Amb. Henry F. Cooper, Chairman Lt. Gen. Daniel Graham, Founder
High Frontier . . Building Truly Effective Defenses . . . Reagan’s Vision Lives!
E-Mail Message 140805
Delusional Defense . . .
By Ambassador Henry F. Cooper
August 5, 2014
“If you will not fight for right when you can easily win without bloodshed; if you will not fight when your victory is sure and not too costly; you may come to the moment when you will have to fight with all the odds against you and only a precarious chance of survival. There may even be a worse case. You may have to fight when there is no hope of victory, because it is better to perish than to live as slaves.” ~Winston Churchill
In last week’s message (Click here.), I discussed “Quick Fixes to Counter the Existential EMP Threat” described in former CIA Director R. James Woolsey’s July 23 written testimony to the House Armed Services Committee (Click here.), particularly his warning that “We must change our policy to assess these threats and deploy defenses against them.”
“There is now an increasing likelihood that rogue nations such as North Korea (and before long, most likely, Iran) will soon match Russia and China in that they will have the primary ingredients for an EMP attack: simple ballistic missiles such as SCUDs that could be launched from a freighter near our shores; space launch vehicles able to launch low- earth-orbit satellites; and simple low-yield nuclear weapons that can generate gamma rays and fireballs. In 2004, the Russians told us that their “brain drain” had been helping the North Koreans develop EMP weapons. ~ Former CIA Director R. James Woolsey”
Others have chosen to ignore—or even ridicule these threats and all who, like Woolsey, believe they are all too credible.
This is not a new dynamic—there were similar mischaracterizations of efforts throughout the Cold War to assure that our strategic forces could operate through a precursor EMP attack and permit the President to retaliate after a nuclear attack on the United States or our allies. Happily, wiser heads prevailed—which I observed close up and personally for the first twenty or so years of my professional career.
About 35 years ago, as a Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Air Force, I oversaw the development and employment of these defensive programs for all Air Force strategic and space systems, including critically important command, control and communications (C3) systems that enabled the President to communicate with his commanders, and for them to communicate with our strategic forces. At that time, Jim Woolsey—who I now call friend—was the Under Secretary of the Navy, and worked to assure that our Naval strategic systems could survive and operate through an EMP attack. He previously worked for Senator Scoop Jackson (D-WA) on strategic matters.
Jim has since served on numerous senior commissions, appointed by Congress and the Executive Branch, that have enabled him to stay current on these matters—and his views on this and other important matters are well known to be impeccably formed and articulated.
And as CIA Director, among these other important avenues of service, he gained additional facts that inform his current views in ways that go well beyond the textbook knowledge of most critics.
This is why I was astounded to see the Christian Science Monitor give voice to obviously uninformed but alleged expert views from the staff of another organization that I also have respected over the years: the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). The August 1 article by Anna Mulrine, “Is [the] US Vulnerable to EMP Attack: A Doomsday Warning and its Skeptics,” is hardly a balanced criticism of Woolsey and his testimony (Click here.).
This headline alone is unworthy of the Christian Science Monitor. Moreover, Ms. Mulrine’s explicit suggestion that alleged “experts” were decrying the “hysteria” of those warning of the existential EMP Threat was irresponsible to say the least.
In the first place, only one alleged “expert” was quoted: Dr. James Lewis, director of the Strategic Technologies Program at the CSIS, who, among other things, said “I think the wild hysteria that’s greeted EMP attacks lately is wildly overstated.”
Dr. Lewis, may be an expert on Cyber technology—which seems to be his forte based on my brief Google search, but he assuredly is not an expert on EMP matters—he definitely is not in the same league with Jim Woolsey and a number of others who share Woolsey’s views on the importance of this very real threat.
Furthermore, Lewis’ alleged technical opinions on the inherent hardness of important systems employing modern electronics are grossly misleading. And his views that no one would use EMP to attack us are absurd, betraying an astounding lack of knowledge of the world in which we live.
The Christian Science Monitor is irresponsible to give this erroneous unbalanced report the international notoriety their publications usually deserve.
Do the editors really want to rely on the strategic restraint of Dear Leader 3.0 or Iran’s Ayatollah who has openly declared, in his messages to the faithful prepared to commit suicide for their cause, death to America—the Great Satan?
For a more carefully researched presentation of technical and political issues associated with the EMP threat, I suggest the far better researched recent Forbes article by Peter Kelly-Detwiler, “Failure to Protect U.S. Against Electromagnetic Pulse Threat Could Make 9/11 Look Trivial Someday.” (Click here.)
