ALASKA MISSILE DEFENSE EARLY BIRD WEEKLY
By: Ms Hillary Pesanti, Community Relations Specialist
Command Representative for Missile Defense
Note: Click on any storyline for more information.
APRIL 1, 20002-APRIL 5, 2002
ALASKA SPECIFIC NEWS BREAKS
MONDAY, APRIL 1, 2002
TUESDAY, APRIL 2, 2002
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 3, 2002
THURSDAY, APRIL 4, 2002
FRIDAY, APRIL 5, 2002
ALASKA SPECIFIC NEWS BREAKS #5
MDA MOVING AHEAD WITH FT. GREELY PLANS FOLLOWING LEGAL AGREEMENT, Inside Defense Today, April 3, 2002. Following a court-approved agreement with several environmental groups, the MDA is moving ahead with plans to build a national missile defense interceptor test site at Ft. Greely, AK, and carry out an 18-month environmental analysis of an extended test range covering Kodiak, AK and Vandenberg Air Force Base, CA. . . . MDA has yet to declare whether it will actually launch missiles from the Ft. Greely site, but MDA Director Lt. Gen Ronald Kadish has repeatedly told Congress the administration reserves the right to use Ft. Greely as an operational missile defense site, if needed, on a contingency basis. If MDA were to use the Ft. Greely test bed under these circumstances, it would be exempt from any further environmental reviews, according to agency spokesman Lt. Col. Richard Lehner. [Editor’s Note: It is not exempt; deployment was covered in the July 2000 Environmental Impact Statement] Last August, eight environmental advocacy groups . . . filed a civil suit against Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, Kadish and the Defense Department, asking that a full environmental impact statement be undertaken for the . . . NMD program. . . . The administration completed an environmental assessment of the Ft. Greely plan. . . . That assessment concluded with a finding of "no significant impact" to the environment surrounding Ft. Greely. . . . Under the terms of the agreement the environmental groups would not challenge that finding and in return the MDA would do an environmental impact statement . . . for an extended test range. . . . On March 19, Judge Colleen Kolla-Kotelly of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia approved the agreement. In a statement released to Inside Missile Defense, Lehner said construction at Ft. Greely and upgrading a Cobra Dane radar on Shemya Island would begin this summer. . . . "We have also agreed to complete an EIS for locating two missile silos at Kodiak Island for launching of either target missiles or interceptors from the existing state-owned commercial/government launch facility at Kodiak, and also at Vandenberg AFB, CA, and will hold public meetings in April," Lehner said in the March 26 statement. "If a decision is made in the future to actually launch interceptors out of Greely, we will do the proper environmental analysis of that proposed action," Lehner added. "We will also do the appropriate analysis if a decision is made to build an X-band radar anywhere on the range other than the places already covered in the 2000 deployment EIS; i.e., Shemya, Clear [AFB, AK], or Greely."
DELTA JUNCTION--In an about face, Department of Defense officials are saying Fort Greely School can be reopened to students. Delta/Greely School District officials are weighing the pros and cons of reopening the school at Fort Greely Army Post, five miles south of the main campus. Superintendent Dan Beck told parents assembled at an informational meeting Thursday that there are many variables in such a decision. "I'm not ready to make a recommendation to the board to open Fort Greely School next year or the following year," Beck said. "I'd rather not use it." School officials got the word early last week that the deputy commander of Ground-based Missile Defense had no problem with the school being used again. Earlier Space and Missile Command officials had said using the school was not an option. That prompted the school, city and Deltana Community Corp. to send letters in late January asking Alaska's congressional delegation for funds to build a new school to replace the 54,000 square feet at Fort Greely School. Fort Greely School was used until May 2000. At the time of its closing, it contained grades four through eight. Beck indicated its most likely future use would be as a middle school for grades six through eight. Neither school officials nor the parents assembled were happy about the military's change of position. They want a new school. "I don't want my child out at Fort Greely School," said Janice Weller, whose younger daughters are in fifth and seventh grades. Weller, a public health nurse, said she is concerned about safety and access. "I think we need to put our effort as a community to lobbying for a new school. We need to quit putting Band-Aids on."
