rather, our forces are postured to provide flexibility by raising the readiness status of the force and by putting weapons systems on alert when necessary.
...and to achieve deep cuts in our nuclear arsenals. Our nuclear arsenal is a deterrent against enemies with similar systems. Deep cuts without verifiable reciprocal cuts would be dangerous. However, we are making progress via the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty which proposes a reduction of the overall threathold of up to 1,500 warheads. Russia has approximately 4,162 and the US has 5,866 strategic warheads and both nations possess thousands of tactical weapons and reserve stocks as well.
Senator Obamas national security views expressed in his 52-second video reflect that of a knee-jerk liberal academic who thinks that the US is the primary threat to world peace. His views are dangerously naive and his statements suggest a shallow understanding of national security issues and in some cases his facts are wrong.
Mr. Maginnis is a retired Army lieutenant colonel, a national security and foreign affairs analyst for radio and television and a senior strategist with the U.S. Army.
Article: Obama Promises to Dismantle Our Armed Forces
by Robert Maginnis, 04/10/2008
Here's the video. It's from the Obama camp itself:
Russia, China flex muscles in joint war games
Reuters: Aug 17, 2007
CHEBARKUL, Russia (Reuters) - Russia and China staged their biggest joint exercises on Friday but denied this show of military prowess could lead to the formation of a counterweight to NATO.
"Today's exercises are another step towards strengthening the relations between our countries, a step towards strengthening international peace and security, and first and foremost, the security of our peoples," Putin said.
Fighter jets swooped overhead, commandos jumped from helicopters on to rooftops and the boom of artillery shells shook the firing range in Russia's Ural mountains as two of the largest armies in the world were put through their paces.
The exercises take place against a backdrop of mounting rivalry between the West, and Russia and China for influence over Central Asia, a strategic region that has huge oil, gas and mineral resources.
Russia's growing assertiveness is also causing jitters in the West. Putin announced at the firing range that Russia was resuming Soviet-era sorties by its strategic bomber aircraft near NATO airspace.
From National Public Radio (NPR):
August 29, 2006
"Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has been visiting countries such as China, Iran and Russia as part of an effort to build a 'strategic alliance' of interests not beholden to the United States. He considers the United States his arch enemy.":
From the Russian News and Information Agency:
July 27, 2006
"'I am determined to expand relations with Russia,' Chavez, known as an outspoken critic of what he calls the United States' unilateralism, told the Russian leader, adding that his determination stemmed from their shared vision of the global order.":
From Investors Business Daily:
September 8, 2008
"On Monday, Russia accepted Chavez's invitation for a first-ever joint naval exercise with Venezuela."
From The Associated Press:
Russian navy ships head to maneuvers in Venezuela
September 22, 2008
MOSCOW - A Russian navy squadron set off for Venezuela Monday, an official said, in a deployment of Russian military power to the Western Hemisphere unprecedented since the Cold War.
Venezuela Set to Develop Nuclear Power With Russia
September 29, 2008
CARACAS, Venezuela President Hugo Chavez said Sunday that Russia will help Venezuela develop nuclear energy a move likely to raise U.S. concerns over increasingly close cooperation between Caracas and Moscow.
Venezuela's Chavez welcomes Russian warships
Nov 25, 2008
LA GUAIRA, Venezuela Russian warships arrived off Venezuela's coast Tuesday in a show of strength aimed at the United States as Moscow seeks to expand its influence in Latin America. The deployment is the first of its kind in the Caribbean since the Cold War and was timed to coincide with President Dmitry Medvedev's visit to Caracas the first ever by a Russian president.
Biden predicts early crisis will test Obama
October 20, 2008
From CNN Political Producer Alexander Marquardt Biden predicts Obama will have to make some unpopular decisions in his first six months in office. Biden predicts Obama will have to make some unpopular decisions in his first six months in office.
SEATTLE (CNN) Joe Biden told Democratic fundraisers Sunday night that there is no doubt in his mind a crisis will occur during Barack Obama's first six months in office that will test his mettle and force him to make unpopular decisions.
"Mark my words. It will not be six months before the world tests Barack Obama like they did John Kennedy," said Biden to a roomful of donors. "The world is looking. We're about to elect a brilliant 47-year-old senator president of the United States of America."
"Remember I said it standing here, if you don't remember anything else I said," Biden continued. "Watch, we're going to have an international crisis, a generated crisis, to test the mettle of this guy.
The closest the world has come to nuclear war was the Cuban Missile Crisis of October 1962. The Soviets had installed nuclear missiles in Cuba, just 90 miles off the coast of the United States. U.S. armed forces were at their highest state of readiness. Soviet field commanders in Cuba were authorized to use tactical nuclear weapons if invaded by the U.S. The fate of millions literally hinged upon the ability of two men, President John F. Kennedy and Premier Nikita Khrushchev, to reach a compromise.
Russian nuclear bombers in Cuba?
July 23, 2008
The media has been abuzz today at the prospect of Russian nuclear bombers being stationed in Cuba if the US goes ahead with plans for missile defense bases in Eastern Europe.
The story has riled the US enough that a US general has been wheeled out to tell the worlds press that any Russian attempt to build another nuclear base in Cuba would cross US red line.
The story broke earlier this week, when Russian newspaper Izvestia quoted an un-named source from within the Russian military. He told the Russian daily:
While they are deploying the missile shield in Poland and the Czech Republic, our strategic bombers will already be landing in Cuba.