This thoroughly researched article lays out in considerable detail the views of true experts on just why our concern is definitely not hysteria. It is based on facts—and there are others beyond this well researched presentation that can be derived from other presentations.
As John Adams once said in an unwelcome pre-Revolution defense of British soldiers, “Facts are stubborn things.” He won their acquittal by the way.
Not the least of these expert views are the EMP Commission reports of 2004 and 2008—representing the informed assessment of a number of real experts involved in these issues which were cloaked in secrecy for a half century because of the vulnerability of our strategic systems discovered in the early 1960s and our efforts to harden them to EMP. Click here for these important benchmark reports which make the extensive background public knowledge.
Since then, the EMP Commission’s conclusions have been openly endorsed by several other detailed reviews, including a notable validation by the National Academy of Sciences.
If the Christian Science Monitor is going to write on the EMP issues, you would expect at least a nod to such substantive public knowledge that contradicts Dr. Lewis.
By the way, after the end of the Cold War (and before the beginning of a possible follow-on), we learned from former Soviet scientists and engineers that they had learned more from their nuclear tests than had we from ours. In the 1960s, they actually exposed Kazakhstan’s civil infrastructure to EMP from high altitude nuclear explosions.
Would you really believe that we are the only ones who have this information on the vulnerability of such important systems? The cacophony of proliferation assures it is widely known, including to jihadi terrorist cells wishing to kill as many Americans as they can—and they are willing to commit suicide to do so!
So much for the MAD (Mutual Assured Destruction) deterrence theology propagated by the Christian Science Monitor.
To those who say that if foreign adversaries get their hands on a nuclear weapon they will only destroy a city, not risk the absurdity of an EMP attack—I say, “I hope you are right.” The American people will then most likely wake up to this threat—as they usually recognize problems after a disaster—and demand that the surviving “powers that be” deal with it.
But if “EMP skeptics” are wrong and we in our current unprepared state are exposed to an EMP attack, it will be too late to do anything about our vulnerability—we will be living back in the 18th century America without our just-in-time electricity-dependent economy.
So, quite literally, how does your garden grow? Or would you rather that we employ the “quick fix” I wrote about last week?
Better than “delusional defense” of Dr. Lewis, I would argue.
P.S. By the way, Lloyds of London takes the matter of the threat from Solar storms to be sufficiently serious to warrant their own detailed 2013 study of the threat to unhardened grid of American Northeast—wonder what is going to happen to insurance rates??? (Click here for a link to this important report.)
Near Term High Frontier Plans.
We are renewing our efforts to inform the state and local authorities—and publics—in states around the Gulf of Mexico of the important role their states can play in defending all Americans against the existential EMP threat from missiles approaching North America from the south.
Given the lethargy in Washington, we will continue informing all who will listen about the existential EMP threat and expanding our work with the National Guard to help them gain knowledge and workable plans to help harden the electric power grid and counter the EMP threat. This work will go hand in hand with efforts of State legislators who are seeking to expand on the excellent work of those in Maine and Virginia, who have passed legislation requiring serious studies of the EMP threat and the needed countermeasures to protect the electric power grid.
The most recent bill passed in record time without a single negative vote in Virginia can be used as a ready pattern.
We are working with South Carolina National Guard to plan tabletop exercises to help them understand how best to engage constructively with private citizens and their local and state representatives and other authorities to understand and respond to this serious threat.We also are supporting related activities in neighboring and other states.
We are informing SC state legislators and senators about the threat and what can be done to deal with it—hopefully they will follow Maine and Virginia in seeking to harden the electric power grid. We also expect support from Cong. Jeff Duncan (R-SC) whose district includes my SC farm—and who is a member of the Congressional EMP Caucus seeking passage of the Shield Act and the Infrastructure Protection Act, as well as other SC representatives.
We will be working with members of the EMP Coalition and others who are seeking to take our message across the country—especially with Bob Newman, a former Adjutant General of Virginia, to help us link our SC plans more broadly and especially into Virginia and the National Capital region.
What can you do?
Join us in praying for our nation, and for a rebirth of the freedom sought, achieved and passed to us by those who came before us.
Help us to spread our message to the grass roots and to encourage all “powers that be” to provide for the common defense as they are sworn to do.
Begin by passing this message to your friends and suggest they visit our webpage, www.highfrontier.org for more information. Also, please encourage your sphere of influence to sign up for our weekly e-newsletter.
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