Delta School was built in the early 1960s. Fort Greely School was built in the late 1950s, with the gym added in about 1985. Beck said Defense Department officials assured him that access will not be an issue. He said a new road dedicated to school traffic could be built and that a fence could enclose the campus, which would be just over a mile from the missile defense test bed. That, officials tell him, will be a safe distance even when the installation is operational. Some parents remained skeptical. But while Beck says missile defense could pay for the road and the fence, Delta City Administration Pete Hallgren said he believes the $2.9 million expected in federal impact funds in fiscal 2004 would be used for that project. The school is slated to receive $500,000 this fiscal year and next, but much of that money will go toward paying the bills to keep Fort Greely School open. The gym at the school is used for practices. Beck said later that the $2.9 million is to make Fort Greely School operational again. But most of the impact funds coming into the community are not committed. "Those funds have not been earmarked for anything right now," he said. Laurel Jackson, federal and special programs director for the school district, said the city and school should pool missile defense impact funds to find money for a new school. "There seems to be pockets of money here and there," Jackson said. "It takes people putting it together and saying, 'We want a school."' The city expects to receive $9.6 million in impact funds for fiscal 2002 and an additional $8.6 million in 2003. But city officials have already earmarked 2002 funds for landfill and road improvements and 2003 money for city buildings and other capital projects. While some people at the meeting could see that using the school might be necessary given an expected influx of students in the coming years due to more workers at Fort Greely, Pogo Mine and other spinoff businesses, they are afraid using the school might reduce the chances of getting funds for new construction. "I think we'd be sending the wrong message to open it," said Randy Bealer, whose three younger children remain at Delta schools. "We'd be saying it's a workable option." But history teacher Howard Beito, whose younger daughter is a seventh grader, was more pragmatic. He said using the school will help lower the teacher/student ratio and give students badly needed gym time. And, Beito noted, the state calculates the footage at Fort Greely School against Delta/Greely School District when it determines who needs new construction funds the most.
"It's getting counted against us anyway," Beito said.
GLOBAL NEWS BREAKS #5
MONDAY, APRIL 1, 2002
FAST TRACK CONTINUES FOR MISSILE DEFENSE WITH BILLIONS AT STAKE, Daily Press Inc., Daily Press, March 25, 2002. Last month, E.C. "Pete" Aldridge, Pentagon undersecretary for acquisition, said the Bush administration decided to "fast- track" the development of the military's missile defense system, which the Congressional Budget Office says could cost as much as $170 billion. The military puts systems on a "fast track" when it wants to hurry them into development. It means the programs are exempt from regulations that specify requirements for new weapons, including the traditional reporting about program time lines, effectiveness and costs. . . . It means that many of the missile system's testing efforts will be free from oversight by the Pentagon's test-evaluation office. . . . Aldridge said the moves were intended to cut out intrusive paperwork, overlapping requests for information and other unnecessary and time-consuming demands. "We needed to give them a process by which they could put all these things together, without all the encumbrances of having so much oversight and so many briefings that have to be done at multiple levels," Aldridge was quoted as saying. . . . In a recent report, the GAO had warned previous administrations had tried to push missile defense programs through too quickly.
NORAD WANTS AIRSHIP TO FIND MISSILE THREATS, Defense News, April 1-7, 2002. The North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) wants to use a high-altitude airship to detect cruise missiles and monitor vessels and other potential threats approaching the continent. Operating at 70,000 feet, the airships would be outfitted with radar and other sensors to conduct wide-area surveillance while staying aloft as long as six months at a time, according to NORAD officials interviewed during the last several weeks by Defense News. The U.S. Army is also interested in using the unmanned and untethered airships as communication relay stations that could be transported to a theater of operations when needed. Canada, partner with the United States in the command, also is studying whether it should take part in the proposal to develop such airships, Canadian Department of National Defence officials told Defense News March 25. NORAD has joined with the U.S. Army’s Strategic Missile Defense Command for an advanced concept and technology demonstration proposal on the high-altitude airships, U.S. Air Force Col. Mark Davis said. "What we’re trying to do is get support for us to build a small one of these to do a proof of concept," Davis, NORAD’s chief of requirements and plans division, said in a March 15 interview. . . . "The real issue is an integration issue, to be able to produce enough power to do a radar or a communications platform and still be able to have an aircraft fly at 70,000 feet and maintain an orbit," he added. "So it’s quite a challenge." The airship likely would have to be run by both fuel cells and solar power. The Boeing Co., Chicago; Lockheed Martin Naval Electronics Surveillance Systems, Akron, Ohio; and Sky Station International, Washington, are among the companies interested in the advanced concept and technology demonstration proposal. . . . If approved, the advanced concept and technology demonstration project would run from 2003 to 2005. If that airship was successful, then consideration would be given to proceed to building a full-scale production airship, Davis said. Such an aircraft could be around 150 meters in length with a diameter of around 50 meters.
