Amb. Henry F. Cooper, Chairman Lt. Gen. Daniel Graham, Founder
High Frontier . . Building Truly Effective Defenses . . Reagan’s Vision Lives!
Flash Message 130419
Build the Most Effective Defenses Possible, Please!
April 19, 2013
Our ballistic missile defense (BMD) systems simply are not optimum for confronting all the threats before us—not even to counter potential North Korean intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) threats; and our engineers should be able to exploit the full range of technological possibilities to build the most effective defenses possible.
That our current defenses need improvement was illustrated when Defense Secretary Hagel ordered additional ground based interceptors be built and deployed in Alaska to counter the threat of North Korean (and potentially Iranian) ballistic missiles launched over the North Pole to attack the United States. And Congress recently directed the Obama administration to consider East Coast defenses because our defenses based in Alaska and California are not optimally placed to defend against missiles launched by Iran over the North Pole.
Then, our last two email messages have observed that when North Korea can load a 220 pound nuclear weapon in a satellite, it has already demonstrated it could attack the United States from the south by launching that satellite over the South Pole and detonating that weapon 300 miles up over Omaha—and the resulting electromagnetic pulse (EMP) could cause a couple hundred million Americans to perish over the next six months to a year. We need to improve our defenses against this possibility.
We can exploit the inherent capability of the Standard Missile-3 (SM-3) interceptor carried by our Aegis cruisers and destroyers deployed in international waters around the world. Advance warning and tracking information should be provided to the Aegis BMD system so some ships can shoot North Korean missiles down while they are still rising from their launch pads. Such advanced warning and tracking information, including that from our Aegis ships, can also enhance the capability of our ground based interceptors (especially those in California) to intercept such satellites before they reach U.S. territory. A longer term improvement is to increase the velocity of the SM-3 interceptors so that they can defend from a wider area deployment and against higher altitude satellites.
Nothing should be allowed to restrict our best engineers’ ability to employ the best technology and system designs in providing these defense improvements as soon as possible. But reports (e.g., see this link.) suggest that Secretary of State John Kerry recently promised the Chinese that we would limit our missile defenses if they would help get the North Koreans to back off their threats of nuclear attacks. Bad, bad deal!
We’ve seen this play before—in the mid-to-late 1990s, the Clinton administration negotiated an agreement with Russia to limit the velocity of our theater missile defense interceptors to demonstrate its commitment to the Antiballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty (actually increasing the Treaty constraints) as the “cornerstone of strategic stability”—a reference to its continuing commitment to Mutual Assured Destruction (MAD) in the “post-Cold
War” new world disorder. This foolish constraint limited the altitude to which our interceptors could reach—we want none of this kind of limitation now or in the future.
It took us 30-years to get rid of the ABM Treaty which adopted as the “law of the land” a policy of deliberately leaving the American people completely defenseless to ballistic missile attack. Please let such thinking remain dead!
Thankfully, Rep. Mike Rogers (R-AL), chairman of the House Armed Services Subcommittee on strategic forces, is onto this kind of appeasement and its apparent central role in our current foreign policy. Last Monday, he wrote to Secretary Kerry that “Many of our Asian allies have watched with consternation the success with which Russia has obtained concessions from the Obama administration about U.S. missile defenses that NATO allies have agreed to host,” and then stated: “No doubt, many Asian allies wondered when China would begin to seek similar concessions.” For a discussion of this important correspondence, see this link.
Then, the Chairman of the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Tactical and Land forces, Mike Turner (R-OH) wrote to President Obama on April 17 about his concern that, with the threat from North Korea and the emerging threat from Iran, the President’s missile defense strategy was “languishing, resulting in additional risk to the United States, increased cost to the taxpayer and needless alienation of our allies.“ And he correctly observed that our allies and enemies are watching this strategy compromise and its constraints on “the implementation of missile defense programs, while seeking elusive Russian approval of the right of the United States to defend itself.”
Amen! And ditto for dealing with China as well!
We need to build the very best missile defenses our technology permits—and as quickly as possible. Ronald Reagan had it right. And not only on missile defenses. Peace through Strength is as sound a policy today as it was then. And weakness is provocative in today’s dangerous world.
And what should you do?
We can use your help in spreading the word to grass roots and local authorities to press the powers that be to provide for the common defense as they are sworn to do. Will you do your part?
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!