US missile defense system, waste of $250 billion investment
Wed Jul 31, 2013 1:24AM
The principal flaw is that any adversary capable of making long-range missiles can also make simple decoy warheads that could easily defeat the planned system." Yousaf M. Butt, Federation of American ScientistsA recent failure in the US missile defense system where the interceptor missed the target means 30 years of research and around $250 billion in investment on the project have failed to yield any results. In a Wednesday letter published by the New York Times, Yousaf M. Butt, a senior fellow at the Federation of American Scientists, writes the system’s problems should be removed before spending any more money on it.
“In fact, the architecture of the planned “midcourse” missile defense is so inherently flawed that the laws of physics would have to be violated in order to correct its problems,” Butt said.On July 5, an advanced missile-defense interceptor, fired from Vandenberg air base in California, failed to hit a long-range ballistic missile launched from an American Army test site at Kwajalein atoll in the Marshall Islands. The tests are rigged as they are conducted in what the program’s director, Vice Admiral James Syring of the Navy, calls a “controlled, scripted environment.” “The principal flaw is that any adversary capable of making long-range missiles can also make simple decoy warheads that could easily defeat the planned system,” the letter added. The writer concludes that investing on such a flawed system only hurts American national security. It has cost the US $34 billion to have 30 of the ground-based interceptors in Alaska and California. Despite the repeated failures, the administration announced in March that it would increase the number of interceptors to 44 by 2017. The additional missiles will be deployed in silos at Fort Greely, Alaska, where there are already 26 interceptors. MA/MA