CRUISE MISSILE DEFENSE, Aerospace Daily, April 1, 2002. With the development of systems that are capable of defending against both cruise missiles and ballistic missiles, the MDA will have to define its role in the cruise missile arena, says Lt. Gen. Joseph Cosumano, the head of Army Space and Missile Defense Command and Army Space Command. Cruise missile defense is “really part of the air defense mission area,” he says, but the question in the future is, can you have a system that protects against both cruise and ballistic missile threats? “I think the answer is yes, we already do,” he claims. PAC-3, for example, can defeat both cruise and ballistic missiles, Cosumano says. With the development of the Medium Extended Air Defense System (MEADS), there will be an even better capability against both cruise and ballistic threats. MDA needs to define “their involvement in future cruise missile development activities,” he says. “I think [MDA is] thinking their way through.”
BOOST PHASE PROPOSALS, Defense Daily, April 1, 2002. The Pentagon is conducting a variety of studies on boost phase intercept technologies and options for future land- and sea-based missile defense systems. . . . One option under consideration uses a boost phase interceptor integrated with an Aegis platform, one industry official notes. “Aegis allows you to do boost, midcourse, and terminal defense,” he adds. The Pentagon is in the midst of evaluating that proposal and others since industry responded to a recent broad area announcement for ideas on boost phase technologies.
COY ON DECOYS, Defense Daily, April 1, 2002. The MDA may not be talking so openly about its countermeasures as the Ground-based Missile Defense (GMD) test program moves forward, DoD officials say. MDA officials said they used additional balloon decoys in the last successful flight test. But, as those decoys become more complex, it’s unlikely MDA will spell out what they are testing against, an official says. “Why would MDA let potential enemies know what they are testing against?” the official says.
PEACE GROUPS RALLY AGAINST STAR WARS, People's Press Printing Society Morning Star (England), March 30, 2002. Peace campaigners will converge on London in the thousands today to demand an end to US plans to dominate the world with space-based weapons of mass destruction. Activists will meet in Hyde Park to join the national "Don't start wars" demonstration, which has been organized by the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament and is backed by the Stop the War Coalition. . . . The CND demo will send a clear message to Prime Minister Tony Blair and US President George Bush that the "Star Wars" missile defence program poses a grave threat to world peace. . . . CND chairwoman Carol Naughton, who will speak at the rally, said yesterday: "We will send a strong message to next week's summit in Texas between President Bush and Prime Minister Blair - don't start wars!" Ms Naughton accused ministers of aiding and abetting US imperialism with their unconditional support for President Bush's plans. "Recent statements by Foreign Secretary Jack Straw and Defence Secretary Geoff Hoon indicate just how deeply new Labor has become enmeshed in the Republican right's aggressive agenda, " she noted.
SMDC SELECTS CONTRACTORS FOR NEW LARGE TARGET VEHICLE STUDIES, Defense Daily, March 29, 2002. Army Space and Missile Defense Command (SMDC) has selected L-3 Communications and Lockheed Martin to study the design and feasibility of a new large target vehicle to support missile defense testing. The companies will study the development of a reliable, target launch vehicle under the Missile Defense Agency's (MDA) Enhanced Target Delivery System (ETDS) program managed by SMDC. The companies were each awarded $600,000 four-month contracts. The ETDS study is geared to devise for development and eventual fielding a next-generation target system capable of launching larger, more massive target vehicles with heavier and more complex payload suites for future ballistic missile defense testing. Both companies have provided target vehicles for a variety of MDA's test plans. Under the new program, the new target system must address a variety of engagement scenarios, including launching from remote, unimproved land-based sites, as well as from sea-based and air-based platforms.
TUESDAY, APRIL 2, 2002
CHINA ASSEMBLES MISSILES NEAR COAST FACING TAIWAN, Washington Times, April 2, 2002. China's military is deploying more short-range ballistic missiles near the coast opposite Taiwan, as tensions in the region are increasing over growing U.S. support for the island. U.S. intelligence agencies tracked a shipment of some 20 CSS-7 short-range missiles to a missile base near the town of Yongan in Fujian province. The missiles were delivered in the past two weeks and were identified by U.S. military intelligence. . . . The shipment is part of a continuing Chinese missile buildup that has raised questions among senior defense officials about Beijing's announced commitment to seeking a peaceful resolution of its dispute with Taiwan. Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz said . . . in August that the buildup of missiles near Taiwan has been steady and is destabilizing. Mr. Wolfowitz said the deployments are counter to China's announced policy of seeking a peaceful resolution of its dispute with Taiwan. "I don't see that building up your missiles is part of a fundamental policy of peaceful resolution," he said. U.S. intelligence agencies now estimate that China has between 350 and 400 missiles deployed at several bases within firing range of Taiwan. The missiles are considered destabilizing because their flight time is so short - they can reach their targets within minutes - and there is no defense. Last year, the Bush administration deferred a decision on whether to sell advanced Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyers to Taiwan in the hope that Beijing could be persuaded to halt the missile buildup against Taiwan. U.S. officials have said the new CSS-7s may lead to sales of the Aegis equipped warships to Taiwan. . . . The Pentagon took steps to update its war plans to defend Taiwan last year after President Bush announced the United States would do "whatever it takes" to defend the island from mainland attack. Chinese missile deployments opposite Taiwan have been continuing at a rate of at least 50 new missiles per year, defense officials have said. Additionally, the Chinese are believed to be increasing the accuracy of the short-range missile force, the officials said. . . . CIA Director George J. Tenet told Congress last month that China is continuing to "upgrade and expand the conventional short-range ballistic missile force it has arrayed against Taiwan."
