In a blog about a month ago,
I noted that the proposed "missile shield" to putatively shoot down Iranian missiles was a total white elephant and waste of money. In an era of expanding deficits it is simply an expenditure we can't afford. The fact is that none of these missile systems-shields- whether Reagan's 'Star wars', Bush Jr's NMD, or Obama's currently proposed limited theater (European) shield, really works. All such imagined shields were shot down nearly 20 years ago by particle physicist Wolfgang Panofsky in his articulate chapter 'MAD vs. Nuts' in Particles and Policy (American Institute of Physics, 1994).
Now, a new report - which had been kept under the covers- substantiates and reinforces all the points I'd made earlier. The Report by the Defense Science Board, an advisory group to the Defense Dept., came out last year but as usual received little notice - probably because the deficit hawks didn't want it (since they have such a boner to cut social programs) and the media didn't care.
The Report actually contradicts itself by speculating "there are no fundamental roadblocks to the system" but then pointing out ginormous problems (which can only be called 'fundamental') to be fixed. This prompted even outside experts, such as a former Pentagon nuclear weapons' tester (Philip Coyle), to warn that the issues raised in the Report "would require substantial and costly changes, if they can be surmounted at all:"
And let's get a freakin' grip on priorities and proportion here for once: If people are going to piss, whine and moan about employees of the GSA spending $800, 000 of taxpayer money on a Vegas "team building" junket, but say nothing about possibly $800 million tossed on an unworkwable missile shield, then quite frankly they don't deserve to be taken seriously. They are clowns, to put it bluntly!
Already, according to a GAO report (a 2nd report) released Friday, the system is experiencing cost overruns, mainly because of "production glitches". The missile system radars are also "under powered" and - get this - the missile sensors "can't distinguish between warheads and other objects".
Well, this was the same problem that Dumbya's National Missile Defense idiocy had, which was why there were 11 of 12 failures - until the resident genii finally decided to mount a receiving beacon on the warhead of a target missile. THEN it worked! WOO Hoo! But does anyone believe any feasible enemy would be so gracious as to mount microwave beacons on their nose cones for us? DUH!!!
Besides, as Pankofsky has noted (op. cit.), it is always and invariably more cost effective to defeat any given missile shield system than to defend against an array of offensive missiles. One reason, for example, that the Raygun 'Star Wars' bunkum had to be scuttled (according to an American Physical Society study done ca. 1987) was that the Russkies were becoming adept at being able to implant millions of metallic fragments in their missile nose cones. All they would have to do, as computer models and tests showed, is deploy the fragments in flight- mainly after the boost phase - and the missile interceptors wouldn't know where to go. Dunned by deflection tactics!
The inability to discriminate an incoming missile from any other objects, shows that this same deflection tactic could also work to defeat any current shield. Thus, the missile's radar would detect milllions of decoy targets and wouldn't know which way to go. The cost of such deflecting decoys? Maybe $500 grand at most. The cost to over ride them? Probably $200 million, maybe more and even then success isn't assured.
The bottom line in all this: we have a system that's a pipe dream and will never work, as the original APS study concluded for Star Wars. It amounts to a colossal waste of money in a time of (supposed) mounting deficits, and is as daft in its own way as building 2,443 F-35s to combat an imaginary enemy, or installing a $1 billion combat air brigade at Ft. Carson, CO in 2013 to support Afghan operations when those are supposed to be over 1 year later. This is all military PORK!
Even the Poles don't buy that any such system is needed to protect them. Stefan Niesiolowski, chairman of the defense committee in the Polish Lower House of Parliament has noted such a missile system is not needed in Poland. As he has pointed out ('Missile Gaffe Leaves Europen Unfazed', WSJ, today, p. A8):
"There's no military threat and we haven't had a situation as secure as this in 300 years. The level of U.S. military engagement in Poland therefore is not of top importance."
WOW! No military threat? Then WHY do it?
The answer is simple: the military -industrial complex ensconced in the U.S. wants to invent ever more specious reasons to piss away ever more billions of our taxpayer dollars. THEN...the deficit hawks can pick up the yelp to cut social programs because of all the deficits created by "entitlements". Except they aren't caused by "entitlements" but by: a) unpaid for Bush tax cuts and b) wasteful military spending!
Obama must not allow himself to be played on this (as he has on extending the middle class Bush tax cuts). He must not allow himself to be egged on by the slimey repukes into a game of "Who takes the defense of the USA seriously?" He needs to level with people that this is a system that is too costly, impractical and will not even enhance our security. (Since the Russians - given the shield's proximity - will always see it directed at THEM!) Meanwhile, let the Reeps squeal like the stuck pigs they are. And bear in mind, these pigs will ALWAYS want more defense spending because it provides the fuckers with an excuse to "starve the Beast" (along with their tax cuts) and go after social programs. The extreme Right has made it known since the mid 60s that tax cuts and military waste -spending are the ideal means to obtain their (back door))objectives of gutting FDR's Social security program and JFK -LBJ's Medicare.
Stand up to these fuckers, Mr, President! And no more soft soaping about any "proven technologies that are proven and cost -effective". They aren't and won't be - not now or ever. Read Panofksy's book and referenced chapter if you need more convincing. And tell the Repukes to fuck off, and that you aren't biting!