Wednesday :: Jan 5, 2005

Unproven Missile Defense Already Obsolete

by soccerdad

The prematurely deployed, over-hyped, unproven missile defense system that is supposed to protect us from incoming missiles is apparently now obsolete. Scott Ritter writing in the Christian Science Monitor reports that Russia has successfully tested its SS-27 Topol-M road-mobile intercontinental ballistic Missile (ICBM).

According to the Russians, the Topol-M has high-speed solid-fuel boosters that rapidly lift the missile into the atmosphere, making boost-phase interception impossible unless one is located practically next door to the launcher. The SS-27 has been hardened against laser weapons and has a highly maneuverable post-boost vehicle that can defeat any intercept capability as it dispenses up to three warheads and four sophisticated decoys.

The hardening against lasers means that the proposed capability of shooting lasers from satellites will not bring down the missiles and the post boost phase maneuvering capability and the use of sophisticated decoys will make intercept in latter phases virtually impossible. The current system has a mixed history against non-maneuvering targets with no decoys.

Its always been difficult to determine what the overall strategy of Bush has been. It would appear that he wanted to increase the nuclear capability of the US as demonstrated by his withdrawal from a number of treaties and requests for increased funding. Knowing that other countries would respond by increasing their capabilities, he then planned to protect us with an unproven intercept system that is already obsolete but has cost us billions of dollars. It seems clear to me that today we are less safe than we were. In addition, his belligerant policy towards Putin does not help the situation. Once again Bush's plan, although having somewhat of a theoretical basis, is completely divorced from cold hard reality.

soccerdad :: 4:52 AM :: Comments (17) :: Digg It!