L-3 COMMUNICATIONS' COLEMAN AEROSPACE LAUNCHES TARGET VEHICLE FOR THEATER MISSILE DEFENSE PROGRAM, Business Wire, April 1, 2002. L-3 Communications announced today that Coleman Aerospace successfully launched a Hera target missile for the U.S. Missile Defense Agency (MDA). The test occurred on March 21, 2002, at 9:23 A.M. EST at high altitude over the central portion of the White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico. The Hera Modified Ballistic Reentry Vehicle-3 target supported the Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) Operational Test/Developmental Test 1A (OT/DT-1A) mission. Preliminary analysis of flight data indicates that all target objectives were met. . . . Coleman provides ballistic missile targets and launch services for the Missile Defense Agency. . . . Coleman is the only company to successfully achieve air launch of a ballistic missile target.
BUSH, PUTIN MAY SIGN ACCORDS IN MAY, AP Online, March 29, 2002. U.S. and Russian negotiators have made so much progress on offensive weapons and a new strategic framework that President Bush and Vladimir Putin may sign agreements on both at their Moscow summit in May, the State Department says. "There are issues that remain to be discussed, as there always are in this sort of affair," John Bolton, undersecretary for arms control and international security, told reporters. . . . "But we're making good progress, and I think it accurately reflects the maturing and merging relationship that is both strong and deep and hopefully will culminate in being able to sign and release these documents in May," he said. "Their determination to move forward is quite evident." Among the issues still to be worked out are the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and a U.S. proposal for a new way to count warheads as the United States and Russia reduce their strategic arsenals to 1,700-2,200 each. . . . When U.S. and Russian officials spoke last fall about Bush's plan to forge ahead with missile defense, the United States said the two countries were not a danger to each other, but "we both faced threats from other states, from rogue states," Bolton said. "On the Russian side, their threat assessment ultimately was not that different than ours," he said. Russian military officials recognized they faced even greater danger. "The countries we're concerned about are closer to Russia than they are to the United States," Bolton said. He said the United States hopes to work with Russia to develop defenses against the common threat, but that can't happen until the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty expires on June 13, six months after Bush announced the United States was withdrawing from the pact. Citing what he called a "curiosity" in the ABM treaty, Bolton said it "precludes the sharing of technology and research and development on missile defense from one country to another." So cooperation must wait until the treaty expires.
RUSSIA PLANS TO FINISH NUCLEAR PLANT IN IRAN, Washington Post, March 28, 2002. Russia will finish building a nuclear power plant in Iran despite U.S. opposition and is considering a tentative request from North Korea for a similar plant, Russia's top nuclear official said. The United States has urged Russia to abandon a 1995 contract with Iran to complete a nuclear reactor at Bushehr, saying the project could help Iran build a nuclear bomb. . . . On a conciliatory note, Atomic Energy Minister Alexander Rumyantsev said Russia viewed the U.S. concerns with "great attention" and hoped for a "compromise that would help strengthen confidence and peace while allowing Russia to reap economic benefits." But he also said his ministry was looking at the request from North Korea, which the Bush administration suspects is developing nuclear weapons.
THE REAL COSTS OF MISSILE DEFENSE, San Diego Union-Tribune, [Opinion, James O. Goldsborough], April 1, 2002. Add up Congressional Budget Office numbers on missile defense and you find that, at $238 billion, it is now the Pentagon's largest program. If cost projections for previous major weapons systems are an example, you can double that $238 billion. The Bush administration's plans for a "layered," three-tiered system will make it easily the most expensive project ever. . . . Governments make choices. In a democracy, those choices presumably reflect what the people want. But popular support for NMD is based on what government is not saying, not what it is saying. Little by little we are learning about NMD's real costs. A few days ago, we learned that doctors are turning away Medicare patients, who represent a rising segment of our population, because government has cut Medicare payments to doctors. . . . And there is Social Security. Under current Bush plans, Social Security surpluses will be spent on the defense buildup, instead of being used for paying down the debt, meaning less money will be available for paying for the boomers' retirement. No way to avoid it, says the administration: The costs of Sept. 11. Wrong. National missile defenses would not have prevented Sept. 11. . . . How many people, for example, make a connection between NMD and immigration? Yet there is a link. If we must dip into Social Security to pay for NMD, then we will need more young workers to pay for the retired boomers. Since Americans aren't making babies, we must import them. To argue for NMD is really to argue for increased immigration, and vice versa. . . . Let's not forget the cost of pursuing NMD for its own sake - little things like Medicare, Social Security and increased immigration.
