Anyone who seriously reads about National Missile Defense (NMD) knows that it will take decades to develop and fully test a system. However, this has not dissuaded racketeers in the U.S. Congress from demanding that contracts be signed to deploy a system now. While the U.S. military has learned to thoroughly test weapons, called "fly before you buy", some corrupt Congressmen want to start buying large numbers of expensive missiles, radars, and satellites for a theoretical NMD system. Last year, one of America's leading experts on space weaponry, Professor Theodore Postol, of MIT proclaimed: "There is no question that the huge missile defense program promoted under Reagan, the so-called SDI, was a scientific fraud. It cost American taxpayers well over $100 billion, spent mostly on experiments that never had a chance of real success. His view of current plans for NMD: "the public may be facing an even worse rip-off."
A more important issue is that the CIA concluded that ballistic missiles are the least likely way that a nuclear weapon would be delivered at the USA. Simply loading a weapon on a ship and exploding it near a major U.S. city is far cheaper, far simpler, far more reliable, and does not leave a trail back to its origin. The irony is that, if a workable NMD system is ever fielded, it only guarantees that a better method of delivery would be used, like a civilian airplane, ship, or truck. Tons of drugs are smuggled into the USA each year, can NMD stop that dangerous cargo? Almost two million people illegally cross America's borders each year with un-inspected luggage, can NMD stop them? Why spend billions of dollars each year on NMD while ignoring the real dangers?
The NMD scam is so obvious that Senator John Warner has begun to argue that NMD is needed to prevent accidental launches. However, history has shown that all governments keep tight "fail safe" controls over their nuclear missile systems. Only Russia and maybe China have missiles that can reach the USA. Former Senator Sam Nunn warns that the greatest threat are the "thousands upon thousands" of missing "loose nukes" from Soviet tactical nuclear weapons. The Nunn-Lugar program to find and destroy these warheads has proven very successful, but Congress has limited funding since much of the money flows to Russia. Congress is also reluctant to spend billions of dollars on true "National Defense" by expanding the U.S. Border Patrol, U.S. Customs, and the U.S. Coast Guard.
Congress shows no interest dedicating money on real programs to protect Americans from weapons of mass destruction because spending on manpower does not result in kickbacks in the form of "campaign contributions", which can be spent on travel, meals, and entertainment. These bribes can also be laundered by paying friends and relatives as "campaign staff". President Bush wants far more than the $13 billion now spent on "missile defense" each year; which includes $6 billion in secret NRO funding. American Generals and Admirals once resisted wasting money from their budgets on these dubious projects, so Congress now funds them in a separate accounts, often defying the constitutional requirement for accounting of public funds by hiding money in secret "black" accounts.
Both major parties in the U.S. Congress have discovered that military spending is easy to justify and generates kickbacks from defense contractors who "contributed" over $13 million into their pockets last years. The major contractors involved in NMD are all major "contributors" and the biggest NMD supporters in Congress pocketed the most. These NMD racketeers also fund several "think tanks" full of academic prostitutes to deceive the American people. Americans should also be concerned that their Vice President just left the board of TRW as his wife left the board of Lockheed-Martin, while the new Secretary of the Navy came from General Dynamics and the Secretary of the Air Force from Northrop-Grumman.
Fortunately, the new Chairman of the Senate Armed Services committee, Carl Levin, recently displayed some insight when he said: "The greater threat is the truck or the suitcase or the ship delivering a weapon of mass destruction. I think we've spent too much time on the least-likely means of delivering a weapon of mass destruction. We have to put more eggs in that antiterrorist basket."
Optimistic Americans can hope that corruption is not the only force driving NMD. British Labour Member of Parliament, Tony Benn, believes that NMD is just a ruse to deploy space-to-ground weaponry. The ability to fire lasers from space at targets on the surface would be the ultimate weapon. The biggest obstacle is how to provide the fuel, which is why reusable space vehicles have been getting attention. However, objects in space cannot hide, so they are vulnerable to surface-to-space weapons, which was proven during actual US-Soviet battles during the Cold war, as an article in this issue reveals.
The 1967 Outer Space Treaty bans putting weapons of mass destruction in space or on the moon or other celestial bodies. The 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty prohibits targeting another country's satellites. Nevertheless, the Pentagon has been moving in the direction of planning for warfare in space. In late January, the Air Force's Space Warfare Center staged the Defense Department's first major war game to focus on space as the theater for combat operations. The scenario at the heart of the war game was an effort by the Chinese in 2017 to knock out U.S. telecommunications.
Concerns about a new arms race are unfounded. Russia has collapsed economically and can only talk tough. China is 40 years behind the USA in space technology. The Europeans may be envious, but their multi-party democracies are more sensitive to wasteful spending. They will never devote billions of dollars to space war unless they feel threatened. The only NMD arms race will occur among American defense contractors competing for more funds.
Fears about expanding warfare to space are ridiculous. Space is the ideal place for war, no civilians, no cities, no environmental damage. Mankind should hope for war in space so that war on earth can be banned. Unfortunately, few nations have the resources and skills to challenge the USA in space, so they will rely on traditional methods of warfare down on the surface. Likewise, no "rogue" nation will devote billions of dollars to build, test, and deploy a multi-billion dollar long range missile, when they can simply call a worldwide freight company and arrange for delivery of a crate.
Carlton Meyer editorG2mil@Gmail.com
June 2001 Articles
Letters - comments from G2mil readers
Update Helicopter Assault Tactics - avert future military blunders
Anti-Satellite Lasers - star wars has arrived
Modern Frigates - big navies also need small ships
155mm Blast-Pen Rounds - can devastate armored vehicles
GPADS - silent assault gliders proposed by Mike Sparks
The Airborne Laser Swindle - develop short-range lasers first
Previous G2mil - May 2001 issue
Library Tour - visit G2mil's library
Library Entrance - members only
All material in G2mil Copyright 2001 G2mil, patents pending on some items. Links to the index page (www.G2mil.com) are encouraged, other page names change often.