The quote hasnt been independently confirmed, but the Russian Defense Ministry added fuel to the fire when they refused to comment on the story.
The prospect of Russian nuclear forces being stationed in Cuba - which is, after all, only 90 miles from the US coast - would bring back some rather unpleasant memories for the US of the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962, where the Soviet Union under Nikita Kruschev launched an audacious and foolhardy bid to station nuclear missiles on the Caribbean island.
"the greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the [20th] century" -Russian leader Vladimir Putin on the collapse of the Soviet Union...
"World democratic opinion has yet to realize the alarming implications of President Vladimir Putin's State of the Union speech on April 25, 2005, in which he said that the collapse of the Soviet Union represented the 'greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the century.'
1. U.S. acceptance of coexistence as the only alternative to atomic war.
2. U.S. willingness to capitulate in preference to engaging in atomic war.
3. Develop the illusion that total disarmament [by] the United States would be a demonstration of moral strength.
'Goals' 4-45 can be found here or at many other sites through a web search for "45 goals":
Obama and the case of the missing 'thesis'
July 24, 2008
By Jim Popkin, NBC News Senior Investigative Producer
The hunt for Obamas senior thesis began with a throwaway line in a newspaper article last October. The New York Times story, on Obamas early New York years, mentioned in passing that the presidential contender had majored in political science at Columbia and had spent his time writing his thesis on Soviet nuclear disarmament.
Journalists began hounding Columbia University for copies of the musty document. Conservative bloggers began wondering if the young Obama had written a no-nukes screed that he might come to regret. And David Bossie, the former congressional investigator and right-wing hit man, as one newspaper described him, took out classified newspaper ads in Columbia Universitys newspaper and the Chicago Tribune in March searching for the term paper.
Bossie came up dry, but said the effort was well worth it:
A thesis entitled Soviet Nuclear Disarmament, written at the height of The Cold War in 1983, might shed some light upon what Barack Obama thought about our most pressing foreign policy issue for 40-plus years (U.S.-Soviet Relations), he wrote in an e-mail to NBC News.
Here is the passage from the New York Times that the above article refers to:
"He barely mentions Columbia, training ground for the elite, where he transferred in his junior year, majoring in political science and international relations and writing his thesis on Soviet nuclear disarmament. He dismisses in one sentence his first community organizing job work he went on to do in Chicago though a former supervisor remembers him as 'a star performer.'"
Obamas Account of New York Years Often Differs From What Others Say
By JANNY SCOTT, October 30, 2007:
We should abandon ALL defense systems because we can't prevent every type of attack. /s
It's relatively easy to smuggle a WMD into a population center, particularly one on the coast. It's really hard to smuggle a WMD onto a military base or missile field. If somebody takes out our missiles in a first strike, we have no choice but to surrender. If somebody takes out a city, but leaves our ability to retaliate intact, then they are in big trouble.
During the campaign he didn't know what the heck he was talking about when he spouted all that jive. I suspect that he's already finding out that cold hard reality has a way of changing one's perception about defense technology when it suddenly becomes his responsibility if an American city goes up in a mushroom cloud under his watch.
The Messiah is already causing anguish on the left by drifting to the center on some issues.
I am far more concerned about the lunatics in Congress.
Nope. But it removes Kim Jong’s ability to threaten the US with his missile leaving more eyes to watch for your keel scenario.
One can only believe that he will cahnge if they believe that he is serious about defending America in the first place. I am afraid that he considers most of our enemies his friends and people he can simply palay with.
I keep thinking about how the French spent millions building the Marginot (sp?) line as a defensive barrier against the Germans in WW2, and the Germans just went around it.
No war as far as I know historically has ever been won being totally defensive.
However we must not stop at winning last years wars technologically, any offensive weapon system can be countered in time, our national policy is to ALWAYS keep building a better Armed Forces.
There may come a day in the future when all of mankind will depend on who has a better weapons system.
Any defensive system can be defeated. The value of the defense system is the uncertainty it creates in the attacker, as to how successful an attack may be. An attack which merely pisses off your target, and leaves intact his ability to launch a counter-attack, is to be avoided.
I agree with you, Obama has not the mindset of being a leader of the masses, he only believes in himself.
I bet the first thing he does when he gets into the Whitehouse is to find out the best hidey hole the SS has for him when the shiite hits the fan.
And you know what? he is going to need it when Islam issues a Fatwa against him.
Obama will cut and run when America needs him, I will bet on it.
Maybe you should send an email to the CIA.
I don't think that the missile shield has ever claimed tobe able to thwart an all out Soviet or Russian attack. What it could do is shoot down a limited "rogue or accidental launch" or a launch by a nation such as North Korea or Iran.
It only takes one nuke to ruin your whole day.
Its a good system in that respect like if Iran was to conceal a missile or missiles in a cargo container or any other ship and managed to launch a salvo with minutes of Washington DC or any viable target along the east coast then yes it would be worth it.
And I hope they try it, give us another Pearl Harbor, actually December 7th is tomorrow....
Spend all that money to prevent a N. Korean attack! Riiiight.
That was the philosophy behind MAD and it was very successful throughout the cold war. But what happens when our enemy thinks that we will not retaliate....or worse yet....doesn't care?
Thanks for posting this thread. Even though we all know it, perhaps some libtards reading FR will learn something.