TESTING OF AIRBORNE LASER DELAYED A YEAR, Albuquerque Journal, April 2, 2002. The graduating test for knocking down an in-flight ballistic missile over the Pacific Ocean is being pushed back at least one year, the latest delay for the program, said program spokesman Kenneth Englade. Air Force researchers and engineers from a mix of defense contractors now hope to knock down a flying missile from a laser-tipped 747 freighter by 2004. The postponement comes shortly after the Pentagon's Missile Defense Agency acquired the Airborne Laser program from the Air Force. . . . The 8-year-old effort is aimed at intercepting ballistic missiles while in their boost phase. Officials had hoped to have at the end of the decade a fleet of modified 747 aircraft able to locate enemy missiles, track their projections and prematurely send them tumbling back to Earth by blowing up the booster with a chemically fueled laser. Most of the physical modifications to the prototype are nearly finished, Englade said. Most notably, the main laser lens turret has been mounted onto the front of the 747, replacing the nose. . . . The craft will be taken this summer to Edwards Air Force Base in California for ground testing. In-flight laser testing will follow at White Sands Missile Range, Englade said, although no timetable is being provided. Eventually, engineers hope to have the airplane shoot down a ballistic missile fired from Vandenburg Air Force Base in California over the Pacific Ocean. . . . Air Force Lt. Gen. Ron Kadish, head of the Missile Defense Agency, recently told The Wall Street Journal that the Airborne Laser is "within our grasp."
OFFUTT PERFECT FOR MISSILE-DEFENSE HOME, TWO LAWMAKERS SAY, Associated Press, April 2, 2002. Two members of Nebraska's congressional delegation are pushing for the Pentagon to pick Offutt Air Force Base as the home base for a new laser missile-defense system. By the end of the decade, the Air Force hopes to have seven modified Boeing 747s that could zap enemy missiles in flight with a laser beam. Offutt is one of a handful of bases experienced in flying such large jets, said Rep. Lee Terry (R-NE). He said Offutt, just south of Omaha, should be considered as a home base for the new Airborne Laser Missile Defense mission. "It's a good fit for Offutt," Terry said. "We are trying to develop a game plan that we can communicate Offutt Air Force Base's assets, its positive qualities, to the Pentagon as they make a choice on where to locate that particular mission.". . U.S. Sen. Ben Nelson (D-NE), a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, said that under current technology, the airplanes probably would have to stand watch at overseas bases for quick response to a missile launch. But the airplanes might require a stateside home base to which they would return for repairs, training and other support, similar to the RC-135 reconnaissance airplanes that use Offutt as a home base to deploy to locations all over the world, he said. "What I'm hoping is that there will be some service and support that will be necessary and, of course, the facilities at Offutt are just first-rate," he said. "They do have the capacity to service and support 747s and laser-oriented weapons."
CHINESE MISSILES CONCERN PENTAGON, Washington Times, April 3, 2002. China's buildup of short-range missiles near its southeastern coast is "threatening" to Taiwan and poses a danger to sea lanes and ports in the region, the Pentagon said yesterday. "These missiles are clearly designed to project a threatening posture and to try and intimidate the people and the democratically elected government of Taiwan," said Pentagon spokesman Lt. Cmdr. Jeff Davis. . . . U.S. intelligence officials disclosed to The Times that China in the past three weeks moved some 20 additional CSS-7 short-range ballistic missiles to a base at Yongan, within striking distance of Taiwan. The missiles are regarded as destabilizing because their presence increases tensions and the danger that an incident could trigger a conflict. . . . The Chinese missile force near Taiwan has increased from fewer than 50 in 1997 to more than 350 today. The Defense Intelligence Agency estimates that the missile force of both CSS-6s and CSS-7s will grow to as many as 650 by 2005. . . . The Bush administration announced last year that it would supply Taiwan with up to eight diesel-electric submarines . . . but stopped short of offering more advanced Arleigh Burke-class warships, which included Aegis battle-management systems that could be used in future missile defenses. . . . [China’s] strategic nuclear buildup includes two new long-range mobile missile systems and a new class of ballistic-missile submarines.
JAPAN AND THE UNITED STATES: THE ESSENTIAL ALLIANCE , The Washington Quarterly, Spring 2002. . . . The alliance between Japan and the United States represents the primary bilateral security relationship for both governments. . . . Since abandoning its sovereign right to the use of force other than for purely defensive purposes, Japan considers the alliance the sine qua non of the country's security. The Japan-U.S. alliance is not just Japan's primary security relationship -- it is its only one. . . . Some of the actions that recent U.S. administrations have taken in the conduct of foreign policy have been interpreted in the region as giving little consideration to the opinions of close U.S. allies, much less to world opinion. Some perceive the United States as acting in a manner that maximizes its own power and profits while undermining the legitimacy of international institutions. The Japanese are concerned that this behavior may eventually adversely affect the strong political ties between the two nations. . . . Many Japanese were unable to comprehend the Bush administration's recent announcement of its intention to withdraw from the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty. Many believed that the United States failed to make its case to the international community that pursuing a national missile defense system was more desirable than other cooperative means of increasing U.S. and global security. Although Japan's biggest concern with the United States is the U.S. tendency toward unilateralism, the United States finds worrisome Japan's pacifist tendency in the face of international security issues. . . . The North Korean military maintains an arsenal of thousands of rocket launchers. . . . The DPRK's immense stock of weapons includes large numbers of Nodong missiles capable of striking Japan's western coastal regions and probably longer-range missiles capable of hitting every major Japanese city.
AIR FORCE OFFICE TO TEST SPIRAL ARMS DEVELOPMENT, Defense News, April 1-7, 2002. A new U.S. Air Force acquisition office will apply innovative business practices to 10 high-profile programs in an attempt to prove it can cut the time it takes to field a weapon system by 75 percent and produce more suitable weapons. The new office, the Acquisition Center of Excellence (ACE), has chosen programs in various stages to show the service, the Pentagon and Congress how spiral development can minimize cycle time and maintain technological advantages. "We’re making a promise that you’re not going to get in three or four years what you might get if you waited 10 or 12, but you’re going to have something … you can use," said Terry Little, director of the new ACE office, which opened in January. . . . The larger challenge is convincing lawmakers and the Pentagon’s testing community that spiral development is the appropriate way ahead. [A] defense consultant said it will take a very long time to convince Congress that spiral development will provide a good value for the money. "The push back on Capitol Hill is that they don’t want to buy anything until the program completes testing and is proven," said a defense policy analyst at Business Executives for National Security.
PUBLIC AIRS CONCERNS OVER AIRBORNE LASER, Santa Maria Times, April 4, 2002. A Defense Department program that would use lasers aboard an airplane to shoot down enemy missiles generated support and concern during a one-hour public meeting here. About 20 people attended Wednesday night's meeting . . . where three local citizens made comments about the Missile Defense Agency's Airborne Laser program. "The Airborne Laser is a weapon system that is designed to spot, track, engage and destroy ballistic missiles using a weapons-class laser," said Rich Garcia, an Airborne Laser program spokesman from Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M. Called a scoping meeting, the session addressed concerns about a draft supplemental environmental impact statement on the ABL's test program. The program has already completed this process once, with meetings five years ago and a finalized environmental impact statement. But, the report's age and a better defined test program prompted the preparation of a supplemental document, officials said. . . . Airborne Laser is one of several systems in development under the Pentagon's "layered approach" to missile defense. ABL would shoot down ballistic missiles in the boost phase, which would send the weapons' debris raining back on or near those who fired them, officials said. The system would use different types of lasers aboard a modified Boeing 747 aircraft for tracking the missile, finding its weak spot and compensating for atmospheric disturbances. A high-energy chemical oxygen-iodine laser ultimately would destroy the weapon. During the test phase, plans call for using a low-energy laser. The plane would have to be within hundreds of miles for the laser to strike
ARMY DEEMS SECOND PAC-3 IOT&E INTERCEPT ATTEMPT A SUCCESS, Inside Missile Defense, April 3, 2002. Preliminary data show that missiles launched during a March 21 Patriot Advanced Capability-3 system test at White Sands Missile Range, NM, hit their targets, the Army has announced. This was the second of four tests planned during the system's initial operational test and evaluation, scheduled to conclude in May. . . . The latest flight test comes just five weeks after an inaccurate guidance cue caused a PAC-3 missile to miss its cruise missile target on Feb. 16. In that same test, a PAC-2 missile missed a sub-scale aircraft as a result of a ground system radar fault. The radar recovered and enabled another PAC-2 missile to successfully hit its target, a QF-4 full-scale Phantom aircraft. . . . Army officials have also said that the mixed success of the Feb. 16 test will not affect the rest of the IOT&E, which must be completed before the Pentagon decides if the PAC-3 system is ready for full production. The Army Test and Evaluation Command is expected to send a report by September to the Missile Defense Agency and some members of Army senior leadership encouraging full-rate production. . . . The PAC-3 system has completed two controlled test flights, five tactical ballistic missile body-to-body intercepts, three cruise missile kills and one aircraft kill.
BEIJING'S MISSILE DEPLOYMENT WATCHED: DEFENSE OFFICIAL, Central News Agency (Taiwan), April 3, 2002. Beijing's missile deployment in southeastern mainland China is being closely monitored by the armed forces, Vice Defense Minister Chen Chao-ming said Wednesday . . . amid foreign news reports that Beijing has posted 20 more CSS-7 missiles to its missile base in Yungan, Fujian Province, directly opposite Taiwan. Chen played down the reports in Tuesday's Washington Times, saying the 20 missiles are merely replacing older ones. . . . Chen also described the island's U.S.-made Patriot anti-missile systems as "only just workable." The missile defense system needs to be used in conjunction with an early warning system to be fully effective, Chen said. . . . " He refused to comment further on the reliability of the Patriot system presently in use by the armed forces, saying only that "its interception rate may not be as high as expected." Taiwan bought three Patriot batteries -- 200 missiles in all -- from the United States in 1998.
CHINA CALLS FOR A BAN ON WEAPONS IN SPACE, Business Recorder, April 4, 2002. China . . . called for a global covenant to prevent an outer space arms race. . . . "The international community should adopt effective preventive measures and make a special international agreement to ban any weapons of destruction from outer space," . . . Vice Foreign Minister Qiao Zonghuai [said]. . . . Military strategies to gain an upper hand in outer space could spark an extraterrestrial arms race, Qiao said, in a veiled reference to recent US policies. Washington pulled out of the 1972 ABM treaty last year to forge ahead with plans to develop a missile defence system, much to Beijing's displeasure. China fears a US missile shield, if operational, could emasculate its small nuclear force and protect Taiwan.
FEW U.S. LAWMAKERS VOTE FOR PEACE, Capital Times (Madison, WI), [Editorial], April 2, 2002. In most western democracies, peace is treated seriously as a political issue. . . . In the United States, peace is less well established as a political issue; and, for the most part, elected officials are unwilling to stand tough even for necessary anti-war positions. Even in the face of overwhelming evidence that the Bush administration is misguided in its approach to Iraq, Israel, limitless "axis of evil" warfare, the Star Wars national missile defense boondoggle and military spending as it relates to budget priorities, most members of Congress have been satisfied to serve as little more than rubber stamps for wrongheaded presidential policies.
INFOSINO: MDA LOOKING FOR NEW IDEAS ON BOOST, SHIP-BASED INTERCEPT, Aerospace Daily, April 5, 2002. The MDA is interested in proposals from industry on alternative methods of boost phase ballistic missile intercept, as well as new ways of placing interceptor technology on ships, according to the agency’s chief scientist. The window of opportunity for intercepting missiles in their boost phase is only about two minutes, according to Chief Scientist Charles Infosino. MDA’s current solution to this problem is the Airborne Laser. . . . “We clearly need ideas across the board, “ Infosino told the Daily, but “We’d like to see more ideas, certainly from the rocket people, as to how do you [intercept boost phase missiles], besides directed energy. In the area of midcourse ground based defense, Infosino believes the key technology need for the future will be sensors that are better able to distinguish weapons from decoys. “I don’t think we need more midcourse hit-to-kill vehicles as much as we need better sensors to do the discrimination, and to really come to grips with how the rockets that we’re going to need . . . can be put on ships,” he said. Last November, MDA Director Gen. Ronald Kadish established the Advanced Concepts Office specifically to act as a “ clearing house” for innovative technology proposals from industry, Infosino said. “Lots of proposals were coming in, but then we had the technology being developed in a different [area],” Infosino explained. [Kadish] is in the process now of combining those two, so that you have the resources combined with the people who are evaluating the proposals. “We felt that the technology [group] was a bit isolated,” he continued. “The office now that’s getting these proposals, if they like them, can send them to an executing organization in the boost phase segment, or the midcourse, or something like that, and get attention a lot more than the technology group itself was able to do before.”. . . Infosino said MDA probably will begin releasing broad agency announcements (BAAs) requesting technology proposals in specific areas on an annual basis. . . . MDA also receives hundreds of proposals through the agency’s Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) program.
NAVY: CUT, DON'T TRIM, WEAPONS PROGRAMS, Electronic Engineering Times, April 1 2002. You don't often hear the profligate spenders in the U.S. military volunteering to cancel costly weapons programs. But the Navy is apparently doing just that. . . . . Vice Adm. Joseph Dyer, commander of the Naval Air Systems Command, declared it's cheaper to eliminate weapons programs than to scale them back. . . . The Navy's new weapon-procurement religion follows the surprising cancellation of the service's entry in the missile defense sweepstakes, the Navy Area Wide interceptor program. The Pentagon reportedly spent $2.4 billion on the sea-based system before it was terminated recently, 32 percent over budget. DOD invoked for the first time an acquisition law called the Nunn-McCurdy Act to kill the program.
CHINA DENIES REPORT OF MISSILE BUILDUP, Washington Times, April 5, 2002. China yesterday denied a report in The Washington Times it had deployed a new batch of missiles against Taiwan. "The report has ulterior motives and is to confuse public opinion," the official Xinhua news agency quoted Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Zhang Qiyue as saying at a regular press conference. The Times reported Tuesday that U.S. intelligence agencies had tracked a shipment of some 20 CSS-7 short-range missiles to a missile base near the town of Yongan in Fujian province near the coast opposite Taiwan.
CHINA INTELLIGENCE FIGHT, Washington Times, [ Inside The Ring], April 5, 2002. The U.S. intelligence community is putting the finishing touches on a major report on China's strategic missile forces. The new national intelligence estimate (NEA), intended as a consensus of all intelligence agencies, is said to minimize the buildup of China's strategic missile forces, a perennial problem of China analysis produced at the CIA and the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA). Some political infighting over the new estimate has spilled over to the Pentagon from the CIA, which dominates the estimate-producing National Intelligence Council. The Pentagon this week was set to release its annual report to Congress on the People's Liberation Army (PLA) and Chinese military power. The report is said to warn that China's strategic forces buildup poses a direct and future threat to the United States. Concerning China's growing military prowess, the report will reflect the much more realistic views that have taken shape under Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld and Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz. Final preparations to send the report to Capitol Hill were ready but a Pentagon spokesman then said, after checking on the status of the report, that its release "is not imminent." . . . The administration is now trying to square the hard-line Defense Department PLA military power report, which will be made public, with the soft-line intelligence community estimate that will stay secret.
JAPAN-U.S. SECURITY TALKS TO FOCUS ON MISSILE DEFENSE, Jiji Press Ticker Service, April 5, 2002. Japan and the United States will hold a meeting of senior foreign and defense officials in Washington April 16 to discuss security issues. . . . Missile defense is expected to be high on the agenda as Japan and the United States remain apart over how they will cooperate in the initiative. Japan proposes that any missile defense system in Japan will be operated at its own discretion, while the United States insists on interoperability of the two countries' systems. The United States plans to seek explanations about Japanese insistence over the initiative, a U.S. administration source said. The two countries have been conducting joint research on missile defense since FY99. . . . Among Japanese participants will be Chikahito Harada, deputy director-general of the Foreign Ministry's North American Bureau, and Kohei Masuda, defense councilor of the Defense Agency. On the U.S. side will be Peter Brookes, deputy assistant secretary of defense for Asian and Pacific affairs, and Christopher LaFleur, deputy assistant secretary of state.
BUSHEHR REACTOR TOPS IRANIAN TALKS, Moscow Times, April 3, 2002. Visiting Iranian Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi and Russian officials on Thursday discussed the final phase of construction of a Russian-built nuclear reactor in Iran -- a project that has caused alarm in the United States and cast a continual shadow over U.S.-Russian relations. Moscow has dismissed U.S. warnings that the $800 million light-water reactor in Bushehr could help Iran develop nuclear weapons, and insisted the plant would remain under international control. The Bushehr reactor is set to be built by December 2003 and start up by 2005. Officials from the two countries have discussed plans for building a second reactor at the same plant. . . . Alongside concern about the Bushehr plant, U.S. officials have alleged that some Russian companies were leaking missile technology to Iran. . . . Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov reiterated Moscow's strong denial that Russia had assisted Iran's missile or nuclear weapons program. "Russia's alleged supply of nuclear or missile technologies to Iran has been discussed for a long time, but it is nothing but a myth," Ivanov said.
DOD TO BECOME MORE SPACE DEPENDENT, ADMIRAL SAYS, Defense Daily, April 3, 2002. The Navy and its sister services in DoD will become more dependent on critical products and capabilities provided by space-based assets, according to Vice Adm. Richard Mayo, commander of Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command (SPAWAR). In particular, Mayo noted that there will be increasing emphasis on the importance of maintaining control over the domain of space, protecting assets and developing capabilities to deny space products to adversaries. . . . Navy acquisition chief John Young . . . said achieving network centricity would include better exploitation of space, especially during the prosecution of very complex air defense command and control missions such as ballistic missile defense. "I believe the Navy needs to better integrate space into how it does business," Young said. "I hope we will grow our capabilities and responsibilities in space." Young believes that in the future the emphasis on Navy space operations will shift from the larger communications-centric operations of today to future capabilities employing space-based sensors.